Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
Off topic: The rudest thing I have ever heard (or read) from a client
Thread poster: Leena vom Hofe

Leena vom Hofe  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 11:11
Member (2005)
English to German
+ ...
Jun 13, 2007

Hello there!

The subject about the rudest thing ever written to a client reminds me of a very very rude client I have talked to a few months ago.

The story is about an agency not paying my invoice. I have send severeal reminders and read in a mailing list that this agency seems to work like this for ages (one collegue waiting for his payment since 1999)!

I finally got my money (after threatening to go to court!). And two months later the boss himself called me. He was very friendly and polite, wanted to thank me for not having sued them etc.
AND: asking me for another collaboration!!

I told him what I read about his agency in the internet and he really got mad, shouting at me: who said so??? Tell me the name of that "bloody asshole" (am I allowed to write this here? I am only quoting!)!

I answered politely: MR X., please calm down... there is no reason to shout like this...

He went on shouting and I told him that his behavior made clear that I would not work with him again. His answer to that was rather straightforward: "Who cares???? I don't need you, you asshole!!!!"

I couldn't stop laughing that day... (it would maybe have been different if I had not got my money before...)

Have you ever been insulted like this by someone you worked for?
What do you think about this? I entered a BB entry, but could not do more...

(The funny thing about this is that I think it's rather strange to call a woman "asshole". Don't you agree?)

[Edited at 2007-06-13 12:45]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 06:11
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Wow! Jun 13, 2007

Hi Leena,
Actually, I think this is really hilarious. I would have had trouble not laughing right over the phone!

But it sure seems as though this guy has some serious stress issues!

Amy


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Nina Khmielnitzky  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 05:11
Member (2004)
English to French
The worst guy on proz Jun 13, 2007

I cannot name him here, but luckily he has been banned. Before I heard about him, he contacted me and was friendly and collaborative. He provided me with all the info I needed, and said he was very satisfied with my work. Then, a few days after I sent my invoice, I received a general email from another translators' website saying that man was banned for non-payment and abusive behavior against translators. I forwarded him the message, saying our collaboration had been agreable so far and that I hoped I didn't have to worry about not being paid. That's when he flipped. He started writing non-sense, being a racist against my origins, demanding that I write him an excellent rating on the BB, etc. I said I would, in due time (i.e. when I gor the check and it cleared at the bank). I got the check, deposited it, it cleared, then I wrote an honest review on the BB. He got nastier, comparing my name to Auschwitz, saying that my work was crap and if I had any class I should repay him, he even called at home under a false name to send me a formal notice by email (luckily, my husband took the call and said to send it to his lawyer). Anyhow, it's over now.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Victor Dewsbery  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 11:11
German to English
+ ...
Can't offer anything rude ... Jun 13, 2007

... but three incidents come to mind. All of them are several years ago now.

1. For a while I worked occasionally for an agency in another city in Germany (communication was still mainly by fax, so it was probably about the mid-90s).
The agency rang me about a new job (and I didn't think to ask for more information). They sent the text, and it was a pretty hefty specialist medical text. I contacted them to say that I had neither the background nor the reference material for the job. The agency owner told me that I was obviously too lazy to take the job.
Result: I never heard from them again (which I did not regret).

2. Another agency. I think the reason for the call was that I had proposed a rise in my rates, and the agency owner wanted to explain the agency's in-house quality assurance policy as a general cost factor. In the course of the conversation he told me that the agency liked my work, but there was something in his voice that gave me the creeps even when he paid me compliments. (Again, I no longer work for that agency).

3. Another agency - although this time the agency was on my side. The end customer complained about my work (the usual sort of complaint - the German manager who is not satisfied with English written by a native speaker). I wrote a substantial and reasoned response, which the agency passed on to the end customer. The end customer wrote back, saying that my German was so good that I could not possibly be an English native speaker. (The agency shared my amusement at that remark and said that no, they would not require copies of my British passport, school reports and degree certificate).
Here, too, the agency is not a client now, although that was not because of this incident.

[Edited at 2007-06-13 13:00]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Steven Capsuto  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:11
Spanish to English
+ ...
Rude versus rude Jun 13, 2007

Note that the meaning of "rude" depends on which English-speaking country one is from. In Britain, it apparently means crude, crass or slightly obscene. In the U.S. and Canada, it merely means impolite or inconsiderate. I'm not sure which definition was intended here.

As far as I recall, none of my clients has been rude to me in either sense.

[Edited at 2007-06-13 13:20]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Aleksandra Kwasnik  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 11:11
Polish to German
+ ...
Serve yourself Jun 13, 2007

That's how my client welcomed the participants of a workshop, while me and my interpreter colleagues were standing nearby: "Here is the coffee and the cookies and here are the interpreters - serve yourself!"



A rather funny example of rudeness, at least I can laugh about it now...


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Leena vom Hofe  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 11:11
Member (2005)
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
quite obvious Jun 13, 2007

shouting at me: who said so??? Tell me the name of that "bloody asshole" (am I allowed to write this here? I am only quoting!)!

I answered politely: MR X., please calm down... there is no reason to shout like this...

He went on shouting and I told him that his behavior made clear that I would not work with him again. His answer to that was rather straightforward: "Who cares???? I don't need you, you asshole!!!!"


I think the meaning of "rude" is quite obvious here, don't you agree?


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Sarah Brenchley  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:11
Spanish to English
+ ...
Not exactly rude Jun 13, 2007

Aleksandra Kwasnik wrote:

That's how my client welcomed the participants of a workshop, while me and my interpreter colleagues were standing nearby: "Here is the coffee and the cookies and here are the interpreters - serve yourself!"



A rather funny example of rudeness, at least I can laugh about it now...


Depending on your client's native language this might possibly be due more to native language interference.
For example, the translation of the Spanish "servirse" (literally "Serve oneself") is "Help yourself" so perhaps he was/she was just trying to be kind.
All the best,
Sarah.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Chantal Kamgne  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 05:11
Member (2006)
English to French
Abuse Jun 13, 2007

A potential client once asked for my rates, which I quoted. Here is his reaction:

"What? XX€/word? Even here in France there are translators who don't charge that!"

So I replied, laughing behind my screen, "Fine then, thank you for your interest in collaborating with me, it would have been a pleasure".

It is not that I could not have lowered the rates. They were not the matter. I was laughing but the contact was not pleasant at all. Anyhow, I always try not to reply to rudeness with rudeness. Life is nice and too short to feel or spread frustration!

[Edited at 2007-06-14 08:58]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tony M  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 11:11
Member
French to English
+ ...
Not quite true, Steve! Jun 13, 2007

Steven Capsuto wrote:

Note that the meaning of "rude" depends on which English-speaking country one is from. In Britain, it apparently means crude, crass or slightly obscene.


That's not quite the whole story, Steve — even over here in GB, 'rude' still basically means 'impolite' — but it also has a secondary meaning, as appearing in certain phrases like a 'rude joke' or 'rude words', which tends twoards your second meaning of 'cheeky, crude or (slightly) obscene' — but when used in this way, it acts to slightly 'play down' the seriousness of the situation (unlike 'obscene', for example) — it is the sort of word one might use to children "Mummy always says I mustn't use rude words"

But in most ordinary situations (apart from set expressions), the first meaning that springs to mind would still be 'impolite'.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Juliana Brown  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 05:11
Member (2007)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I love this- the flip side of my other issue! Jun 13, 2007

I can easily say that my slightly mad author non-client (see other thread...) was the rudest. After asking me why I thought I was qualified to do the job, I explained that I had lectured for several years at universities, published a couple of articles, written and defended a Ph.D thesis, and written and presented papers all over the world, on top of the usual translation-linked proofreading we all do every day. Her response was "What? How can you have done all those things? You must be lying. I'm older than you, and I haven't done that many things." Lovely, no?

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:11
Italian to English
+ ...
Admit it Juliana, you've been outed! Jun 13, 2007

Juliana Starkman wrote:

I can easily say that my slightly mad author non-client (see other thread...) was the rudest. After asking me why I thought I was qualified to do the job, I explained that I had lectured for several years at universities, published a couple of articles, written and defended a Ph.D thesis, and written and presented papers all over the world, on top of the usual translation-linked proofreading we all do every day. Her response was "What? How can you have done all those things? You must be lying. I'm older than you, and I haven't done that many things." Lovely, no?




Direct link Reply with quote
 

Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:11
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
Do News Bureaus accept explanatory notes? Jun 13, 2007

I once did a job for an agency where the client was the UK newspaper "The Guardian". I added one or two translator's notes explaining terms with which the recipient was likely to be unfamiliar. The woman from the agency phoned, and though I can't remember her exact words, it was something along the lines of how dare I be so unprofessional as to add notes, newspapers never wanted anything like that. I told her I had worked for six months in the News Bureau at BBC Monitoring, and that such notes were always welcome. But it didn't pacify her, so I just told her not to send me any more work and hung up. The agency went bankrupt a few months later (fortunately after they'd paid me), and I wasn't at all surprised or sorry.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Ritu Bhanot  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 11:11
Member (2006)
French to Hindi
+ ...
Rudest??? Jun 13, 2007

Here's an e-mail exchange, and it is quite recent.

E-mail 1 (from a prospective client through my proz profile):

Dear Linguist

We have an URGENT French to English job due as soon as possible.
If you work in a group you shall be able to do it easily else we
are willing to split the file within various translators. We can
offer XX EUR per word for this job. Let us know if you can
help.

Regards

xxx


My reply:

Dear XXX,
Could you please give more information about your agency and the project.
thanks and regards,
Ritu


And His reply:


Could you give me your phone number in India.

I have a few file which need to be translated by end of the day at any
cost.
I won't be trusting any Indian French to English linguists because most of
them use Machine Translations, unless they prove their credentials in
French
language.
Therefore to talk in details I would need a telephonic conversation

Regards
XXX


At this point I was quite upset.

First, I had not contacted him. He had sent the e-mail.

Secondly, my profile gives my name (and he is of Indian Origin so could figure out that I was Indian) as well as the fact that I was based in India. So, if he didn't want me to work on the project, why did he send the e-mail?

And lastly, my profile has my phone number, so it was strange that this person starts asking for my phone number in spite of the fact that he'd sent that e-mail from my profile.

Anyways, I told him as much.

To his credit, he apologized. But he never wanted to reveal his identity. And this was so strange...

AND HE POSTED THE JOB ON PROZ.COM

At last I knew the identity and address of the person (earlier I just had his name and his company's probable name)

[Edited at 2007-06-13 17:03]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Yolande Haneder  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:11
German to French
+ ...
Do you want my story? Me and a (not potential) client, you decide wo were rudest Jun 13, 2007

That monday last week, were I had quite a pretty busy day.
I got a call from an unknown company asking for a translation.
I said OK, I can make you an offer, just send me the document.


On Thursday (bank holliday) I received a mail with an attachment just asking for a quote and attaching a text. I was quite puzzled to get such an e-mail on a bank holiday, but hey, I also have clients who are still online at 10 pm.

There was not indication of the target language, so I gently asked to indicate the target language.

On friday, I received a mail saying me that the job was already gone, that she already told the target language on the phone and that in the private industry the clocks are ticking differently.

I got quite upset about her way of telling me how to do my business and needing to remind me that we are in a private industry and I had to react accordingly.

I answered more or less like:
-Thank you, I am fully happy with the way my clocks are ticking
-She was not only the only one to call and if she doesn't send the text the same day, why should I remind myself days afterwards about her call, and not being sure that was her who send the document, should I have disclosed informations about other clients?
-That she then dare to request for a quote on a bank holiday and expecting me to be as quick with an incomplete information.
-More or less that if she were not happy I was most happy that she found another agency.


A couple of hours later as I settled down, I had a look at the header of the mail (not the outlook date and time - the mail had been sent on Monday).

I am however happy that she won't count to my clients. Such clients already patronizing because a quote comes too late are a pain when it comes to the translation.

[Edited at 2007-06-13 18:29]

[Edited at 2007-06-13 18:32]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

The rudest thing I have ever heard (or read) from a client

Advanced search






LSP.expert
You’re a freelance translator? LSP.expert helps you manage your daily translation jobs. It’s easy, fast and secure.

How about you start tracking translation jobs and sending invoices in minutes? You can also manage your clients and generate reports about your business activities. So you always keep a clear view on your planning, AND you get a free 30 day trial period!

More info »
SDL MultiTerm 2017
Guarantee a unified, consistent and high-quality translation with terminology software by the industry leaders.

SDL MultiTerm 2017 allows translators to create one central location to store and manage multilingual terminology, and with SDL MultiTerm Extract 2017 you can automatically create term lists from your existing documentation to save time.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search