Blue Board - an overview
What is the Blue Board? We'll explain in a roundabout way. First of all, any ProZ.com member can enter a number from 1 to 5 corresponding to his or her likelihood of working again with a given outsourcer (ie. client or translation company/agency). By way of explanation, the member can also enter a line of text along with the number. In response, the outsourcer may enter a line of text of his/her/its own. The Blue Board is the complete, searchable database of the records containing entries and replies, along with outsourcer coordinates.
Over time, records have been collected for many outsourcers. In fact, the Blue Board is the largest built-from-scratch database of translation outsourcers in the world. What makes it most unique are the "likelihood of working again" entries from ProZ.com members--and the fact that you may know those members, or can contact them easily.
What does this mean to you? If you are a translator, you can use the Blue Board to help manage risk whenever you evaluate new clients. If you are an outsourcer, and your translators tend to work with you on an ongoing basis, this fact will be reflected in the Blue Board. The greatest beneficiaries of the Blue Board are popular outsourcers.
Any ProZ.com member can use the Blue Board to make, request or review entries. Platinum members have unlimited access to all records, and non-platinum members can buy permanent access to records one at a time, at a cost of 50 browniz or 50 US cents. (All members start with 300 browniz, so you can buy access to 6 records without doing a thing. You also earn 50 browniz for making an entry for an outsourcer for which you have worked--so if you contribute actively, you may effectively enjoy free access.)
Many members have commented on just how valuable a resource the Blue Board has been to them. To make a habit of using it, just remember the URL: http://proz.com/bb
(Another way to get to the Blue Board is to click on "Jobs" in the menu at the top of the site, and then "Blue Board".)