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Off topic: Proz being discussed in another site
Thread poster: xxxInes Cas
Jul 8, 2004

Hello everyone!
Proz is being discussed in the Discussion Forum of the Institute of Linguist.
Have a look at the following:

http://www.iol.org.uk/discussion/viewtopic.asp?id=692

In particular have a look at the following message that was posted today:

"ProZ.com is very much a mixed bag. I certainly got started on my career by bidding for jobs there (I was only successful after going platinum). On the other hand, the KudoZ forum is a rather bad joke for a number of reasons. Like other forums on the site, it is subject to apparently random censorship, and, in every language combination I have looked at, there are cliques who support one another even when obviously wrong (most of the time), abuse people who offer reasoned dissent, etc. The whole atmosphere of the site is anti-intellectual and anti-professional. This is not surprising since most members are both stupid and unqualified. Some lay claim to bogus qualifications; others seem to think a language certificate well below degree level somehow makes them professionally qualified translators. It is perhaps best to confine one's activities there to looking for jobs."
8/7/2004 richard


I haven’t been a member of Proz for very long but I don’t agree at all with what Richard says.

Ines


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Judy Rojas  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 11:21
Spanish to English
+ ...
Read our comments Jul 8, 2004

Hi:
There are some interesting replies in support of Proz (mine included)


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Eva T
English to Albanian
+ ...
So sorry for him Jul 8, 2004

Ines Cas wrote:

Hello everyone!
Proz is being discussed in the Discussion Forum of the Institute of Linguist.
Have a look at the following:

This is not surprising since most members are both stupid and unqualified. Ines


It seems that he is making a foul of himself as well. He calls us stupid and unqualified. Does he forget that we are members here, and we are members at other sites as well. So if I am a member here, I am stupid, but if I am a member in another site, I am not stupid. Well, this is being picky, unrightously picky.


I do not know him, but his writing says enough.

Dear Ines,
Proz.com is a wonderful place. It has helped me with a lot of things, I have learned a lot, not only through reading different topics, but also by participating in the Kudoz system.

I would feel very embarrased if I was the one who had said those words.


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R Farhat  Identity Verified
Lebanon
Local time: 16:21
Member (2004)
English to Arabic
+ ...
pathetic! Jul 8, 2004

a guy who had a chance to see but kept himself blind!
and yes, it is so pathetic that there are people like that in every corner.
in my 8 years of web surfing, "proz" has been and is the only cyber place i frequent everyday- since the day i came across it!

forget about that lad!


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Narasimhan Raghavan  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:51
English to Tamil
+ ...
I gave the following reply Jul 9, 2004

Dear Richard,
Your comments are nothing new. A thrice expelled ex. member (twice he was readmitted after abject apology on his part, he was not lucky the third time) has said/is saying much more. In the Yahoo group being moderated by him, he has made so many slanderous statements, that he himself deleted them afterwards as a result of post-facto-cold feet.
I am a non-paying member since February 2003 and I find the site very useful, especially the fora and Kudoz questions.
Regards,
N.Raghavan


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Eva T
English to Albanian
+ ...
What is more pathetic Jul 9, 2004

is somebody who is a member of this site, even a paying member!!!, calling this site with these names. It is a different thing to give some feedback to improve the site, and a total different thing to call it like this, especially when he is a paying member. If he does not like it or thinks that this is stupid, then why bother to pay a membership??? Obviously must be something very attractive about this site, that the other ones do not have it.

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Omar Osman
Belgium
Local time: 15:21
Member
English to Somali
+ ...
Hard luck Jul 9, 2004

I am a paying member of Proz, I haven't seen an increase on workload since I became Platinum, but I have increased my workload by 30% since i joined Proz last year.
The platinum membership is continent for other things; beside I have used some of the income of the job I got from the site to pay the membership. Will check next year if convinient or not.
I do see though some of the things mentioned by Richard on the Kudoz questions/answers.


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 10:21
SITE FOUNDER
Thanks, Ines - I wrote a reply Jul 9, 2004

Thanks for the link Ines, I wrote a reply. Since ProZ.com had been discussed pro and con by the time I got there, I mainly replied to the poster's question about starting out as a freelancer.

Regarding the exchange about ProZ.com and its members, I find it fair to defend oneself and one's colleagues when a person suggests that "most" of us here are "stupid and unqualified". When replying to such postings, we put on display the level of professionalism we expect from others. A strong reply will not resort to name-calling of its own--that would only play into the hands of someone who clearly has an agenda against this site and community.

As for me, while I acknowledge that unqualified translators come and go here from time to time, I am very proud of the outstanding community that has made ProZ.com its home workplace. I believe that our combined linguistic expertise is without parallel, and I see us only getting stronger in that respect.

Thanks, all, for being part of the community, and for defending it in this case.


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RHELLER
United States
Local time: 08:21
French to English
+ ...
just a microcosm Jul 9, 2004

Dear Friends:

Proz is a microcosm of the world we live in. We all know that good and bad exist everywhere. Stereotypes of people from a specific country, ethnicity, or website are not useful.

Understanding the nuances and subtleties of specific groups is the best way to improving communication. Most of us have lived in more than one place and speak more than one language. Therefore, we are/should be thoughtful and open-minded.

The person who called us stupid may have suffered from some of the hurtful cattiness and cliquishness that exists on proz.

Aldous Huxley
"There's only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self."


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Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 11:21
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
Comments on critics Jul 9, 2004

Richard said
On the other hand, the KudoZ forum is a rather bad joke for a number of reasons. Like other forums on the site, it is subject to apparently random censorship, and, in every language combination I have looked at, there are cliques who support one another even when obviously wrong (most of the time), abuse people who offer reasoned dissent, etc.


Omar said
I do see though some of the things mentioned by Richard on the KudoZ questions/answers.


Rita said
The person who called us stupid may have suffered from some of the hurtful cattiness and cliquishness that exists on ProZ.com.


Dear all regular ProZ.com users, particularly KudoZ users (or addicts as some call us)

Richard mixes several things (he calls KudoZ a forum and talks about censorship, the ideas are not very clear I’d say or he doesn’t know very well how ProZ.com works)
First of all, as it was answered in that forum, there are rules, clearly stated in the FAQ, about KudoZ and Forums and whenever they are not respected censorship may be applied. But some people forget that when they create a profile they also accept the rules. There are some people who create a profile and start asking for changing the rules or complaining about them.

I think that we all see the advantages of KudoZ and maybe some of us have “suffered”, but I’d need to have more details about this. Most of the language pairs have a moderator and in every single question there’s a link to contact him or her in order to call his attention to that particular question.
Maybe what you’re talking about is something more general and can’t be described in only one link, but our goal is always to make things better and to make members feel good, so I’d advice to contact moderators when there’s a problem or a bad feeling about what happens in a sub-community. Whenever there’s a problem in a s/c in which there’s no moderator you can contact a mod who works in one of those languages or any moderator.
I have seen people “fighting” and having “enemies”. Some of them have been cooled down with a week off, some with more than a week, and we try to keep things in order with a pleasant atmosphere.
But I’ve also seen people who can’t accept receiving a disagree or being wrong, so I’d also like to know very precisely what are we talking about.
Anyway I firmly believe that it’s discussing about problems how we’ll be able to find solutions. Critics are fine when we take lessons from them (for those who are criticized), but for those who just critic I’d like to know their purpose and their reasons.

I’d like to add how my personal view for KudoZ. Before finding ProZ I had subscribed to a translators list and in my first message I asked how I could become a translator (I’m a teacher first). I was contacted by the moderator of that list and she asked me whether I was a translation student or a translator. I answered “not yet”, as my message had shown. She answered, then, come back when you are either a student or a translator. I looked at many sites. I was not welcome. In ProZ.com I found open doors, although I remember that somebody told me in a forum to forget about becoming a translator. And in KudoZ I found the best way to show what I knew, to show what I could do, to become more confident. I learned to look for information in the web, I discovered resources, I made friends. I found clients and collaborators, in KudoZ, not via KudoZ. I also made mistakes and I also had to swallow my pride once or twice. But it’s simple: it changed my life (and I didn\'t say anything about forums, it\'s another chapter:-)).

Claudia


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Elías Sauza  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 08:21
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Let's look at the positive values Jul 9, 2004

The fact that there will always be Proz foes is unavoidable. It should encourage us in making of Proz.com a stronger community. I have no doubt that most of the people in this community look at life and work in a positive manner. Scorn and unjudicious, hatred-loaded opinions are a minority and must not alter our path to the betterment of this site.

Elías Sauza


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xxxCHENOUMI  Identity Verified
English to French
+ ...
Very eloquently said, Rita! Jul 9, 2004

Rita Heller wrote:

Dear Friends:

Proz is a microcosm of the world we live in. We all know that good and bad exist everywhere. Stereotypes of people from a specific country, ethnicity, or website are not useful.

Understanding the nuances and subtleties of specific groups is the best way to improving communication. Most of us have lived in more than one place and speak more than one language. Therefore, we are/should be thoughtful and open-minded.

The person who called us stupid may have suffered from some of the hurtful cattiness and cliquishness that exists on proz.

Aldous Huxley
"There's only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self."


Rita, I wish your well-reasoned and very wise words were the closing thought of this thread. They are so pertinent and so true!! Perhaps you can repeat your posting at the end. But, I'd like to express my viewpoint.

The person who called us stupid may have suffered from some of the hurtful cattiness and cliquishness that exists on proz.


Speaking of cattiness, you have no idea how malicious and malignant people can be... I do. I have experienced it a few times here but I also know that on the whole, there are so many decent people who outnumber them. They are in obvious minority.

The detractor is not apparently a tough-skinned individual. I can't judge or condemn him because I'm unaware of his specific circumstances, and I don't condemn people. Besides, things are never what they appear to be. I can however say that at times the pettiness and callousness do get on the nerves and under the skin... Yes, people are mean-spirited - overtly or covertly malicious - At times, one can be disgusted. And yes too, we don't always react as wisely as we normally should. But we are humans, after all.

It took me a while to come to terms with this hard truth of our human condition: good and bad exist in everyone and everywhere. It IS sometimes difficult to accept that duality. But since living in the US, I've come to realize too that one cannot throw the baby out with the bathwater. (I like this saying.) And what has kept me going on this site, is the good. The good things and the good people. The good, the goods (yes) and the goodies. The rest, *even the most evil attitude*, becomes incidental and IRRELEVANT.

With this latest case of ProZ-bashing, those who hurt others -- specially those in position of "power" -- should realize that by doing so they are being detrimental to the site itself. And causing it great harm. In the end, their fairness or rather lack thereof, is what ultimately gives rise to current and future vitriolic detractors.

ProZ.com is a community - a common space - that gives us all visibility and that we all SHARE and LOVE.
NO mean spirit will drive me off ProZ.com. I have invested too much quality time on it... It is as MINE as it is 'theirs'.

ProudZianly yours,
Sandra;)


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zaphod
Local time: 15:21
English to French
+ ...
I like the Microcosm Idea Jul 9, 2004

It should also be stated that as professionals, we often don't have the time to completely reason out our answers - hence the spaces for further additions. The will to help often oversomce the time to complete the thought. I would be the first to admit I am stupid and unqualified, with false credentials; but my PhD and linguistic training has stood me in good stead through several books and a steady income as a working writer.Maybe my readers are the stupid ones. I still cash their checks.
E-Mails by their nature tend toward the aggresive,as brevity is a product of intelligence and the intellignet often don't communicate more than is necessary. We often don't feel the need to expand on our thoughts, because we have been trained in the economy of language. As Rita so eloquently said: We represent a microcosm. Richard thinks it is of stupidity. One has to wonder why he stayed around for so long; was it to absorb more?
Chers,
Zaphod.


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teju  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:21
English to Spanish
+ ...
My mouth is still open! Jul 9, 2004

Dear friends,

I have frequented the ProZ site often in the last year. While I haven't been around very long, I have found it very useful. ProZ allows you to get opinions from translators in many different countries, with varied backgrounds and experience. The people who answer questions do so in an effort to help others, they are not getting anything in return.

If there are times when an answer may not be correct, or it may not be the best answer, the willingness to help is still appreciated. I think this site gives us an excellent way to share knowledge, and sometimes, even make friends.

When people criticize what's on TV, I say "use your remote, change the channel". If you don't like ProZ, that's OK with us. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. And that's all it is -- an opinion. We will continue doing what we have been doing, since it seems that thousands of members would agree that it's working!

I second what Elias Sauza said. This should encourage us to make ProZ.com a stronger community!


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