former project and its after-editing/proofreading quality - how to approach the client
Thread poster: Austra Muizniece

Austra Muizniece  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:48
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
Jun 13, 2005

About half a year ago I translated a website into Latvian. The project was offered by an agency, not a direct client. After I finished it, the agency came back, saying the client had asked to make some changes to the style, in order to make the website more user-friendly. I edited the whole thing and sent it back. Aferwards I informed the agency that for a couple of months I was not going to be available for any projects due to a long trip and another large project, so I haven't received any emails from that point on.

Out of curiosity I visited the website I translated today and found out that my text has been updated again, and new areas of the website have been translated - obviously another translator had been hired to translate the new texts, which of course is only logical.
The problem is that the very first page of the website (the "Welcome" page") now contains some very serious spelling & grammar errors and this pattern continues in the rest of the pages. Though the text has become more "creative", the overall impression is far from good, since there are mistakes all over the place - typos, commas, wrong capitalisation,wrong medical terms, wrong synthax,etc., etc...

Now I am considering informing the agency about the mistakes, but I do not know if after half a year there is anything they can do - the agency would have to tell their client that there are mistakes in the previous version, which,to my mind, they might not be eager to do.

What would my colleagues do in such a situation - approach the agency, offer editing or leave this whole thing behind?

Any advice will be greatly appreciated.

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Laura Gentili  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:48
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
what I would do Jun 13, 2005

I would simply tell the agency that the Web site includes several mistakes. I would prepare a table with 3 columns: term in the Web site, suggested new term, reason for the change. I would include 20 terms to be amended.
Then it's up to the agency to remain silent, approach the client and offer to edit the Web site, or wait for a later update in order to insert the changes.


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Local time: 16:48
English to French
+ ...
Options Jun 13, 2005

I wouldn't do anything. It was an assignment several months ago, you weren't available, they gave it to someone else.

Unless 1) your name appears on the website 2) you would like them to give you back the site for editing to earn some money.

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Aleksandra Kwasnik  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:48
Polish to German
+ ...
I would contact the agency first Jun 13, 2005

Before doing any corrections (and probably wasting your time) I would first contact the agency and inform them about your observations.

I had a similar case some months ago: my translation has been worsened on its way to the target website and although it was not my fault and not my mistakes I still felt responsible for it and informed my agency. Unfortunately the agency did not feel the same (for whatever reasons) and said that the project has been finished and that there is no need for further corrections. It was their decision & as the things turned out I decided that it's finished for me too.

BUT: in another case I did inform another agency about some smaller mistakes and inconsistencies I discovered in their source text (which I was translating) and they (and their client too) were very happy to work with a translator who "feels responsible" for the project as a whole.

In my opinion it's always better to communicate such things (some clients do appreciate translators who do some "extra thinking", but don't be disappointed if it won't be appreciated!


[Edited at 2005-06-13 19:29]

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