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Pleeeeease, before accepting a job, have a look at the Blue Board!
Thread poster: Claudia Iglesias

Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 05:52
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
Nov 6, 2003

Hi all

Once again, the same song. Some job posters have really bad records, and avoiding them is a very safe way.

Please, the few BrowniZ it costs (for non Platinum members) can avoid you very unpleasant experiences. A few lines are enough to draw a picture, and when you see the same few lines written by 5 or 6 translators, there's no place for doubt, unless you like to play with fire.

And when you have finished a project and you have an experience to tell (good or bad), please comment it in the BB. It's getting bigger, it's getting trustful, it serves all of us.


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Todd Field  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 01:52
Member (2003)
Portuguese to English
Could not agree more Nov 6, 2003

Well put, Claudia.

The Internet has become a powerful tool in the translation world, and in my career as a freelancer I have discovered that there are plenty of so-called "agencies" that are actually single individuals looking to manipulate the system.

When translators use the Blue Board effectively, it becomes immediately apparent which agencies are legitimate, i.e. those that strive to uphold standards of quality, who proactively defend the complex nuances of the translation process, and who maintain fair prices for services provided... and likewise obvious who is going directly against the most fundamental principles of our industry in an attempt to make a quick buck at the expense of their clients and/or outsourcers.

Like you, I encourage all other freelancers to check carefully before accepting a job, to assist their colleagues by reporting candidly on bad experiences, and to support all the good agencies out there with positive Blue Board feedback.

Todd


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Domenica Grangiotti  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:52
English to Italian
+ ...
Do not fool yourself Nov 6, 2003

Especially if you are not working regularly, you are tempted to accept all sorts of jobs (badly paid, for agencies with dubious reputation...).
Don't fool yourself: better not to work at all than work and NOT be paid.
If an agency has a bad record, be cautious!

Ciao e Buon lavoro
Domenica


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Rosa Diez Tagarro  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 09:52
Member (2003)
English to Spanish
+ ...
what happens when there are no ratings for an agency? Nov 7, 2003

Hi, Claudia:

I agree with you. I am new in ProZ and the Blue Board was one of the things that first convinced me it was a great site.

Even when the offer you get has not been posted in Proz, it is very useful to check the Blue Board if you have never worked for them before (or even if you have).

But, what do you do when there are no ratings for the agency that you're considering working for?

This has just happened to me. I have requested ratings (there are none), what happens next?

Thanx for your help!


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:52
English to German
+ ...
Request more info - check on other lists Nov 8, 2003

Hi Rosa,
Obviously contributions to the Blue Board are voluntary, so unfortunately there are a few empty entries.

You can request more ratings by clicking on the link in the BB entry; this is possible every 30 days.

It's also advisable to check other payment practices lists - maybe there's an entry somewhere else.

Best regards, Ralf


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Heike Behl, Ph.D.  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:52
Member (2003)
English to German
+ ...
Make the Blue Board free to everyone Nov 8, 2003

It always amazes me that agencies with the worst ratings still get a good number of bids, and maybe this is because people cannot freely access the Blue Board rating. I assume that there are many non-platinum translators that do not have many KudoZ points so they cannot check every job they submit a bid to.

Isn't that undermining the purpose of the Blue Board to some extent? As long as those agencies find people to work for them, their practices pay off and they will continue.
Wouldn't it be possible to make the Blue Board accessible for all for free? I know it's one of the incentives for people to become platinum members and/or participate actively, but...

Or could there be an automatic flag that is added at a posted job when this agency's rating is at three or below to indicate that people better invest those points to check it out? A more visible indication of an agency's standing might serve also as a deterrent/incentive to clean up their act.


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:52
English to German
+ ...
Access to BB entries requires BrowniZ Nov 8, 2003

Hi Heike,
I assume that there are many non-platinum translators that do not have many KudoZ points so they cannot check every job they submit a bid to.

The number of KudoZ points is irrelevant - it takes 50 BrowniZ to permanently access an outsourcer's entry. Note that new profiles have a starting balance of 300 points.

Also, Jobs Area coordinators actively investigate non-payers, and block outsourcers provided that we receive several independent confirmations.

Finally, a team of approx. ten moderators actively scans job postings.

Please do not hesitate to contact the Jobs Area coordinators (Giuliana Buscaglione and myself) if you see a posting by a suspected non-payer.

Best regards, Ralf


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Melina Kajander
English to Finnish
Definitely agree with Heike!! Nov 9, 2003

Yes, the access should be free & effortless to all! The present situation undermines the purpose of the Blue Board, in my opinion.

50 Browniz can be far too much...
At the moment, I have 40 of them, after recently starting from zero, so I would not be able to see any ratings on Blue Board - unless I upgraded to Platinum, of course, but right now it's not a possibility.
(Can't remember if this 300 points for new members applied when I joined in 2000, as I've been more or less an 'unactive member' for most of this time - not full-time in translation - and only recently 'reactivated'!)


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:52
English to German
+ ...
Quid pro quo Nov 9, 2003

Hi Heli,
Heli Kajander wrote:

Yes, the access should be free & effortless to all! The present situation undermines the purpose of the Blue Board, in my opinion.

I beg to differ. The Blue Board is one of the services provided by ProZ.com to its members. This service requires investment on the part of the site, both in terms of server capacity and programming - who do you think would have made this investment in a "free-for-all" solution in the first place?


50 Browniz can be far too much...

Are you aware that you can also access the information for USD 0.50 if you don't have a sufficient quantity of BrowniZ? If you consider 50 cents too much, you can also do some work on the site, such as helping to entering KudoZ answers into the glossary.

At the moment, I have 40 of them, after recently starting from zero, so I would not be able to see any ratings on Blue Board - unless I upgraded to Platinum, of course, but right now it's not a possibility.

See above.

Best regards, Ralf


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DGK T-I  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:52
Member (2003)
Georgian to English
+ ...
Members exclusively working in languages with a smaller no. of members (and so quiet Kudos sectors) Nov 9, 2003

can do a particularly useful job for their language community and the site (as well as providing a modest advert for themselves) by adding -in their language pairs - useful or interesting terms (not readily found in standard dictionaries, or eg: where dictionaries are difficult to obtain - particularly from their areas of specialist interest and knowledge) - to their personal glossaries.
Genuinely useful entries added by hand earn 10 brownies.
So although accumulating brownie points by (careful:-) grading of Kudos questions is slower than in busy Kudos sectors involving say Russian, German, Spanish or French (to/from)English
there are other ways of earning brownies - and potentially helping or providing interest to others at the same time.
The combined personal glosses of the site can be searched for terms, just as the main Kudos glossary can be.

Best wishes
Giuli

~Eng Russ Geo~

[Edited at 2003-11-12 20:14]


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Melina Kajander
English to Finnish
I still beg to differ... Nov 12, 2003

[quote]Ralf Lemster wrote:

Are you aware that you can also access the information for USD 0.50 if you don't have a sufficient quantity of BrowniZ? If you consider 50 cents too much, you can also do some work on the site, such as helping to entering KudoZ answers into the glossary.

Hi Ralf, I wasn't aware of this, but after checking it out, it would make no sense to transfer a small amount such as 50 cents (or even $5), for the wire transfer fees involved (as I don't have a credit card)... (I will have to check this 'glossary-thing', too, of course, as that's another function on this site I'm not yet familiar with...)

But I still think the present situation is not very good - not at least for me & anyone in the similar situation, who just cannot check the entries if we needed to, right now, period. What I meant with 'undermining
its purpose' (and I think Heike did as well) was that this should be a system is there to help & benefit all translators, and you still have to pay for accessing it (in one way or another)...! Of course I understand it's not free to maintain, but that doesn't help me right now... Yes, as someone said, this is one of the incentives to go Platinum, and it really doesn't leave much choice!


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Evert DELOOF-SYS  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 09:52
Member
English to Dutch
+ ...
I understand your position, Heli Nov 12, 2003

[quote]Heli Kajander wrote:

Ralf Lemster wrote:

Are you aware that you can also access the information for USD 0.50 if you don't have a sufficient quantity of BrowniZ? If you consider 50 cents too much, you can also do some work on the site, such as helping to entering KudoZ answers into the glossary.

Hi Ralf, I wasn't aware of this, but after checking it out, it would make no sense to transfer a small amount such as 50 cents (or even $5), for the wire transfer fees involved (as I don't have a credit card)... (I will have to check this 'glossary-thing', too, of course, as that's another function on this site I'm not yet familiar with...)

But I still think the present situation is not very good - not at least for me & anyone in the similar situation, who just cannot check the entries if we needed to, right now, period. What I meant with 'undermining
its purpose' (and I think Heike did as well) was that this should be a system is there to help & benefit all translators, and you still have to pay for accessing it (in one way or another)...! Of course I understand it's not free to maintain, but that doesn't help me right now... Yes, as someone said, this is one of the incentives to go Platinum, and it really doesn't leave much choice!


But no matter how you look at it, without paying members there would be no ProZ.com.


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Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 05:52
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
You have the choice! Nov 12, 2003

Either you have money and you go Platinum, or you prefer to invest more time in the site helping the others. In order to receive, we must give, it's not only a question of money.

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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 03:52
SITE FOUNDER
Get 50 browniz by entering five terms from your specialties in the glossaries Nov 12, 2003

If you want to gather 50 browniz, you can do so by entering 5 terms into the shared glossaries. (Go to My ProZ.com -- My Glossary -- Enter more terms) Enter some terms in your specialty!

Also, fyi, in addition to the 50 browniz/$0.50 option, we have a Blue Board partial platinum membership for $30/yr.


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Melina Kajander
English to Finnish
Thank you for replies & info... Nov 14, 2003

...I will consider my options!

(I see your point(s), but I hope you also see mine!)


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