Manual vs Automatic Bitext Extraction Aibek Makazhanov, Bagdat Myrzakhmetov, Zhenisbek Assylbekov Nazarbayev University, National Laboratory Astana Nazarbayev University, School of Science and Technology Kabanbay Batyr ave, Astana, Kazakhstan firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org Abstract We compare manual and automatic approaches to the problem of extracting bitexts from the Web in the framework of a case study on building a Russian-Kazakh parallel corpus. Our findings suggest that targeted, site-specific crawling results in cleaner bitexts with a higher ratio of parallel sentences. We also find that general crawlers combined with boilerplate removal tools tend to retrieve shorter texts, as some content gets cleaned outwith the markup. When it comes to sentence splitting and alignment we show that investing some effort in data pre- and post-processing as well as fiddling with off-the-shelf solutions pays a noticeable dividend. Overall we observe that, depending on the source, automatic bitext extraction methods may lack severely in coverage (retrieve fewer sentence pairs) and on average are fewer precise (retrieve less parallel sentence pairs. We conclude that if one aims at extracting high-quality bitexts fora small number of language pairs, automatic methods best be avoided, or at least used with caution.