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Thread poster: xxxIreneN
xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 14:08
English to Russian
+ ...
Apr 18, 2007

Well, I guess we are getting used to starting our posts with "this has been discussed since the dawn of times"... And?...

Proz members are being thoroughly scrutinized and are requested to provide the information close in scope to INS application requirements in order to take their decent place in the Proz food chain, yet again and again we get "job offers" either without any subject at all or, at best, "Tech/Engineering". What kind of subject is this, if I may ask? When, if ever, the time will come for pushing job offers without specific subjects away just like our bids/profiles are when we miss a piece of info, in many cases much less vital?

I find this "urgent, tomorrow, 10000 words" and no subject offers plain insulting. One has just made me mad enough to open yet another thread... How about you, ladies and gentlemen?

Regards,
Irene

[Edited at 2007-04-18 15:53]


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:08
Dutch to English
+ ...
To be honest ... Apr 18, 2007

..., I find "urgent, tomorrow, 10,000 words" ridiculous regardless of the topic

I just regard these types of job postings as indicative of the outsourcer's mindset and avoid them like the plague. By omitting information, they're actually doing me a favour in a funny (albeit irritating) sort of way.

A lot can be read into the way jobs are posted. I respond to maybe one or two a year, on average, and choose them carefully. So far, it's paid off.

However, if everyone were forced to do exactly the same, it would be more difficult to spot an outsourcer who is likely to be a problem down the line - perhaps it's best to let them show their true colours upfront and get who they deserve.

Just playing devil's advocate ...

Keep well
Debs

[Edited at 2007-04-18 15:59]


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 14:08
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I consider it the matter of principle Apr 18, 2007

as I have very little personal interest in what I am trying to say - I've mentioned many times that I don't bid on translation jobs here at all.

10000, 100000 or 10 makes no difference for my point. The number was taken out of the blue even though 2-4K, rush turnaround and no subject is not an unusual thing to see.

Frankly, I'm not so sure who looks more ridiculous or unprofessional with this kind of approach - outsourcers or the site overlooking their mess.

We light up the welcoming candle, the mosquitoes get attracted... Isn't it our job to educate clients how to find a good service? After all, they are not translators and, therefore, are not obligated to know all and any professional details. What if they are making an innocent mistake? There are too many people who simply do not realize what is and should be involved in translation and could be very grateful for a timely warning...

Will your dentist follow your orders blindly or do it his way?:-)


[Edited at 2007-04-18 16:12]


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:08
Dutch to English
+ ...
Principles are laudable things, but ... Apr 18, 2007

... since these type of outsourcers generally have none (I'm talking about the example you gave), I wouldn't waste any time or effort on trying to educate them or forcing them to act differently.

Birds of a feather as they say, they'll attract who they deserve ... maybe the market should regulate itself.

If they've made an honest mistake, they'll soon realise it with the type of interest that is (or isn't) shown, learn from their mistakes and hopefully be more careful next time. Guidance often falls on deaf ears, sometimes it's better to let people learn the hard way. I'm referring to outsoucers who run so-called translation businesses here, not Joe Blogg off the street.

In the meantime, those colleagues who do bid regularly, from time to time, or (like me) maybe once a year can use the lack of information as a reason to stay clear, not an altogether bad thing in itself.

And if you don't bid at all - which is, of course, your perogative - perhaps there's actually nothing to feel insulted / mad about in the first place. You've got your own niché, galaxies away from these issues (excuse the pun)

Every market has its bottom feeders. You'll find high word counts, ridiculous deadlines, lack of information and low rates are normally part and parcel of the same offer.

If these outsourcers didn't find a willing audience they wouldn't come back, so perhaps those responding to these offers - rather than the site itself - are the ones letting the proverbial side down.


[Edited at 2007-04-18 16:45]


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 14:08
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
We are all entitled to our opinions Apr 18, 2007

Deborah, I wonder whose fault is it when a decent citizen gets in trouble with a dishonest/unqualified lawyer? Is he an idiot who was supposed to know it all in the first place? How the law works etc? How would you make a living then? Or does he deserve to pay a crook first and learn things a hard way, bills including?

As a minimum, the rules, just like the law, should be equal for everyone - Joe Blogg, good and bad outsoursers and site members. Kinda strange that I have to argue this with a lawyer:-). We all have our nichés...

Who knows - maybe the enforcement of professional rules will make jobs published by the site I support worth bidding on...

[Edited at 2007-04-18 17:29]


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:08
Dutch to English
+ ...
Did anyone say you weren't .... Apr 18, 2007

... entitled to your opinion?

Actually, the law says "ignorance of the law is no excuse", but that aside, I didn't realise we were "arguing" or, for that matter, that I needed to have my lawyer cap on to just to visit this forum.

And fwiw, I have never made my living out of people's ignorance of the law, I specialised in liquidations, engineered by white collar crooks, trying to nail errant directors who knew their way around the legal system all too well - but that's an unrelated story for another day (not that anyone would be interested)

In my opinion - which by your own admission, I'm fully entitled to - you're flogging a dead horse.

Much as we'd all like to see outsourcers give more information, pay better rates and be more reasonable across the board, it ain't going to happen. Markets are driven by forces, not our individual whims or reactions, as long as translators answer these postings, they will be posted.

Maybe a translator who is desperate to make some money really doesn't care if the rate is pittance or the topic isn't specified. I don't agree, you don't agree but as you say, everyone is entitled to their opinion.

Nothing worth - again just in my humble opinion - getting mad or feeling insulted about. Or maybe, being a cold-hearted laywer, I'm just emotionally dead to these things

I just think over-enforcement of rules, forcing all outsourcers to give certain information can be counter-productive because, by way of their omissions, I (at least) can read a lot into their business practices.

As I said at the outset, I'm just playing devil's advocate, not trying to force my opinion down anyone's throat.







[Edited at 2007-04-18 18:22]


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 14:08
English to Russian
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Ok then Apr 18, 2007

Creative people are so touchy... I picked the law example only as the one close to you. Nothing personal, I'm sorry you took it this way. I rest my case before words like "cold-hearted" and "throats" start flying in flocks...

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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:08
Dutch to English
+ ...
No apology needed ... Apr 18, 2007

Just hope you got some of the frustration - that prompted this tread in the first place - out of your system in the process.

Keep well
Debs


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 21:08
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
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I find this "urgent, tomorrow, 10000 words" and no subject offers plain insulting Apr 18, 2007

wth ... we starve them out of the market place. Because the service they get must be as ridiculous or substandard as are their offers.

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Natalie  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 21:08
Member (2002)
English to Russian
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MODERATOR
Please contact a job moderator Apr 18, 2007

Hi all,

May I suggest contacting a jobs mod in case of receiving anything like that? Jobs moderators do their best, however, high percent of jobs goes live directly, without being checked by moderators. If we don't contact such outsourcer at all, s/he would post next jobs also without any description.

Please use the link "Contact jobs moderators if there is a problem with this job posting" which is available at the bottom of each job page.

Thank you,
Natalia


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 22:08
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Perhaps its the system? Apr 19, 2007

I think the job posting system here at Proz.com is not very user friendly in the first place. I rather use some other site for this purpose. That does not mean that the system is responsible for ill-formulated, deficient postings. But its part of the picture.
You must take into account, that many outsourcers do not know, what the text is about.

I would suggest to simplify the job posting form and instead of the subject selector it would have a field, where a sufficient amount of the source text would be displayed (copied from the document to be translated. Lets say at least 100 words. This field would be obligatory. I believe it could be done. If the poster declares that the text has less than hundred words it would be possible to leave this field empty. Or if he/she declares the amount in characters a respective chunk of test would be required.

This would force the poster at least to have a look at the document, instead of just forwarding pdfs. Today for instance I recieved a pdf from a scanned document, where complete pages were omitted (paper jam at the fax machine perhaps?)
If forced to copy part of the text the poster would have to convert pdfs first and view the doc at least superficially.

Cheers
Heinrich

[Bearbeitet am 2007-04-19 01:44]


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 21:08
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
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You are too easily offended Apr 19, 2007

IreneN wrote:
I find this "urgent, tomorrow, 10000 words" and no subject offers plain insulting.


IMO, you feel too easily insulted. To regard a client's ignorance of what information is relevant to a job which he can't do himself, as insulting, is somewhat unfair, don't you think?

If you phone a mechanic to ask for a quote on your car, and you provide him with details that you think is relevant, but which he regards as insufficient, should he feel insulted? It's not like you deliberately withheld information knowing that it is crucial, and its not like you have shown disrepect towards his skill and his profession in any way.


[Edited at 2007-04-19 06:48]


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Tim Drayton  Identity Verified
Cyprus
Local time: 22:08
Turkish to English
+ ...
Yes, but ... Apr 19, 2007

Samuel Murray wrote:

IreneN wrote:
I find this "urgent, tomorrow, 10000 words" and no subject offers plain insulting.


IMO, you feel too easily insulted. To regard a client's ignorance of what information is relevant to a job which he can't do himself, as insulting, is somewhat unfair, don't you think?

If you phone a mechanic to ask for a quote on your car, and you provide him with details that you think is relevant, but which he regards as insufficient, should he feel insulted? It's not like you deliberately withheld information knowing that it is crucial, and its not like you have shown disrepect towards his skill and his profession in any way.


[Edited at 2007-04-19 06:48]


Samuel,
If a direct client posts this kind of offer, you are absolutely right. However, I expect more professionalism from agencies, who nine times out of ten are the culprits. I have often requested information about the subject matter from agencies posting such job offers, at the same time providing information about my areas of specialisation, and almost invariably I receive no response. I accept that they may have no in-house expertise in the pair in which I work (Turkish into English), but surely they could at least send the text (or a short sample from it) so that I can work out what the subject matter is myself, and whether I feel capable of handling it. I have stopped sending this kind of response because I know it is almost certain to be ignored.


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:08
Dutch to English
+ ...
Agree, but ... Apr 19, 2007

Tim Drayton wrote:

Samuel,
If a direct client posts this kind of offer, you are absolutely right. However, I expect more professionalism from agencies, who nine times out of ten are the culprits. I have often requested information about the subject matter from agencies posting such job offers, at the same time providing information about my areas of specialisation, and almost invariably I receive no response. I accept that they may have no in-house expertise in the pair in which I work (Turkish into English), but surely they could at least send the text (or a short sample from it) so that I can work out what the subject matter is myself, and whether I feel capable of handling it. I have stopped sending this kind of response because I know it is almost certain to be ignored.


I agree with you Tim, some agencies should be more professional.

But by showing they aren't, it also says a lot about their general business practices.

So, I'd personally like things to be left as is - it's easier to sort out the wheat from the chaff - but again, that's just my opinion.



[Edited at 2007-04-19 12:06]


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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 14:08
English to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Hi Samuel Apr 19, 2007

Samuel Murray wrote:

[If you phone a mechanic to ask for a quote on your car, and you provide him with details that you think is relevant, but which he regards as insufficient, should he feel insulted?


He will tell me to bring the car to the shop. As a minimum, he'd know that I didn't mix up my Honda with my LG washing machine and I'm calling the right person in the first place. I woudn't want to hear his suggestions about not wasting his time otherwise:-)

[Edited at 2007-04-19 16:04]


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