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Poll: What concerns you most right now about the translation business?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 20:11
SITE STAFF
Dec 7, 2016

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "What concerns you most right now about the translation business?".

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Noura Tawil  Identity Verified
Syria
Local time: 06:11
Member (2013)
English to Arabic
+ ...
Rates! Dec 7, 2016

Other: Rates.

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Alexander Kondorsky  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 07:11
English to Russian
+ ...
Low rates Dec 7, 2016

Lack of incoming work at acceptable rates

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Michael Harris  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 05:11
Member (2006)
German to English
Other Dec 7, 2016

I must admit (touch wood) I am not really worried about anything at the moment. As long as you do not do anything stupid and annoy your customers they will always be there for you, just like anonymous in these polls.

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Cecilia Civetta  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 05:11
Member (2003)
Italian to Spanish
+ ...
Other Dec 7, 2016

Rates

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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 04:11
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Other Dec 7, 2016

I’m not exactly concerned: 2015 was an excellent year and 2016 is shaping up to be even better. I’ve been around for awhile (30 years full time+ 10 years part-time) and if I had to name one or two elements that are out of my control (I have control over all the other aspects mentioned by declining unacceptable jobs or terms or by negotiating them) would be irregularity of work (though this is also what makes the charm and the excitement of this profession) and late payment or even worse non-payment…

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:11
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other Dec 7, 2016

The overweening, grubby tendency to perceive or portray translation first and foremost as a "business" to be fiercely monetized, rather than as an art or skill.

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:11
Spanish to English
+ ...
Same here, really Dec 7, 2016

Michael Harris wrote:

I must admit (touch wood) I am not really worried about anything at the moment. As long as you do not do anything stupid and annoy your customers they will always be there for you, just like anonymous in these polls.


But I had to post something and that's what came out...


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Jenny Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:11
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Several Dec 7, 2016

I'm somewhat concerned about several of the aspects listed in this poll: ever-tightening deadlines, lack of incoming work (at the moment, anyway), illegible source texts offered, dodgy payment practices, haggling about per-word rate, mass emails offering work which is - presumably - assigned to the lowest bidder. Not universally, of course, but by certain agencies.

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Annamaria Amik  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:11
Romanian to English
+ ...
Low quality Dec 7, 2016

Although there are clients out there who demand top-notch quality, there is a frightening number of agencies that get away with low-quality work for years.

Some of the translations I see in existing TMs are just amateurish, use common terms instead of the proper legal terms, or just plainly mistranslate expressions, etc. The fact that agencies can do this for years means that their end clients accept this low standard, as well. And that concerns me most. If the end clients accept or get used to low quality, they won't be willing to pay the higher rates that come with good quality.

P.S. Plus the lack of respect for professional translators.
Just the other day, an aggressive lady contacted me, asking for an official translation to be used in court. She can't use anyone for this, she needs a court translator licensed by the Ministry of Justice. When I explained I can't do it within her timeframe, basically overnight, she said 'oh but I can handle the translation, I only need you to put your stamp on it!'. I told her I don't work that way, I only affix my stamp on what I actually translated. She got so annoyed, she said she can do it elsewhere, only wanted to do me a favor, then said bye and ended the conversation.

[Edited at 2016-12-07 10:15 GMT]


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Somnath Dey  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 09:41
Member (2014)
English to Bengali
+ ...


Posted via
ProZ.com Mobile


Lack of incoming work Dec 7, 2016

I am quite concerned about the offered rates that are getting worse day by day.

[Edited at 2016-12-07 09:12 GMT]


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Linda Ildevert  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 04:11
Member (2004)
French to English
Two things Dec 7, 2016

Tightening deadlines combined with downward pressure on rates

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Khanda
Poland
Local time: 05:11
Polish to English
+ ...
Weltschmerz Dec 7, 2016

There comes a moment when another technical specification fails to quicken your pulse, and you feel like you've seen them all...

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Helen Hagon  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:11
Member (2011)
Russian to English
+ ...
English Dec 7, 2016

The dumbing down and corruption of the English language is something that concerns me a lot. There are, of course, several official variants of English (US, UK, Canada, Australia, etc.). However, for so many reasons, English is also now regularly spoken all over the world by people of other languages and cultures, resulting in a huge melting pot of all kinds of cultural and linguistic variations. As a result, there are so many discrepancies between what is considered acceptable and what is not, and the boundaries between right and wrong are very grey (or perhaps gray). I am just about as English as it is possible to be, and have lived in England all my life, apart from a few extended stays in other countries, but I often find my English corrected by native speakers of other languages. Consequently, I find myself trying to use the plainest possible English in my translations, to avoid misunderstanding, and so I, too, am contributing to the over-simplification of this highly complex and idiomatic language.

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Julian Holmes  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 13:11
Member (2011)
Japanese to English
Other Dec 7, 2016

Bottom-feeders in Chindia who are constantly lowering the bar in the race to the bottom.
And stupid customers who settle for the rubbish they churn out.



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