Mobile menu

Pages in topic:   [1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8] >
The Disagree Drive (aka weeding out the rubbish)
Thread poster: Catherine Bolton

Catherine Bolton  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:34
Member (2002)
Italian to English
+ ...
Aug 5, 2006

I've been inspired by Ian's great forum and Dominique's wonderful suggestion
http://www.proz.com/post/394326#394326

Why are we afraid of the "disagree" button? I admit that I have tended to prefer "neutral" in the past, as a way of being polite while letting the answerer know that maybe some rethinking is in order.
But the fact is that a clearly wrong answer deserves an onslaught of disagrees.
The disagree option is there for a purpose... so let's use it!
Catherine


Direct link
 

Mats Wiman  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 20:34
Member (2000)
German to Swedish
+ ...

MODERATOR
If you disagree - you should say so Aug 5, 2006

Good idea!

The general idea with Kudoz is to help (with the additional bonus of showing expertise) and learn.

It's then only logical that an answer which I find wrong, I should disagree with.
But I should never only disagree. I am obliged to give a linguistic reason for disagreeing, not comments like "not native language' (then say what is) or "a Brit wouldn't say so" (then say what he would say).

I have lived this from day one and have been surprised to find how many find it aggressive or rude.

Therefore, any action to change the attides towards 'Disagree' is welcome


Direct link
 

bohy  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:34
English to French
+ ...
Should agree/disagree need additional feedback ? Aug 5, 2006

Although it's theoretically a good idea to get feedback on agrees and disagrees, I note that answers to "agree" are usually "Thank you, XX" "Hi" and such, while the answers to "disagree" are sometimes very rude.. and often wrong.

There are a few Prozians which consider this place as a battle field where they fight for Kudoz, and sometimes you get very inadequate answers (mostly because you have posted in the same minute, or because you disagree). But many (most) others show that they are very nice people, I must say.

As a rule of thumb, I try to "agree" or be "neutral" to avoid problems with the answer (unless I think I really have to "disagree"), but I would appreciate if I could click on "disagree" without a sense of fear of a possible reaction


Direct link
 

Amy Williams  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:34
Italian to English
+ ...
To a point... Aug 5, 2006

Hi Catherine,
You're absolutely right.
Sadly, it seems not everyone feels that way.

I added a disagree the other day to a machine translation answer (answerer openly stated it was a machine translation) on the Italian to English site and it was removed by a moderator for being too personal. I'm not quite sure how "unbelievable!" is personal, but anyway, I went ahead and changed my comment to a rather more robotic "this is an incorrect rendering of the phrase", to which I then received the pleasant reply "I HAVE UNDERSTOOD,teacher! AMEN!!!". I did indeed believe (and still believe) that the translation given was "unbelievable". It wasn't especially helpful to anyone and was in a highly specialist field, too. At least the answerer in question admitted their mistake, but surely answers like this should be discouraged? I'm all for keeping the tone professional, but there's just too much sitting on what is now a severely sagging fence. IMO moderator support is vital in this.

Enjoy your weekend,
Amy


[Edited at 2006-08-05 11:04]


Direct link
 

Nadia-Anastasia Fahmi  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 21:34
Member (2004)
English to Greek
+ ...
Yes, indeed... Aug 5, 2006

bohy wrote:

Although it's theoretically a good idea to get feedback on agrees and disagrees, I note that answers to "agree" are usually "Thank you, XX" "Hi" and such, while the answers to "disagree" are sometimes very rude.. and often wrong.

There are a few Prozians which consider this place as a battle field where they fight for Kudoz, and sometimes you get very inadequate answers (mostly because you have posted in the same minute, or because you disagree). But many (most) others show that they are very nice people, I must say.

As a rule of thumb, I try to "agree" or be "neutral" to avoid problems with the answer (unless I think I really have to "disagree"), but I would appreciate if I could click on "disagree" without a sense of fear of a possible reaction


I could not agree more with you. Every time I "dared" to disagree, the replies were so aggressive that I now tend to either agree or keep my mouth shut. I only use neutral, when I know the answerer and know that they are not going to react badly. Our job is quite frustrating, I don't think I need further aggrevation for speaking my mind in a professional manner.

If people cannot accept disagreement gracefully, then I prefer to keep my distances.

Have a nice weekend all,
Nadia


Direct link
 

Mats Wiman  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 20:34
Member (2000)
German to Swedish
+ ...

MODERATOR
How about blocking reactions to disagrees Aug 5, 2006

I never experienced agressive responses but I have noticed that many have, I guess also depending very much on the language pair.

To avoid heated exchanges over a disagree, why not make it impossible for the answerer to comment on a disagree.
A disagree is a (hopefully) honest of disagreement with an answer and should be for the benefit of the asker. No need for the answerer to comment.

This would maybe also make an answerer less inclined to shoot from the hip.


Direct link
 
Niraja Nanjundan  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:04
German to English
A victim of "disagrees" Aug 5, 2006

I'm not very active in KudoZ, but do answer questions from time to time and have had quite a few "disagrees" to my answers, so there are people who don't hesitate to use this option.

At first I was quite taken aback, but I did learn something from the comments made. It's quite normal in any discussion to agree or disagree, so I don't see why it should be any different in the context of KudoZ, and people shouldn't take "disagrees" sensitively.


Direct link
 
xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 13:34
English to Russian
+ ...
Every problem is an indication of sort Aug 5, 2006

Prevailing attitude toward Disagree proves that the site is dominated by point-grabbers and non-professionals. For anyone caring for quality in a professional environment a Disagree is a form of help, sometimes a big one. People shoud be grateful that someone cares to save their butts. A Disagree could be wrong just as an Agree but to contemplate that I'm out there to take your points... Unbelievable! Get a life! Make it a professional discussion site. Disregard, at worst, but to anticipate each time that your answer is the 11th testament - whoof! OK, you disagree with disagree, than what? It is only normal, find the way to deal with it.

Off-topic: You know, guys, sometimes I think that some people with their heads and torsoes inside the PC for most of the time lose their communicative skills... When was the last time you participated in an open non-virtual discussion (aside of spouse fights:-)? Start interpreting, it helps!:-) BTW, can you assess if you became more or less tolerant in real-life arguments after such a long and intimate time spent with the computer and being a "lonely wolf", i.e. home-based-office-enclosed freelancer? Or do you think that there is no difference? All of a sudden I got really curious about this. We all need to balance "man-man"/ "man-machine" environments, otherwise... PC is so easy to shut, and so is a virtual opponent... but all the truth in the world came out of very hot discussions:-)

Suggest the person who disagreed to prove the point and elaborate. If no further explanation will be given, it will speak for itself and it will be up to an asker to exercise his/h brain cells:-).

I suggest to instate a strict rule regarding rude responses to Disagree.

Sorry, but this subject really works me up every time. I personally have given at least 3 "thank you" to disagrees with me and a dozen of "you must be right, I overlooked it" or "both could be valid" or "a matter of style and, most important, register" or smth like it to neutrals.

Irene

[Edited at 2006-08-05 14:26]


Direct link
 

Linguasphere
France
Local time: 20:34
Spanish to French
+ ...
I am against this idea Aug 5, 2006

Mats Wiman wrote:

I never experienced agressive responses but I have noticed that many have, I guess also depending very much on the language pair.

To avoid heated exchanges over a disagree, why not make it impossible for the answerer to comment on a disagree.
A disagree is a (hopefully) honest of disagreement with an answer and should be for the benefit of the asker. No need for the answerer to comment.

This would maybe also make an answerer less inclined to shoot from the hip.



Because you should have the right to defend your answer and to justify it. Sometimes a disagree may be a good thing if it is justified (nobody is perfect and you may make a mistake) but some "disagrees" are a mistake and are not justified.

For example, once I answered a question about the legal system in the UK and gave my reference "The Council of Europe Legal dictionary", and somebody disagreed but the reason was : the question is about UK and not about Europe without proposing another answer.
Very interesting ! I am sure this person does not know this dictionary.
So in such a case, you should have the possibility to answer.

Sorry but when you are "accused" you MUST have the right to defend yourself or to acknowledge you are wrong.


Direct link
 

Mats Wiman  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 20:34
Member (2000)
German to Swedish
+ ...

MODERATOR
Comments and thanks belong to the asker Aug 5, 2006

virgynet wrote: Sorry but when you are "accused" you MUST have the right to defend yourself or to acknowledge you are wrong.

I hope I do not misundestand the above, but if you mean that a Disagree is an accusation, you are exactly off track.
A disagree is (or should be) a friendly rejection of a suggestion - with arguments.
If the answerer is deprived of the possiblility to comment, nobody will find it necessary to "defend" anything.

KudoZ should be a meeting place where suggestions are given and comments are made - not a fighting ground between answerers.

The asker is king/queen!


Direct link
 

writeaway  Identity Verified

Local time: 20:34
Partial member (2003)
French to English
+ ...
disagrees can produce useful feedback and brainstorming - if there is an exchange of pro opinions Aug 5, 2006

A pro translator will never be 'offended' by a justified disagree. With the ability for everyone to edit peer comments, there can be a real exchange of opinions which can be enlightening for both/all parties. Taking that away would be a huge mistake.

As for reasons for disagreeing, if someone gives an answer that would never ever be used in the target language, what's the harm in saying so? English in particular (but not only English) suffers from the 'anyone can do it' syndrome and many people seem to have the idea that 'anything goes' when it comes to that language. Of course this isn't the case, but it does produce some very wrong answers with a randomly chosen concoction of words. So I can't see the harm in disagreeing by saying it's not native English. All the words may be English, but the turn of phrase isn't. If that's the case, why not say so? For any language.

Also, let's stop marginalizing people who do enter disagrees.

In past forums, a trend was started to 'marginalize' people who give disagrees (or even neutrals) to others. Words like nasty, unfriendly, unprofessional, unkind etc. were repeatedly introduced on forum posts (about other topics) to refer to people who dared 'welcome' answers with disagrees. People who 'dared' assume they know more than someone else. It was even suggested that these people 'disappear' from the site to make wa for kinder gentler peers who were curteous and agreeable to everyone. This was one person's repeated cry in particular, but in practice it seems to have been take up to some extent by a number of like-thinking peers, especially on the site concerned. Result: misplaced agrees given to kinder answerers, even if the answer is patently wrong. Kindergarten games à la Kudoz.

Hopefully, in the long run, disagrees will help improve the quality of the site. Care has to be taken not to discourage people from trying. If an answer is wrong, but an attempt has been made to back it with references and/or explanations, then it's a bit harsh to bombard that person with disagrees. People should feel free to try to answer.
But those who wildly post the first thing off the top of their head, post in language pairs and/or fields they know nothing about, give total bs answers backed by 100% confidence level, etc. - those people should be actively encouraged to stop doing that. It's detrimental for everyone on Kudoz and is currently happening far too often (see Ian's post about rubbish answers).



[Edited at 2006-08-05 12:51]


Direct link
 
xxxdf49f
France
Local time: 20:34
responses to disagrees sometimes necessary Aug 5, 2006

Mats Wiman wrote:
I never experienced agressive responses but I have noticed that many have, I guess also depending very much on the language pair.
To avoid heated exchanges over a disagree, why not make it impossible for the answerer to comment on a disagree.
A disagree is a (hopefully) honest of disagreement with an answer and should be for the benefit of the asker. No need for the answerer to comment.
This would maybe also make an answerer less inclined to shoot from the hip.


Hi Mats
The possibility of responding to disagrees is important and sometimes necessary and I don't believe that it should be removed:
1) a disagreer can also be wrong, and answerers must have a way to "defend" their proposal and/or request more justification.
2) there have been cases of entirely unjustified "retaliatory" disagrees... and a reply may there again be needed (I've noticed a few people with enough time to waste to screen back to old answers of mine just to systematically slap spiteful disagrees on them in reprisal...!!)

Rude responses to disagrees are unpleasant (and unfortunately end up discouraging many from using the disagree tool when appropriate - though they certainly have not discouraged me), but they serve at least one good purpose: they reveal to public eyes the true personality and/or (lack of) competence of the answerer!

And I agree with you and others that justified, well-grounded, well-argumented disagrees are not to be regarded as "accusations" - on the contrary, I've frequently found them extremely instructive.

(have other thoughts on the subject, but keeping them for later when I have more time to word them properly).
Best regards - df


Direct link
 

Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 19:34
Flemish to English
+ ...
Justify Aug 5, 2006

The building blocks of language are semantics, syntax and style.
Whenever a person is asking a Kudoz-question, it is because (s)he does not know the equivalent of one of these elements in the other language.

Proz.com members answer and if they can find one, have to indicate a source where they got the answer from. Members agree or disagree.
I am for explaining why they agree or disagree or "why it is an incorrect rendering of the phrase (what was wrong with its syntax or semantics in the target language?). These are explanations from which I can learn.

I can also learn if the person rewarding points motivates why (s)he gives this points to member XYZ.

To end with a question: What are "authoritative sources" to answer Kudoz questions? Google, glossaries, standard dicos, work experience in that field.

The funny thing occurred to me that I knew the translation, literally copied it from an electronic version of a standard dictionary, but unfortunately I was not a native speaker of the target language.
A native did more or less the same. Guess who got the points???

Now, if there is one thing I don't get upset about, it is Kudoz... When i see an interesting question and have some time to spare, I will try to answer it. If I get points fine, if not fine.


Direct link
 

Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 13:34
German to English
Defining personal vs. linguistic comments Aug 5, 2006

Amy Williams wrote:

I added a disagree the other day to a machine translation answer (answerer openly stated it was a machine translation) on the Italian to English site and it was removed by a moderator for being too personal. I'm not quite sure how "unbelievable!" is personal, but anyway, I went ahead and changed my comment to a rather more robotic "this is an incorrect rendering of the phrase", to which I then received the pleasant reply "I HAVE UNDERSTOOD,teacher! AMEN!!!". I did indeed believe (and still believe) that the translation given was "unbelievable". It wasn't especially helpful to anyone and was in a highly specialist field, too. At least the answerer in question admitted their mistake, but surely answers like this should be discouraged? I'm all for keeping the tone professional, but there's just too much sitting on what is now a severely sagging fence. IMO moderator support is vital in this.



You've raised an excellent point, Amy. When does a peer comment cross the line from the linguistic to the personal? We need to deal with this. I happen to agree with the moderator you mentioned that "unbelievable!" on its own wouldn't qualify as a linguistic comment. A good linguistic comment would have to point out what was wrong with the translation, but I understand the sentiment you wanted to convey. Some rubbish answers are so awfully bad that they take your breath away and don't really deserve much of an analysis because it is so obvious to any translator in the language pair that the answer is absurd.

We can easily draw up a list of clearly personal peer comments, such as Ian's tongue-in-cheek "buy a dictionary, stoopid". As soon as we get into name calling and stinging sarcasm we've crossed the line (in these forums as well as in KudoZ). But conscientious professional translators are rightfully offended by some of the garbage they see in KudoZ and need a way to express their justifiable outrage without getting into trouble.

In one of the other threads related to this topic a moderator wrote: "According to rule http://www.proz.com/siterules/kudoz_answ/3.5#3.5 peer comments must be purely linguistic and include no personal comments. Therefore there should be no comments in addition to the peer's linguistic reasoning in the particular situation."

I think some guidelines are called for and in this thread http://www.proz.com/topic/51612 Klaus Herrmann offered some interesting ideas:

Klaus Herrmann wrote:

Kim Metzger wrote:
Maybe we could formulate responses that are purely linguistic and that won't be regarded as personal as guidelines for peer comments.


Here's some:
• Not used by target audience: The suggested translation may be understood but is not used by target audience.
• Out of context: The suggested translation may be found in a dico, but is not applicable in the given context.
• Technically wrong: The suggested translation may be found in a dico but is technically wrong
• Non-native - The suggested translation exists but no native speaker has used the suggested translation in this way before.
• Does not exist: The suggested translation does not exist in the target language.
• Unrelated to question: There is no connection between Q&A (think twice before checking this one!)

Modifiers:
+ Sorry.
+ Google doesn't prove a thing
+ is not a compelling reason
+ German uses umlauts and hyphens.

The options above are some of the typical objections one could have. The modifiers are a joke (sort of).





[Edited at 2006-08-05 15:53]

[Edited at 2006-08-05 18:15]


Direct link
 
xxxIanW
Local time: 20:34
German to English
+ ...
Clearing up a couple of points Aug 5, 2006

Kim Metzger wrote:
We can easily draw up a list of clearly personal peer comments, such as Ian's tongue-in-cheek "buy a dictionary, stoopid". As soon as we get into name calling and stinging sarcasm we've crossed the line (in these forums as well as in KudoZ). But conscientious professional translators are rightfully offended by some of the garbage they see in KudoZ and need a way to express their justifiable outrage without getting into trouble.



It might well be clear to Kim but is not evident from his posting, so I'd just like to point out at this stage that I have never said - or proposed saying - "buy a dictionary, stoopid" as a peer comment, but rather said, jokingly, that it would be nice to have this as a "standardized option" as suggestion in the following posting by Kim:



Kim's suggestion:
Maybe it would be a good idea to standardize the comments peers can make about questions and answers. Just as we have drop-down boxes for reasons for squashing questions, we could have a set of responses to questions and answers. This would keep people like Stuart and me out of trouble.

Ian's comment:
Yes, a "buy a dictionary (stoopid)" option would be top of my wish-list ...

(Cue other humorous comments)

http://www.proz.com/post/390286#390286



I don't agree with Mats that the option of replying to disagrees should be removed - disagrees are not always right, especially those of the tit-for-tat variety.

And, for the record, a disagree to the effect of "not something a native speaker would say" is certainly valid, and, in my view, extremely important. In fact, if this disagree drive is to work, that is one of the main areas that should be targeted.


Direct link
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

The Disagree Drive (aka weeding out the rubbish)

Advanced search






LSP.expert
You’re a freelance translator? LSP.expert helps you manage your daily translation jobs. It’s easy, fast and secure.

How about you start tracking translation jobs and sending invoices in minutes? You can also manage your clients and generate reports about your business activities. So you always keep a clear view on your planning, AND you get a free 30 day trial period!

More info »
WordFinder
The words you want Anywhere, Anytime

WordFinder is the market's fastest and easiest way of finding the right word, term, translation or synonym in one or more dictionaries. In our assortment you can choose among more than 120 dictionaries in 15 languages from leading publishers.

More info »



All of ProZ.com
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs