Bidding: Source or target words?
Thread poster: Tim Drayton

Tim Drayton  Identity Verified
Cyprus
Local time: 18:05
Turkish to English
+ ...
Dec 23, 2008

I have just submitted a bid here at Proz. It struck me that, when quoting a rate per word, there is no mechanism for stipulating whether this is per source or target word. In many language pairs, this can make a huge difference. For example, there is an expansion on average of about 55% in the word count when translating from Turkish into English. In the interests of avoiding subsequent disputes, it is absolutely essential for both parties to be in prior agreement as to which word count payment will be based on. Of course, one can add a note in order to clarify this matter, but this seems a slightly clumsy approach. Could I suggest that you make two buttons available; one for "word (source)" and one for "word (target)"?

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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 22:05
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
The number of source or target language words Dec 23, 2008

1. I clearly write word counts for source or target language.
2. In certain source text file, it is relatively impossible to count source words accurately e.g. PDF from scanned document. I write quotation for target word counts.
3. To prevent dispute, I quote for source words as frequently as possible.
4. The tool for word count is also given e.g. MS Word, Trados, FineCount, WordFast, SDLX since word counts with different tools usually give different numbers.
5. I quote for total price or hourly rate if the methods above are not very reasonable e.g. partial translation, partial editing or revision jobs.

Soonthon L.


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RichardDeegan
Local time: 10:05
Spanish to English
Why more buttons? Dec 23, 2008

It seems to me quite easy to specify source/ target pricing and other important factors (method of payment, how and when made, etc) in the body of the bid message. There's certainly enough space, and a lot of matters to be clarified in bids (representations regarding format of original text, delivery, option to decline if..., etc).
Not to mention, of course, the compelling reasons why you should be awarded the bid.


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Tim Drayton  Identity Verified
Cyprus
Local time: 18:05
Turkish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
crucial information Dec 23, 2008

RichardDeegan wrote:

It seems to me quite easy to specify source/ target pricing and other important factors (method of payment, how and when made, etc) in the body of the bid message. There's certainly enough space, and a lot of matters to be clarified in bids (representations regarding format of original text, delivery, option to decline if..., etc).
Not to mention, of course, the compelling reasons why you should be awarded the bid.


So what happens if the bidder fails to specify whether they are quoting on a source or target word basis? I realise that there are language pairs in which this does not make a great difference, but there are also pairs where a very different fee will be payable depending on whether the source or target word count is taken. Is it not possible that a bidder may take it for granted that their quote is based on, say, the target count and the client just assumes that it is based on the source count? This is surely creating the potential for disputes to arise which could easily be avoided if the bidder were required to specify which word count the bid was based on.

Another alternative would be to have a clearly visible notice at this place on the bidding form stating that one of the two options applies as a default, i.e. unless stated otherwise the bid will be based on the ..... word count.


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RichardDeegan
Local time: 10:05
Spanish to English
If you dont specify, who will? Dec 23, 2008

If you don't specify the specifics in your bid, then you're stuck with the outsourcer's / client's decision. It's wise to consider that the information not given by someone posting a job is probably not favorable.
If they don't specify MS Word in the original, I guarantee it's an image file.
If they dont specify source or target pricing, it's the lower.
No payment method/ timeframe specified? It just might be 75 days. (Or a new one, even better, 75 days after the end of the month in which a signed physical invoice was received).
A 30,000 word job need not be a single document; I had one outsourcer whose 30,000 job was over 400 different files. Keeping track of the files, file names, etc would have been more work than the translation.
Always ask to reserve final acceptance until you've seen a real portion of the job. Sometimes the original text may be horribly written, making no sense in the source language. But you're the one responsible if it doesn't make sense in the target.


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