Is this a normal payment model (for proofreading using a CAT tool)?
Thread poster: Rebecca Lyne

Rebecca Lyne
French to English
+ ...
May 23, 2010

I would like to get the opinion of everyone on the following payment model that I was offered.
Is this normal? Note: I do not use Trados.

¨Our rate for proofreading this project is 0,015 € per source
word using the following trados grid:

100% matches > 20% of the full rate
repetitions > 20% of the full rate
95-99% matches > 30% of the full rate
75-94% matches > 60% of the full rate
0-74% matches > full rate ¨


[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2010-05-24 02:16 GMT]


Mirella Soffio  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:37
Member (2002)
English to Italian
+ ...
No need to read further than the first line... May 23, 2010

Proofreading at € 0,015 per word, and Trados-like discounts for fuzzy and repetitions too?
Thanks, but no thanks.


Edited to add that this seems to be a new trend - I vaguely remember reading a similar post a few weeks ago.

[Edited at 2010-05-23 18:07 GMT]


imatahan  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:37
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Rebbeca May 23, 2010

I would do it, it's demeaning.


Andrea Martínez  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:37
Spanish to German
+ ...
Hi Rebecca, May 23, 2010

I've never heard about this type of payment for proofreading... The word price is already very low, so, if you decide to accept the job, I think you should really not accept this type of Trados discounts for proofreading. And maybe you should ask to have a look at the text before accepting the job. If translation quality is poor, 0,015 € per word means a VERY low rate per hour.


Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:37
French to German
+ ...
So do I... May 23, 2010

Mirella Soffio wrote:

Edited to add that this seems to be a new trend - I vaguely remember reading a similar post a few weeks ago.

So do I...

And Rebecca - sorry: why do you call this scheme a "payment model"?icon_rolleyes.gif


JaneD  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:37
Member (2009)
Swedish to English
+ ...
Discounts on proofreading?! May 23, 2010

I've never been asked to give discounts on proofreading, nor would I - typical rates are already rather low for the work involved.


Bryan Crumpler  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:37
Dutch to English
+ ...
No... May 23, 2010

This isn't normal.

Three things:

(1) The proofreading rate is substandard

This is grounds to reject the assignment altogether (see below).

(2) Trados does not automatically update matching/fuzzy segments when you make changes to only one, so you do not gain any leverage. No leverage is no grounds for discounting.

In other words if something is repeated, and you change the 1st occurrence, you still would have to go through that entire translation line-by-line or use some clever Find/Replace utility to make the changes consistent.

(3) It's possible they want to use this model to compensate you merely for actual changes made to the document and the extent of said changes. Big BIG no no!

Re: point (3), the only way they could do this is to compare your proofread document to the original translation by cleaning it without a TM update, reversing the language pairs in the TM, and doing an analysis on the target to see what percentage of segments had been altered (sort of an automated back-translation). If segments match 100%, that means you didn't change it at all. So, they don't want to compensate you for it in full, but only for 20%.

In other words, they have no regard for your time.

Hypothetically, if you had to proofread 1 million words, and all 1 million words were already perfectly translated with perfect grammar, sentence structure... the whole 9 yards... then they would only pay you 3000 EUR (1,000,000 * 0.015 * 0.20 = 3000).

The standard proofreading time, however, is around 1000 words per hour. So you would have to budget for 1000 hours of your time (1 million words / 1000 wph = 1000 hours). 1000 hours of work is not worth 3000 EUR. It's 3 EUR/hour (3.75 USD/hour), which is an illegal wage. You'd be better off working for McDonalds and getting minimum wage to collect money at the drive-thru.

On the flipside, if the translation is terrible and you have to retranslate the entire thing, you're looking at maximum pay. GREAT!! But, it will cost you at 3 to 4 times the time commitment to retranslate 1 million words. This amounts to 15,000 EUR (or 0.015 * 1,000,000). 15,000 EUR looks like a lot of money, but don't let this huge number fool you.

If we assume you translate the standard 2400 words/day to retranslate this horrid translation from scratch, you would have to work 416 business days to make that 15k euros. That's 1 year, 7 months and 6 days of work.

So, no matter how you put it... they are designing this "model" to skimp you out of a fairly paid job and seeing your time commitment as worthless.

I would not even do them the courtesy of a reply.



Krzysztof Kajetanowicz (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:37
English to Polish
+ ...
some agencies insist on similar arrangements May 23, 2010

...which is why they have a terribly hard time finding proofreaders.

Go figure.

[Edited at 2010-05-23 21:30 GMT]


Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:37
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
No discounts on proofreading May 24, 2010

Whatever the price (in this case it is simply ridiculous), there can be no CAT discounts in proofreading, since proofreading means that you need to read it all.


Yossi Rozenman  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:37
English to Hebrew
+ ...
For proofreading I always charge per hour May 24, 2010

The speed of proofreading changes considerably with the translation quality. This is why I always charge proofreading by the hour.


Teresa Borges
Local time: 16:37
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
The same here May 24, 2010

No discounts on proofreading, rate per hour and... anyway the price "offered" is unacceptable!


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