When the going gets tough...
Thread poster: Caryl Swift

Caryl Swift  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 16:35
Polish to English
+ ...
Sep 25, 2009

If this is the wrong forum for this posting, then I do apologise. I've just read this and thought I'd post it here for those who may not have come across the story yet...

http://tinyurl.com/yd3baqx


 

Alexandra Goldburt
Local time: 07:35
English to Russian
+ ...
75 minutes of interpreting without a break? Sep 25, 2009

No wonder the guy collapsed...

 

Steffen Walter  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:35
Member (2002)
English to German
+ ...
Team of two Sep 25, 2009

There should have been two interpreters to begin with, taking turns about every 30 minutes. Why this was not arranged beats me - especially in such a high-level political setting.

 

John Farebrother  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
French to English
+ ...
Respect for language professionals Sep 25, 2009

I remember thinking when I heard the speech that the interpreting wasn't very good and wondering why they didn't have a native English speaking translator. Also, as it was a speech, that he should have been given access to it in advance. However it seems the colonel likes to do things his own way. Given Libya's human rights record, it's not surprising that no-one was interested in the interpreter's well-being. However, that's not the only country where the needs of the interpreter are not routinely taken into account.

 

Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 16:35
German to Serbian
+ ...
Budget Sep 25, 2009

Steffen Walter wrote:

There should have been two interpreters to begin with, taking turns about every 30 minutes. Why this was not arranged beats me - especially in such a high-level political setting.


Costs reduction, not hard to guess? One head less on their precious budget.


 

FarkasAndras
Local time: 16:35
English to Hungarian
+ ...
come on Sep 25, 2009

Lingua 5B wrote:

Steffen Walter wrote:

There should have been two interpreters to begin with, taking turns about every 30 minutes. Why this was not arranged beats me - especially in such a high-level political setting.


Costs reduction, not hard to guess? One head less on their precious budget.


At that level, one more interpreter is not a factor. Not for the UN.
It's probably the Libyan way of doing things. He brought along two interpreters of his own that he trusts and that's it. He oviously doesn't get invited to many international conferences so it's a safe bet that the organizers of MK's trip had no idea they needed two for each language.


 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
Tough? Sep 25, 2009

How about a conference lasting nine and one half hours working solo with speaker after speaker going on one after another, no breaks, and including speakers during lunch? So how about no lunch at all? So how about having to just get up and go to the bathroom and leave them to their own devices for three minutes?

I was mighty tired, but I did not collapse.


 

Mariusz Kuklinski  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:35
Member
English to Polish
+ ...
Congratulations Sep 25, 2009

Congratulations, Henry. And sympathy!

 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
No Problem Sep 26, 2009

At least I proved to myself what I can do, and I will not do it again for anything less than $2,000 a day.

 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:35
Member (2008)
Italian to English
I used to Sep 26, 2009

I used to interpret Italian/English and English/italian at long meetings, attended by about 10 people, and often lasting for three hours.

That mean I was speaking continuously, Italian/English and English/Italian, for all that time.

It wrecked my throat.

That's a lot longer than Gaddafi's interpreter, who was able to pause and was only translating from one language to another, for one person. So he really shouldn't complain. Particularly since I imagine he was being very well-paid.

Oh- by the way I was also actively participating in those meetings. I wasn't *only* the interpreter.

I can't believe I did this. It was a long time ago.

[Edited at 2009-09-26 17:43 GMT]


 

Evonymus (Ewa Kazmierczak)  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 16:35
Member (2010)
English to Polish
+ ...
the content of the speech Sep 26, 2009

Tom in London wrote:
That's a lot longer than Gaddafi's interpreter, who was able to pause and was only translating from one language to another, for one person. So he really shouldn't complain. Particularly since I imagine he was being very well-paid.


well, maybe he didn’t collapse because of the duration of the speech but its contenticon_wink.gif
Ewa


 

Kati Bumbera  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:35
Hungarian to English
+ ...
Re: Tom and Henry Oct 2, 2009

Those were pretty much normal working conditions when I worked in-house. Plus they chain-smoked in the conference room as well. Oh, and none of this nonsense about only interpreting into your native language.

[Edited at 2009-10-02 10:20 GMT]


 

FarkasAndras
Local time: 16:35
English to Hungarian
+ ...
tough guys Oct 2, 2009

I think we all did one or two jobs in less than ideal conditions... a 6-hour chouchoutage into my 2nd language comes to mind from my own experiece. Compared to that, an hour and a half of sim may sound like a walk in the park,
but none of these jobs involved a "speaker" like Gaddhafi, and none of them were at such a high political level, which surely add a massive amount of stress to the mix.


 


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