Last month, I wrote about Facebook using their users to translate their pages. Then users vote on the best translations of the site to determine whether it will be used into a translated version of the site. Facebook users successfully translated the site into French, German, and Spanish. The Spanish version is officially rolled out now.
Users can set their language on Facebook to be in Spanish and users visiting from Latin America will be redirected to a Spanish-translated page. Facebook has 2.8 million users in Latin America and Spain as of right now [Source: TechCrunch]. Facebook’s approach to site translation and message-tailoring is different from MySpace’s approach: open offices in locations where they want to open translated versions. However, Facebook did open an office in London to capture more market-share around Europe.
Another reason why Facebook may be introducing new languages is to counter companies abroad from opening up exact clones of the social network, like StudiVZ. StudiVZ was a site that looked almost exactly like Facebook but was written in German.