Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
Poll: Does the translator own the copyright of TM data created during the translation process?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 13:52
SITE STAFF
May 15, 2015

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Does the translator own the copyright of TM data created during the translation process?".

View the poll results »



 

David Wright  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 22:52
German to English
+ ...
I don't see May 15, 2015

how this can be an issue for a poll. It is a simple question of law and/or the contract concluded between the translatoer and the client.

 

Jon Hedemann  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 22:52
English to Danish
+ ...
Of course not May 15, 2015

Of course not. It's part of the delivery to the client, and as such, the client owns the copyright.

 

Gianluca Marras  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 22:52
Member (2008)
English to Italian
poll, quiz or question? May 15, 2015

poll: do you own the copyright of YOUR TM data YOU created during YOUR translation process?
quiz or question: leave the question unchanged

icon_biggrin.gif


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:52
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other May 15, 2015

Don't know, don't care, not an issue for me AFAIK.

However, if you want my opinion, unlike Jon, I consider anything such as translation memories or glossaries that I create during the course of my translation work as belonging to me. All that belongs to the client is the original document and the finished translation. The process in between is my domain.

PS: Of course, it would be another story if the client gave me one of their TMs or a glossary whatever - which in my case never really happens; I don't recall the last time a client asked me to use a glossary and I don't ever remember being sent a TM, or being asked to hand over any of my own either.

[Edited at 2015-05-15 09:11 GMT]


 

Yetta J Bogarde  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 22:52
Member (2012)
English to Danish
+ ...
depends May 15, 2015

In principle, the translator owns a translation until s/he is paid by the client.

But some clients make you sign a framework service agreement to secure they are the owners from the beginning.

It makes sense to keep a separate project TM, but I cannot see how the client can stop you from adding project translations into your own TMs.

However, so far it has never been an issue for me.


 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 22:52
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
More complicated than it looks on the surface May 15, 2015

The whole point of creating a TM is to be able to use the data again at a later date.

The copyright of specific content generated by a translation of a specific document belongs to whoever owns the copyright to the original.

The tricky question is: who owns the copyright to segments when they come up again as matches in a new translation?

That depends on a lot of things, because many of them will come up.


 

Oliver Lawrence  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 22:52
Italian to English
+ ...
Interesting May 15, 2015

Christine Andersen wrote:

The tricky question is: who owns the copyright to segments when they come up again as matches in a new translation?

That depends on a lot of things, because many of them will come up.


At what level does the copyright apply? Certainly at the level of the entire text (you can't just reproduce the whole thing and pass it off as your own). But certainly not at the level of individual words within it (the copyright doesn't stop you using the word "the" in another translation). So what about individual segments?


 

David Young  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 22:52
Danish to English
All depends on the contract ... May 15, 2015

... but most of my commercial translation work is done on the basis of emails without any signed contract.
If it is a literary translation, it is common practice that the copyright in the translation belongs to the translator in perpetuity, but the question of copyright in the TM has never arisen, presumably because the author and the publishers of the translation don't see it as an issue.
I agree with Neil.


 

Markus Perndl
Austria
Local time: 22:52
Italian to German
+ ...
Yes, definitively! May 15, 2015

Jon Hedemann wrote:

Of course not. It's part of the delivery to the client, and as such, the client owns the copyright.


That's not correct. A copyright is not, under no circumstances, transferable to another person or company. They only have the "right of use", but never the copyright. Only after your death you can transfer it to others...


 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 22:52
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
The problem is more one of confidentiality than copyright May 15, 2015

Many sentences or segments that come up are simply not original enough to warrant copyright as single sentences.

I translate standard letters, documents, protocols, consent forms, references to this and that piece of legislation, and the originals come from various databases and template letters.

The Danish Health and Medicines Authority, for instance, would probably not start copyright proceedings against anyone copying their standard letters, which explain and comply with EU regulations on this and that, but outside their specific contexts, copying might amount to fraud.

Other texts I translate contain confidential information. People hardly have copyright on their medical records - but they certainly do not want them spread around. Other translators work with sensitive industrial material and formulae that are outside my scope. They might come under patents and intellectual property rights.

Where there may be copyright issues in my work would be in marketing slogans and trade marks, but the ownership is usually clear in those cases.
"Big enough to cope, small enough to care" - the slogan of a client I have worked for, or my own 'the meaning, not just the words' - are not really eligible for copyright.

I have in fact exchanged TMs with colleagues and received some from agencies. In the old days when Trados could only cope with two at a time, they all tended to be combined into 'big mommas', which I still use in modified form.

There was a system for filtering out specific things, but I am afraid I never really got the hang of it, so my big TMs cannot be filtered.

The solution is simple: I never let anyone else use them, and I do not pass big TMs on.
If required, I can find or produce bilingual versions of most individual documents I have translated with my CAT, but when I stop translating and retire, the TMs I use will be deleted.

That is the best I can do.


 

DianeGM  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:52
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Contractually? May 15, 2015

Considered as a contractual issue - it depends on what was agreed between the translator and the other party.
Considered as a moral issue - it could be seen quite differently, I guess.
De facto - TM data is comprised of words, phrases, sentences - thought up and compiled by the translator. Regardless of what I may or may not have in my TMs and who may or may not own them, or have copies of them, the knowledge I have acquired from every translation I have ever done, remains in my head, to some degree.
Would a client care to copyright my thoughts or phrases, my writing tone and style?
Bring an injunction to prevent me from using certain phrases [segments], which I thought up in future translations for other clients?

Those would be interesting times indeed



[Edited at 2015-05-15 11:24 GMT]


 

Julian Holmes  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 05:52
Member (2011)
Japanese to English
Very simple May 15, 2015

If the customer has set up the CAT tool and provided the package and asked for the return package, then it's the customer's data (copyright).
If I set up the CAT tool, do the translation and deliver the (cleaned up) data, then what has happened between me accepting and delivering the translation is entirely my own affair and nothing to do with the customer. If they want a TM, they can pay for it.

Doesn't this make sense? icon_confused.gif

BTW, whenever I see an 'anonymous' poll I always assume it's been planted by Proz personnel. FWIW


 

Jan Kovačič
Slovenia
Local time: 22:52
English to Slovenian
It depends May 15, 2015

It really depends on the circumstances. If you have an agreement to pass all TM rights to the client, then you should do it. Otherwise, you have the copyright of TM data since you're the one who is creating it.
What Julian H. said makes a lot of sense too.


 

Jose Arnoldo Rodriguez-Carrington  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 15:52
English to Spanish
+ ...
Exactly! May 15, 2015

Julian Holmes wrote:

If the customer has set up the CAT tool and provided the package and asked for the return package, then it's the customer's data (copyright).
If I set up the CAT tool, do the translation and deliver the (cleaned up) data, then what has happened between me accepting and delivering the translation is entirely my own affair and nothing to do with the customer. If they want a TM, they can pay for it.

Doesn't this make sense? icon_confused.gif

BTW, whenever I see an 'anonymous' poll I always assume it's been planted by Proz personnel. FWIW


That is exactly what I think!


 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

Moderator(s) of this forum
Jared Tabor[Call to this topic]

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Poll: Does the translator own the copyright of TM data created during the translation process?

Advanced search






TM-Town
Manage your TMs and Terms ... and boost your translation business

Are you ready for something fresh in the industry? TM-Town is a unique new site for you -- the freelance translator -- to store, manage and share translation memories (TMs) and glossaries...and potentially meet new clients on the basis of your prior work.

More info »
Déjà Vu X3
Try it, Love it

Find out why Déjà Vu is today the most flexible, customizable and user-friendly tool on the market. See the brand new features in action: *Completely redesigned user interface *Live Preview *Inline spell checking *Inline

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search