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I am ashamed of my fellow Prozians
Thread poster: lexical
lexical  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:57
Portuguese to English
Aug 22, 2008

A thread has just been locked by the moderator in the SDL Trados Support Forum (http://www.proz.com/forum/sdl_trados_support/113129-i_can_not_erased_the_sorce_language.html) in which a struggling, inexperienced fellow translator was treated dismissively (with the sole exception of the SDL Support Team) by members who either knew the answer but hid behind comments like "Read the manual!" or were wetting their knickers to put their comments into print without putting themselves to the inconvenience of actually helping a colleague.

We have all been in that situation. Do you not remember the first time you tried out Trados and had to learn how to clean up? Or did you "spring fully armed from the head of Zeus"? Have these ungenerous colleagues of ours not heard of business mentoring? Have they not heard of giving back? I owe a great debt to those who helped me when I was green, and I feel I have a duty to help others in return. I am saddened that there are some who don't feel that.



[Edited at 2008-08-22 20:15]


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:57
French to English
History Aug 22, 2008

FWIW, that particular poster has been been the subject of critcism for other reasons in the past, criticsim which, on the face of it, appeared to be justified but which I am not going to repeat here.

But the attitude demonstrated by this post by the OP in the Trados thread:

"This was a better solution than go and read the manual, wich is the whole point of having forums."


is, in my humble opinion:

a) not particularly positive, nor well spelt (ditto the original query - some minor effort on the part of the OP in some aspects of the query would surely be welcome - if you want help, you could at least have the courtesy to make the question readable)

b) would appear to indicate an attitude which would, turning full circle, appear again to indicate that the previous criticism was indeed justified.

I don't 'subscribe' to the Trados thread, 'cos I don't use it, but I think the comments, particularly as regards this particular individual, were fair enough. Just my opinion, though.


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NataliaElo  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 06:57
Member (2004)
English to Russian
+ ...
Don't you think you are overreacting? Aug 22, 2008

Hi Lexical,

Honestly I don't see the point of being ashamed. I think Ralf and Viktoria gave exactly the right piece of advice. I don't think that anyone in that thread has treated the asker dismissively. Maybe a bit ironically, but no more than that.

To answer your question, yes, I was in the situation and well I read the manual. Still reading it actually from time to time.


Best regards,
Natalia


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Siegfried Armbruster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 06:57
Member (2004)
English to German
+ ...
No, I have not been in that situation Aug 22, 2008

lexical wrote:
We have all been in that situation. Do you not remember the first time you tried out Trados and had to learn how to clean up?

[Edited at 2008-08-22 20:15]


I got Trados, printed the various user manual and started reading.

I'm tired by this attitude that as a professional you always have to help others independent of how unprofessional they behave.

For me it is the minimum that somebody uses the typical resources he/she has, before asking. I do not expect that the asker spends several days researching the internet, but I do expect that the asker opens the PDF with the user manual and at least tries to find the information.

I feel ashamed that we are surrounded by so called professionals that are not able to open a file in Trados, clean a file in Trados, hide the source text in Word etc, and at the same time are too lazy to check a user manual, but call themselves professionals.

How much effort does such a person invest in the required research for translation jobs?

They are destroying our reputation and make the whole profession look like dump i***ts.
No wonder that more and more people believe that USD 0.03/word is more than enough, if we keep these persons in the business by supporting them.


Helping a struggling, inexperienced fellow translator is in my opinion something completely different.

I’m always prepared to help, but not to spoon-feed where it is not necessary.


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 00:57
English to French
+ ...
Really? Aug 22, 2008

With all due respect, lexical, I think you should read the thread you are referring to before making accusations such as:

It's so good to see experienced members like Viktoria and Thor offering the benefit of their experience readily to those who are less experienced...


My first reply to that thread contains:

(in your case, you need to read the File Formats Guide, section Translating Word Files, or something of the sort)


Then, replying to the post from SDL, the poster of that thread goes on to say:

This was a better solution than go and read the manual, wich is the whole point of having forums.


I wonder then what the point of having a manual is. This really ticked me off. Regardless of what the poster of that post may think, the purpose of a forum is not to waste people's time so they can teach people how to use their tools.

I am one of the most active users of this site when it comes to helping with technical issues, and I don't even expect to be appreciated for it. I get to learn a great deal through these attempts to help those who are in need, and this helps me a lot in knowing my way around my tools. It also helps because I don't have to bother our already very busy colleagues with questions that have been asked and answered countless times. I am doing my part. If others don't, I don't care - but like most human beings, I don't like it when redundant questions are taking up all the room, outshining problems there really isn't any readily available solution to elsewhere. It is my understanding this site is for professionals. If things are maintained as they are now, the day is not far when someone posts a thread asking where the any key is. How professional is that?

It's not about being helpful or not. It's about doing your part. Looking for an answer before wasting people's time is the bare minimum. And just how does that infamous poster expect that the more experienced among us know the solution? I bet he thinks we all asked the questions on ProZ...

I may not have been overly friendly with him - but I did offer a start for a solution and I did remind him that the manual is there for a reason. What more would you expect in such circumstances? Flowers? I honestly wish Ralf had locked the thread right after he first posted...

Helping someone who is struggling is noble. Helping someone who is perfectly capable of helping themselves is just giving them a means to keep struggling, perhaps at the expense of those who have had their share of struggle - there is nothing noble about that. Do your part and I'll do mine...


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tinageta  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:57
English to Latvian
+ ...
I am proud of my fellow Prozians Aug 22, 2008

Like Siegfried "I'm tired by this attitude that as a professional you always have to help others independent of how unprofessional they behave."

It seems that this attitude now is everywhere, be it KudoZ where an increasing number of people are asking for help (marking their questions as "pro") with the most straightforward and simple words one can find in an elementary school dictionary, be it forums where they have adopted the attitude "that's what forums are for", and to add insult to injury they cannot even be bothered to search these very same forums. I also can hardly imagine a forum of, say, architects where a "new and inexperienced architect" would even dare to ask for and receive sympathy because s/he does not know how to hold a pencil or draw a line.

In fact I admire Viktoria et al for replying so politely and helpfully - "professionals" like that "fellow translator" deserve an answer much shorter - RTFM.

[Edited at 2008-08-22 21:47]


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 05:57
Dutch to English
+ ...
Hear, hear! Aug 22, 2008

Siegfried Armbruster wrote:

I’m always prepared to help, but not to spoon-feed where it is not necessary.


I mean get real, what on earth is this - a forum for professional translators or a kindergarten?

So-called translators who either don't possess or bother to employ basic research skills frankly either need to quickly raise their game or find another industry in which to try and mask their pure incompetence/laziness with the I'm-a-bambi-eyed-newcomer-so-please-feel-sorry-for-me approach.

Try and do something comparable in a law firm, hospital or garage as a trainee and you'll be given a right dressing down.

I'm sure anyone wanting to play Mother Teresa can find a far worthier and more deserving cause - there's already more than enough moddy-coddling going on here as it is.

[Edited at 2008-08-22 22:14]


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xxxUSER0059  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 07:57
English to Finnish
+ ...
*shrug* Aug 22, 2008

lexical wrote:

[A] struggling, inexperienced fellow translator was treated dismissively (with the sole exception of the SDL Support Team) by members who either knew the answer but hid behind comments like "Read the manual!" or were wetting their knickers to put their comments into print without putting themselves to the inconvenience of actually helping a colleague.


This appears to be the same pseudonym who had the good taste of greeting me as follows, in response to a spin-off to the recent poll on cash payments:

So you enter a café and buy a cup of coffee with your card, and presumably pay at least 5% over the odds to cover the owner's Visa (or whatever) trader charges. And that makes you smart?


I did not bite when the pseudonym tried to pick a fight with me then, and neither will I now. If the pseudonym has nothing positive to say about his or her fellow Prozians, so be it. When I have time to spend on these forums, I prefer to help where I can. For some must do that, while some must gripe; so runs the world away.


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Andrea Riffo  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 01:57
English to Spanish
wow! Aug 23, 2008

Having seen the thread in question -as well as other threads along the same line- I have to agree 1000% with Viktoria, Thor, Lawyer-Linguist et al.

It isn't even funny any more.

[Edited at 2008-08-23 01:57]


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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:57
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Locking the thread Aug 23, 2008

I am locking the thread as it is against the site rules.

http://www.proz.com/siterules/forum/6#6

When a topic has been locked, discussion may not be resumed. Discussions contained in threads locked or hidden by ProZ.com staff members or moderators should not be resumed.


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I am ashamed of my fellow Prozians

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