Translating into your native language...
Thread poster: Lagom
Lagom  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:10
Swedish to English
Sep 9, 2005

As a native English speaker and translator from Swedish to English I have noticed a large number of profiles on the ProZ site offering translations into English from persons advertising themselves as 'professional' translators that do not have English as a mother tongue and whose profiles are ridden with spelling and grammatical errors.

I appreciate that as a community you cannot certify each and every profile but when a platinum 'featured translator' on the index page is so badly presented it must have a detrimental effect on the professional image of the site.

Why not counter this by having a panel of native speaker moderators as per the current forum moderators that can be called to the attention of particularly badly presented profiles. The person/profile in question can then be encouraged to either proof read/edit their presentation and/or subtly encouraged to delete the language pair from their profile that is obviously not of a 'professional standard'.

If worded properly this need not be a negative issue for those whose presentations are brought to attention as a more professional appearance would be good to both that person and Proz.

Whether the person advertising their services is professional or not is the responsibility/ risk of the outsourcer or client commissioning any project but at least ProZ would look more professional.


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Yolande Haneder  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:10
German to French
+ ...
mistakes Sep 9, 2005

Benjamin Love wrote:

Why not counter this by having a panel of native speaker moderators as per the current forum moderators that can be called to the attention of particularly badly presented profiles. The person/profile in question can then be encouraged to either proof read/edit their presentation and/or subtly encouraged to delete the language pair from their profile that is obviously not of a 'professional standard'.

If worded properly this need not be a negative issue for those whose presentations are brought to attention as a more professional appearance would be good to both that person and Proz.

Whether the person advertising their services is professional or not is the responsibility/ risk of the outsourcer or client commissioning any project but at least ProZ would look more professional.


I think it is not the responsabiliy of Proz to decide who is writing properly or not. I think it is the responsability of the individual. At least for the english language it spares me much time and trouble when I am asking for a native english speaker and I receive applications of so called native speakers whose english is worse than mine (and I am not saying that mine is perfect).

Please leave the mistakes, it tells me "who I should NOT take" (and I take many outsourcers have a pretty good command of english).

[Edited at 2005-09-09 18:09]


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PCovs
Denmark
Local time: 19:10
Member (2003)
English to Danish
+ ...
Let people do what they like. Sep 9, 2005

Yolande Haneder wrote:

Benjamin Love wrote:

Whether the person advertising their services is professional or not is the responsibility/ risk of the outsourcer or client commissioning any project but at least ProZ would look more professional.


I think it is not the responsabiliy of Proz to decide who is writing properly or not. I think it is the responsability of the individual. At least for the english language it spares me much time and trouble when I am asking for a native english speaker and I receive applications of so called native speakers whose english is worse than mine (and I am not saying that mine is perfect).

Please leave the mistakes, it tells me "who I should NOT take" (and I take many outsourcers have a pretty good command of english).

[Edited at 2005-09-09 18:09]


I really don't think that ProZ looks any less professional by "hosting" such translators.
To the contrary, I believe that any outsourcer at the moment is getting a very good picture of who NOT to choose and who to choose.

Imagine that all profiles showing bad language skills in any form would be proofread because ProZ asked them to. Then the outsourcer would think that all translators are really good at whatever languages they are offering!
In reality these outsourcers might be getting a translation that looks just as bad as the original profile used to, and they never had a chance to even suspect this.

Therefore, I suggest that profiles be left as they are. They speak for themselves, and IMHO ProZ is not responsible for the skills of the translators here. The translators are responsible for not taking on a job that they are not properly qualified for, and the clients are responsible for doing a proper search an investigation of the translators they choose to work with!

;o)


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Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:10
English to Spanish
+ ...
Warts and All Sep 9, 2005

I agree with the rest, leave them with warts and all, the story deserves to be told the way it is! Professionalism shows, and the lack of it needs to show also.

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Russell Jones  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:10
Italian to English
Reality rules Sep 9, 2005

We are not responsible for the fact that, as in my pair, very few native english speakers learn italian, while most Italians learn english. Nor are we responsible for the cultural background to the fact that many e.g. italian companies prefer to entrust their translations to people they know(or even to their printers,who look for the cheapest option).
When I see embarassing mistakes on profiles / CVs I try to send tactful advice to a fellow professional.


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Jane Lamb-Ruiz  Identity Verified
French to English
+ ...
I agree with improving things Sep 9, 2005

Why let all the English be so bad?

It brings down the level of the site....

Why let the lowest common denominator rule?

Why not make things as good as possible?


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Uldis Liepkalns  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 20:10
Member (2003)
English to Latvian
+ ...
Each provider is responsible for himself Sep 10, 2005

not so long ago I came across a foreign based website offering translations into Latvian (approximate back-translation from Latvian into English my own):

"Waitin here on Ladies and Gentelman beside 3000 what translators ready at any monmetn to cary out Overlordshipings deesigres connected with transaltions"

(I specially tried to convey also the spelling.)

And why should any Latvian translator inform them how wrong that is? To enable them to correct it and enable them get the orders? No, if you ask me, the more such websites and profiles are around there, the better for the rest of us professionals


Uldis


Jane Lamb-Ruiz wrote:

Why let all the English be so bad?

It brings down the level of the site....

Why let the lowest common denominator rule?

Why not make things as good as possible?



[Edited at 2005-09-10 00:04]


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Trudy Peters  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 13:10
German to English
+ ...
Love it, Uldis!! :-) Sep 10, 2005

My sentiments exactly.

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xxxtazdog
Spain
Local time: 19:10
Spanish to English
+ ...
leave the mistakes Sep 10, 2005

I agree with Henry's "warts and all" approach. I've seen quite a few profiles of people who claim to translate into English whose spelling and/or grammar mistakes certainly seemed to belie their claims of experience, education, customer satisfaction, etc. (and some of these people are native English speakers). I find mistakes of this type extremely revealing: if you don't care enough to produce impeccable work when this is the image you are presenting of yourself to the whole world, what could potential customers expect? Leave the mistakes, and let the buyer beware.

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Agnieszka Hayward
Poland
Local time: 19:10
German to Polish
+ ...
let it be Sep 11, 2005

I agree with everyone here who are reluctant to give the 'profesjonal translater' the benefit of the doubt. Leave the mistakes as they are.

What gets me is, some of them actually insists English is (one of their) native languages.

Well, quite possible, there is a newly established meaning of 'native' that I yet fail to grasp.


Regards,
Agnieszka


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