Query re a free test for audiovisual client in April (Paris)
Thread poster: Anna Knight

Anna Knight  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:45
French to English
Jul 14, 2009


I was wondering if any French-English translators in Paris working in the audiovisual sector did a free test translation for a scenario in April? (There may be lots of you, but hear me out...)

Call me paranoid, but I was asked to translate a resonably lengthy passage (not that long, but a couple of pages which is more than I'd usually do for free) from various parts of a scenario. The client said they'd get back to me once they'd talked with the producers, but never gave a clear reply. This may mean that they just chose another translator -- well that's fine. But I'll admit I began to have my suspicions about the test they'd asked me to do... and how many people they may've asked to do it! I don't want to give the client's name for fear I'm wrong about this, but would like to hear if anyone thinks they identify with this particular "smell of rat" experience, or other similar experiences, if anyone has these.

Also, how can we be vigilant to this kind of activity? Can ProZ develop some way of monitoring this kind of thing? To lessen our being isolated, in the dark and paranoid/exploitable...?

The obvious solution is of course, to refuse to give test translations of more than, say, a paragraph. I think I will apply this policy in the future, if only to rid myself of the Distrust Factor!

Hope to hear your experiences, thanks in advance...


Riens Middelhof  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:45
Spanish to Dutch
+ ...
... Jul 15, 2009

A lot has been said about test translations in these fora. I´ll add a smile:

I once had this situation where an agency sent me a fragment chopped out of a text. The words at the beginning and the end of the text (OBVIOUSLY not beginning or ending a sentence...) were chopped off in the middle. The funny part was that my particular "test translation" consisted of a real (although chopped off) sentence at the beginning and the end, plus thirty times the following:

Question 1: Choose one option and press Enter
Question 2: Choose one option and press Enter
Question 3: Choose one option and press Enter

On the positive side I did one or two test translations where the agency took 3 unrelated paragraphs, each containing a particular difficulty or pitfall. In a technical paragraph you´d need to combine several terms into one concept in order to produce a readable sentence. In a legal paragraph one could be faced with be a rather complicated legal phrasing. Those tests make at least a little sense...


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Query re a free test for audiovisual client in April (Paris)

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