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Kudoz abuse or rotten apples?
Thread poster: Edward Vreeburg

Edward Vreeburg  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 23:08
Member (2008)
English to Dutch
+ ...
Jul 29, 2009

I normally only check the Kudoz questions when I am not so busy, but recently I see a lot of questions by the same people...and not jusst one or two, but literally dozens !

I know the number of questions is limited depending on your memebership, so I guess it's all "legal". But if you have to ask 10 or 20 questions for a single text, are you really qualified to translate it?

There is an up side, some of the people ASKING al lot of questions are also ANSWERING a lot of them, so I would say they are also helping other translators, but some of them keep asking and asking questions on all sorts of subject matters for which they obviously have no clue of the terminology.

Now I am going to generalise a bit, because I'm not 100% sure, but I know some of these translators are really cheap, at least 20% cheaper than their colleagues. So,... does Kudoz create the support for cheap translations by unqualified translators and ultimately lower rates and the idea of an unprofessional industry or do I simply see some rotten apples?

On the occasions I really needed help myself I was very happy to have Kudoz, but if more people are seeing the same thing as me, would they also loose interest in answering Kudoz questions, (or only answer questions for people with a balanced Kudoz score?)


===
best regards
Ed Vreeburg



[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2009-07-31 08:37 GMT]


 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:08
English to German
+ ...
You know... Jul 29, 2009

Edward Vreeburg wrote:
are you really qualified to translate it?


cheap translations by unqualified translators and ultimately lower rates and the idea of an unprofessional industry or do I simply see some rotten apples?



I read your CV with great interest.
I noticed that you stated your proficiency level in German "reasonable". Not even fluent, as you did with French.

Yet you are offering translations INTO GERMAN. You are answering KudoZ questions in the EN>DE


 

Edward Vreeburg  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 23:08
Member (2008)
English to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
@ Nicole: Jul 29, 2009

Fortunately I do not TRANSLATE INTO German myself, but I outsource it to a very qualified collegue of mine...
...and if I think I can help I will offer my suggestions..
...I will not take a DE-> NL text and start asking questions when I have no clue about the subject matter...


 

LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:08
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Monetize the KudoZ system Jul 29, 2009

I think that ProZ should monetize the KudoZ system. This would eliminate most of the problems.

Askers would pay a non-refundable $1.00 per question. (Very cheap considering the valuable help that is now being given away for free - and in some cases unappreciated. And the rate has to be high enough to prevent abuse and to prevent KudoZ from becoming a cheap virtual translation agency rather than a resource of LAST RESORT).

The selected Answerer (either selected by the Asker or peer-agreement) would receive .75 in their wallet (which can be sent to PayPal when the balance reaches a certain threshold or used to renew membership) and ProZ would receive .25. If there is no acceptable answer, that is the risk you take and ProZ keeps the entire 1.00.





[Edited at 2009-07-29 14:09 GMT]


 

Edward Vreeburg  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 23:08
Member (2008)
English to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
@ Jeff: Jul 29, 2009

I think we have a winner!

I would be happy to pay a $1 when I'm desperately looking for an answer...

Ed


 

Alexander Onishko  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:08
Member (2007)
Russian to English
+ ...
Things happen Jul 29, 2009

Edward Vreeburg wrote:

I know the number of questions is limited depending on your memebership, so I guess it's all "legal". But if you have to ask 10 or 20 questions for a single text, are you really qualified to translate it?



If this is a one-off occasion, this may be ok.

For example, you are translating a 100-page software user manual and there comes a section on the legal use. Being a qualified translator in IT you still may not know all those legal things and you may ask.


 

xxxAWa
Local time: 23:08
English to German
+ ...
Not a new development Jul 29, 2009

This fact has been noticed and discussed several times before, usually when somebody notices it for the first time and decides not to answer Kudoz questions any more or asks for changes to the system.

There is always the chance that by answering questions you help a person who got a job in your area of expertise for which you bid, too, but lost because you were too "expensive".

Edward Vreeburg wrote:

. But if you have to ask 10 or 20 questions for a single text, are you really qualified to translate it?


Depends on the length of the texticon_wink.gif

[Edited at 2009-07-30 08:09 GMT]


 

Frances Leggett  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:08
Italian to English
+ ...
I think you're being a little hard on up and coming translators... Jul 29, 2009

I have asked quite a few questions in the past from the one text. I have been translating for some time now but I would like to expand my specialisation areas and I still don't have enough experience in any one field to put myself across as specialised (as most people intend specialised to be working in one sector fairly constantly for at least two years). New translators however need to gain experience in whatever they can to start working towards specialising in something. A translator can be specialised in one sector and could also want to move into another sector. How can the translator ever learn and improve if only the "qualified" translators with much experience in the sector can do those documents? And you might find that one translator asks a few questions from the one document, but how many words are in that document? I hardly think it is only one page, so 5 terms in a 40 page document is perhaps not that exaggerated...

And what is the harm in asking a few questions to get yourself better acquainted with new terminology? As long as you attempt to help others with their KudoZ queries when you get a chance, I think the whole process works very well. I haven't earned any points yet but I'm just getting started, I'm doing a lot of agreeing!

I think you'll find that the translators asking a lot of questions are fairly new to the industry, so they may also be overly cautious about translating some terms; they may very well have a good idea of what the translation is but want to make sure from some more qualified translators. New translators also tend to charge lower rates as well...

So these points may be something to consider under this topic...

[Edited at 2009-07-29 14:43 GMT]


 

Edward Vreeburg  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 23:08
Member (2008)
English to Dutch
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
@Frances Jul 29, 2009

I know you can sometimes be surprised by a few lines of legal text. What I generally do is offer that as a small job to a specialist colleage..., but I'm talking about people who ask a lot of technical terms all day long, not just 2 or 3...
...you can sometimes read the entire document if you past all of the context phrases together...

There are other options to gain knowlegde, buying books, going to libraries, searching for glossaries..., not simply flooding Kudoz ... I'm not against people asking questions, but somehow it has to stay balanced... asking AND answering...


Ed

[Edited at 2009-07-29 14:52 GMT]

[Edited at 2009-07-29 14:52 GMT]


 

Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 23:08
English to Croatian
+ ...
Ha! Jul 29, 2009

Jeff Whittaker wrote:

I think that ProZ should monetize the KudoZ system. This would eliminate most of the problems.

Askers would pay a non-refundable $1.00 per question. (Very cheap considering the valuable help that is now being given away for free - and in some cases unappreciated. And the rate has to be high enough to prevent abuse and to prevent KudoZ from becoming a cheap virtual translation agency rather than a resource of LAST RESORT).

The selected Answerer (either selected by the Asker or peer-agreement) would receive .75 in their wallet (which can be sent to PayPal when the balance reaches a certain threshold or used to renew membership) and ProZ would receive .25. If there is no acceptable answer, that is the risk you take and ProZ keeps the entire 1.00.





[Edited at 2009-07-29 14:09 GMT]


icon_lol.gif

Try to imagine the war field that concept would create among the peers competing for money this time, not for points. I certainly wouldn't like to be a part of that.


 

Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 23:08
English to Croatian
+ ...
$1 Jul 29, 2009

Edward Vreeburg wrote:

I think we have a winner!

I would be happy to pay a $1 when I'm desperately looking for an answer...

Ed


Yes, but what if the asker is a $0.01 translator? How can he or she afford $1 for a simple question then?


 

LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:08
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Start-Up Costs Jul 29, 2009

Frances Leggett wrote:

I think you're being a little hard on up and coming translators...


Not really, there was no internet when I started and I had to spend $4,000 - $5,000 on paper dictionaries. Back then, you had to know the translation for EVERY word in a document (or know where to find it). Otherwise, as a new translator, you usually had to turn the job down. You could not simply wake up one morning, turn on your computer and think, today I will be a translator.

New translators should be willing to invest in their career whether in the form of purchasing resources or paying for assistance.



[Edited at 2009-07-29 16:42 GMT]


 

LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:08
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Resistance Jul 29, 2009

Of course, those whose very existence depends on the free help they receive from KudoZ will rigorously fight against and criticize any discussions of a paid system. They could not exist without it and could not afford (based on their low rates) to pay more for the help than they are charging for their own work.

Besides, why shouldn't answerers be paid? It is highly likely that at some point in the future, users will be charged a fee to access the KudoZ glossary or the entries will be sold in one form or another.



[Edited at 2009-07-29 16:43 GMT]


 

liz askew  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:08
Member (2007)
French to English
+ ...
Monetize the KudoZ system Jul 29, 2009

Hello Jeff

I say, I think I would be quids in were this system implemented:-)

Liz Askew


 

LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:08
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
They could not and that is a good thing. Jul 29, 2009

They could not and that is a good thing.

Lingua 5B wrote:

Yes, but what if the asker is a $0.01 translator? How can he or she afford $1 for a simple question then?


 
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