Would you have accepted 0.01 dollar per word from an award-winning international company?
Thread poster: Marian Muiños

Marian Muiños  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:12
English to Galician
+ ...
Feb 14, 2011

Obviously, this was not stated in the ad at Proz.com.
I only got to learn about it after sending a letter and CV.
(Well-known Outsourcer ommited as kindly requested by Proz.com) can be easily found online, and it is clear enough that is not a NGO.
However, this is the answer I got:

"Thank you for your interest in the TermWiki translation project. As the ad explained, for a limited time (before March 1, 2011,) we are paying participants that enter qualified translations for terms at TermWiki.com.

You will be compensated based on the number of terms you translate before March 1st, 2010.

Because this is a community effort, we are only paying a token fee for each term which is only 1 US cent per term. We understand this is not an usual translation rate, however this is not a regular translation project, but more of a community effort."

Then, more information is obtained in one of the attatchments:

"All translated terms are calculated when making payment. However we imposed a minimum 5000 translated terms due to operational costs. For example translating 5500 terms means you will be paid 5500 x 0.01
We require that you translate a minimum 5000 terms in order to get paid.
Please note that translations MUST be in compliance with TermWiki quality standards/specifications. We will perform random quality checks for each translator before payment is made. A high level of errors will result in partial or no payment."

I did not accept it and, after a couple of days of mental relaxation, I turned to answer as follows:

"According to your explanations you "are only paying a token fee for each term which is only 1 US cent per term." because you "understand this is not an usual translation rate, however this is not a regular translation project, but more of a community effort."

I am glad you do understand this is not the usual translation rate, otherwise any translator who spent a lot in his/her education plus all that much spent in continuous updating would have felt insulted at being offered 0.01 dollars per word.

Anyhow, regarding myself, I´d rather get involved in community or NGO´s efforts for free, devoting my time when I have it and deciding who deserves my time. Time cannot be bought, you know, our lives have a limit.

But of course, we, translators, do not pay taxes for free voluntary jobs, while we do have to pay them for every 0.01 dollar we receive.

Consequently, and since I am already contributing to other community efforts, I´m afraid I need to devote the rest of my time to earning my living, so as to pay at least the rent, the bills, the food, in order to be able to survive and keep on working and never accept an offer that would depauperize our human rights.

Best regards,"

[Edited at 2011-02-14 12:10 GMT]


Java30 (X)
Local time: 13:12
English to German
+ ...
the same Feb 14, 2011

Hi, yes I know them. A couple of month ago I sent my CV and cover letter to them They were looking for an "marekting expert" and translator. I received the same mail as you received and didn't answer them. Its an insult...its a waste of time to answer.
Did you receive an answer in due to your mail??



ATIL KAYHAN  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:12
Member (2007)
Turkish to English
+ ...
No Feb 14, 2011

No, I would not have accepted such a low rate at all.


Stanislaw Czech, MCIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:12
Member (2006)
English to Polish
+ ...
No Feb 14, 2011

I must make a living


Enrico C - ECLC  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:12
Member (2011)
English to Italian
+ ...
Absolutely not Feb 14, 2011

I have been offered the same rates by an Indian company, as well as 0,03 or similar. Some translations are considerably complicated and often what they call 100% matches need to be retranslated from scratch so it takes longer, underpaid and with the extra discount caused by the Trados breakdown.

Top of that, when a professional making a living out of this job goes so down with rates, not only ruins himself, but it ruins the market too.

It's unacceptable. You don't even repay a CAT with those rates.


Carolin Haase  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:12
English to German
+ ...
No, I declined Feb 14, 2011

and I think we are referring to the same company.


Nikita Kobrin  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:12
English to Russian
+ ...
Never Feb 14, 2011

And their awards are none of my business...



Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:12
French to German
+ ...
As long as awards don't 'translate' into money for me... Feb 14, 2011

I couldn't care less.
Nikita Kobrin wrote:

And their awards are none of my business...



Local time: 17:42
Portuguese to English
+ ...
So low? Feb 14, 2011

When a professional translator goes so down with rates, he not only ruins himself, but ruins the market too. It is time to look for alternatives, and I have many.


Ivan Rocha, CT
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Nope. Feb 14, 2011

No, I would not.


Paula Hernández
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:12
English to Spanish
+ ...
No Feb 14, 2011

Just, no.

And I care about them having won awards as much as I care for them owning a pet...this has nothing to do with my job.


IPtranslate (X)
English to Dutch
+ ...
No Feb 14, 2011

No, and wouldn't even have taken the time out to reply.


Daria Bontch-Osmolovskaia
Local time: 22:12
Member (2010)
+ ...
No Feb 15, 2011

No way, 1 cent/word is ridiculous.

I've translated glossaries for large projects, and it's actually very tough work, in some respects harder than translating plain text. You have to consistently pay very high attention to detail, because every single word matters. And then you run into a term that could be translated 5 different ways, and the client only has a very vague idea about where it fits into their software or game...

I do like the point you made about paying taxes and NGOs though!icon_smile.gif


Zea_Mays  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:12
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Same here - similar project Feb 15, 2011

The invitation to Ackuna came from an US based Translation Services agency which changed their "translators portal" 3 times within 2 years. On their Translation Cloud site they claim they want "to refine Google Translate through Facebook crowdsourcing and translation memory supplied by XXXX (company's name)". The task: check machine translated segments/sentences.

Terms are similar: USD 0.01 per word, you'll have to "proofread" a sentence within 2 minutes, otherwise it will be passed on to another translator. And you'll get paid only if the checked sentence was approved through two other "translators".


When filling out the information on your profile, you may
choose to work for Translation Cloud in one of two capacities:

* Volunteer. Fine tune your translation skills & help us to improve the overall quality of machine translations.
* Get paid. Provide a PayPal ID and get paid $0.01 per word for all “proofread & approved” translations.
All translators work as proofreaders on Translation Cloud.

When proofreading a segment, a translator has 2 options:

* If the translation is correct, submit it without making any changes.
* If the translation is not correct, fix it and submit it with the necessary changes.
You have up to 2 minutes (max) to complete each translation task.

Note: You can still submit the task after the 2 minutes have passed, but there’s no guarantee that it will be accepted. The reason being that the assignment becomes available to other translators once the timer’s run out on an incomplete translation.
Translators are paid at the rate of USD.01 per word (ONE US DOLLAR AT THE RATE OF ONE CENT PER WORD). The total price paid for any given task is calculated based on the rate (USD.01 per word) and unique word count, and your earnings are then escrowed by Translation Cloud. Contributions are measured by edits given by the Translator against the total edits already stored in the Translation Memory Bank.

Note: Translators will only be compensated for correctly translated and approved segments.
If you submit a segment there is any small error, it is marked as an incorrect translation and you will not be paid.

* We’re paying for proofreading, not translations. (nb. what they claim:) The going rate for most proofreaders is .02/per word.
* Translation Cloud is a more efficient platform. No bidding or handling invoices affords a proofreader more time to actually do the proofreading. Time is money. On Translation Cloud, a proofreader can complete 20,000+ words a day.

Apart from the ridiculous rate - working for such projects in the long run means to act self-destructive.


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Would you have accepted 0.01 dollar per word from an award-winning international company?

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