- タレント (tarento): celebrity frequently appearing on the radio or TV
- Talent: natural aptitude or skill, often athletic, creative or artistic
You turn on the TV and the same people seem to appear in each and every program. They are not gifted piano players nor actors, maybe they are funny, or perhaps just famous for their inability to cook. They are known for being known and are what Japanese people call タレント.
Originally used in Japanese with the same meaning as in English, タレント became exclusive to the entertainment business. Media executives started using the term to distinguish the “stars” from the production crew.
Today’s タレント has no exact translation into English other than TV celebrity or entertainer. Interestingly enough, Koreans appear to use the term in the same manner.
This article is part of the weekly Katakana English series, where we discuss Japanese words borrowed (mostly) from English that have acquired a different meaning.
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