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Please read this - and tell me it's not true!
Thread poster: ViktoriaG

ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 10:53
English to French
+ ...
May 18, 2006

Hello dear colleagues,

Please read this very short article and comment: http://newstodaynet.com/17may/ss4.htm

What struck me about this is how people seem to think a foreign language course is enough to start translating. Also, look at the quality of language in this article - it only goes to show how far one can get with a simple foreign language course.

But we are talking about India, where, according to the article, translation has become a fashion. What is the population of India? Now, imagine they all get into the same fashion...


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:53
English to German
+ ...
Not just India May 18, 2006

Hi Viktoria,
You may find the same attitude with some German companies, where the CEO "can English", or legal texts are translated by an assistant. The answer is in education and marketing - in any country.

Cheers, Ralf


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xxxEmmanuelleAn  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:53
English to French
+ ...
oh la la May 18, 2006

Oh dear, that must be a joke...

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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 10:53
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
This is a simple problem to me May 18, 2006

The more civilized the population of out planet becomes, the more people realize you can easily work from home - and they end up thinking it's an easy, effortless job that only requires knowing a second language.

No wonder clients want to pay less and less. Self-proclaimed translators abound, but only a handful of them is really skilled. So, clients get so used to so-so translators that they end up not believing us when we tell them that we are really that good - and they will not risk paying us better than the last guy.

I know it sounds weird, but I am seriously starting to feel that my profession gets trampled every day - and I don't like it.

I am sure there are excellent translators in India, but I am sure that those who are excellent have more than a foreign language course - and they probably don't aspire to being able to live off of one contract for the whole month... Edit: correction, the guy in the article said a MERE PAGE earns you enough to live through the month. Oh dear!

Pathetic... Sad... Disappointed... I'll go cry myself to sleep now...



[Edited at 2006-05-18 07:09]


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JolaS  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:53
English to Polish
+ ...
If life was that simple.... May 18, 2006

I wish a translator could live off one page of translation for a month, then we would not really be bothered with the whole of India translating as well. But everyone knows that one page will not get you very far with the fierce competition everywhere now, and one page can sometimes mean a lot of work. I agree with all of you. What is most annoying is the fact that we spend years studying the language AND translation so as to be able to prepare excellent quality translations and in response the customers choose someone who has no clue as to what is really expected of them. It is quite sad, I agree with you. All we can hope for is that the customers notice that what really matters is the quality and not the price...

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Ricki Farn
Germany
Local time: 16:53
Member (2005)
English to German
The proof is in the article May 18, 2006

"So the mantra now is etucions une nouvelle langue (learn a new language) and go places."

"Etucions"? What does that mean? And how does it agree with the singular verb "go"? Looks like the journalist took a starter course in French...

(I know some people from India, and I was absolutely flabbergasted by their progress at German and Italian respectively, which they explained by the fact that they knew several Indian languages plus English to start with, and had to learn a new one practically each time they relocated within India - but even the greatest preconditions for language learning do not mean one should translate into a foreign one...)


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 09:53
English to Russian
+ ...
Science manual waiting for an Indian housewife... May 18, 2006

Give way, people:-)

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Michał Szcześniewski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 16:53
English to Polish
+ ...
it's not true, but... May 18, 2006

some people just don't get it.

In Poland I am often asked by FCE-holders 'how to start translating, since I need some extra pocket money'. People think that translating is nothing more than re-writing from one language to another. Not much of a trouble. It's enough to complete some language classes.

But there's nothing to worry. Quality always wins.


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Harry Hermawan  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 21:53
Member (2005)
English to Indonesian
YES... May 18, 2006

Michał Szcześniewski wrote:

Quality always wins.



YES...absolutely, no worries there.


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 09:53
English to Russian
+ ...
Hmmm.... May 18, 2006

Michał Szcześniewski wrote:

Quality always wins.



Google alone proves different.


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xxxMarc P  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:53
German to English
+ ...
Double standards May 18, 2006

Pardon me for saying so, but I detect a certain inconsistency here.

If it is suggested elsewhere on the web that anyone can become a translator, there are howls of protest on ProZ.

But if a "newbie", however unqualified in the broadest possible sense, appears on ProZ looking for advice, users and members fall over themselves to encourage him or her to "get started". Look at this recent thread:

www.proz.com/topic/44540

A 17 year-old schoolkid asks about becoming a self-employed translator. The response? Twenty-four colleagues offer advice, ranging from "It's not as easy as you think, but good luck" to "Sure, here's how it's done". If you read a couple of the posts very carefully, you can detect a note of caution. But no poster, not one, finds it opportune to point out that offering translation services commercially whilst being unable to guarantee professional standards is potentially very dangerous, and in some jurisdictions even fraudulent or illegal.

So why the discrepancy?

Marc


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 16:53
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
"Etucions"? May 18, 2006

Should be etudions. But then, the author of that paper does not have the french spellchecker on his clunker;)

And, who cares? Let's have some lyrics, appropriate to the occasion


....

Buying bread from a man in Brussels
He was six foot four and full of muscles
I said, "Do you speak-a my language?"
He just smiled and gave me a vegemite sandwich
And he said,

"I come from a land down under
Where beer does flow and men chunder
Can't you hear, can't you hear the thunder?
You better run, you better take cover."


....


[Edited at 2006-05-18 12:07]


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Dyran Altenburg  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:53
English to Spanish
+ ...
Discrepancies May 18, 2006

MarcPrior wrote:
So why the discrepancy?
Marc


'xactly.

I also find a discrepancy when people who are obviously unqualified to take on a job, get all the help they need from fellow translators via KudoZ or otherwise.

Talk about shooting yourself on the foot.

--
Dyran


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Harry Hermawan  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 21:53
Member (2005)
English to Indonesian
Hmmm... May 18, 2006

MarcPrior wrote:

So why the discrepancy?

Marc


Didn't see the posting?



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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 16:53
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
A 17 year-old schoolkid asks about becoming a self-employed translator May 18, 2006

After reading the posts through, the kid will probably/hopefully realize he's been daydreaming and start looking for that dishwasher job - With the feeling, he was treated as a grown-up.

regards

smo


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