I occasionally find myself amused to see in my blog stats that someone has translated my blog into another language. Being so inquisitive, I often follow their lead.

Yesterday morning, I noticed that one of the referring pages was a Google translation of this post into Korean. Naturally, I had a look to see what my blog would look like written in Hangul. As you might expect, it looks really cool, except that I kept noticing a telephone number, the same telephone number, all the way through. Here’s what it looks like:

케빈 Rudd 전화 +852 2907 2112, 자신의 게시물 – 사과 연설에서 거듭 사과를하는 이유는 원상 회복 과정에 필요한는 그들을 처음으로보고 이후에 화해와 일반적으로합니다.

Strangely, each and every time this telephone number appears, it is preceded by the characters 전화, which, according to a Korean-reading friend of mine, means phone, and the whole thing is immediately preceded by Rudd. Looking at the corresponding English of each line (it pops up when you scroll over a line of Hangul), it appears that the phone number is purely being inserted and has no corresponding constituent in the English.

To put this another way, the string of letters Rudd in English, becomes Rudd 전화 +852 2907 2112 in Hangul.

In an attempt to track this a little further to its source, I typed “Rudd” into Google’s translation page, and sure enough, the phone number emerges. This tells me that it’s an artefact of Google translator, and not some mysterious subliminal message that I’ve subconsciously coded into my blog for the sole benefit of Korean readers.

I’m a little discombobulated1 by this, so if you know anything more about this oddity, or could even posit an explanation, I’d love to hear it.

Someone might even like to put their neck on the line and ring the number…

  1. I’ve always wanted to use that word. []