Should I be suspicious of this job offer?
Thread poster: Tom in London

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:50
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Dec 9, 2008

Just received this email:

"After reviewing your resume, we would like to consider you for collaboration on a large project of ours - it involves a technical
expertise. Could you please complete the attached translation as soon as possible so we may review it and see if you are well-equiped for the job? Thanks! I look forward to hearing from you soon, XXX"

This message came to me from a gmail address. There is no name of any agency.

Note the mistake in the English "it involves a technical expertise".

The translation test is 268 words, technical in nature. I would have no trouble doing it, but this would take me about 1 hour including the necessary research and testing.

Should I be suspicious?


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NancyLynn
Canada
Local time: 04:50
Member (2002)
French to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
Just ask! Dec 9, 2008

Hi Tom,

This may be a direct client, unfamiliar with our protocol.

Just reply, asking for the details you require. The answer you get should help you decide.

Best,

Nancy


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Aniello Scognamiglio  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:50
English to German
+ ...
Good luck! Dec 9, 2008

Best,
Aniello

[Edited at 2008-12-09 17:43 GMT]


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:50
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Solved Dec 9, 2008

Nancy Lynn Bogar wrote:

Hi Tom,

This may be a direct client, unfamiliar with our protocol.

Just reply, asking for the details you require. The answer you get should help you decide.

Best,

Nancy


Thanks Nancy, I did that, and they immediately replied politely giving me full details.

Problem solved .

Thanks!


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Marina Soldati  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 05:50
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Agree on rates, first Dec 9, 2008

Nancy Lynn Bogar wrote:

Hi Tom,

This may be a direct client, unfamiliar with our protocol.

Just reply, asking for the details you require. The answer you get should help you decide.

Best,

Nancy


And, apart from asking for all necessary details, I would agree on rates and payment term/means before doing any translation test.

Marina


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Marina Soldati  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 05:50
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Why? Dec 9, 2008

Aniello Scognamiglio wrote:

A direct client?
With a gmail address?
A test translation?

Don't waste your precious time, Tom!

Best,
Aniello


I´ve been approached by direct clients using gmail accounts, and they have proved to be good clients who pay my rates and on time. So, why should he forget it?

Marina


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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 05:50
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Agree with Marina Dec 9, 2008

Marina Soldati wrote:

Aniello Scognamiglio wrote:

A direct client?
With a gmail address?
A test translation?

Don't waste your precious time, Tom!

Best,
Aniello


I´ve been approached by direct clients using gmail accounts, and they have proved to be good clients who pay my rates and on time. So, why should he forget it?

Marina


There are lots of individuals (direct clients) needing translators who use Gmail. And why should they ask for a test?


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Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:50
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Gmail accounts Dec 9, 2008

You may be getting emails from people using Gmail but substituting another address in Gmail for their Gmail one - me, for instance. I am currently away from home with a laptop which has been infected with some sort of bug that prevents me sending any emails from Thunderbird, though Tbird functions quite normally in every other way. So I am now sending emails via Gmail, which allows me to enter another email address (after checking that I am entitled to use it) and to set it as my default address, so that I do not appear to be using Gmail at all.

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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:50
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
hmm Dec 9, 2008

Jack Doughty wrote:

....so that I do not appear to be using Gmail at all.


Jack, you devious fellow, you!


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Caroline Lakey  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 10:50
French to English
Gmail is widely used by businesses here in France Dec 10, 2008

Hi,

Here in France, gmail is widely used by businesses, especially small ones, who often forward their "usual" e-mail to it. Apparently the spam filters are much better than anything many ISPs are providing at the moment.

So, I wouldn't necessarily be suspicious of gmail if I was satisfied with the rest of the information the client gave.


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Steffen Walter  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:50
Member (2002)
English to German
+ ...
Please let us not jump to conclusions Dec 10, 2008

Hi all,

As so aptly illustrated by Tom's added comment (saying that the problem was solved and full details were provided by the outsourcer after his request) and Caroline's remark regarding the frequency of business use of Gmail in France, I believe we should not jump to conclusions as to the legitimacy of using such email addresses. I guess the proof of it all is in the style of communication adopted by the outsourcer. If full, verifiable contact details are not forthcoming even after an additional request to provide those, then that should make you suspicious indeed.

On a related note, I have made it a habit to ask for full details right at the outset even before submitting a quote on a job, and to decline to do business with individuals/entities not providing such information.

My 2c,
Steffen


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