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A BB for outsourcers' rates
Thread poster: XXXphxxx

XXXphxxx  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:26
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Apr 23, 2010

Looking at the number of threads on low rates I wonder about the possibility of a BB-style board for the rates that outsourcers are offering. It might discourage outsourcers from:
a) dictating the rates
b) offering outrageously low rates knowing that someone will eventually accept them.
Just a thought...

[Edited at 2010-04-23 15:34 GMT]


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erika rubinstein  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:26
Member (2011)
English to Russian
+ ...
Nice Idea Apr 23, 2010

I go for it.

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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 19:26
SITE FOUNDER
Can you put this on the "Ideas" page? Apr 23, 2010

Hi Lisa,

Thanks for the suggestion.

There is a (relatively new) feature we are using to ascertain member support for ideas like this, and to prioritize tasks relative to other things that have been requested. I'd like to ask you to post the idea there, if you would. Look for the "Ideas" link in the upper right of the home page.


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 00:26
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Various categories Apr 23, 2010

Why not give a rating for various categories eg communication; timely payment; rate; ...

As is done on many restaurant and hotel rating sites.

PS I just HATE the new "Ideas" area. What's this about "You have n votes left" etc? Why does everything have to be done in the form of childish games nowadays? What's wrong with this forum?


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Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 21:26
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
I support the "Ideas" area. Apr 23, 2010

Sheila Wilson wrote:

PS I just HATE the new "Ideas" area. What's this about "You have n votes left" etc? Why does everything have to be done in the form of childish games nowadays? What's wrong with this forum?


I am sorry to disagree with you, Sheila. This "Ideas" area looks very useful and interesting to me. It is an innovative way of introducing ideas and proposals to the site for everybody's sake.

You have 10 total votes in each forum to distribute amongst the proposals you like or support the most. "You have n votes left" means what you have left after voting. You may run out of votes to use, eventually. When one of the proposals you voted for is cancelled or accepted, you may have your votes back, kind or recharging your voting batteries.



[Edited at 2010-04-23 22:06 GMT]


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 00:26
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
What's wrong with this forum? Apr 24, 2010

Walter Landesman wrote:
This "Ideas" area looks very useful and interesting to me. It is an innovative way of introducing ideas and proposals to the site for everybody's sake.


You may run out of votes to use, eventually.


What this says to me is that you have the right to make a couple of comments, then you are stifled. Not my idea of free speech and democracy. The new system may be innovative but that doesn't necessarily mean it's good.

Can I suggest that this forum and the Ideas area be used in tandem? New proposals could be discussed here and voted for in the Ideas area once the suggestion has firmed up a bit and really taken shape.


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XXXphxxx  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:26
Portuguese to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Forum to be used to develop ideas Apr 24, 2010

Sheila Wilson wrote:
Can I suggest that this forum and the Ideas area be used in tandem? New proposals could be discussed here and voted for in the Ideas area once the suggestion has firmed up a bit and really taken shape.


I agree Sheila. My thought was just a seed of one and working with others on the forum the idea can then be developed and put on the 'Ideas' page. Anyway, it's there already if anyone would like to vote for it now.

Yes, I see the value of rating by category: timely payment etc. I also think we should be more specific on the rates actually being offered, so when offered $0.03/word we log on the site that a particular outsourcer has just offered us $0.03/word rather than just giving them, say a 2/10. A rate that is acceptable to one person, will not be acceptable to someone else and I think scores are too vague. Ditto with timely payment, an outsourcer could be rated on the actual number of days it takes them to pay. What I don't know is if anyone will log outsourcers who are paying good rates or will they want to keep this to themselves? Those outsourcers may also then end up getting swamped with job applications and may not appreciate it. As I say, the idea is still in its infancy and I'm hoping through this forum that it could be developed into something more concrete. The idea was to stop agencies from dictating rates to us and to expose those offering absurdly low rates. Conversely, it may be helpful to outsourcers intent on running a serious business to have a yardstick by which to measure their performance and they can in turn use that to market their services to their end-clients. It could be a win-win situation and go some way towards increasing respect for the profession and payment conditions for translators which, after all, seems to be the one of the main gripes on this forum.


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Krzysztof Kajetanowicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 01:26
English to Polish
+ ...
can someone explain to me Apr 24, 2010

what the purpose of the Blue Board is?

I thought it was a tool intended to reduce risk. As in "not getting paid" risk. As in "unreasonable demands made after work has been delivered" risk. Things you do not know when you agree to do a project.

Not as in "pays too little". Has anyone ever accepted a project without knowing what the rate was?


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Laurent KRAULAND  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 01:26
French to German
+ ...
Would this be a surprise for you:... Apr 24, 2010

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:

Not as in "pays too little". Has anyone ever accepted a project without knowing what the rate was?


the answer is a big "Yes" - and I always shake my head in disbelief when I read that the translator accepted a low rate (or an unspecified "question-marke rate"), especially when there is always the possibility for asking to see the ST and to decline the job if the customer is reluctant to send you said ST.

[Edited at 2010-04-24 10:50 GMT]


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Krzysztof Kajetanowicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 01:26
English to Polish
+ ...
uhm Apr 24, 2010

Laurent KRAULAND wrote:

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:

Not as in "pays too little". Has anyone ever accepted a project without knowing what the rate was?


the answer is a big "Yes" - and I always shake my head in disbelief when I read that the translator accepted a low rate (or an unspecified "question-marke rate"), especially when there is always the possibility for asking to see the ST and to decline the job if the customer is reluctant to send you said ST.


Care to elaborate? I'm not sure if I got it right. Are you saying people actually start work without knowing what they'll be paid?

Another question is - is the BB the solution?


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Laurent KRAULAND  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 01:26
French to German
+ ...
Elaborating :) Apr 24, 2010

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:

Care to elaborate? I'm not sure if I got it right. Are you saying people actually start work without knowing what they'll be paid?


Some actually do this, hopefully only once - there are many occurrences of such a behaviour.

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:

Another question is - is the BB the solution?


Obviously: NO, for reasons revolving around the guideline: "You've accepted it, now do it".

IOW, freelancers should "be able" to inform colleagues about low rates or "question-mark rates" on a subjective basis as long as they did not accept them for themselves. There must be some limits after all.

[Edited at 2010-04-24 11:08 GMT]


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 00:26
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Secondary purpose - do they interest me? Apr 24, 2010

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:
I thought it was a tool intended to reduce risk. As in "not getting paid" risk. As in "unreasonable demands made after work has been delivered" risk. Things you do not know when you agree to do a project.


That is certainly my understanding of the main purpose of the BB, too.

Not as in "pays too little". Has anyone ever accepted a project without knowing what the rate was?


From what I've seen on the forums, Laurent is right - it happens!

The thing is, we should be checking the BB before we prepare a quote, and it would be really handy to know if it's worth quoting in the first place.

The BB may well be full of shining recommendations for outsourcers that you and I wouldn't want to touch with a barge-pole. Being great communicators, with interesting projects and payment the next day still doesn't interest me if they only pay 0.05 € per source word.


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Laurent KRAULAND  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 01:26
French to German
+ ...
Indeed Apr 24, 2010

Sheila Wilson wrote:

The thing is, we should be checking the BB before we prepare a quote, and it would be really handy to know if it's worth quoting in the first place.

The BB may well be full of shining recommendations for outsourcers that you and I wouldn't want to touch with a barge-pole. Being great communicators, with interesting projects and payment the next day still doesn't interest me if they only pay 0.05 € per source word.


(my emphasis)

Indeed... Freelance Translator 101!

As per the "Communication" part, I can tell about an US agency which took care of its freelancers as if they were pure gold, but paid them only low rates. Caveat emptor! (as we sometimes are asked to "buy" rates from low-priced outsourcers)...

[Edited at 2010-04-24 11:16 GMT]


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XXXphxxx  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:26
Portuguese to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
BB does not reflect rates being paid Apr 24, 2010

Sheila Wilson wrote:

The BB may well be full of shining recommendations for outsourcers that you and I wouldn't want to touch with a barge-pole. Being great communicators, with interesting projects and payment the next day still doesn't interest me if they only pay 0.05 € per source word.


I can certainly name at least two agencies that get ratings of 5 or close to 5 on the BB who bombard me with requests to work with them. The rates they are offering are so low that they are frankly an insult. Now, there may be translators out there who are giving them such high scores because they receive a huge amount of work from these agencies, however, with the turnaround times and rates they are offering I have to question the quality of these translations. This is exactly what we want to stamp out.


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Walter Landesman  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 21:26
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Yes Apr 24, 2010

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:

what the purpose of the Blue Board is?

I thought it was a tool intended to reduce risk. As in "not getting paid" risk. As in "unreasonable demands made after work has been delivered" risk. Things you do not know when you agree to do a project.

Not as in "pays too little".


I certaninly agree with this statement. The BB is there to reduce risks.


Lisa Simpson wrote:
I can certainly name at least two agencies that get ratings of 5 or close to 5 on the BB who bombard me with requests to work with them. The rates they are offering are so low that they are frankly an insult.
Now, there may be translators out there who are giving them such high scores because they receive a huge amount of work from these agencies....


I also agree with Lisa. I keep receiving job proposals from high rated agencies and I keep refusing them because of the low rates offered.

I told them many times "my rate is such and such", but they insist on contacting me for availability but with outrageous rates.


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