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New moderators for Dutch and Flemish
Thread poster: Enrique Cavalitto

Enrique Cavalitto
Local time: 15:17
SITE STAFF
Jun 12, 2007

Dear members,

I am very happy to announce that four great professionals have joined the outstanding ProZ.com moderators team:

  • Jacqueline van der Spek will moderate with veteran mod Evert DELOOF-SYS the Dutch forum and the following KudoZ pairs:
    • English to Dutch
    • Dutch to/from Spanish
    • Flemish to/from Spanish


  • Marian Pyritz will moderate the following KudoZ pairs:
    • German to/from Dutch
    • German to/from Flemish
    • Dutch monolingual
    • Flemish monolingual


  • Antoinette Verburg will moderate the Dutch-English KudoZ pair with Evert.


  • Joris Bogaert will moderate the following KudoZ pairs:
    • Italian to/from Dutch
    • Italian to/from Flemish


  • Besides, Evert will add to his many roles the following KudoZ pairs:
    • French to Dutch
    • Dutch to Russian
    • Flemish to/from French
    • Dutch to/from Flemish


    Thanks to all moderators, new, current and past, for their many selfless efforts to support the site and its community!

    Kind regards,
    Enrique

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  • Henk Peelen  Identity Verified
    Netherlands
    Local time: 20:17
    Member (2002)
    German to Dutch
    + ...
    Big surprise, and welcome! Jun 12, 2007

    I thought we were all operating so moderately that we hardly did need any moderator, let alone so many of them.

    Great, and thanks (in advance) for your hard work!


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    writeaway  Identity Verified

    Local time: 20:17
    Partial member (2003)
    French to English
    + ...
    New criteria for selecting Moderators? No native speakers of the target language(s)? Jun 12, 2007

    Are there any other language pairs where none of the Moderators is a native speaker of the target language? I thought that amongst the qualities needed to be a Moderator, being an expert native speaker of the target language was the first criteria. So why is there no longer a single native speaker of the target language moderating several of the pairs involving Dutch/Flemish, including the Dutch-English pair?
    I don't understand what the signal being sent out by this selection is supposed to mean. As Ian Winnick said in his posting in the forum, "who needs the natives?" http://www.proz.com/post/146849
    Dutch-English isn't that exotic-there wasn't a single suitable native Anglo found to co-moderate that pair?
    I can't imagine English-Spanish without a native Spanish speaking moderator or any other site with only source language people moderating it.
    So why Dutch?


    [Edited at 2007-06-12 23:35]


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    Maria Karra  Identity Verified
    United States
    Local time: 14:17
    Member (2000)
    Greek to English
    + ...
    Welcome! - and some comments Jun 13, 2007

    Henk wrote:
    I thought we were all operating so moderately that we hardly did need any moderator, let alone so many of them.

    Henk, moderators do many things on the site; they reclassify KudoZ questions, they approve (or hide, if needed) forum posts, they move threads to the appropriate forums, they approve knowledgebase articles, some vet job postings, others vet or reject GlossPost entries, etc. So even if your SC is quiet, some extra hands are always welcome.


    writeaway wrote:
    I thought that amongst the qualities needed to be a Moderator, being an expert native speaker of the target language was the first criteria.

    I think it's essential that the moderator of a language pair be highly competent in the target language, that his/her level in that language be that of an educated native speaker. I'm not sure that being a native speaker should be the first criterion.


    I don't understand what the signal being sent out by this selection is supposed to mean.
    can't imagine English-Spanish without a native Spanish speaking moderator or any other site with only source language people moderating it.
    [/quote]

    I don't think there's any hidden meaning. If anything, it shows that there are other criteria/qualities that are more important than being a native speaker (e.g. objectivity, friendliness (well, we try), patience, experience (in using the site), competence in the source and target languages, etc.)
    As to non-native Spanish speaking moderators: today two new moderators were assigned to the Spanish forum. Only one of them is a native Spanish speaker. The other is yours truly But I've been a moderator for 7 years, and my Spanish is not too bad, so hopefully I'll manage. If there were a native-speaker criterion, that would mean that I was a bad choice. I suppose time will tell. My first day on the job went OK, though.

    Regards,
    Maria


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    Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
    Mexico
    Local time: 13:17
    German to English
    Who needs the natives? Jun 13, 2007

    writeaway wrote:

    I don't understand what the signal being sent out by this selection is supposed to mean. As Ian Winnick said in his posting in the forum, "who needs the natives?" http://www.proz.com/post/146849



    I mainly participate in German to English and English to German KudoZ, and I can say with some assurance that the English speakers are in control of their community and the German speakers are firmly in control of their community. In other words, English to German "belongs" to the Germans/Austrians/Swiss and German to English "belongs" to the English native speakers. The target language translators tend to have the final word when it comes to how their language is written and spoken.

    I understand that this is not necessarily the case in some language pairs where it seems the tone is not set by the target language folks (native speakers) but by the source language folks, many of whom claim the target language as one of their native languages although in fact they grew up speaking the source language. If I translated in one of those language pairs, I doubt if I would use KudoZ very much.

    I believe a language pair can be reclaimed by the target language translators. They can once again "own" their community. But it takes people willing to speak up in the forums to turn things around. English monolingual is one such success story, in my opinion. It is now more likely that the native speakers will have the final word on what is acceptable written and spoken English.



    [Edited at 2007-06-13 01:55]


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    Enrique Cavalitto
    Local time: 15:17
    SITE STAFF
    TOPIC STARTER
    Criteria for selecting moderators Jun 13, 2007

    writeaway wrote:

    Are there any other language pairs where none of the Moderators is a native speaker of the target language? I thought that amongst the qualities needed to be a Moderator, being an expert native speaker of the target language was the first criteria.


    What moderators are and do is described here.

    The principles upon which ProZ.com has been built can be found in the document Sixteen (16) cornerstones of ProZ.com.

    All the candidates designated for site moderation are chosen based on the criteria stated in these documents.

    I am confident that all the members of the team assembled around Dutch and Flemish will prove to be excellent moderators.

    Regards,
    Enrique


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    Henrik Pipoyan  Identity Verified
    Local time: 22:17
    Member (2004)
    English to Armenian
    Hi Jacqueline, Marian, Antoinette, and Joris Jun 13, 2007

    Welcome aboard. The team of moderators is getting stronger and stronger, so does the site.

    Here, on this site, moderators are first of all native speakers of ProZ.com, who help this huge and diverse community coexist in peace.

    I wish you success.


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    writeaway  Identity Verified

    Local time: 20:17
    Partial member (2003)
    French to English
    + ...
    Agree with what you said. Which is why I posted my comments Jun 13, 2007

    Maria Karra wrote:



    writeaway wrote:
    I thought that amongst the qualities needed to be a Moderator, being an expert native speaker of the target language was the first criteria.

    I think it's essential that the moderator of a language pair be highly competent in the target language, that his/her level in that language be that of an educated native speaker.



    My point exactly.


    I don't think there's any hidden meaning. If anything, it shows that there are other criteria/qualities that are more important than being a native speaker (e.g. objectivity, friendliness (well, we try), patience, experience (in using the site), competence in the source and target languages, etc.)


    Regards,
    Maria


    Also my point.

    [Edited at 2007-06-13 10:59]


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    Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
    Portugal
    Local time: 19:17
    Dutch to English
    + ...
    Not that surprising Jun 13, 2007

    writeaway wrote:

    Dutch-English isn't that exotic-there wasn't a single suitable native Anglo found to co-moderate that pair?


    In fact this was predicted - spot on - if you think back.

    Many (if not most) native English speakers (i.e. geniune natives not self-professed ones) stopped participating in that pair yonks ago, so there's not exactly an infinite pool of candidates out there.

    If you've got the time or inclination for KudoZ, see how it goes or focus on other things. You might be pleasantly surprised if you approach it with an open mind and let bygones be bygones.

    New brooms sweeping clean, all that jazz ...







    [Edited at 2007-06-13 08:13]


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    writeaway  Identity Verified

    Local time: 20:17
    Partial member (2003)
    French to English
    + ...
    A clean sweep Jun 13, 2007

    Lawyer-Linguist wrote:

    writeaway wrote:

    Dutch-English isn't that exotic-there wasn't a single suitable native Anglo found to co-moderate that pair?


    In fact this was predicted - spot on - if you think back ...

    Many (if not most) native English speakers (i.e. geniune natives not self-professed ones) stopped participating in that pair yonks ago, so there's not exactly an infinite pool of candidates out there.

    If you've got the time or inclination for KudoZ, see how it goes. You might be pleasantly surprised if you approach it with an open mind. New brooms sweeping clean, all that jazz ...







    [Edited at 2007-06-13 08:03]


    Don't know how new the brooms are, but it certainly is a clean sweep. And with one broom now moderating a pair it don't even work in. But as you say, this was predicted so it's not that surprising. And it does reflect the actual state of the site. Native-speaker free and loving it that way.


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    Adam Smith
    United Kingdom
    Local time: 19:17
    Dutch to English
    + ...
    New moderators around Dutch and Flemish?? Jun 13, 2007

    Enrique,

    One point:

    When was the competition for moderator announced?

    I would be very grateful if you could direct me to the announcement about the open competition for the moderator roles for Dutch/Flemish to English. I am afraid I missed that particular email.

    Adam




    [Edited at 2007-06-13 10:17]


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    Anjo Sterringa  Identity Verified
    Spain
    Local time: 20:17
    Member (2003)
    English to Dutch
    + ...
    Welkom Jun 13, 2007

    Welkom nieuwe moderatoren! Fantastisch dat mensen met zoveel ervaring zich beschikbaar stellen voor dit soort werk!
    Heel veel sterkte en plezier natuurlijk.


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    Enrique Cavalitto
    Local time: 15:17
    SITE STAFF
    TOPIC STARTER
    Selection of new moderators Jun 13, 2007

    Adam Smith wrote:

    When was the competition for moderator announced?



    Hi Adam,

    There is no such competition. Some candidates volunteer for the position (usually through the support system), some are recommended by current moderators or by other members, and others are selected by staff among site members.

    Advise and feedback are asked from other moderators (sometimes personally, sometimes globally) but the ultimate decision and responsibility falls on site staff.

    Regards,
    Enrique


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    Adam Smith
    United Kingdom
    Local time: 19:17
    Dutch to English
    + ...
    Closed shop? Jun 13, 2007

    Enrique wrote:

    Adam Smith wrote:

    When was the competition for moderator announced?



    Hi Adam,

    There is no such competition. Some candidates volunteer for the position (usually through the support system), some are recommended by current moderators or by other members, and others are selected by staff among site members.

    Advise and feedback are asked from other moderators (sometimes personally, sometimes globally) but the ultimate decision and responsibility falls on site staff.

    Regards,
    Enrique


    Enrique,

    I find this process quite disturbing really - it reminds me a little too much of a closed shop. What are the objective criteria used by the site staff - who, as you say have the "ultimate decision and responsibility"? Who chose these individuals, on what basis, and why was nobody else informed?

    I don't have any problem with people volunteering for these jobs or being recommended by others per se, but surely this should be voted on or there should be an open competition and others should be provided with the opportunity to volunteer?

    I also have a separate, but related issue about the use of non-native speakers in English language pairs (and this is not intended as a slight to the individuals concerned): I think it may have been wiser, given recent trends in the Dutch-English glossary, to have included at least one native English speaker as a moderator for the Dutch/English pair.

    Adam


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