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I would like to say the following in German:

Unfortunately, we could not reproduce the Save-as-XML issue that you are experiencing on your computer.

but I cannot find a word other than "Problem" or "Fehler", which is too negative:

Leider konnten wir das Save-as-XML Problem nicht reproduzieren, das bei Ihnen auftritt.

Is there a word in German which has the same meaning as "issue" here, i.e. something that could be a "problem" but could also be something for more neutral, even positive?

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5  
It's a Problem, no matter which Euphemismus you are using. Honestly, "Problem" is the right word to use. The positive variant would be "Feature". –  John Smithers Feb 10 '12 at 15:52
4  
Either way, this is a compound word! Meaning, you need to put a hyphen: “Save-as-XML-Problem”. I know lots of people omit it but they are wrong. –  Konrad Rudolph Feb 10 '12 at 20:19
    
I think in all the companies I have worked in the last decade the Germans simply used the word "Issue" when they were referring to what's an "issue" in English. :) –  sbi Feb 15 '12 at 18:43
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8 Answers

up vote 20 down vote accepted

In this specific case the word Verhalten (behaviour in English) could fit:

Leider konnten wir das Verhalten bei Save-as-XML nicht reproduzieren, das bei Ihnen auftritt.

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Another possibility for a "neutral" expression would be "Situation" - which has a rather deliberately vague feel to it in German, not unlike "issue" in English :)

Leider konnten wir die von Ihnen beschriebene Save-as-XML-Situation nicht reproduzieren.

Still, splattne's suggestion sounds best to me, esp. in an IT-related context. (+1 for splattne, btw) :)

Also, +1 for the question - "issue" is a neat little expression that we're lacking in German.

(OT: recently heard a hilarious use of the term: "B*tch, please; you've got more issues than Vogue." - I laughed so hard I cried)

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In general I think Problem and Fehler fits best in this topic and you can use them for sure. I know the concern of some people that both words sounds too negative, but if something does not work it is a problem or mistake. So why beating around the bush? Just mention what it really is. A bug.

If you don't want to use them, it's hard to find a good word that fits in this case. At least I don't know any. Maybe you can replace issue with behavior (as splattne also mentions) or difficulty (whereas the latter does not really fit and is negative yet).

Leider konnten wir das von ihnen beschriebene Verhalten der Save-as-XML-Funktion nicht nachvollziehen.

Leider konnten wir das von ihnen beschriebene Verhalten beim Speichern im XML-Format nicht nachvollziehen.

You can also reword your sentence by specifying the actual error:

  • If it is about the export result (e.g. incomplete), then you could rephrase it

    Leider konnten wir die Ausgabe, wie sie bei Ihnen auftritt, nicht nachvollziehen.

  • If an error message occurs, then you could say

    Leider ist es uns nicht möglich, die von ihnen beschriebene Fehlermeldung auszulösen.

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+1 I think "auslösen" is a perfectly good verb here. –  Mac Feb 10 '12 at 16:28
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Im geschilderten Fall halte ich Problem für angemessen und kundenfreundlich, weil man signalisiert, dass man das Phänomen ernstnimmt, und für ein Problem hält. Phänomen ist ein traditionsreiches Fremdwort:

Leider konnten wir das Save-as-XML-Phänomen, das bei Ihnen auftritt, nicht reproduzieren.

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For an IT related auditorium the best is to not translate "Issue", if you really want to translate it, I would use "Problem", as it is not as negative as "Error".

I would not use the suggested word "Situation", it is not common in this context.

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Of course you must translate it. Issue is not a common word such as E-Mail, Download, etc. Moreover it sounds odd, using issue in a German sentence. Pay attention on the fact that your contact does not necessarily knows English. Example: A customer who only use your system. He reports an error and you answer him in Denglish?! No, please don't! –  Em1 Feb 10 '12 at 23:00
    
@Em1: Issue is common for IT related persons, especially developers will know what an issue is and they will know the difference between an issue and a bug. Of course you would translate it for a customer. –  Feroc Feb 13 '12 at 8:54
    
@Feroc Of course they know what an issue is but it isn't in regular use. I am developer and I only hear this word when talking with our Americans fellows. Though you can use it in pure German when referring to a context where the word issue is given (e.g. in a database: Hast du auch den issue Eintrag korrigiert). Bug, however, is much more common but have to be translated, too. –  Em1 Feb 13 '12 at 9:31
    
@Em1 Guess the vocabulary of our companies is different then. For the last two companies I worked for, issue was quite a common word to use. Just my first company never ever used it. But I guess this is more about customers anyway. –  Feroc Feb 13 '12 at 9:35
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2 Jahre zu spät aber im Internet steht alles bis in alle Ewigkeit also hier mein Vorschlag:

Schwierigkeit

Geht sehr gut zusammen mit auftreten.

Die Schwierigkeiten treten bei uns nicht auf.

Klingt vielleicht etwas weniger dramatisch als Problem.

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Another slightly more colloquial term which can also be used outside of IT:

Die Sache mit "Save-as-XML", die Sie gemeldet hatten, konnten wir nicht reproduzieren.

I wouldn't necessarily write this in an official Email, though.

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Another appropriate word in this case would be Angelegenheit which means 'matter,' 'issue,' or simply 'point.' Alternatively: Problematik, Sachverhalt

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