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A non-pro first impression of ProZ
Thread poster: redsexy
redsexy
Local time: 22:14
French to English
+ ...
Oct 25, 2001

As a totally non-professional translator, who does it more for the fun than the money, I\'m intrigued by this site! The politics, wow, I haven\'t seen stuff like that since I used to play dungeons and dragons. So now I\'m going to try and make some constructive comments.



It seems that ProZ has an identity crisis in a way. It wants to aim for professional translators and agencies, and allow companies to post jobs for bidding - at the same time it remains open to schoolchildren who need homework advice and people like myself.



Sure, I translate stuff. But my translations are never literal. I\'d rather get the meaning across in my own English than have a phrase by phrase translation. For certain jobs that works really well, particularly with creative, marketing and entertainment texts. I wouldn\'t go near a legal document if you paid me $2,000 a word. (ooops, did I just mention my rates? Naughty me! ). What people have to decide is if they want people like me around. If not, maybe it\'s a good time to start considering making the place paid members only.



Lets go through the sections:



KudoZ is a good idea, but having a point scoring system where only one person can get Kudoz will encourage competitiveness and bickering. Even amongst professionals! [:O] The problems I\'ve seen mentioned are all too evident. If I\'m going to answer a question I go to the reply page as I\'m double checking my references, and by the time I\'ve double checked and typed it all in, sure, there may be another answer there already. Now, I think it\'s more the responsibility of the ASKER to determine who is \'worthy\' of the points by looking at the time the response was posted. If someone does decide to post the exact same response as you do, fair enough. There isn\'t a lot of room in the additional comments section to say \'well, what she has said is right, but you can also look at it from this perspective by visiting this link\'. So, perhaps total responsibility should lie with the asker.



Maybe allocate a total of five points per question which can be shared by those who answered. 3 for this person, who gave me the answer I needed, 2 for that person who came up with some great references for the first person\'s answer.



OK the pros will REALLY hate me now.... []



How about a \'fun\' KudoZ area? Where translators can pit questions against other translators in their quieter moments. For example, I have a whole list of phrases that I\'ve always translated the same way - sometimes through laziness, sometimes through lack of other references to fire my imagination. I could post all these on KudoZ and get flamed because people will think they\'re translating a whole document for me. Or you could have a \'fun\' KudoZ area, maybe make each question worth 1 Kudoz point (or a few Brownies) where people can ask other people things they already know just to help others increase their knowledge and also to add to the great database you\'re building up here.



Then the Glossaries. The team glossary idea is a fantastic one! I\'ve already started building a few glossaries that I can add to whenever I come across a new phrase that\'s related to the discipline I\'m building the glossary for. By no means are these for my personal usage though, these are for other people and I\'d love people to be able to add to my glossaries if they came across something similar. Maybe have a list of available global glossaries for each language pair and give users the choice of whether to make a glossary global or personal.



Personal profiles, ah what a barrel of laughs. [] I\'ve decided to spare people the torture for now and I\'ve taken down my photographs. But seeing everyone you can tell that there are characters out there. I find translating is a lonley job sometimes (can\'t you tell from the length of this post) and maybe it would be nice to have a more social area for people to hang out in.



\"What,\" you say \"The forum isn\'t social?\"



No, man, the forum is professional. There isn\'t one place where someone could post:



\"Dyed my hair, kids driving me crazy, what should I cook them for dinner tonight?\"



Not as if that\'s the kind of image the site is aiming for. After all, correspondences like that can, and should, take place over email with friends. Forums are a good place to make friends as well as enemies, don\'t ya know...



Speaking of friends, it\'s back to the dungeons and dragons for me. I have a few mortals I need to squash. Have fun everyone,



Sx


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Vladimir Dubisskiy  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:14
English to Russian
+ ...
You probably better stay with ProZ longer Oct 25, 2001

Yes, and then, probably, you will be even more constructive than that. Personally, I find it too wordy to discuss, and, if the author was just passing by, why bother...

However it\'s good that our ProZ \'intrigued\' a non-pro. Let\'s build more dungeons with more dragons )))

All the best to all!


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Roomy Naqvy  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 03:44
English to Hindi
+ ...
Stay with ProZ Oct 25, 2001

Dear Sarah



Very interesting post. Appreciated and admired. Well, how would I characterize myself? As a Pro? Or as someone who translates for \'fun\'? Such a difficult choice to make. Possibly, fall in the \'fun\' category.



But I don\'t know if ProZ suffers from any identity crisis... I have been here over a year and never felt it.



Best wishes in all your endeavours,



Roomy Naqvy



Moderator

EnglishGujarati/

Literature & Poetry Forum,

New Delhi, India.
[addsig]


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Sven Petersson  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 23:14
English to Swedish
+ ...
There are no disagreements, only misunderstandings! Oct 25, 2001

“Right” is that which contributes towards the Objective, wrong is all that does not!



The Objective, as I understand it, is to build “the dictionary of all dictionaries”.



The current KudoZ point system is “Right”.



It’s not only right; it’s downright BRILLIANT!



Refine it to make it fairer?



“Fair” is a meaningless fiction created by the weak.



To discuss the fairness of the KudoZ point system is as meaningful as to discuss “how many angels can dance on the point of a needle”!



It works! Don’t change it!



Sven.



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Telesforo Fernandez
Local time: 03:44
English to Spanish
+ ...
It is great Oct 26, 2001

What a great response - cler and concise.

I too would say the same.

Henry and Proz.com team should be really proud of their site and the way they carried along with all shades of opinion.


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TransHispania
English to Spanish
+ ...
KudoZ System of points Oct 26, 2001

I agree with Sarah Eaglesfeld, in that KudoZ\'s system of points should give the asker an opportunity to give some points to other people who came with good elements in their answer. I say it from the point of view of someone who recently posted a question, and I would have liked to give part of the points to a person who gave me an excellent information. I had to be unfair (to my judgement, very unfair) to this person and give points (although only part of them) to another person, who only gave part of the answer to my question (and with no references).



I do not agree with Mr. Petersson\'s arguments, they lack an integral sense of reality (what in philosophy has come to be considered as the shortcomings of \"idealist\" -i.e. merely abstract- thought), and very much \"Will to Power\" (\"the weak do not deserve to survive\",etc etc).





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Thierry Heim
Local time: 08:14
English to French
+ ...
Why change it when it works perfectly ? Oct 26, 2001

Out of all the sites for translators I have come accross, Proz is definitively the best. Kudoz is extremely helpful in getting a consensus on the accuracy and meaning of a translation. Sarah, \"if it ain\'t broke, don\'t fix it\". If you don\'t like Proz I\'m sure you will find plenty of other \"professional\" sites who will charge you an arm and a leg. Cheers.

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Robert Pranagal
Local time: 23:14
English to Polish
+ ...
ProZ freedom... Oct 26, 2001

What is terrific about PROZ.COM is that everyone has freedom to take, to contribute, to share, and to give as much as they can or like. The thing that seems useless to one person, may be the best issue for another individual.



If someone does not like KudoZ - no problem, do not use them!



You are annoyed with easy questions - no problem, do not answer them!



You think forums are waste of time - no problem, do not go there!



You believe glossaries are useless - no problem, do not build yours!



Take what you think is best for you, and let others enjoy and benefit from this site too!





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redsexy
Local time: 22:14
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Addressing one or two points Oct 26, 2001

Quote:


The Objective, as I understand it, is to build “the dictionary of all dictionaries”.


Exactly what a KudoZ for fun area would help to achieve! More questions, more answers and more reference for people to check back on.



Quote:


Refine it to make it fairer?



Not just to make it \'fairer\'. To make it easier for the asker to allocate points.



Quote:


If you don\'t like Proz I\'m sure you will find plenty of other \"professional\" sites who will charge you an arm and a leg



Who said that I don\'t like ProZ? All I\'ve done is make suggestions on possible ways to improve the place.



Quote:


\"if it isn\'t broken, don\'t fix it\"



MDR, Thierry! That sounds as if you\'re trying to say that ProZ should stay exactly the same way as it is now, without ever adding any new areas or incentives. Try reading what I\'ve written again... maybe with a second reading you\'ll understand the true purpose of the post.



I started this topic so people could discuss the ideas I had for enhancing the ProZ experience and maybe eliminating just a bit of the bitchiness and politics that may scare off newcomers (look I\'m still here...).



For a site that\'s aimed at translators, I feel a little misunderstood!



What ProZ have already is great. What they could have here is even greater. I think every website designer should constantly seek ways to add to and to improve their site, regardless of how perfect it may already seem.



Toodle-pip, thanks for making me smile, keep it coming,



Sarah

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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 17:14
SITE FOUNDER
"identity crisis" or "growing pains"? Oct 26, 2001

I found Sarah\'s posting to be positive, useful and entertaining. Good to have you here, Sarah.



Your point about the professionalism \"identity crisis\" struck a chord with me.



I had not thought of the situation in terms of \"crisis.\" But on further thought, the word is probably a good one to summarize the feeling conveyed in a number of emails I have received from new members.



I see the situation as one of \"settling\". The community is now a big mix of translator types, ranging from commercial TM-equipped localization professional to grade schooler with an interest in foreign songs.



What I envision is a period of gradual maturation. Over time, I believe tools will occur to us (like pro/easy KudoZ) that will allow us to differentiate and segment ourselves, and still allow the system to accommodate everyone.



I think it is in our interest to wait out this process. After all, the grade schooler with an interest in foreign songs may turn into a localizer one day. (Too bad we can\'t go the other way.)



But in the meantime, it is a fact that some people are \"lost\" to the community as a result of the mixing.



Just an observation.



By the way, don\'t be fooled, folks. Sarah may translate for the enjoyment she gets. But she is a \"pro.\"


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Sven Petersson  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 23:14
English to Swedish
+ ...
Dear TransHispania, could you please translate? Oct 27, 2001

Dear TransHispania,



Could you please translate “they lack an integral sense of reality (what in philosophy has come to be considered as the shortcomings of \"idealist\" -i.e. merely abstract- thought), and very much \"Will to Power\" (\"the weak do not deserve to survive\",etc etc).” into understandable English?



I really would like to understand what you try to communicate!



Best regards,



Sven.



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TransHispania
English to Spanish
+ ...
KudoZ System of points (reply to Mr. Petersson) Oct 27, 2001

Dear Mr. Petersson,



Thank you very much for your answer to my posting, which I published in answer to yours (in an attempt to justify and defend the value of Sarah Eaglefeld\'s point of view).



The first thing I want to do is to apologize if I offended you with the words that I used for my posting (I was thinking afterwards to edit it and make some changes, but I decided finally not to do it).



I think that Sarah\'s idea of giving the asker the possibility to give some points to another person who came with a good part of the answer (and that was not given by the winner), is an excellent idea. There could be an agreement for example, to give only one point to that answer, and still the greatest part to the winner. This would be an excellent idea if the winner gets only part of the points (for lack of references, for example), so that the total of 4 points gets evenly distributed without any losses.

If it is what you are looking for, it would give you even more chances of winning even more KudoZ points.



As for the rest of my comment, which is secondary to my main argument, it does not need any translation (unless you really need it in another language).



I think that there is a real risk from your own argument, that you invent your own criteria for what is \"good\" and \"wrong\" and \"fair\", based on your own recent success with KudoZ points (which however also deserves a lot of admiration, in appreciation also that it has cost you a lot of effort -I have absolutely nothing against it).



One thing that made me think that you lacked

an integral sense of reality (AT THAT TIME; it is exactly the purpose of reflection, of thinking,

-for everybody- to try to gain a more complete vision of it, to overcome our partial way of looking at things), is your use of capital letters for words such as \"Objective\" and \"Right\", which is a way to create big abstractions, without truly examining their relationship with the reality out there (which has been exactly the temptation of \"idealist\" thought in German philosophy).



I am not sure that it is possible to create \"the dictionary of all dictionaries\" through KudoZ, or that this is what KudoZ system of points should try to do (as a kind of new \"tower of Babel\"), I see it more as fiction.



Finally, your sentence:\" “Fair” is a meaningless fiction created by the weak\". It

made me directly think of Nietsche, who also tried to justify the moral of the \"masters\" against the moral of the \"slaves\", or the moral of resentment).Thisis why I used the expression that I used. Maybe we should all follow this moral (and try all to be on the side of the \"winners\", at the expense of the \"loosers\"). Or maybe try to find instead to find what is \"justice\", and \"goodness\", in the sense that Plato did, and still remains actual.



Best regards,



Diego Perez de Leon.



P.S. I have nothing against you; I hope it will be possible to be friends, and not \"enemies\" (it is however difficult to avoid conflicts in human relationships, we should all make an effort to avoid it).



I wish you all the best in all your endeavours, and in your work.




[addsig]


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xxxPaul Roige
Spain
Local time: 23:14
English to Spanish
+ ...
In the beginning there was nothing... Oct 27, 2001

Gidday y\'all! I don\'t know how long has Sarah been aware of ProZ existence. I have for one year now, and, man, it has changed quite a bit since. There are some heavyweights working behind the scenes here, I reckon. Thanks to ProZ, ignoramuses like me become here a little bit less ignorant, vocations and friendships are born here. I\'ve seen beginners giving out great answers and very established ones not so good. I myself have felt ashamed of some answers I gave out (oh if only I had searched/thought a bit deeper!). But then so many rightly answered questions are not given points...

Kudoz, Brownies, bids, jobs, glossaries, CVs, profiles, photos, hates, competition... WHO CARES? Something will only affect you if you allow it. The really important thing is that we are here sharing a MIRACLE! Can\'t we see it? Of course there are things that could improve, but have we taken a look at the difference there is between what we\'ve got here (for free if we want to) and NOTHING? What was there before ProZ, I ask? Every time I connect it amazes me that this site is still there... and I won\'t ever take it for granted. I can\'t wait to get some dough and help financing it as I feel I\'m getting too much for nothing. Not perfect? What, who is? Ideas to improve it? Contact the people in charge. It\'s a good idea to cut down expectations and enjoy what we\'ve got. We\'ll have even more fun. Put down your binocs and jump onboard Sarah, and let\'s all sail together with our virtues and vices.

Hasta la vista


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