'Terrible': Doctor's office slammed for 'embarrassing' poster

·News Reporter
·3-min read

A doctor's office has been targeted over a bizarre poster that was supposed to make it easier for people to request an interpreter, but has likely made the task painstakingly more difficult. 

A man photographed the poster inside his doctor's office in the US state of Missouri and later shared it online, leaving social media users to work out what made it unique. 

The poster instructed people to "please point to your language" from an extensive list of languages, including Cantonese, French, Mandarin and Russian. 

Patients theoretically would then be able to indicate to a health worker the kind of interpreter they require so they can accurately communicate what healthcare they need. 

People in a doctor's office.
The poster caught the attention of a man at his doctor's office in Missouri (not pictured). Source: Getty

While on paper the initiative appeared aptly inclusive, one major shortfall meant the poster was completely redundant. 

Instead of the languages being properly displayed with the symbols and signs included in the diverse list, each language was a compilation of letters, punctuation and numbers from a standard English keypad.

Ethiopian Semitic language, Amharic, was displayed as an incorrect line of different sized lettering, colons, numbers, apostrophes and several equal signs. 

The western Iranian language, Farsi, was mostly blank space, small lettering, arrows, dashes, dots and commas. 

Picture of the interpreter poster shared online.
This poster raised eyebrows for how majorly it missed the mark. Source: Facebook

The Japanese row featured predominantly capital letters and a collection of random symbols that had absolutely no likeness to the real symbols.

Hundreds baffled by strange poster

The poster attracted a huge response on Facebook after being shared on Tuesday, with more than 1000 people reacting to it, many of who were baffled at how it came to be displayed. 

"Potentially, someone was so ignorant about other languages that they thought these represented their actual alphabets. I literally can't think of another reason for how this was printed and displayed," one person wrote in a comment.

"How could someone put this up. So obviously wrong. Embarrassing," another wrote.  

"I love that someone looked at this paper and was like yeah that’s probably what their languages look like I don’t know," a third said.

"That is so terrible! A for effort. F for execution," someone else wrote.

People on social work out what 'caused error'

Some speculated over what they thought could have caused such a major error.

"One hundred bucks says this poster was sent to them to print as a Word document when it should have been sent as a PDF," one person wrote. 

"I must assume this was done on Windows 95," another said. 

Several encouraged the person behind the post to inform staff at his doctor's office about the issue.

He responded saying that he had already voiced his concern and hoped it would soon be fixed. 

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