Non-paying users must now pay to play?
Thread poster: Edward L. Crosby III

Edward L. Crosby III  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:57
German to English
+ ...
Jul 20, 2008

Greetings,

I was going to submit a quote on a proofing/editing project this afternoon (Job No. 268213), but when I initiated the process (by clicking the "submit quote" link), a pop-up screen announced that "Non-paying site users are asked to pay..." to enter a quote.

Is this a new ProZ site rule? Does it apply to ALL jobs, or only certain ones?

Let's be fair. Would it not be more appropriate to charge job POSTERS a small fee for using the site? Every outsourcer who posts a job immediately enjoys the benefit of bringing the availability of the job to the attention of all interested ProZ translators. At the other end of the quoting process, however, only the winning bidder(s) receive any value.

Since registering in 2002 I have yet to submit a successful quote, probably because I refuse to work at the 5-cent-per-word level, which is unfortunately where a large number of posted jobs are clustered. Some are worth less than that ("low budget"), and I've even been asked if I would please translate a chemical textbook for FREE.

Regards,

Ed
Crosby@odessaoffice.com


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Yolanda Broad  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:57
Member (2000)
French to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
Non-members pay to quote on jobs (BrowniZ or cash) Jul 20, 2008

Dear Ed,

There is nothing new about paying to quote on jobs. Since you don't appear to have run across this issue before, I'm guessing you've been "paying" with BrowniZ up till now.

You'll find the rundown on how job quoting payment works here:

http://www.proz.com/faq/jobs#job_bidding_pay


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Edward L. Crosby III  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:57
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
"Pay 2 Quote" is a new wrinkle Jul 20, 2008

Yolanda Broad wrote:

Dear Ed,

There is nothing new about paying to quote on jobs. Since you don't appear to have run across this issue before, I'm guessing you've been "paying" with BrowniZ up till now.

You'll find the rundown on how job quoting payment works here:

http://www.proz.com/faq/jobs#job_bidding_pay



Yolanda,

I've submitted a handful of quotes since 2002 (not many due to the "bottom-feeder" rates offered by most outsourcers), and today was the first time I was explicitly encouraged by ProZ to pay. The payment request screen never appeared before.

Perhaps BrownieZ have been deducted from my account all along without notification? Don't know, since I haven't kept track of my BrownieZ balance, but I never saw the "Pay 2 Quote" screen before.

I still feel it is far more equitable to charge the poster rather than the bidder. In the business world it is the advertiser who pays for the ad, not the respondent.

Cheers,

Ed
Crosby@odessaoffice.com


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 14:57
English to French
+ ...
I think it is the BrowniZ Jul 20, 2008

I think that you paid for all your other quotes with BrowniZ - and you have since then depleted them, whence the note asking you to pay. If you check your wallet, you should get a record of your BrowniZ spending, along with links to the jobs you spent them on.

Otherwise, I agree that it is strange that outsourcers don't need to pay to post jobs, but freelancers have to pay to quote on them - I, too, think it should be the other way around. However, it is also true that if non-members were not required to pay, then the value of the full membership and the jobs membership would be considerably reduced...


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Edward L. Crosby III  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:57
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Still beaucoup BrownieZ left... Jul 20, 2008

Viktoria Gimbe wrote:

I think that you paid for all your other quotes with BrowniZ - and you have since then depleted them, whence the note asking you to pay. If you check your wallet, you should get a record of your BrowniZ spending, along with links to the jobs you spent them on.

Otherwise, I agree that it is strange that outsourcers don't need to pay to post jobs, but freelancers have to pay to quote on them - I, too, think it should be the other way around. However, it is also true that if non-members were not required to pay, then the value of the full membership and the jobs membership would be considerably reduced...


Viktoria,

I have a BrownieZ balance of over 2300, so that's not the problem, and it leaves me unable to explain why I'm seeing the "pay" screen only now for the first time.

In addition, the user is offered a choice of how to pay -- BrownieZ or wallet dollars -- so it would be unreasonable to just assume the user wanted to pay with BrownieZ points (see last paragraph).

I'm not sure what site benefits are available only to paying members, but there are a lot of them. Changing the job posting procedure to "poster pays" seems to me to be not unreasonable, since every poster gets the benefit of the post, but only one bidder gets the benefit of the job.

My wallet history shows that I was indeed charged 100 BrownieZ for quotes on three occasions (without having the option to pay in dollars) since 2003, but I'm fairly sure I've bid on more jobs than that. Who knows.

Cheers,

Ed
Crosby@odessaoffice.com


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Niels Stephan  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:57
Member (2009)
English to German
Just a new ad Jul 20, 2008

As a non-paying member you had to click all the time at the bottom right corner how you want to pay: from your wallet or with your browniz. (At least since I'm active here.) What is new, seems to be a big advertisement at the top of the page, that explains your third option: getting a full membership (and the 2 other options again as well).

When I read in another recent thread how two handful of members - among them several of the more experienced and active colleagues, who often give valuable input in the forum - stated in unison, that they never won a single bid here on proz.com (same for me btw), this whole "payment for bids" thing seem to be a bit hilarious in a first place to me.


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Astrid Elke Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:57
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
Outsourcers do have to pay to post "Connect" jobs Jul 21, 2008

To be a company member of Proz, and post jobs through "Connect", which is intended to be the more commercial job posting facility, we have to pay an annual fee, which is mostly for this purpose.

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Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:57
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Paying posters Jul 21, 2008

Come on Ed. Get that chip off your shoulder, man. What's the odd textbook between friends? A TEXTbook, too! That way you'll be helping the authorities out with the cost of education AND helping kids to go on to become chemists so they can do occasional chemistry translations for the bottom feeders at weekends and/or nights if the main breadwinning activity doesn't make enough.

Right on about the advertisers paying. Perhaps there would be less sleaze that way. These days, any drossy outfit can sling a semi-anonymous advert on, and any drossy outfit does. "We have an urgent translation to be done. Please send best rate". No info, no nothing - I swear I feel like a linguistic whore just looking at some of these offers. Although there was one offer a week or so ago I simply couldn't stop laughing at. Like all the others, though, it closed, so not everyone has my sense of humour.


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Yolanda Broad  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:57
Member (2000)
French to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
Checking your previous quotes on jobs Jul 21, 2008

To see how many jobs you've previously quoted on, click on the Jobs tab at the top of a ProZ.com page, then click on "My quotes." I just checked: mine go all the way back to Sep 5 2000, with full quote details still available. (However, I'm not sure why that feature hasn't been included under the My ProZ.com tab, rather than under the Jobs one.)

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Edward L. Crosby III  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:57
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
The "pay" notice may appear only for "regular" jobs Jul 22, 2008

Niels Stephan wrote:

As a non-paying member you had to click all the time at the bottom right corner how you want to pay: from your wallet or with your browniz.


I don't usually bid on "regular" jobs because I know it will almost certainly be a waste of time. The other two job categories -- "connect" jobs and "premium" jobs -- may have a different post/quote mechanism wherein the bidder is not asked to pay.

When I read in another recent thread how two handful of members - among them several of the more experienced and active colleagues, who often give valuable input in the forum - stated in unison, that they never won a single bid here on proz.com (same for me btw), this whole "payment for bids" thing seem to be a bit hilarious in a first place to me.


Amen. If the job is only worth 5 cents per word to start with, why burden the bidder further by exacting a quoting fee?

Gruß,

Ed
Crosby@odessaoffice.com


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Edward L. Crosby III  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:57
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I think the job category is the key Jul 22, 2008

Astrid Elke Johnson wrote:

To be a company member of Proz, and post jobs through "Connect", which is intended to be the more commercial job posting facility, we have to pay an annual fee, which is mostly for this purpose.


I think that's the issue. I almost always restrict my quotes to "connect" and/or "premium" jobs, since the others are primarily a waste of time. Perhaps "premium" job posters also are charged a posting fee; that would explain why I have only once seen the "please pay" screen.

Ironically, I would be much more agreeable to paying for my quote on a higher-value ("connect" or "premium") job.

Cheers,

Ed
Crosby@odessaoffice.com


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Edward L. Crosby III  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:57
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Pro bono work has its limits... Jul 22, 2008

Mervyn Henderson wrote:

Come on Ed. Get that chip off your shoulder, man. What's the odd textbook between friends?


You're right, of course. I have done the occasional encyclop(a)edia translation on a pro-bono basis, but I won't touch pro-bonehead jobs. I think the "bottom-feeder" rates must be intended primarily to attract "me-too" translators, such as immigrant pole dancers who beef up their accounts by "making the English translations" during their downtime in the smoky back room of the club.

"Me-too" translators and agencies have existed since I've been in the business, and I reckon they were made for each other.

Salu2,

Ed
Crosby@odessaoffice.com


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