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Requesting arbitration on quality
Thread poster: Andrey Lipattsev

Andrey Lipattsev  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 13:14
English to Russian
+ ...
Apr 12, 2007

Dear colleagues,

A couple of months ago I have completed a small translation (Russian->English) for a good client of mine (an agency). It now appears that their end client is dissatisfied with the quality and is delaying payment.
I have here a couple of extracts from my translation and the corresponding "amendments" of the end client. I would greatly appreciate any sort of feedback on this matter. Particularly, if you do feel that the changes made by the client are justified and my original quality was poor or vice versa.
Thanks a lot in advance,
a

ORIGINAL:
Kомпания «X» предлагает совершенную технологию для быстрого и качественного строительства wills and towers. Принцип технологии заключается в использовании несъемной опалубки из современного, прочного и супертермоизоляционного материала EPS (предварительно вспененного полистирола) в сочетании с бетоном. Это означает, что в самые короткие сроки Вы сможете построить очень комфортное помещение, годное к эксплуатации в течение многих десятилетий.
Возводить дома из EPS-блоков - удовольствие: маленький вес деталей, высокая скорость, с которой строится новый дом, возможность создавать строения разнообразных форм, как из конструктора «LEGO» - все это обеспечило популярность технологии во всем мире.
Что такое несъемная пенополистироловая опалубка?
Это EPS-блоки длиной 1000 мм, шириной 250 мм, высотой 250 мм, имеющие вертикальные и горизонтальные пустоты...

MY TRANSLATION
X offers the perfect technology for rapid and high-quality construction of wills and towers. The technology is based on the use of permanent formwork made of modern, durable and super-thermo-insulating EPS material (expandable polystyrene foam) in combination with concrete. You may thus very quickly erect an extremely comfortable construction that will remain in working order for many decades.
Building houses from EPS blocks is a pleasure: the low weight of the components, the high speed of construction of the new house, the possibility to vary the form of the constructions, as if from “LEGO” building blocks – have all combined to ensure the popularity of this technology throughout the entire world.
What is permanent polystyrene foam formwork?
These are 1000mm-long, 250mm-wide and 250mm-tall EPS blocks with vertical and horizontal cavities filled up with concrete during construction to form a monolith wall...

END CLIENT'S VERSION
X presents the perfect technology for rapid and upscale construction of villas and towers. The technology is based on the use of permanent formwork made of modern, durable and super-thermo-insulating EPS material (expandable polystyrene foam) in conjunction with concrete. You may thus very quickly erect an extremely comfortable construction that will remain in working order for many decades.
It’s a pleasure to build houses from EPS blocks: the low weight of the components, the high speed of construction of the new house, the possibility to create various construction forms as if from “LEGO” building blocks. All these have provided the popularity to this technology all over the globe.
What is permanent cellular polystyrene formwork means?
These are 1000mm-long, 250mm-wide and 250mm-tall EPS blocks with vertical and horizontal cavities filled up with concrete during construction to form a monolith wall.


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Can Altinbay  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:14
Japanese to English
+ ...
Essentially the same... Apr 12, 2007

Russian is not one of my languages, but I can give you feedback based on comparing the 2 English versions. As there doesn't seem to be much disagreement in the words used, it appears that the issue comes down to style and quality anyway.

To me, the 2 versions are almost identical in style and quality. There are parts of both that I would change because they seem a bit awkward to me, but again, that quality is in both versions.

The only glaring difference is:

"Building houses from EPS blocks is a pleasure: the low weight of the components, the high speed of construction of the new house, the possibility to vary the form of the constructions, as if from “LEGO” building blocks – have all combined to ensure the popularity of this technology throughout the entire world."

vs.

"It’s a pleasure to build houses from EPS blocks: the low weight of the components, the high speed of construction of the new house, the possibility to create various construction forms as if from “LEGO” building blocks. All these have provided the popularity to this technology all over the globe."

Here, the latter (end client) version is inferior. Because they cut this into 2 sentences, the first one does not make any sense, and the second sentence is dangling in terms of what it relates to. The meaning is clear, but I wouldn't call it good.


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Jan Willem van Dormolen  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 13:14
English to Dutch
+ ...
I don't know Russian but... Apr 12, 2007

I don't know Russian, so I can't comment on how faithful any of the translations is. But I can see a few things:
- both translations are exactly the same in content - so you didn't make any real translation errors. The only differences are in style.
- Your sentence starting with "Building houses from EPS blocks..." is too long, I prefer the amended version.
- The amended sentence "What is permanent cellular polystyrene formwork means?" is grammatically wrong (there are two verbs!); your version is correct.

All in all, I'ld say that there's nothing wrong with your translation, except for one style issue. And there's definitely one thing wrong with the version provided by your client.

This all said, I repeat that I have no idea what the Russian is about - but since both translations have the same meaning, that can't be the issue.

HTH.


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Lesley Clarke  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 06:14
Spanish to English
Not much difference Apr 12, 2007

I agree with the points made by Can Altinbay, the only problem, in terms of comprehension that I find in your text is the word "wills" that the client translated into "villas". I don't know Russian either, but I cannot see that this is a valid excuse to delay payment. Good luck!

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The Misha
Local time: 08:14
Russian to English
+ ...
They are just stalling Apr 12, 2007

I agree with the other gentleman, if anything the client's version is slightly inferior, and all the difference is merely cosmetic. They are probebly just stalling and refuse to pay.

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Andrey Lipattsev  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 13:14
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks, Can! Apr 12, 2007

What about: "What is permanent cellular polystyrene formwork means?" from the client's version?

This is clearly iffy grammar to me.

I didn't post the entire piece here, since that's not what the forum's for, but I appreciate your comments on what's already up there, as it represents the rest of the text pretty well.

[Редактировалось 2007-04-12 17:40]

[Редактировалось 2007-04-12 17:43]


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Andrey Lipattsev  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 13:14
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks, Lesley! Apr 12, 2007

Lesley Clarke wrote:

I agree with the points made by Can Altinbay, the only problem, in terms of comprehension that I find in your text is the word "wills" that the client translated into "villas". I don't know Russian either, but I cannot see that this is a valid excuse to delay payment. Good luck!


The problem with "wills" is that that's the way it was in original text! You may see for yourself in the Russian text - that's the only English piece in there - "wills and towers". How is one supposed to know that it refers to "villas"?

[Редактировалось 2007-04-12 17:39]


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Barbara Micheletto
Italy
Local time: 13:14
Russian to Italian
+ ...
Isn't it wrong? Apr 12, 2007

I'm not an English native speaker, but isn't this sentence "What is permanent cellular polystyrene formwork means?" wrong? (2nd version). In any case, the 1st version sounds better to me.
B.


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Roman Bulkiewicz  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 14:14
Member (2004)
English to Ukrainian
+ ...
Agree with Can, and... Apr 12, 2007

"What is permanent cellular polystyrene formwork means?"

Am I missing something, or are there 2 grammatical errors in 1 sentence?


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Yolande Haneder  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:14
German to French
+ ...
I would not exacly say the same Apr 12, 2007

Maybe one of the natives may correct me but not both versions are the same.

"in combination with concrete" vs "in conjunction with concrete"

In the years I have been living in the UK, I had not heard much the word "conjunction", rather something like "combined with something". In conjunction sounds like French.

"the possibility to vary the form of the constructions" vs "the possibility to create various construction forms"

The possibility to vary the form would be in one piece, the possibility to create various constructions forms is plural and sounds like several distinctive pieces

"What is permanent polystyrene foam formwork?" "What is permanent cellular polystyrene formwork means?"

If your client would want to correct this, he should have written "What DOES .... mean?" and not "What is...means?"

Sounds like an argument with a non native of English too.
Maybe the native English speakers will be able to help you more.

[Edited at 2007-04-12 17:54]


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Andrey Lipattsev  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 13:14
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks, everyone! Apr 12, 2007

I just wanted to add a request to Russian speakers to post their comments (or double them up) in Russian too for the client's benefit. Otherwise, I'll have to translate the entire thread for them and since they were not happy with my translation skills... You see the conundrum, I hope Thanks a lot once again.

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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 12:14
Dutch to English
+ ...
Tip Apr 12, 2007

Andrey Lipattsev wrote:

I just wanted to add a request to Russian speakers to post their comments (or double them up) in Russian too for the client's benefit. Otherwise, I'll have to translate the entire thread for them and since they were not happy with my translation skills... You see the conundrum, I hope Thanks a lot once again.


You'd be best asking for that specifically on the Russian forum - run a separate thread.

I agree with Can, both are awkward in places but the first version is better than the second - sorry I can't help with the Russian


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Andrey Lipattsev  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 13:14
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks, L-L! Apr 12, 2007

Lawyer-Linguist wrote:

You'd be best asking for that specifically on the Russian forum - run a separate thread.



Thanks for that L-L! Just did that.


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craigs
Local time: 08:14
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Why couldn't they just hire a copywriter or proofreader? Apr 13, 2007

It seems that the customer was very keen one how eloquently the script flows, in which case a slightly different talent may be needed besides simple translation. If the English is accurate and faithful, a simple editing could have fluffed up the English; or else why don't they shell out the money for professional copywriting?

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Claire Titchmarsh  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:14
Italian to English
+ ...
The end client was not even a native speaker Apr 13, 2007

Hi Andrey

There's nothing worse than a know-it-all source language person who likes to "edit" translations.
The end client's version is not slightly inferior, it is c**p. The person has no idea about proofreading or editing, I don't speak a word of Russian but I can tell you that the person who edited your translation is not a native Eng. speaker.

Ask them why their version contains these 2 errors (there may be more but these are the worst) and then demand immediate payment.

All these have provided the popularity to this technology all over the globe. ???

What is permanent cellular polystyrene formwork means?

(no Eng.-speaker would ever make this mistake)


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