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How to Find Translation Work - Business Week
Thread poster: Anil Gidwani

Anil Gidwani  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 20:45
German to English
+ ...
Sep 10, 2008

If Business Week is running an article on translation, the industry must be growing! It's nice to see translation 'in the spotlight', so to speak, in a mainstream business magazine.

Here's the link to the article:

http://www.businessweek.com/smallbiz/content/sep2008/sb2008099_904198.htm?chan=top%20news_top%20news%20index%20-%20temp_small%20business


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 16:15
Member (2003)
German to English
+ ...
Nice little article Sep 10, 2008

The points made in the article are the same ones made every week by experienced translators on this site. The one about specialization is particularly worth noting.

Thanks for the link!


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:15
French to English
Hmmmm Sep 10, 2008

Nothing there that anyone browsing through the forums here or elsewhere for 15 minutes wouldn't already know.

For such a short article, I think there are 2 points which are a matter of some debate, and would not have been mentioned in such a positve light by anyone who knew anything about it, i.e. working for free and including references on the website.

Good point about specialising, though.


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Anil Gidwani  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 20:45
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
True, but the exposure can't hurt Sep 10, 2008

While many of us in the industry are aware of much of what is stated in the article, what I found most significant was that Business Week (one of my favorite magazines), widely read in the corporate world (at least in the US), chose to dedicate an article to the ongoing growth in the translation industry. This reinforces my belief that translation and language services in general are poised to see a substantial increase in mindshare among the corporate honchos and take their rightful place in the globalizing knowledge economy.

Among the things I found interesting in the article:

a) There actually exists a business globalization and language services research firm, Common Sense Advisory! It focuses on issues of globalization AND "language services", inextricably linking the two, which link is undeniable though unfortunately unstated.

b) The phrase "you'll be able to decide how much—or how little—you want to work" was particularly nice! The "how little" was the icing on the cake

c) I liked the suggestion of sending a translation sample to potential clients along with the resume. Wonder how many of us do that.

What I did not agree with in the article: where it says "Where you live determines how much you will earn."

I certainly do not agree with that statement. Earnings should be a function of language pair, textual domain and difficulty, and the quality of the final translation. In practice, though, a locational bias does exist. Now isn't that something we should all challenge? If we could change that perception, think how much easier it would be for any of us to move to the Canary Islands or the Seychelles and translate from our beach side residences!







[Edited at 2008-09-11 14:19]


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Felipe Gútiez  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:15
Member (2002)
German to Spanish
+ ...
Good point Sep 10, 2008

I certainly do not agree with that statement. Earnings should be a function of language pair, textual domain and difficulty, and the quality of the final translation. In practice, though, a locational bias does exist. Now isn't that something we should all challenge? If we could change that perception, think how much easier it would be for any of us to move to the Canary Islands or the Seychelles and translate from our beach side residences!







Canary Islands are good....


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Stuart Dowell  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 17:15
Member (2007)
Polish to English
+ ...
Location and native language Sep 11, 2008


What I did not agree with in the article: where it says "Where you live determines how much you will earn."

I certainly do not agree with that statement. Earnings should be a function of language pair, textual domain and difficulty, and the quality of the final translation. In practice, though, a locational bias does exist. Now isn't that something we should all challenge? If we could change that perception, think how much easier it would be for any of us to move to the Canary Islands or the Seychelles and translate from our beach side residences!


When the issue of a translator's location and its link to earnings comes up, I usually take it to mean how much the market values the translator's native language, which would be a function of the strength of the local economy. The assumption here is that a translator would live in their home country (not always true I know).

Therefore, if Dutch-English translators, for example, have good earning potential, then this would not change if they relocated to a Pacific island.

The natives of that island may not be able to demand such high rates for localising into their own language.


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bishan sharma  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:45
English to Japanese
+ ...
Brushing up for free! Sep 11, 2008

Charlie Bavington wrote:

Nothing there that anyone browsing through the forums here or elsewhere for 15 minutes wouldn't already know.

For such a short article, I think there are 2 points which are a matter of some debate, and would not have been mentioned in such a positve light by anyone who knew anything about it, i.e. working for free and including references on the website.

Good point about specialising, though.



Well, I personally do appreciate her suggestion for the beginners to brushup their work of translation by providing free services to NGOs or other type of clients if they can find who would agree to accept their quality of work.


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Niraja Nanjundan  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:45
German to English
Many translators still do not know about ProZ.com Sep 11, 2008

Charlie Bavington wrote:

Nothing there that anyone browsing through the forums here or elsewhere for 15 minutes wouldn't already know.



True, but it seems many colleagues, such as N.A. from Cairo still do not know about sites such as ProZ and what they offer, and are not yet registered here.

[Edited at 2008-09-11 11:14]


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Dana David Kogan  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 18:15
Romanian to Hebrew
+ ...
agree and identify with you Sep 27, 2008

stuart dowell wrote:


What I did not agree with in the article: where it says "Where you live determines how much you will earn."

I certainly do not agree with that statement. Earnings should be a function of language pair, textual domain and difficulty, and the quality of the final translation. In practice, though, a locational bias does exist. Now isn't that something we should all challenge? If we could change that perception, think how much easier it would be for any of us to move to the Canary Islands or the Seychelles and translate from our beach side residences!


When the issue of a translator's location and its link to earnings comes up, I usually take it to mean how much the market values the translator's native language, which would be a function of the strength of the local economy. The assumption here is that a translator would live in their home country (not always true I know).

Therefore, if Dutch-English translators, for example, have good earning potential, then this would not change if they relocated to a Pacific island.

The natives of that island may not be able to demand such high rates for localising into their own language.







i find this conduct deplorable as a global policy.
As I see it, this situation is up to us hard working people to change it.

I have a radical idea, but in my experience is quite impossible to influence people to be in solidarity

with one great idea for change.

Do you people out there have ideas for A BIG CHANGE in this unfair, quite degrading situation?


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