Recent large discrepancy on word counts MS-Word/Trados
Thread poster: Thomas Rebotier

Thomas Rebotier  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:32
English to French
Oct 6, 2015

Hello,

this may just be a fluke but from TWO different agencies that I cannot suspect of trying to cheat, I've just seen while invoicing large word count discrepancy between the agency analysis apparently done on Trados and the simple MS Word word count. I'm talking about a wordcount roughly 20% lower (and I AM looking at total words) in the agency analysis compared to the word count indicated by opening the file in MS Word or, for that matter, rerunning the analysis in WordFast Pro. Am I the only one? If so any idea what could account for the difference?

I am fairly annoyed at how to handle this commercially too. I've been swamped for 2 months and should have rechecked the word counts on every project but those were large evolutive (files cancelled, files added) projects and now Im afraid that the agencies have invoiced the client based on a wrong WC, which of course will make it hard for me to get my due...

Anyway, the primary question is: has anyone else got the word count deeply off (20% less) from agencies using trados tools?


 

Annamaria Amik  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:32
Romanian to English
+ ...
CAT discounts? Oct 6, 2015

Thomas Rebotier wrote:
Anyway, the primary question is: has anyone else got the word count deeply off (20% less) from agencies using trados tools?


Are you sure the agency was not using a weighted/equivalent word count, meaning that they applied some discounts based on repetitions?


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:32
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
And/or Oct 6, 2015

Annamaria Amik wrote:

Thomas Rebotier wrote:
Anyway, the primary question is: has anyone else got the word count deeply off (20% less) from agencies using trados tools?


Are you sure the agency was not using a weighted/equivalent word count, meaning that they applied some discounts based on repetitions?

Are you saying that your own version of Trados gave a far lower count than either Word or Wordfast? In other words, have they actually given you the real wordcount that Trados supplied to them or have they doctored it to suit their own purposes (of rippng off their translator)?


 

Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 20:32
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
Word counting software Oct 6, 2015

Sheila Wilson wrote:

Are you sure the agency was not using a weighted/equivalent word count, meaning that they applied some discounts based on repetitions?

Are you saying that your own version of Trados gave a far lower count than either Word or Wordfast? In other words, have they actually given you the real wordcount that Trados supplied to them or have they doctored it to suit their own purposes (of rippng off their translator)? [/quote]

Thai, my native language, has more issues on word counting since most software ignore words, except characters, of Asian languages. By the way, settings in CAT e.g. Trados can vary word count outputs significantly, for example, HTML tag words to ignore.
A laughing joke was that a Chinese agency gave me word counts of target texts in Trados in order to settle payments. Target text word count basis should have been agreed beforehand, in my idea.

Soonthon L.


 

Jenae Spry  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:32
French to English
Numbers Oct 6, 2015

Were there any numbers in these files? If so, Trados doesn't include them. If you did the translation in Trados then their word count is fair because Trados handles numbers for you and extracts them from the Xliff. If not, then this is something to be aware of moving forward. I have a client that bills based on Trados word count no matter what for consistency. I have to ask them to add extra words when the files contain large amounts of numbers and I've been working from a PDF.

 

Thomas Rebotier  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:32
English to French
TOPIC STARTER
replies Oct 6, 2015

I'll be looking at the numbers and in fact Trados does not do them for me since it doesn't format properly most of the time. It replaces numbers adjusting to the French format ONLY when the number is freestanding. Unfortunately, good French typographics requires that number followed by units are separated by a non-breaking space, and Trados is unable to adjust the next occurence. And even accounting for numbers, it still looks far too much of a decrease for me...

Other than that, no explanation. There is no such thing as "equivalent word count" on Trados, you get the counts, real count, in each matching % bracket. And it's definitely not the agency doctoring an html output...


 

Thomas Rebotier  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:32
English to French
TOPIC STARTER
Apologies.... Oct 6, 2015

I was rerunning word counts on my own translations.... hence the 20% difference! (From one agency, still finding out with the other)

[Edited at 2015-10-06 20:31 GMT]


 

Jenae Spry  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:32
French to English
No, not those Oct 7, 2015

Thomas Rebotier wrote:

I'll be looking at the numbers and in fact Trados does not do them for me since it doesn't format properly most of the time. It replaces numbers adjusting to the French format ONLY when the number is freestanding.


Those numbers are included in a Trados word count. I'm talking about freestanding numbers that are very literally not visible in the xliff. So, as I translate a lot of medical files, if I do a PDF file of lab ranges, this type of thing becomes an issue with my client that uses Trados to run their word counts and can account for hundreds or more words depending on the length of the document.


 


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