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a virtual court!!! this is just an idea
Thread poster: xxxBrandis
xxxBrandis
Local time: 17:06
English to German
+ ...
Mar 29, 2007

Hello all! I have been thinking about this for a while. Considering the late turmoil I have been undergoing due to an outsourcer not wanting to pay, the proof I have may have to be presented in a foreign court, because the outsourcer from my perspective either not well knowledged about the seriousness embedded in implementing high-level CAT tools, and wishes to stick to his lower word count. To avoide all that trouble, a virtual court could solve this trouble, so that we do not have to seek external resources and save of foot and communication work and expenses. There are many lawyers- translators at proz.com in various language combinations, when and where it is possible to implement a virtual court system, to the proven satisfaction of the concerning parties, it could be with majority of the member consent. As in real life, the lose bears the charges. In simple words, it is only a way to integrate external virtual legal support systems to a community advantage, so that an outsourcer doesn´t have to strike off a delivered project as non-sense and the outraged translator doesn´t have to swear court trials. The difference being, the project is a translation project and it concerns all of us, and we all know of bad outsourcers and equally bad translators. A tolerance level of some kind could be introduced to solve these perpetual hopeless discussions and be more collaborative and productive with a mutual respect. May be my formulation is not the best way to put it, but that is the rough sketch I was wishing for myself. Brandis

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Hipyan Nopri  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 22:06
English to Indonesian
+ ...
Fully Agree and Support Your Idea Mar 29, 2007

Hello Brandis,

First of all, I would like to express my sympathy with you in connection with your recent case. Indeed, the case makes me more cautious and punctilious in dealing with any offers from both agencies and direct clients wherever they are from.

Furthermore, your idea of virtual court is really good and interesting. If it could be realized, we freelance translators would be protected against any possible abuse.

Warm Regards

Hipyan


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Angela Dickson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:06
French to English
+ ...
don't understand Mar 29, 2007

The difference being, the project is a translation project and it concerns all of us,


If an outsourcer has a problem with a translation one member has done, I don't see how that concerns the rest of us. Surely that is a matter for the particular outsourcer and the particular translator to sort out between themselves? Please explain.

Personally, I have no interest in seeing people's dirty linen aired in public on Proz.


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Birgit Richter  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 17:06
Member (2006)
English to German
+ ...
virtual court Mar 29, 2007

I don't think this is within the scope of Proz.com. I must say I don't like the idea. And how would you enforce a decision made by a virtual court?

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Fan Gao
Australia
Local time: 02:06
Member (2006)
English to Chinese
+ ...
Would it really be effective on those with no morals? Mar 29, 2007

There are unscrupulous translators out there and there are unscrupulous agencies out there and I really can't imagine anyone unscrupulous, on either side of the field taking any notice of a virtual court.

What would the penalties be? A virtual fine? A virtual prison sentence?:)


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 16:06
Dutch to English
+ ...
No-go Mar 29, 2007

Angela Dickson wrote:


The difference being, the project is a translation project and it concerns all of us,


If an outsourcer has a problem with a translation one member has done, I don't see how that concerns the rest of us. Surely that is a matter for the particular outsourcer and the particular translator to sort out between themselves? Please explain.

Personally, I have no interest in seeing people's dirty linen aired in public on Proz.


I agree. There's enough of it that goes on anyhow.

Apart from that, the basic idea is flawed for a host of legal issues (which I won't bore people with here), not least of all the lack of enforceability of any "order" this "virtual court" could ever make.

We're no different from any other service providers - it's about time some translators realise that and act as business professionals to enforce their rights.


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Mats Wiman  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 17:06
Member (2000)
German to Swedish
+ ...
A ProZ.com court would not be public Mar 29, 2007

Dear all,

If I understand Brandis correctly:

What s/he suggests is NOT that 'dirty linen' should be washed publicly but that the different courts should function as an intracommunity court for disputes between outsourcer and freelancer.
The different courts would be experts on technical subjects like word count, Trados, PDF-Word conversions or language experts in the language pairs involved.
The court members would take some time (months-years) to select and the subject areas would also evolve slowly.

I could imagine the court members earning BrowniZ for the time spent and maybe some BrowniZ-like points as a thank you and a merit to be shown in their profiles.

Outsourcers that wouldn't abide by the court judgements would be cautioned with some sort of Blue Board minus points and a losing translator would get a 'Lost at ProZ.com court' note on their profile page.

If this were to materialise, then, in Brandis's words, it would "concern all of us"

Mats Wiman


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Hipyan Nopri  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 22:06
English to Indonesian
+ ...
Enlightening Idea Mar 29, 2007

Mats Wiman wrote:

Dear all,

If I understand Brandis correctly:

What s/he suggests is NOT that 'dirty linen' should be washed publicly but that the different courts should function as an intracommunity court for disputes between outsourcer and freelancer.
The different courts would be experts on technical subjects like word count, Trados, PDF-Word conversions or language experts in the language pairs involved.
The court members would take some time (months-years) to select and the subject areas would also evolve slowly.

I could imagine the court members earning BrowniZ for the time spent and maybe some BrowniZ-like points as a thank you and a merit to be shown in their profiles.

Outsourcers that wouldn't abide by the court judgements would be cautioned with some sort of Blue Board minus points and a losing translator would get a 'Lost at ProZ.com court' note on their profile page.

If this were to materialise, then, in Brandis's words, it would "concern all of us"

Mats Wiman


Hello Everybody,

It should be noted that what Brandis suggested is still a basic, raw idea. The point is how to create a mechanism to solve any dispute between translators and outsourcers fairly.

To Mats: Your idea is really enlightening.

I am curious about next ideas from fellow freelancers.

[Edited at 2007-03-29 12:08]


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 16:06
Dutch to English
+ ...
Still a no-go IMHO Mar 29, 2007

Mats Wiman wrote:

Dear all,

If I understand Brandis correctly:

What s/he suggests is NOT that 'dirty linen' should be washed publicly but that the different courts should function as an intracommunity court for disputes between outsourcer and freelancer.
The different courts would be experts on technical subjects like word count, Trados, PDF-Word conversions or language experts in the language pairs involved.
The court members would take some time (months-years) to select and the subject areas would also evolve slowly.

I could imagine the court members earning BrowniZ for the time spent and maybe some BrowniZ-like points as a thank you and a merit to be shown in their profiles.

Outsourcers that wouldn't abide by the court judgements would be cautioned with some sort of Blue Board minus points and a losing translator would get a 'Lost at ProZ.com court' note on their profile page.

If this were to materialise, then, in Brandis's words, it would "concern all of us"

Mats Wiman


I scarcely think taking a knock on Blue Board ratings would be an effective deterrent to an unprincipled outsourcer and conversely whether Brownie points could be expected to duly compensate a "court member" for their time and effort.

Remedies need "teeth" to be effective. This idea is (currently) lacking in that department.

Translators would be better off taking preventative action upfront, minimising their financial risk and developing some business savvy, rather than resorting to ineffective remedies after the fact.

Perhaps Brandis can supply a link to something already running in the IT industry (as he mentions). I'd be happy to follow it up and see whether it's effective.

[Edited at 2007-03-29 12:26]


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xxxBrandis
Local time: 17:06
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Mats got me right I think... Mar 29, 2007

Hello!
The idea is to make such a facility available to all of us, like an intra-communal court, where we all are part of the same industry. it works on the proof-basis, like source files recd. acknowledged of their condition , PO type and agreed terms of execution of a project, CAT tools implemented and the communication log as a matter of fufther proof, there are a quite a few components that make our issues very complicated in a for a real court in any given country to comprehend and do the justice. and all that costs, time, energy also in terms of money paper and postage and having to maintain court calls and schedules.

- It is just like we have moderators now, it is only a different level and the option is free to participate. I am sure at one time or the other we all have faced a similar situation whether due to a translator or on account of an outsourcer. This thing is reflecting a perpetual fight and abuse of trade on the net. We are a community and we know what we are doing, so why not try the model. Surely the site designers also have to agree, just like they have been introducing newer get-up and workings of the site trying to facilitate, this is just one of them. I hope i am not hoping for the impossible.

-if I have observed the development of the legal side industrial history, I still It industry for example as a relatively young industry and only since a few years I see IT-Legal professionals taking up IT-related issues as representable cases, few of these are also doing it remotely by developing international networks. Then why should our industry stay back. We all are working processing etc., literally remotely.

-This is probably just one implementable solution, and would require much support and information from individuals like all of us, becasue it is to our advantage. Natually those who are not interested in supporting their issues, will not participate in that system. As said this is just an idea. I presonally wish all of us some peace of mind and security once there is a workable system like that. Instead of having to bragging about such troubles in forums or with the neighbours or colleagues, there would be this system ... a place to go to get solutions. I am aware of translation associations or trade unions, but that is not the goal here, individual may still opt to go for other alternatives.
All refining ideas are much welcomed.
Brandis

[Edited at 2007-03-29 12:45]


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Sylvain Leray  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:06
German to French
Dito Mar 29, 2007

Lawyer-Linguist wrote:

We're no different from any other service providers - it's about time some translators realise that and act as business professionals to enforce their rights.


Amen.

And I would add : ...to enforce their rights and assume their responsabilities.

Sylvain


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Stéphan Goldsmith
Local time: 11:06
English to French
+ ...
Arbitration Mar 29, 2007

Why not just become member of translator associations of the countries in which you do business (your country of residence and the countries where your clients are based) and use their arbitration services ?

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Robert Mouris  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 17:06
French to German
+ ...
Which legal basis to this? Mar 29, 2007

Mats Wiman wrote:

a losing translator would get a 'Lost at ProZ.com court' note on their profile page.


Which legal basis could justify to pillory a translator in such a way? The terms and conditions of a ProZ membership? And if this were possible, the losing translator should have the right to lodge an appeal, but whereto? A virtual court of appeal? Or a real court refusing the exequatur? There might even be the risk that the losing translator could sue ProZ or its virtual court for slander [edit: text deleted].

I agree with Lawyer-Linguist that translators are business people like everyone else and that they should bring their cases before the regular courts.

[Edited at 2007-03-29 17:22]

[Edited at 2007-03-29 17:23]


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Mulyadi Subali  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 22:06
English to Indonesian
+ ...
agree with no-go Mar 29, 2007

i think the more important thing is how to collect payment from the non-paying agency. if proz can provide such service, i.e. payment collection, i'll be more interested.

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xxxBrandis
Local time: 17:06
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
This will have to be just an added service, just like moderation Mar 29, 2007

Robert Mouris wrote:

Mats Wiman wrote:

a losing translator would get a 'Lost at ProZ.com court' note on their profile page.


Which legal basis could justify to pillory a translator in such a way? The terms and conditions of a ProZ membership? And if this were possible, the losing translator should have the right to lodge an appeal, but whereto? A virtual court of appeal? Or a real court refusing the exequatur? There might even be the risk that the losing translator could sue ProZ or its virtual court for slander, and I can hardly believe ProZ to be ready to take such a risk.

I agree with Lawyer-Linguist that translators are business people like everyone else and that they should bring their cases before the regular courts.
or CAT support or many other features. Proz.com similarly would have to treat this as an added feature, the option of wanting to participate is of individual´s free accord, and they should be equally ready to be consequent and respect the outcome of such process. Since we are located in somany different countries, it is hard to have a uniform system applicable to all, in case of loss of pay and or similar calamities, we are faced with regular courts in atleast two countries. This system surpasses all and embeds this technique facilitating the required effect. Whether the consideration can be paid via Browniz may or may not fit, since the outsourcer seldom has any browniz to contribute. This will have to be some minimum fee for the outsourcers with a probable percentile split on both parties, ultimately if the translator loses, he sacrifices his browniz if he has any, else pay the minimum fee, may be from his proz.com wallet. I find this idea is comprehensible. Saves a lot of headache and unnecessary postings, the moderators can wave their magic wand and the situation is in the virtual court. As a matter of idea, this should not have consequences of any kind to both the concerned parties. Now both have agreed and must abide by this regulatory. This saves lot of running around, paper work, waiting, maintaining schedules and most of us or all of us are pepetually online.Brandis


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