What does translation rate per line of 55 beats in € (source word) mean?
Thread poster: Sarah McDowell

Sarah McDowell  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 03:00
Member (2012)
Russian to English
+ ...
Jan 23, 2014

I received an e-mail with the following request in it:
"Please, add your translation rate per line of 55 beats in € (source word)"

What does 55 beats mean? I have only ever seen translation measured in words or in pages of 1800 characters including spaces.

Please let me know if this is common at all and what it actually means in terms of a standard word calculation.


 

Mikhail Kropotov  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 11:00
Member (2005)
English to Russian
+ ...
Common in Germany; 55 characters Jan 23, 2014

Hi Sarah,

In German-speaking countries, there is this unit of measurement called a 'line' which amounts to 55 characters (sometimes 60).

You can convert your per-word rate to a per-line rate depending on your source language. For example, if an average word is 6 characters long in your source language, then 55 characters should equal roughly 55/(6+1) = 7.86 words (+1 is for blanks).

Hope this helps.

[Edited at 2014-01-23 04:34 GMT]


 

philgoddard
United States
Member (2009)
German to English
+ ...
I usually find Jan 23, 2014

that if I quote per word, they're quite happy to pay on that basis.

 

Wolfgang Vogt  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:00
English to German
+ ...
Online-tool Jan 23, 2014

Hi Sarah,

Here's an online-tool which might help. It counts characters with spaces, characters without spaces, words and "standard lines of 55 characters" (I suppose this is what you were referring to).

http://charcount.com/


There's also a German Wikipedia entry which might be useful: http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Normzeile


 

Michael Wetzel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:00
German to English
at least they didn't ask for "attacks" Jan 23, 2014

"Beats" is good: They mean "Anschläge", which are "characters and spaces" and are called "keystrokes" (among other things) in English.

On top of that, "source word" is confusing. I assume they mean "source text", but that is strange, because German "Normzeilen" are almost always based on the "target text", unless you're translating into a non-Latin alphabet.

Unless it's a direct client (it's not their job to know these kinds of things), you might ignore an agency purely because they're too incompetent to translate such a simple and oft-used text into comprehensible (not to mention correct) English.


 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:00
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Mac or Windows Jan 23, 2014

You can also check the number of lines in a document by navigating to the (Word) "Check" (Überprüfen) tab and click on the icon "abc 123" after you have high-lighted the text and it will give you the relevant figures, e. g. number of words, lines, characters with or without spaces. This gives you an idea of how many lines you will produce in the target text.

 

Melanie Di-Costanzo  Identity Verified
Germany
Member (2013)
German to French
Rate per line Jan 23, 2014

I am just applying to a new agency. They asked me to indicate my "Rate per target line in EUR".
They added underneath : "If you have never worked with "lines" before, please multiply your rate per source word by 8 and enter the result here".

Hope this helps


 

Sebastian Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 10:00
Member (2004)
German to English
+ ...
Multiply all per word rates by 8 2 arrive at the corresponding standard line rate? I don't think so. Jan 23, 2014

Melanie Di-Costanzo wrote:

I am just applying to a new agency. They asked me to indicate my "Rate per target line in EUR".
They added underneath : "If you have never worked with "lines" before, please multiply your rate per source word by 8 and enter the result here".

Hope this helps



No, not at all, actually. An English standard line comes close to 9 words, whereas a German standard line having 55 chars with spaces (keystrokes) is about 7 words. The difference between 7 and 9 is 22.2 %. Caution!


 

Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 10:00
English to Polish
+ ...
Yeah, strokes Jan 26, 2014

Yeah, 'strokes' is the term. This part of Europe seems to adhere to the concept of rewarding a translator for the characters actually produced (as opposed e.g. to a more client-centred concept of paying only for those which are visible, useful or whatever).

As for the number itself, some time ago the German translation industry decided that it was necessary to subdivide the German word and hence the 55-character unit called a 'segment' or 'line' or 'verse' was born.


 

A.Đapo  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 10:00
Member (2007)
English to Serbo-Croat
+ ...
How many lines per page? Oct 13, 2016

How many lines are per page in a standard German text?

 

Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 09:00
Member (2004)
English to Italian
is the agency based in Italy, by any chance? Oct 13, 2016

beats = battute = keystrokes...

 


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What does translation rate per line of 55 beats in € (source word) mean?

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