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Kudoz - Had enough
Thread poster: N.M. Eklund

N.M. Eklund  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 22:57
Member (2005)
French to English
+ ...
Oct 3, 2008

Well, I figured I'd declare it more openly than stomping around in my little corner.

After a small Kudoz sabbatical, I decided to give it another try. I was led to this little break by an accumulation of small things and larger ones, which made me too upset to continue trying to help other translators. We all know those things that bother us, it's been discussed before (from trying to help despite the Kudoz hunters out there, to being 'dissed' by other translators so they can win the points).

I'm sorry, but I refuse to get into a childish Yes it is/No it isn't shouting match. If I answer correctly according to US English standards, I take it badly if a Kudoz hunter says, 'No, THIS is the correct English. Anybody who knows English knows that.'
But, I will not make this a competition full of low-blows and hoity-toity so-called know-it-alls maneuvering themselves to make themselves look better (which unfortunately usually works).

So, instead of turning Kudoz from a volunteer effort to a blood-letting gladiator event, I prefered to step away for a breather.

This week I tried again. For once, I had some extra time so I spent it doing the research to help an asker out. The answer was not easy to find, since there's no widely established translation, so my final answer had to be tacked onto the end of my original answer.

7 hours later another answerer arrives and (I will not make any accusations), I found my final answer mirrored this person's original answer. The asker accepted this answer, instead of mine given 7 hours earlier.

Perhaps no one is at fault....or perhaps the second answerer picked up an easy reply and the asker preferred not to read through all my references and explanations. Perhaps Perhaps.
The truth of the matter is, if you found the correct term, should someone else be given the credit for taking that term and adding on an 's' or translating the asker's entire sentence even though the asker was looking for only that term?

'Why should this matter? It's really not that important' you might say. Well, it's the straw that broke the camel's back. I'm sure you all have experienced this before.

In any case, the result is that by the end of the day I feel frustrated and instead of dwelling on this, I prefer to focus on more positive and productive things in translation, such as participating in the forums. It is possible that after a while I may limit my participation to just agree/disagrees. But, right now I feel that Kudoz is not setup to allow purely non-competitive assistance.

Good luck to those of you who stick with it. Don't forget your mace and armor.


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Tomás Cano Binder, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:57
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
I wish I could! Oct 3, 2008

...but I am addicted to suffering for my help in Kudoz! Must be some Stockholm syndrome!!! Good luck!

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Amy Williams  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:57
Italian to English
+ ...
worse things have happened at sea Oct 3, 2008

I sympathise entirely, but all I'd say is that askers and answerers are only human and therefore wildly unpredictable, and that life is far too short to worry about it. It's all too easy when you're working in near isolation all day (I'm speaking generally here) to allow things to take on greater significance than they probably deserve.

There will always be numpties on KudoZ and there's nothing anyone can do about it. Whether--as you mention at the end of your post--KudoZ as it stands is set up in such a way that it minimises numptiness is a whole other question. Just rise above it.

Cheers and have a good weekend,
Amy


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Nesrin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:57
English to Arabic
+ ...
I try to walk away... Oct 3, 2008

but it keeps pulling me back!
Yes, N.M., I know exactly what you're talking about. I can't tell you the number of times I felt like shaking the asker, telling him/her "don't you SEE that I posted this first? Don't you SEE that my answer is CLEARLY the correct one?"

But what gets me most is the "bandwagon" behaviour of many peer graders, who see one answer being agreed to, and automatically add their agrees cause there's a good chance that's the right answer. Ok, call me bitter, but when I know I'm right, I know I'm right!

But at the end of the day, I feel that Kudoz has given me more joy and fun and useful information than frustration, and I feel it would be a shame if we (the ones who know better, of course ) abandoned it and left it for those who think they know better to take over (I'm perfectly aware of how that sounds, but you know what I mean! )


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Tomás Cano Binder, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:57
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
My summary about Kudoz several times a year is... Oct 3, 2008

..."¡Que les den!". Sorry, I cannot translate this or this reply would be deleted!

But then I keep coming back. I can't help it. And there are people out there who legitimally need the help and just can't seem to get around to finding the information alone. It's because of them why I keep coming back...

[Edited at 2008-10-03 11:12]


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Stéphanie Soudais  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 22:57
Member (2006)
English to French
I understand... Oct 3, 2008

The worst for me is when an asker chooses the answer of someone who replied two minutes before you, with no explanation/references, while you searched the web to find relevant references and finally (obviously) posted the same answer, but two minutes later...On top of that, many members keep agreeing with the fisrt answer, just because it is the first answer.

Well, I keep answering questions and taking time to find (good) references, because I know I will help some askers and they will be grateful.

As a KudoZ asker, I never select an answer with no references/explanation at all (except when questions are about style), and I have already received private emails from answerers asking me why I did not choose their answers tough they were first to answer....

Stéphanie

Edit : I must point out that I got this kind of private emails 2 or 3 times only in two years.

[Edited at 2008-10-03 11:55]


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Tomás Cano Binder, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:57
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Good idea! Oct 3, 2008

Stéphanie Soudais wrote:
As a KudoZ asker, I never select an answer with no references/explanation at all (except when questions are about style), and I have already received private emails from answererers asking me why I did not choose their answers tough they were first to answer....


Great idea!!! I think I will do that the next time I ask something. Congratulations.


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Nikki Graham  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:57
Partial member (2003)
Spanish to English
Against the rules Oct 3, 2008

Stéphanie Soudais wrote:

As a KudoZ asker, I never select an answer with no references/explanation at all (except when questions are about style), and I have already received private emails from answererers asking me why I did not choose their answers tough they were first to answer....


People are not supposed to contact you to ask why you chose a particular answer and not theirs. You might like to think about reporting them next time this happens.


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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 22:57
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
Well said! Oct 3, 2008

I do so sympathise!

Askers are free to give points to 'wrong' answers for their own reasons, and later edting does not change that. The rules have to be fairly tolerant, or they annoy people using the system properly more than the offenders. But if the rules are actually infringed, please contact a Moderator.

Almost always, when I answer a question, I delete the e-mail and make sure I am not tracking any comments etc. I simply do not return to questions I have answered as a rule - unless it was a term I have been puzzled about myself, and I am hoping a colleague will come up with a better suggestion than my own.

When a 'congratulations' turns up, it is a pleasant surprise.

I do actually get the 'daily digest' in the pairs I moderate, and I do spot check as time permits.
I am lucky - competition is not so hot in 'my' languages, and askers and answerers are generally well behaved and good humoured. Believe me, some Moderators work very hard trying to remonstrate with the others, and the real abusers can be blocked from making peer comments or using KudoZ at all if necessary.

KudoZ is supposed to be about quality, not just a race.
Don't just give four points automatically, if there are no references. Either close without awarding points, or consider giving only one or two points.

There used to be a grading scale (it is not easy to find, but I will try to track it down!)

*** *** *** *** ***
When deciding how many points to award, please consider this scale as a guideline:

4: Answer was acceptable, explanation was good, reference was provided (or not needed)
3: Answer was acceptable, explanation was good, but reference was lacking
2: Answer was acceptable
1: Answer was somewhat helpful

*** *** *** *** ***


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Stéphanie Soudais  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 22:57
Member (2006)
English to French
Have enough too Oct 3, 2008

In the end, it is always the same : people opening a thread to complain about "bad" askers (and I am the first to complain), moderators and/or staff adding their comments, but the thread ending up nowhere and not even displayed on the first page when someone add a new comment.

Last time was here: http://www.proz.com/forum/kudoz/114428-kudoz_is_not_a_shadow_of_what_it_used_to_be-page1.html
I am still waiting for the next episode...I am still waiting for a reply to my support ticket (i.e. why my last post was not displayed on the "most recent posts page" ?).

Once I also complained (and was not the only one) about an asker who never ever gives points and closes all his questions "without grading, reason: other" and without any comment/thank word (the few questions that were closed with points were "automatically selected based on peer agreements"). But I did not get any satisfactory answer...


Well, I am wandering from the point. Sorry
Stéphanie


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R-i-c-h-a-r-d  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 18:57
Member (2006)
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Two sides to the argument. Oct 3, 2008

I'll try not to write a book...

Firstly; there are times when YOU or I need help from other translators or, at the very least, simple confirmation and opinions from others. Kudoz exists for the ASKER first and the ANSWERER thereafter.

If you 'refuse' to answer, then you're not really helping anyone.

Yes, I've been SOOOO frustrated at times, especially when a peer of mine received THREE negative peer agrees to my positive TEN, and yet, as you can probably gather, received the Kudoz points! Yow, I was so CROSSSSSS.

However, the only way to continue using and participating in Kudoz as an ANSWERER, is to accept its lighter and less serious side. I'm not going to compare it directly to a pub quiz, but it's not that far off. I've even heard people refer to it as 'Puboz' because of the apparently inebriated logic in choosing answers.

I'm starting to get worked up now, lol, but I really feel that we take it too seriously.

My advice: Do your research, make sure your answer is as near to 100% as possible, then forget it. That's the best you can do (and remain sane).

Now... I'm going to try and follow my own advice!


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Tomás Cano Binder, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:57
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Anatomy? Oct 3, 2008

Richard Jenkins wrote:
I've even heard people refer to it as 'Puboz' because of the apparently inebriated logic in choosing answers.


Puboz? Do you mean that some answers are chosen with organs in the pubic area instead of the brain?

I agree with your reply Richard: The only way of "surviving" Kudoz as an answerer is to take it as a game: if the asker insists in using use THAT! as the answer... it's perfectly Ok with me: it will mean more work for good translators in the long run!


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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 21:57
Member (2003)
German to English
+ ...
Stupid choices are worth a good chuckle Oct 3, 2008

Richard Jenkins wrote:
I've even heard people refer to it as 'Puboz' because of the apparently inebriated logic in choosing answers...


When I do search the archives, I make it a point to read all the answers, and often I find the real gems among the answers not chosen. So these people may have missed out on the points, but I suspect there is a silent harvest of respect which may lead to the occasional useful job recommendation. And when I see a pattern of certain askers demonstrating consistent "inebriated logic", that is valuable to know as well

So take heart, N.M. You may be getting dissed by a few twits, but for all you know, you are quietly building a fan base who will see you off to a wealthy retirement....

[Edited at 2008-10-03 13:45]


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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:57
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Eliminate KudoZ points? Oct 3, 2008

On the other hand, some terminology/translation assistance sites survive quite well without the need to award points:
Example: http://forum.wordreference.com/forumdisplay.php?s=&daysprune=&f=23
http://forum.wordreference.com/forumdisplay.php?f=3



[Edited at 2008-10-03 13:57]


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Jabberwock  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 22:57
Member (2004)
English to Polish
Brilliant! Oct 3, 2008

Kevin Lossner wrote:

When I do search the archives, I make it a point to read all the answers, and often I find the real gems among the answers not chosen. So these people may have missed out on the points, but I suspect there is a silent harvest of respect which may lead to the occasional useful job recommendation.


How about an option in the Kudoz Search that would show all the answers when you expand the question (click on the little plus sign), not just the selected one? This would make the search much easier...


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