The BBC website reports that unofficial translations of the latest Harry Potter book have started reaching certain markets and being sold. According to the story, "the unofficial translation omitted several paragraph of actions and contained some mistranslations, such as swapping the original word "immortal" for "mortal"." Oops. This is unavoidable, really, as I doubt these rogue translations go through the editing and proofreading stages that the official versions undoubtedly do.
However, I understand that there is so much demand for the books to be translated quickly, that the translators engaged in the task are not given very much time to produce the texts. I remember reading somewhere that the French translator of the fifth Harry Potter delivered on time, but almost lost his marriage and mental health in the process. I would never dream of criticising his work, especially as I would never be able to produce such a difficult translation in so little time, but I must admit I’m not sure of some of his choices, particularly his translations of names, like "Hogwarts", which becomes "Poudlard".
For this type of translation, which has to be extremely creative and deals with a whole new world of wizards and witches, I’m wondering whether a wikipedia-style collaboration would be the ideal way to achieve the best possible translation. There must surely be lots of Harry Potter enthusiasts out there who can also write; they could all chip in, add their finds, debate others’ choice and collectively produce the ultimate translation. As with Wikipedia, the unfit contributions would quickly be eliminated through self-regulation and trusted administrators. It would be the product of lots of different people with a passion for the book and its universe. It would also be a way for the thousands of fans out there who know the Harry Potter universe inside out to really appropriate for themselves the books, ensuring that they reach their potential in lots of different languages.
My colleagues operating in the literary world will probably hate this idea, but these books touch people so closely that giving them a chance to translate them into their own language would turn the translation into a real labour of love, which, I think, would probably lead to exceptional results.
Wikipedia gives loads of resources on the Harry Potter translations.