Should I lower my rates?
Thread poster: Kathryn Strachecky

Kathryn Strachecky  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:09
French to English
Jan 23, 2006

Hello all!

I have just been contacted by a regular client. He wishes to send me a translation to do, but explained that the text was originally in English. They translated it to French, but now would like me to translate it back into English. He could send me the original document in English, but it apparantly is not quite the same as the French document.

He asked me if I would lower my rates, which I consider to be already fairly low, as I would have the English document. Has any of you every been in this weird position? What would you do?

TIA for your help!


Marijke Singer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:09
Dutch to English
+ ...
Hourly rate? Jan 23, 2006

You could charge your hourly rate. If the quality of the original is good and you can really use it then this may be a fair solution.


Rafa Lombardino
United States
Local time: 16:09
Member (2005)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Middle point Jan 23, 2006


If I were presented with this situation, I would find a middle point between my proofreading and translation rates and use it as back-translation rates. But if you can charge your hourly rate, it would be even better.

Good luck!


xxxMarc P  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:09
German to English
+ ...
Should I lower my rates? Jan 24, 2006

What is the reason for the back-translation? Isn't this in effect just an editing job?



Sven Petersson  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:09
English to Swedish
+ ...
I would charge ... Jan 24, 2006

I would charge my normal proofreading rate, which is EUR .05 per source word.


Kathryn Strachecky  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:09
French to English
Thanks Jan 24, 2006

Thank you all for your help. I still haven't seen the document in question, so I can't say for certain what I'm going to do, but your advice is very helpful. I think I will find a compromise between my translation and my proofreading rates, which works out at 0,05€, and seems reasonable.

What would I do without Proz?!?


Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:09
Dutch to English
+ ...
Be careful ..... Jan 24, 2006

You really need to find out the purpose of this job before going any further.

IF the purpose is to test the accuracy of the French translation by means of a back-translation into English, you should be doing the back-translation without sight of the original English text AT ALL. It will inevitably influence your translation and that goes completely against the reasoning behind and purpose of a back-translation.

For that you should be paid normal translation rates.

Otherwise your instruction should only be to REVISE (and not proofread) the French translation from the original English source - in which case revision rates would apply. However as an English native speaker, you shouldn't be accepting that IMO.


[Edited at 2006-01-24 13:03]


Kathryn Strachecky  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:09
French to English
Not a back-translation Jan 24, 2006

Thanks Deborah for your advice.

I finally got to see the text, which of course I looked at before accepting the work or quoting a price, and it is not really a back-translation. They had a text in English which they modified when translating it into French- adding titles, missing out details, changing the syntax etc. They now wish to translate the modified version back into English, keeping the changes that they made. Some of the work consists in translating the modified text, some of it can just be done by copying the original English text (which is in good English) and making a few changes.

I accepted the job, and dropped my rates to 0,05€, as a compromise between my translation and proofreading rates as the work involved is really a mixture of the two. The client is also a regular client who brings me a lot of work, so I was prepared to lower my rates for him.

Thank you all for your help, and now I'd better get back to workicon_smile.gif


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