Poll: How do you proofread your translations?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 02:14
SITE STAFF
May 5, 2006

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "How do you proofread your translations?".

This poll was originally submitted by Alexa Dubreuil

View the poll here

A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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Rosa Maria Duenas Rios  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:14
I am puzzled... May 5, 2006

... by the almost 4 percent who do not proofread. Anybody mind telling us why?

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Yakov Tomara  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 12:14
Member (2003)
English to Russian
+ ...
It's hard to answer the poll question May 5, 2006

In fact, depending on the situation, I use all the suggested options. Some texts may be very simple and short and do not require any proofreading but as a rule some kind of check should naturally be done

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Voloshka  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:14
English to Russian
+ ...
Too complicated :) May 5, 2006

As for proofreading English>Ukrainian translations - my Mom is a Ukrainian language linguist (in Ukraine) and she is proofreading (style, spelling, grammar, compatibility) all my Ukrainian translations.
As for editing English>Ukrainian and English>Russian - a relative, a lawyer is assisting to edit law/finance/business texts (while I am helping with translations).
And I am proofreading against the original and reading aloud. Too complicated


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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:14
Flemish to English
+ ...
Always May 5, 2006

Given that a part of translation consists of seeing the mote in one's brother's eye, but not see the beam in one's own and that clients are looking for the needle in the haystack to ask for a price reduction or to postpone payment, I always have the translation proofread by a specialist and another linguist. I am not an engineer, doctor, dental surgeon etc. Besides two see more than one.
Of course, these people don't work for free.


[Edited at 2006-05-05 08:34]


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Orla Ryan  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 10:14
two options May 5, 2006

I would have liked to pick two options, but anyway...

When I translate into Gaelic, I pay someone to proofread my work, but for DE-EN, I usually proofread it myself.


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Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 10:14
Member (2004)
English to Italian
No surprise May 5, 2006

Rosa Maria Duenas Rios wrote:

... by the almost 4 percent who do not proofread. Anybody mind telling us why?


You'll be surprised by the number of translators who don't actually proofread their own work before sending it to the customer. And often they don't even activate the spellchecker! Otherwise I woudn't be revising so many translations full of typos all the time. And then they wonder why they don't get any repeat business. According to my calculations, 11,7 translators, out of the 651 who partecipated in this poll, don't proofread their work.

Giovanni

P.S. Sorry for the post above... I don't know what happened!

[Edited at 2006-05-05 11:33]


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French Foodie  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:14
French to English
+ ...
Also suprised May 5, 2006

I'm also surprised about how many people only proofread on their screens. I catch **way** more typos, oversights, etc. when reading on paper and won't proofread any other way.

As for doing it on my alone vs hiring a proofreader - when the price allows for it and/or I am not a expert in the field, I hire someone else to go over it. For example, I translate the brochures for an expat health insurance company. I feel confidant with the stylistic, marketing edge I give it, but I'm no insurance expert, so I have a specialised insurance translator go over it before sending it to the client. This is a direct client, however, so the price is good and I have a much greater margin to work with.


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Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:14
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
Several options May 5, 2006

A) When the customer pays also for the revision:
1) I do the translation
2) I self-edit, proofread it myself, then run the spell checker on it
3) I pass it to one of my partners to revise;
4) My partner enters all changes he or she deems necessary in the translation, and sends it back to me
5) I receive the revised translation, accept (or reject) the changes made to it
6) Spell check again
7) Send it to the customer

B) When the customer pays also for the revision, but the deadline is very tight:
1), 2), 3) as before
4b) My partner enters all changes he or she deems necessary in the translation
6a) He or she spell checks again the translation
7) Sends it to the customer

C) When the customer does not pay for a separate revision
1), 2), as above, then 7) send it to the customer

In special instances (e.g., particularly difficult translations, new customers, etc.), we may go with process A) even if the customer has not paid for the revision.



[Edited at 2006-05-05 21:04]


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Jo Macdonald  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:14
Member (2005)
Italian to English
+ ...
Oi John May 5, 2006

Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL wrote:

11,7 translators, out of the 651 who partecipated in this poll, don't proofread their work.

Giovanni



Ok, the 11 whole translators have no excuses, but as for the poor sod who's just over half a translator I think it depends which part is missing.


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Serkan Doğan  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 12:14
Turkish to English
+ ...
Screen May 5, 2006

I prefer to proofreading on screen. I hate hard-copy documents in this age But, according to some others, proofreading on printout paper is a must.

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paolamonaco  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 05:14
English to Italian
+ ...
it depends on the customer May 5, 2006

Like Riccardo, when the customer pays for the revision I translate the text. I take a break. Eventually I proofread the translation (usually on paper because after working with the PC screen for several hours my eyes ache), run the spell checker, and send it to a mother tongue proofreader.

Afterwards, I revise the proofread translation (on screen), accept or reject the changes made to it, run the spell check again and send it to the customer.

If the customer doesn't pay for or want proofreading, I translate the text and take a break. After the break I proofread the translation (on paper), run the spell check and send it to the customer. Sometimes if the customer doesn't pay for proofreading and I realize I am really tired (and thus the chance of making mistakes is higher) I ask someone to read the final version.


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Rosa Maria Duenas Rios  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:14
Suggested reading May 6, 2006

Serkan Dogan wrote:

I prefer to proofreading on screen. I hate hard-copy documents in this age But, according to some others, proofreading on printout paper is a must.


I find the article on how to proofread one's work, written by our colleague Sormane Gomez, very useful. It can be found at the following link:
http://www.proz.com/translation-articles/articles/29/1/Proofreading-Your-Work


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Szymon Metkowski  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 11:14
Member (2006)
German to Polish
+ ...
The agency does it May 8, 2006

Rosa Maria Duenas Rios wrote:

... by the almost 4 percent who do not proofread. Anybody mind telling us why?


It's really hard to misspel something when you're using the MS Word. And the eventual other small mistakes, that I don't catch at once are corrected at the agency (it's usually no more than 1-2 errors/page).

I cannot work 24/7. There is a certain amount of time I will devote for work every day. The agency knows, that they'll make more money on me, when I don't waste my time with technical activities like proofreading or text alignment, so they let others do that stuff. I focus on translating... just like this.

Of course I get feedback, so that I can see what I've done wrong and make adequate conclusions. It is optimal for me. If I had my own translation-related company, I would certainly provide the same work conditions for the translators I would work with....

[Edited at 2006-05-08 21:49]


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Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:14
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
Not hard at all May 12, 2006

Szymon Metkowski wrote:

It's really hard to misspel something when you're using the MS Word.


I don't know in your language, but in many languages it is not at all hard to misspell something in Word without the program flagging it as a spelling mistake.

e.g.:

"I don't knot in our language, bet in money languages it not at all yard to misspell some thing in World without the pogrom flogging it ass a spilling mustache"

which Word's spell checker tells me is exactly as right as the first version.

And the eventual other small mistakes, that I don't catch at once are corrected at the agency (it's usually no more than 1-2 errors/page).


1-2 errors per page is about 8 errors per 1000 words, and that is either close to, or over, the error limits allowed by such QA methodologies as the one advocated by LISA, or other adopted in large organizations.

don't waste my time with technical activities like proofreading ...


Call it a waste of your time, if you so choose, but, in addition to correct any spelling mistake not caught by Word, proofreading might allow you to catch such unimportant mistakes as negatives turning into positives by just leaving out a tiny word ("If the patient is breathing normally" and "If the patient is not breathing normally" both look OK to your spelling checker, but there is a huge difference), or numbers that are not what they should be just because a little dot or comma has been inadvertently left out or added: "1.00 mg dose" and "100 mg dose" look very similar, but one may be beneficial and the other lethal.



[Edited at 2006-05-12 03:36]


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