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Banned agency now back on Proz
Thread poster: NataliaAnne

NataliaAnne  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 03:52
Portuguese to English
Apr 8, 2013

I just noticed that an agency which was previously banned from advertising jobs on Proz now seems to have had this decision reversed. I.e. The banner at the top of their Blue Board page is gone and they’re active again. What I’m curious about is what they’ve done to prove that their prior poor practices have improved. I’m also concerned about the fact that there does not seem to be any visible record of this past ban.

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Luximar Arenas Petty  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:52
English to Spanish
+ ...
Not a surprise at all Apr 8, 2013

This is not news. It's happened before with other agencies/companies. I guess Proz gives them second chances if they can clean their records or accumulate a 4 or 5 on their blue boards. If they do that, then they can come back. Not a surprise.

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NataliaAnne  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 03:52
Portuguese to English
TOPIC STARTER
What is involved in the process? Apr 8, 2013

I’m sure it’s happened before but I’d like to know how they are allowed to do this and what other translators think about it. For example, if an agency with bad entries convinces the translators in question to remove the entries, thereby raising their overall score, is this appropriate?

Also, I’d like to suggest that should be a way of knowing whether or not an agency has been banned before as this is pertinent information. Of course I believe that people can change for the better and that it’s possible some agencies have truly turned their companies around. Nevertheless, I want to know so that I can make an informed decision.


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:52
Member (2008)
Italian to English
How? Apr 8, 2013

Luximar wrote:

This is not news. It's happened before with other agencies/companies. I guess Proz gives them second chances if they can clean their records or accumulate a 4 or 5 on their blue boards. If they do that, then they can come back. Not a surprise.


If they are banned how can they "clean their records or accumulate a 4 or 5 on their blue boards" ?


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NataliaAnne  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 03:52
Portuguese to English
TOPIC STARTER
@ How? Apr 8, 2013

Tom in London wrote: If they are banned how can they "clean their records or accumulate a 4 or 5 on their blue boards" ?


By convincing the translators who gave them low scores/negative entries to remove them?


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LEXpert  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 23:52
Member (2008)
Croatian to English
+ ...
@Tom - the ban is from posting, not from contacting translators Apr 8, 2013

Tom in London wrote:

If they are banned how can they "clean their records or accumulate a 4 or 5 on their blue boards" ?


As I understand it, they would just be banned from posting jobs, but I don't think anything would prevent them from contacting translators directly. Those same translators could then make positive BB entries.

Or, as NataliaAnne suggested, they might also convince people to revise existing entries.


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Luximar Arenas Petty  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:52
English to Spanish
+ ...
Exactly, Rudolf Apr 8, 2013

Because they can catch new translators outside the Proz website, or even inside, and those translators can give the agency new blue board entries. They are banned, but they still can receive blue board entries. It is probably that some agencies ask translators to change their entries. It has never happened to me. However, I have been contacted a couple of times by banned agencies, so Proz allows this. I don´t know why.

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svenfrade  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 06:52
French to German
+ ...
Agree Apr 9, 2013

NataliaAnne wrote:

Also, I’d like to suggest that should be a way of knowing whether or not an agency has been banned before as this is pertinent information. Of course I believe that people can change for the better and that it’s possible some agencies have truly turned their companies around. Nevertheless, I want to know so that I can make an informed decision.


Agree. I think this is an essential piece of information that should not be withheld from translators.


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Annette Skipper  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 06:52
English to Danish
+ ...
Does not surprise me Apr 9, 2013

A banned agency is back..... well, my experience with proz.com is that proz.com always favors the agencies, never the freelancers. So, I am not surprised!

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NataliaAnne  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 03:52
Portuguese to English
TOPIC STARTER
Comments from site staff? Apr 9, 2013

I’d love it if someone from the Proz.com staff could explain what processes are involved in a ban being removed and why there is no visible record of past bans.

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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:52
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Agencies should never be reinstated Apr 9, 2013

until ALL of their previous debts to translators are paid in full or they have submitted proof of bankruptcy (which should be indicated in their profile). Anything else is just a slap in the face to the hard working people who were cheated.

If I buy a house, I am responsible for the liens on that house. If I purchase an agency and that agency's name, I am responsible for that agency's prior debt.



[Edited at 2013-04-09 12:06 GMT]


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Alejandro Cavalitto
Local time: 02:52
SITE STAFF
Bans may be lifted if non-payment situations are resolved Apr 9, 2013

Hello,

When all non-payment reports on a Blue Board record are resolved and this is confirmed by site staff, the ban on a company may be lifted.

I would like to invite you to read knowledgebase article "Using the ProZ.com Blue Board record", where how site staff handles non-payment reports and applies the termination policy for outsourcers is explained.

Please let me know if you have any question.

Best regards,
Alejandro


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NataliaAnne  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 03:52
Portuguese to English
TOPIC STARTER
Proz Termination Policy Apr 9, 2013

Alejandro, thank you for joining the discussion. For those interested, the Termination Policy states:

"If a total of two complaints regarding a single outsourcer have been received from unrelated sources, a warning will be issued to the outsourcer. The warning will serve as notification to the suspected party that its privileges are in jeopardy. The outsourcer's access to job posting and profile messaging may be suspended as a precaution until all non-payment issues have been resolved.

Upon receipt of a third complaint, the issue will be brought to ProZ.com staff for review. At its sole discretion, ProZ.com staff may then choose to suspend or revoke the outsourcer's right to use ProZ.com."

http://www.proz.com/termination_policy

Basically, it appears that any outsourcer who eventually pays for outstanding translation services may have their ban removed. This seems to be regardless of:

- How late the payments were
- How many translators were affected
- What the communication with the translators was like
- Whether translators were coerced in any way
- How many times they’ve been banned
- And many other pertinent factors…

Alejandro, is this true?

I’m worried about the fact that suspending or revoking outsourcers comes down to the discretion of Proz staff. I’d like to call for more transparency from Proz regarding this process and a clear statement on what behaviour results in revocation as opposed to mere suspension. Additionally, I would like to see the fact that outsourcers have been previously banned, and how many times, listed on the Blue Board.


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Post removed: This post was hidden by a moderator or staff member because it was not in line with site rule

Alejandro Cavalitto
Local time: 02:52
SITE STAFF
The placing or lifting of a ban is decided on a case-by-case basis Apr 11, 2013

Hello Natalia,

The termination policy does not state when a ban may or may not be lifted, it merely points out under which conditions a ban may be placed. The placing or lifting of a ban is decided on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the factors you list and any others that may be relevant for that particular case.

Information about whether an outsourcer has been banned in the past is not supplied on Blue Board records. Each record displays the feedback an outsourcer has collected over time. Only when non-payment reports are accumulated are bans placed and made public. Once that situation is resolved, the bans can be lifted. The service providers who experienced payment problems can still post their feedback on the record to express their willingness to work again with an outsourcer, and that will remain on the records as a testament of any problems there may have been.

Best regards,
Alejandro


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