When contacting individuals, archives, and others who may not speak your language, give a second thought before using Google translate or a dictionary to “translate” your communication. You want (and need) to be clear when making requests and asking questions of someone who does not speak your language.
Jim Beidler in his Trace Your German Roots Online makes a point that is worth remembering:
Be realistic about your foreign-language writing skills: Good English beats bad German in communicating by e-mail or letter.
That’s good advice. This quote appears on page 152 of Beidler’s Trace Your German Roots Online published by Family Tree Books.