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Quality of Portfolio samples
Thread poster: Jesús Marín Mateos

Jesús Marín Mateos  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:48
English to Spanish
+ ...
Dec 18, 2006

Sorry but I had to choose a forum and wasn't sure where to put this.

I have been thinking about adding sample translation to my profile but I'm a bit reluctant since I feel the need to ask for permission to the agencies I translate for.
However I decided to have a look at some portfolio samples and must say that the quality (my view) was appalling. How dare people put up a sample which is "crap" (forgive my English). I am not the best translator in the world but I am sorry for those outsourcers who do not know the language and decide to go for those portfolios........yes with lots of sample but lacking basic translation skills. Has anyone felt the same or is it me just being too demanding???
I'm talking about my language pair English>Spanish but I'm afraid they may all be the same.
Thanks.

[Edited at 2006-12-18 13:27]


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Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:48
Italian to English
Good point about asking permission, Jesús Dec 18, 2006

I have included a couple of sample IT-EN translations in my profile, one I did for a winery and the other for a newspaper.

When I posted them, I included a copyright notice (the work is paid for and belongs to the clients) and a link to each client's web site where the translations are published. I informed the clients about the postings and asked for their permission, assuring them I would remove the translations if they objected, which neither did.

Vis-à-vis your other point, remember that a mediocre translation is also a benchmark that gives potential clients an excellent reason for getting in touch with someone good.

FWIW

Giles


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Jalapeno
Local time: 06:48
English to German
... Dec 18, 2006

Giles Watson wrote:

Vis-à-vis your other point, remember that a mediocre translation is also a benchmark that gives potential clients an excellent reason for getting in touch with someone good.



If I may pick up your thought ...

Wouldn't it then be good marketing and help us generate new business if we created dozens of new profiles in our respective language pairs and swamp them with bad sample translations?



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BelkisDV  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:48
Spanish to English
+ ...
Great point Dec 18, 2006

Giles Watson wrote:

Vis-à-vis your other point, remember that a mediocre translation is also a benchmark that gives potential clients an excellent reason for getting in touch with someone good.

FWIW

Giles


I thought the same when I saw a colleague post examples of SPAN>ENG translations who had stated in their profile: "final copy requires no correction". The example was plagued with mistakes.

I'm sure they're not getting much work in that language pair.


Regards,
Belkis

[Edited at 2006-12-18 16:07]


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xxxLia Fail  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:48
Spanish to English
+ ...
papel mojado? Dec 18, 2006

Jesús Marín Mateos wrote:

Sorry but I had to choose a forum and wasn't sure where to put this.

I have been thinking about adding sample translation to my profile but I'm a bit reluctant since I feel the need to ask for permission to the agencies I translate for.
However I decided to have a look at some portfolio samples and must say that the quality (my view) was appalling. How dare people put up a sample which is "crap" (forgive my English). I am not the best translator in the world but I am sorry for those outsourcers who do not know the language and decide to go for those portfolios........yes with lots of sample but lacking basic translation skills. Has anyone felt the same or is it me just being too demanding???
I'm talking about my language pair English>Spanish but I'm afraid they may all be the same.
Thanks.

[Edited at 2006-12-18 13:27]


I asked permission where the material wasn't already in the public domain. Maybe better choose private clients, as agencies would have to check with their clients.

However, the portfolios are 'wet paper' (i.e. not worth the 'paper' they are written on:-)), as obviously, there is no guarantee that the work is one's own. I hasten to add that my samples are all mine:-)

Pretty much like test translations, who's to know?

I'm beginning to think that the only reliable way to evaluate a translator is by their rates + availability, the higher the former/ the lower the latter, the better:-)


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Giles Watson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:48
Italian to English
Who's to know? Dec 19, 2006

Lia Fail wrote:

However, the portfolios are 'wet paper' (i.e. not worth the 'paper' they are written on:-)), as obviously, there is no guarantee that the work is one's own. I hasten to add that my samples are all mine:-)

Pretty much like test translations, who's to know?



That's not always the case, Lia.

I chose a translation I did for the Corriere della Sera because I work for them every day and they kindly let me "sign" the translations with a link to my site.

In most cases, though, I suppose that the old principle of "caveat emptor" is as valid in the ProZ marketplace as it is in any other. Thinking as an outsourcer (which I very rarely am) for a moment, I certainly wouldn't hire a translator on the strength of a sample translation alone, although a good sample might induce me to propose a test or ask for more details of the person's - preferably published - work.

As in the case of test translations, if the translator has cheated, this will probably become apparent from the first job, which is why savvy outsourcers try to make sure that first jobs are short, or at least non-critical to important projects.

I prefer to think that most people are in good faith. In the case of those who post mediocre sample translations, I am pretty much certain that they are

FWIW

Giles


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absciarretta  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 05:48
Member (2008)
English to Norwegian
+ ...
Public domain? May 3, 2007

How about translating something that is in the Public domain, not for a client but just to put up in your CV?

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