Not counting text in MS-Word
Thread poster: Marcos Zattar

Marcos Zattar
Local time: 11:49
German to Portuguese
+ ...
Sep 29, 2011


lately I have been getting more and more jobs for certified translations than ever. I mostly do them without a CAT, since I get the documents in paper and OCR is not quite a good solution for such kind of texts, with so many stamps and signatures and so on. So I do them directly in MS-Word (2007). My issue is quite simple: I am looking for a comfortable way of counting the translated text without considering the opening and closing statements, which declare my certification and contains my name, title etc.

A colleague of mine gave me the following idea: hide the text passages of my template .dotx that should not be counted and before printing set the Word option "Print hidden text". Altohugh the count function of Word would by this method reflect the real volume to be billed, it is somehow clumsy because I have to turn this option on and off every time, since the default behavior of Word should not to print hidden text.

I would be interested to know if my colleagues have the same issue and how are the strategies to solve it. In my search in past posts of this forum I unfortunately did not find any solution for this.



Tony M
Local time: 11:49
French to English
+ ...
Deduct your standard texts Sep 29, 2011

If the text you add is relatively standard each time, why not simply count how many words are involved (once) and then simply deduct that number of words each time?

Usually, I don't worry about being accurate to the nearest word, and if you count the time it takes you to do so, I wouldn't have thought it would have been worth your while either. So even if there is a minor variation for each document, surely the few cents you might lose or gain would be insignificant?

If the blocks of text are clearly delimited at start and/or end, then you could simply do what I often do: select and cut the offending passages and do the word count without them (but of course remember not to save the 'stripped' document!)

Alternatively, you could apply a certain style to the text in your template, setting some particular attribute (say dark blue ink colour), and then easily search for 'any character with {that attirbute}' and replace it with {nothing}, thus effectively removing all your added text in one fell swoop.


Trudy Peters  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:49
German to English
+ ...
Marcos Sep 30, 2011

Just highlight the section(s) you want to count, and you will only get that wordcount. (I use Word XP).



Marcos Zattar
Local time: 11:49
German to Portuguese
+ ...
Workarounds... Sep 30, 2011

Tony, I had thought of your solution of deducting the volume. That is probably the easiest way, although not the most elegant one. Another one is to create a "count copy" of the file, without the sections in question. Put that means more files, (a little bit) more work and also not being straightforward. About being accurate: that does not make a big difference in a large file, but I usually translate diplomas, declarations, birth certificates which are themselves very short - so this standard text sums up to 20% in some cases.

Trudy, your suggestion works beautifully if there were not text fields in the document, which I use a lot in this kind of translation.


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Not counting text in MS-Word

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