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The most important thing about translation tagging is respect
Thread poster: Enrique F Granados-González

Enrique F Granados-González  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Member (2011)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Jan 23, 2013

Dear colleagues,

I would like to ask all to use respectful terms when tagging texts of ProZ.com Translation Contests. Even these comments are anonymous, I think that some of them are unacceptable (e.g. "criminal comma", etc.) Great professional such those who use these contemptuous terms, I am sure they could use less disparaging, disrespectful, formulas. Sometimes a simple "disagree" or any other neutral, professional expression, could be enough. Please, be respectful with your peers, that is more important than any contest. I think that the huge majority of us would appreciate it. Thank you very much in advance.

Regards,


 
Post removed: This post was hidden by a moderator or staff member for the following reason: Unedited since 3 days

Enrique F Granados-González  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Member (2011)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I agree Jan 23, 2013

Dear DU SHI KANG, I agree with you about that issue, but I was highlighting the fact of basic respect that should rule all kind of relationships in this community. I was just talking about politeness, disregarding the appropriateness or justification of these likes and dislikes. And yes, definitely, your question also should be taken into account by the organizers.

Regards


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Spanish to English
+ ...
Draw the line Jan 23, 2013

I think that a certain level of proficiency in English, even when it is used as lingua franca, assumes a working knowledge of hyperbole, irony and similar devices. I for one don't consider "criminal comma" or "heinous apostrophe" as disrespectful, seeing them rather merely as humorous expressions of the rejection some of the more pedantic among us still feel towards sloppy punctuation ( I deliberately do not use any euphemism for "sloppy", as I fall into the latter camp).

I think we also need to take into account that when you enter a public arena such as the kudoz section on proz or any other translation website, especially assuming the role of "armchair expert", you ought to be prepared both for plaudits and brickbats. When you stick your head above the parapet, you should be prepared to suffer the slings and arrows.

[Edited at 2013-01-23 09:28 GMT]

[Edited at 2013-01-23 17:14 GMT]

NB: I don't comment on the translation contests myself, as my activity is mostly confined to the kudos section, but we need to bear in mind that what is being assessed or commented upon is the translation, not the person who submitted it. And if I exclaim "off with their heads" when I see a misplaced comma or errant apostrophe, I expect people to understand that's it's intended as a humorous literary reference and not some sort of personal slight.

[Edited at 2013-01-23 17:22 GMT]


 

Noni Gilbert  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Spanish to English
+ ...
Explanation of tagging Jan 23, 2013

I've not had a great deal of time, but I have taken a look at a couple of the entries in my main language pair, and made some comments. And of course I have given an explanation when I mark something with "dislike" - criticism of this kind must be constructive, the recipient needs to learn something.

There is never any need to poke fun at someone's mistakes. I wouldn't have students coming back to me year after year if I did that. I look on mistakes as useful things, to be learned from, and if they are corrected in public, it is so that others will learn and remember too. I suppose you may be more likely to remember if you were embarrassed, but I would never encourage that technique. Having a giggle together maybe, but that's difficult to do if you're not face to face, so clear explanation is what is appropriate.


 

Enrique F Granados-González  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Member (2011)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
The situation makes the difference Jan 23, 2013

Dear Neilmac,

I beg your pardon, but I cannot disagree more your comment. As you have said we are in a public "place" where we find people that we know, friends and, the most of us, people that we do not know and probable never will. Moreover, this is a place to work, a place for business, a place for learning. I am completely ready for assuming my errors but not "to suffer the slings and arrows" of contemptuous people that think that social conventions are not for them, or simply look over one's shoulder. I am just asking for a minimal sense of education and respect for people that we do not even know.

In this particular case I think that peers do not need to be disrespectful or mock on others errors to show them (who is going to cast the first stone?).


My determination is trying not to do so, perhaps because of a kind of personal belief.


Anyway, thank your for your opinion. The value of these debates is in the confrontation of different ideas.icon_smile.gif


Regards


 

Ambrose Li  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 00:00
Chinese to English
+ ...
What to do when you sort of agree but not quite, or sort of disagree but not quite? Jan 23, 2013

I saw the same strange tags that Du Shi Kang mentioned. So what do you do when you see a dislike tag and agree that there is an error but it’s not a spelling error (for example)? Agree because you agree that there’s an error? Disagree because you disagree that it’s a spelling error? Neither really makes any sense.

(I also went to the EN>ES page just to see what that “criminal comma” is. Some of the tags there look pretty randomly categorized too. Why aren’t people more serious when they put in categories? Sigh…)


 

Noni Gilbert  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Spanish to English
+ ...
Tag categories Jan 23, 2013

Straying a bit, but since Ambrose mentions it: I had difficulty choosing categories, but tried to repair this by my explanations.

 

Ambrose Li  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 00:00
Chinese to English
+ ...
Things getting worse Jan 23, 2013

Things seem to be getting worse over there, with people tagging things without regard to regional vairations for example, or randomly miscategorized tags without any explanation. And this seems to be causing some of the submitters to become overly defensive, adding even more hostility to the discussion.

Is this how these contests usually go around here? (Sorry if it’s obvious but this is my first time.) I know translators don’t usually go to art school, but in art school this wouldn’t be acceptable behaviour when doing critiques.

So I guess I’m in complete agreement with the original poster. I just need to treat this contest as something that’s not serious, I suppose.


 

Magdalena Balibrea Vich  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Member (2010)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Criminal comma is an academic term - Not an offense! Jan 23, 2013

Enrique F Granados-González wrote:

e.g. "criminal comma", etc. Great professional such those who use these contemptuous terms, I am sure they could use less disparaging, disrespectful, formulas.


Enrique, "coma criminal" in Spanish is an academic term, it's used to name the comma between the subject and the verb, like in "I, like Proz."

http://www.manualdeestilo.com/ortografia/la-coma-criminal/

The only one I can see tagged like that in the EN > ES contest is actually very well spotted.



[Edited at 2013-01-23 21:18 GMT]


 

Enrique F Granados-González  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Member (2011)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Apologize for "criminal comma" Jan 24, 2013

Dear all,

I want to apologize publicly without reservations nor sugar-coating about the question of "criminal comma". If anyone was upset or offended I will personally apologize to that person because it was completely my mistake. It was my fault not having even heard of that concept before. Since who pointed my mistake was Magdalena I would like to apologize to her in representation to rest of people that used that expression. I am so sorry about it. I beg your excuses.

After that I would like to reaffirm what I wrote in my first post, because it is not based on this precise and particular issue. The general atmosphere of the discussions here, and we all know that generalizations are not good, are most of the time quite aggressive and "contemptuous,... disparaging, disrespectful" (as I already stated in previous posts) and, in occasions, full of arrogance and disdain. I think that I am not the only one that thinks like that, but that is just my perception and I am fallible.

I would also like to stress that I am not criticizing if corrections are appropriate or not. I wouldn't like to violate the contest rules. Of course, I have my opinion, but that is not the point (perhaps after the ending of the contest process it could be a good topic to discuss).

Thinking about it I have come to the conclusion that what for some of us can be a hobby, a way to have fun, can be for many others other thing and perhaps that should refrain from participating in some specific activities. I have many other concerns, work and things that are really important to deal with high school puerility.

Once more, my apologies to anyone that could have felt offended by my actions or comments, I still have a lot to learn.


Best regards,


 

Ty Kendall  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:00
Hebrew to English
A thick skin is an asset.... (and where are these flame wars?) Jan 24, 2013

After a sojourn into the contest area I'm scratching my head as to where the problem is.

My language pair is stuck in limbo, in the submission phase. So I ventured out into other pairs...

I expected to see comments like "this guy hasn't got a single brain cell", "can this person even speak Chinese", "this person is in the wrong profession". However, this just wasn't the case.

I found that for the most part (and for the comments that were in English which I can understand), there wasn't much conflict. The comments tended to stay on the constructive/objective/factual side.

The Germans marked the height of diplomacy with their comments, which were often just a "Grammar-Off" with various parties quoting DUDEN at each other.

I looked at Spanish, didn't seem that bad there either. The worst it got is when some of the authors responded to the tagging defensively, which is not entirely unexpected.

You have to expect some friction. 9 times out of 10 translation is a debate not a dichotomy; that's a good thing, as long as the blows are kept above the belt.

[Edited at 2013-01-24 08:59 GMT]


 

Enrique F Granados-González  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:00
Member (2011)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Perhaps Jan 24, 2013

Dear Ty, perhaps the problem is mine for having a thin skin, couldn't be?

Regards


 

Ambrose Li  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 00:00
Chinese to English
+ ...
They are there Jan 24, 2013

Ty Kendall wrote:

After a sojourn into the contest area I'm scratching my head as to where the problem is.

My language pair is stuck in limbo, in the submission phase. So I ventured out into other pairs...

I expected to see comments like "this guy hasn't got a single brain cell", "can this person even speak Chinese", "this person is in the wrong profession". However, this just wasn't the case.

I found that for the most part (and for the comments that were in English which I can understand), there wasn't much conflict. The comments tended to stay on the constructive/objective/factual side.


I might have exaggerated a bit, but there actually are a couple of comments that border on “can this person even speak Chinese,” though it’s not worded that bluntly (yet). The problem is that Chinese is a fragmented language and a lot of people do not seem to acknowledge the existence of that fragmentation. So a person native in the wrong dialect will see a term that’s perfectly fine in another dialect but think it’s wrong. The sane thing to do would be either research the terminology to make sure there’s indeed an error, or refrain from touching it because you simply aren’t a native speaker so you’re not in a position to judge, but there are more and more inexplicable dislikes for such non-issues including bizarre ones like “spelling mistake” or “syntax error” with no explanation or irrelevant explanations. So I admit I don’t have a think skin, but some of the tags really are pretty ridiculous.

Starting a day ago or some of these dislikes are also getting sloppier, by which I mean the person making the comments do not seem to be even reading the context before tagging.

One of the pairs I tried is also stuck in a limbo state—“Final” in my case, but judging from the lack of activity I’d expect it to never get out of that “Final” phase any time soon, if ever.

[Edited at 2013-01-24 09:32 GMT]


 

Ty Kendall  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:00
Hebrew to English
Responses...... Jan 24, 2013

@Enrique : Not at all, I just think on a site like this, with all manner of folk, then you have to be extra laid-back or you just end up getting upset/offended. It's quite a weird place really, for example I'd say that a "disagree" on HE/EN KudoZ is quite a damning indictment, people usually reserve it for answers which really are off the beaten path (and people sometimes take umbrage when it occurs). However in other language pairs "disagrees" are as commonplace as daisies in summer (and the sentiment/response is like water off a camel's back).

@Ambrose : I admit that I did spot a few instances of regional variations being treated as "errors". I think this was especially so with European vs Latin American Spanish. I am unfamiliar with the contest rules but surely they should include something about being aware of regional differences and not flagging them as mistakes and I also agree that the tags should be qualified with an appropriate explanation (unless glaringly obvious). Or they should just find a way of separating the main regional varieties to be assessed separately - although I suspect this isn't really feasible.

[Edited at 2013-01-24 09:46 GMT]


 
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