Hi again, François,
The rates system means you cannot REPLY to an offer where the rate is lower than your own. It doesn't mean you cannot RECEIVE the job offer in the first place.
Sorry, but that's one part of it:
2. Why should I enter rates?
Benefits of specifying a range of rates:
(1) Specifying a rate range makes it easier for clients to consider working with you
(2) You will not be bothered with notifications of jobs below your minimums
(3) You will be able to compare your rates with aggregated data from other pros in your pairs
Also, by specifying the range in which you are willing to work, you supply valuable information that will be used in educating clients. For example, if a client wants to post a job at 0.001 cents/word (a very low rate), he or she will be presented with data showing the percentage of pros who are not willing to work at that rate. This helps to head off unreasonable offers.
9. I've entered my rates but I'm still receiving some jobs offering a rate under my minimum. Why is this?
Not all jobs conform to the format of "[X] per [word|hour|total] in [currency]". Some jobs specify lines instead of words, ongoing or in-house jobs often have different pricing requirements, and so on. To accomodate these different situations, outsourcers are given the choice of entering pricing for the job in the standard format, or using a free-form text box to enter the pricing. Jobs that use the free-form format cannot be checked for rates, so you will receive notification for them, even if they are below your set minimum.
Note that in the future, outsourcers will have more incentive to enter pricing in the standard format, and whether standard pricing is entered or not will influence who receives the notification.
Assuming you entered your rates, and you received a notification you shouldn't have, please submit a Support Request to ProZ.com staff. Preferably, you should include the IP headers of that message, to allow them to trace the notification.
[Edited at 2005-07-07 16:01]