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In English we do have the distinction between a web page and a web site, the former being the HTML document visually displayed in a browser, the latter is a set of web pages from a given web address.

In German we do have this distiction as well with a "website" having quite a choice of different synonyms:

  • Web page: Webseite, Internetseite, Dokument
  • Website: Internetauftritt, Webpräsenz, Internetplattform, ... from Wikipedia

Outside an IT-professional context I have the impression that this distinction is not so clear when people talk of an "Internetseite" or "Webseite" when they actually mean a website.

Will it be correctly understood when we translate "website" with "Internetseite", or is "site" a false friend here that should be avoided?

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I think often one can just omit the word "website". Can you give me examples where you'd use it? –  Hendrik Vogt Jul 7 '12 at 8:27
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I think, most common (non technical and non marketing) people use the term "Homepage" for website in german, although it's technically wrong. –  Hinek Jul 9 '12 at 12:37

2 Answers 2

up vote 9 down vote accepted

IMO, everyone will think of a website no matter whether you call it "Internetseite" or "Webseite". I think this is due to the English language being number one concerning IT issues.

So if you want to talk about a web page by your means, you better explicitly call it "eine HTML-Seite" or something similar.

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Also words like "Webpräsenz" or "Internetplattform" are used in a more strategic context. Like marketing or conversation with the CEO. John Doe, or in German "Otto Normalverbraucher", will understand "Webseite" or "Internetseite" best and refer to it as the whole site. Not only one explicit page. Also, this differentiation (page/site) is a technical one, that "Otto Normalverbraucher" doesn't bother anyway, and it's not even sure that he knows the difference at all! –  Alexej Froehlich Jul 5 '12 at 12:00

A Website consists of web pages (dt. Webseiten, Internetseiten) of which the start page is called homepage.

People often confuse these terms. IMO the best German translation of "Website" is "Internetauftritt". The translation "website" -> "Internetseite" is wrong, as "website" stands for the whole thing whereas an "Internetseite" is just a part of it: one individual page.

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I disagree. While you may be right technically, I doubt that any non-native internet user ever differentiates between website and webpage, even though wegpage is less common in German. And homepage is often understood as the site about the owner of that page (i.e., the employees of a company would refer to their homepage) - in this sense homepage is a special website. Nowadays few people understand homepage as the start page. –  MERose 2 days ago

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