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Compilation of thread "Let's improve...3 things I would do if I were running ProZ.com" / Action plan
Thread poster: Enrique

Enrique
Local time: 23:55
SITE STAFF
Oct 13, 2006

Note: According to the approach we have used so far on this exercise, we invite members who reply to this post to do so only once, in a post of up to 250 words. This will allow us to review each post carefully while proceeding to the action plans. Thank you!
Thanks to everyone who joined in sharing what they would do if they were running the site. As staff members, we greatly value this input. Although many of the suggestions are similar to those that have been made previously, this format has provided additional insight into your priorities, i.e. what is most important to us as a community. Plus, there were some great new ideas.

We'd like to explain how we as staff members have processed the information here, and let you all know how we intend to act upon it.

Pursuant to our mission statement and the basic principles that form the foundation of this site and community, we have compiled the information you have provided here and analyzed it together with information we have from other channels, including your emails and support tickets, face to face exchanges at events, surveys results and site usage patterns.

We will post the compiled list of suggestions next, for your reference.

Both of us (Henry and I) have gone through every message in this thread. We have listed and organized all suggestions into categories, and assigned priorities to the categories based on the amount of attention each category has received in feedback from you (not only here but elsewhere as well).

Then, we have taken stock of the suggestions made, from the viewpoint of the action plans that we are currently carrying out. The idea was to calibrate those plans based on your "what I would do" feedback.

This exercise has been very useful, and we have decided to modify our plans in several respects. We will be able to better serve you because of your participation in this exercise.

What is more, the act of comparing our plans with your prioritized suggestions has caused us to reevaluate our approach to site development. Until now, we have only maintained internal plans, which we modify based on your input. Now, we are wondering if it will be better for us to publish our plans in general terms, thereby providing additional insight to you on what you can or can not expect from the site team in the future. We hope that in doing this, we will get on the same wavelength as a community, and perhaps improvements to our shared workplace could be made more readily, in an environment of even deeper cooperation and mutual trust.

So we have decided to try posting action plans publicly.

In the plans we post, we will cover our directions in general terms, then address the specific suggestions that each of you have made in this thread as a community.

The process of considering all the suggestions in this thread has been labor intensive. Thanks to everyone for posting according to the ground rules, which made it possible to work through all the suggestions more efficiently.

In order to keep the process manageable also going forward, we will address areas of the site one at a time, roughly in order of the priorities that you seem to have placed on them (not only here but in all forms of feedback).

Specifically, we will publish action plans on the following eight topics:
1. Jobs
2. KudoZ and term search
3. Profiles
4. Blue Board & WWA
5. Forums
6. Community (including moderators, code of conduct, communications)
7. Events (powwows, conferences and seminars)
8. General and miscellaneous
We intend to release one action plan [at a time over the next several months] (this text has been edited from the initial, overly ambitious plan of releasing one per week). After releasing each plan, we will address specifically each of the suggestions that was made in this thread for that area. There will be discussion facilitated on each plan... and there will be ground rules designed to keep the process moving forward. We can't afford to get caught up on any one issue, so we are counting on your continued cooperation.

We are optimistic about this approach, but let's see how it works in practice. If it proves effective, we will continue. If it does not, we may change course midway.

In any case, speaking for the ProZ.com team, we look forward to continuing to serve you and your business, as we continue to improve our great industry together.

Regards,
Enrique and Henry
Note: According to the approach we have used so far on this exercise, we invite members who reply to this post to do so only once, in a post of up to 250 words. This will allow us to review each post carefully while proceeding to the action plans. Thank you!


Direct link
 

Enrique
Local time: 23:55
SITE STAFF
TOPIC STARTER
Compilation sorted according to upcoming action plans Oct 13, 2006

Actions members of the community would take to improve ProZ.com
Taken from: http://www.proz.com/topic/55502
Updated up to post http://www.proz.com/post/436852#436852

In the following compilation, proposed actions have been categorized into sections organized by site area or theme, and in some cases categories have been subdivided into loose subcategories. These categories correspond to the actions plans that we will begin releasing.

Within each section or subsection, there is no particular order applied. When several people advocated similar actions, we lumped them into a single action. for this reason, the people listed below each action can not be assumed to fully endorse the action as written.

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1 - Actions members would take in relation to the jobs systems

Set rules in order to improve the wording of jobs postings so that at least the title is clear and make sure that the offer contains all necessary information (field, volume, detailed word counts, information about text format and deadline).
Marie-Céline Georg
Norbert Gunther Kramer
Michele Fauble
Rebecca Hendry
texjax
Norbert Gunther Kramer
Tina Vonhof
GoodWords

Mandatory explanation of the reasons for requiring certain translator’s attributes or for statements that might be perceived as discriminatory or offensive.
texjax
Norbert Gunther Kramer
Tina Vonhof

More information and screening of the outsourcers, including some sort of categorization of the outsourcers - size, years in business, are they an agency or a company, are they incorporated
Elizabeth Lyons

Create a new category for agencies who are not posting a real job but looking for freelancers in general or make the "potential job" category visible in the start page table (e.g. background color).
Marie-Céline Georg

Implement a system to reward outsourcers with good track records, verified identity/business licenses, good payment history, etc. by providing them with incentives – such as job postings highlighted in a different color, etc.
TampaTranslator
Daniela Zambrini

Proz.com should play a stronger role against unfair outsourcers
Chinese Concept

Good and serious outsourcers, posting good and serious jobs at a decent rate.
Giovanni Guarnieri

Raise quality of jobs that enter via ProZ.com.
Monika Coulson
Andrea Ali
Ana Cuesta
Viktoria Gimbe

Show more information about old jobs, including contact information
Balaban Cerit
EszterB

All jobs should be read by a moderator or site staff before published
Aurora Humarán
Alicia Casal
Silvina Matheu

Give a prominent position to the "Find a Linguist/Translator/Interpreter" option on the Home page and make it an obvious straightforward option written in simple words so that outsourcers can easily find and use it.
Larissa Dinsley
cmwilliams
Konstantin Kisin
Graciela Guzman
Anjo Sterringa, who asks for improvement of the feature
Kathryn Strachecky
Elizabeth Ardans would say "if you don't find a professional that suits your needs, then post a job..."
María Teresa Taylor Oliver
langnet
FrenchtoEnglish

Enhance directory search functions
Antonella Andreella

Do not allow to offer jobs through messaging to groups of people
Viktoria Gimbe

Stop publishing jobs
Antonella Andreella
Dyran Altenburg

Separate offers for agencies and freelancers, as well as offers from agencies or direct clients
Claudia Iglesias
Anjo Sterringa

Make the community rates public for all users and for all job posters
Claudia Iglesias
Ma. Fernanda Blesa

Forbid any job offer with more than 30-days payment delays
Yaotl

Make this a "real site for real professionals" speaking in terms of job pricing
Christel Zipfel

Don't allow outsourcers to specify a rate when posting a job.
cmwilliams
Norbert Gunther Kramer
Steffen Walter
Viktoria Gimbe
Elizabeth Lyons
JL Baker
McNohara
FrenchtoEnglish
Andrew Steel MCIL, MITI

Assign sufficient resources to an extensive overhaul of the Jobs system.
Ralf Lemster

A methodology suggested to handle rates in job offers
Giles Watson
Ma. Fernanda Blesa, who suggests another methodology

Attract more direct clients by every means possible
Konstantin Kisin
Norbert Gunther Kramer
Robert Forstag, who suggests several strategies
David Russi, who would charge a small commission on jobs that freelancers secure with *direct clients* through this site
Ritu Bhanot

Banning of bids posted by outsourcers below decent rates.
Silvina Dell'Isola Urdiales
melinak
Ines Cas

Make "submit quote" compulsory
Alberto Valle

Restrict job posting to outsourcers, who are ProZ.com. members.
Alberto Valle

For outsourcers who are not paying members, levy a one-time fee for every job posting, put this extra cash towards levelling the playing field for translators who live in countries where rates are lower
Jonathan Lukens

Allow jobs post only by people who are signed in (with up to date contact info INCLUDING their address)
Viktoria Gimbe

A filter to hide low-paid job offers from the screen, not only from email notifications
Harry Bornemann

To know who got the jobs offered in the site
Ask people who post jobs to give feedback (i.e., who got the jobs, why a translator was not chosen, etc.)
Harry Djuhari
Stefania Williams
Andrea Riffo

Stop people who post jobs to aks for free test translations
Stefania Williams

Kick out mala fide outsourcers well before they hit rock bottom on the BlueBoard
Robert Kleemaier

Drive outsourcers to quality and not only to low rates
Magdalena Reyes

People asking for 'decent pricing from job advertisers' should consider that some nations don't pay those levels. Allow companies to put in a price that would suit someone from a poorer nation
Trevor Butcher.

All quotes should be made visible so that bidders can see what other bidders are doing
soumitro das

Build in a filter so non-members will not get emails with job offers restricted to members
EszterB

Posting of potential jobs should be allowed only to outsourcers who are ProZ.com members.
Krys Williams

Find out how many outsourcers and providers would be ready to pay how many percent of jobs that would be handled by experts (including securing of delivery and payment);
eur0tec

Find out ways to let users who are ready to pay a percentage of jobs become members;
eur0tec

Find out how to identify and label substandard job postings, outsourcers, and translators (which would reduce or improve their activities).
eur0tec

Information (statistics) on who´s posting the biggest amount of jobs in ProZ.com and a link to the Blue Board information (if any) within the same page.
Elena Robles Sanjuán

The possibility of sending your ProZ.com cv to agencies/job posters open to receiving them, plus constantly updated information on which agencies are currently looking for translators/interpreters etc.
Elena Robles Sanjuán

The option of submitting resumes in job applications, currently not supported in the bid form.
Elena Vazquez Fernandez
Troy Fowler

A better control of the agencies and people who publish their jobs here.
Elena Vazquez Fernandez

Tweak the "specializes in" categories allowing a "fill in the blank" category be added to the specialization options.
Michele Fauble

Provide a more differentiated structure of the Jobs section, by identifying jobs targeted at freelancers and agencies (to permit for more targeted notifications), and introducing a separate segment for jobs posters focusing primarily on the price.
DSC

Include language variety in KudoZ and in Jobs (EN-UK, EN-US, ES-AR, and so on)
Marta Fernandez-Suarez

Add Date of Availability of documents to the jobs posting form
isoyo

A user-friendly rate explainer/calculator to explain and calculate all the different ways of costing a document, eg. per word/cartella/page
lizzy g
EszterB would add currency conversion

Integrate word / character count and invoicing technology into the ProZ.com environment
Troy Fowler

A ProZ.com payment escrow service. Outsourcers would place payment in an optional escrow account until translation project is complete, thus guaranteeing payment. This could also be an additional source or revenue for ProZ.com in the form of an escrow fee.
TampaTranslator
texjax
Jordan
Ma. Fernanda Blesa

Help translators receive small payments outside US and Europe who are in a very disadvantaged condition because they cannot receive payments for small assignments.
Henrik Pipoyan
Harry Djuhari

Consider to bring a Wallet back.
Vladimir Dubisskiy

More noticeable text ads, with display to poster of IP and date of clicks
Balaban Cerit

Forbid outsources to close an offer before the deadline stated initially
Andrea Riffo


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2 - Actions members would take in relation to KudoZ and term search

Target audience field for askers (KudoZ), at least for those languages spoken in several countries.
Claudia Alvis

Delete the points system in KudoZ
Chademu
Giovanni Guarnieri
Silvina Dell'Isola Urdiales
Puicz
Viktoria Gimbe
Sergio Mangiarotti
McNohara
CMJ_Trans
Robert Forstag disagrees
Riccardo Schiaffino
suvasree, who would create a rotational grading system for the Freelancers' Directories
Dyran Altenburg

The asker should not be allowed to grade the answer. The points should instead be automatically awarded by the Agree/Disagree balance after two weeks.
Andy Lemminger
Cilian O'Tuama disagrees
María Teresa Taylor Oliver disagrees
Sergio Mangiarotti

The task of grading KudoZ answers and making KOG entries should be entrusted to paid professional independent linguists.
FrenchtoEnglish

Agreeing on what to put in the glossary as a group
Viktoria Gimbe

Restricting grading privileges to those with a verified credential or X number of KudoZ points. (Questions asked by unqualified askers would then be graded by a designated grader, whose grading would in turn be monitored to ensure fairness.)
Robert Forstag

Finding an alternative to get rid of the "Pro" vs. "non-Pro" division, for instance making any visitor's question "not-for-point"
Suggested Kirill Semenov

Delete current daily limits
Cristina Heraud-van Tol

Replace current KudoZ limits by another system tied to the amount of questions answered by the asker.
Suggested Kirill Semenov

Limited KudoZ questions when the asker does not contribute providing answers to other members/users.
Graciela Guzman

KudoZ glossary clean-up
Angioletta Garbarino
Niraja Nanjundan, who also includes personal glossaries
Kirill Semenov
Daniela Zambrini, who also suggests a methodology to do so
JaneTranslates
Andrea Ali
sarmb
Silvina Dell'Isola Urdiales
claudia bagnardi

Make peer comments and replies visible only to the asker, answerer, moderators and assessor.
FrenchtoEnglish

Allow user participation in KudoZ only above a certain percentage of profile completeness.
Cristiana Coblis

Allow the askers to upload graphics
George Rabel
Nik-On/Off, who would also do so in answers

Make this a "real site for real professionals" speaking in terms of questions/answers level.
Christel Zipfel

Make KudoZ search more user friendly
rdom

Limit the term section to paying members
Roland Peiler
Andrew Steel MCIL, MITI
Andy Watkinson disagrees

Colleagues whose areas of specialization and language pairs do not match the question's should not be allowed to answer or comment on peers
Andy Lemminge
Cristiana Coblis (specialty and working fields)
Cilian O'Tuama disagrees
María Teresa Taylor Oliver disagrees

Colleagues who answered a question should not be able to agree or disagree with other answers of the same question.
Andy Lemminger
Cilian O'Tuama disagrees
María Teresa Taylor Oliver disagrees

No KudoZ for the same answer with a longer explanation.
Andy Lemminger
Cilian O'Tuama disagrees
María Teresa Taylor Oliver disagrees

No homework questions through KudoZ
rdom would ban homework
CMJ_Trans

No test translation questions through KudoZ
CMJ_Trans
Texjax

While a dedicated answerer assembles a good answer including references, sonther one send a fairly cursory reply and gets the points. This should be improved.
Krys Williams

Block askers who use ProZ.com just to ask easy question
Liliana Roman-Hamilton

Eliminate delay in term Search page options
lizzy g

A feature for users to search in their own KudoZ questions
María Teresa Taylor Oliver

Questions that are closed w/o grading should be shown as closed.
Mårten Sandberg

Allow users to to tell others who violate KudoZ rules that they do wrong and what they do wrong, instead of having to report it to a moderator.
Mårten Sandberg

Emphasize the information regarding the need for context when asking KudoZ questions
Mårten Sandberg

Currently, a link listed in answer is opened in the same window. It will better, if the link will be opened in new window.
Pristav

Avoid the rush for points in KudoZ
FrenchtoEnglish, who suggests several alternatives

Supress the Kudoz term translation questions
Alberto Valle

All KudoZ questions should be private and only accessible to users. They would not be indexed in the search engines. Glossary entries would be public.
Marina Varouta
Roland Peiler

Introduce old option "Restore Answer", but with new time stamp-label.
Pristav

Allow asker to assign points to more than one answer
zappy
Nik-On/Off

Abolish agrees and disagrees
zappy

Replace "confidence level" with an expertise level
RobinB

Include language variety in KudoZ (EN-UK, EN-US, ES-AR, and so on)
Marta Fernandez-Suarez

Allow just three KudoZ answers a day for everyone
Marta Fernandez-Suarez

Expand the number of General Fields to minimize the use of the "Other" category
Nicholas Ferreira

Replace KudoZ points by net (agrees-disagrees)
Anastasia Novoselova

Allow linguistic questions about whole sentences
Alena Chebanenko

Add an "Abuse" or "Alert to this question" button in KudoZ, see http://www.proz.com/topic/57384
Stefanie Sendelbach

Implement a box called "Comment" instead of or in addition to the peer comments in order to have the possibility to comment an answer without having to choose between "agree/disagree/neutral" (and increase the box up to 500 characters)
virgynet

Get rid of "confidence levels".
TonyTK

Make it impossible to hide answers
TonyTK

Require at least some degree of explanation for all answers to show the answerer understands how his or her suggestion can be used in the given context.
TonyTK

Encourage a policy of robust KudoZ debate.
TonyTK

Make glossary entries subject to peer review.
TonyTK

Block askers from closing question sooner than 24 hours after asking.
GoodWords

Eliminate the "first verified answer" function.
GoodWords

Make default source term and target term blank for entering a KudoZ term into the glossary.
GoodWords

Include serbocroat = bosnian+croatian+serbian in KudoZ search
jokerman


-------------------------------------------

3 - Actions members would take in relation to profiles

Profiles, published articles or any other material indexed only in our language. No more duplicates in google results, which desorient potential clients.
Marina Varouta

It should be possible to give several locations for where you are based
EszterB

Allow paying members more flexibility to make decisions on what/how our information is seen by the public (such as the ability to choose between old and new profile format as default, organize placement of information, etc)
Bonita Mc Donald
Riccardo Schiaffino

Make it possible for the site user to show his or her old
profile to the public
Chinoise

More flexibility in the new profiles. More tabs to be automatically available in the new profile, to declutter the profile format. Tabs that could be created automatically using the information that is already stored.
Rebecca Hendry

Make the new profile more user-friendly
EszterB

Allow specializations per language pair
Maria Rosich Andreu

Improve the availability feature
Nicholas Ferreira

Provide at least one extra colour (profile page) for a change
Vladimir Dubisskiy

Increase the number of fields under "Medicine" or leave it only as such.
McNohara

Better explanation for fields in profiles and jobs, fields so similar that they coulb be confused should be merged.
bjornarmag

Allow sorting of project history in profiles by size, field, language combination etc.
bjornarmag

Timeline in project history should state months, not days e.g. "Jul to Aug" instead of Jul 31 to Aug 31.
bjornarmag

Under “Years of full-time experience as a translator:” in our profile settings, give us the option of having this figure increase automatically upon renewal of membership.
Robert Kleemaier

Verify native language(s) of ProZ.com members by means of tests done online by an institution to be set up within ProZ.com with qualified, authorized representatives worldwide
tectranslate

Against the verification of native speaker status
Puicz

Introduce a near-native level symbol for a person reaching Council of Europe's level C2
Williamson

Introduce tests to test the linguistic level of the working languages of a translator and indicate the results in his or her profile.
Williamson
mediamatrix

In all major multinational languages, require members to indicate the 'variety' of their native language(s)
mediamatrix

Make verification of credentials compulsory as well, wherever possible
Jonathan Lukens
Belkis Díaz-Vidaillet

Profiles: offer the possibility to upload more than one file
virgynet

Add the "student" option next to "freelancer" "company", "both" or "neither"
Andrea Riffo

Profile localization, allow users to choose wheter theis profiles are visible in other languages or not
Ritu Bhanot

More flexibility in categories to allow greater specialization.
GoodWords


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4 - Actions members would take in relation to the Blue Board and WWA

The ability to leave BlueBoard comments on payment issues for all members, regardless of membership level or participation in site features
Viktoria Gimbe

A "Hall of Fame" as well as a "Black List" of agencies.
Cristina Heraud-van Tol

Option to sort the B/B LWAs by country and by score to allow taking care of relevant/better agencies first, improving the efficacy of sending CVs
Claudio Porcellana

Create another B/B variable: LWA/entries ratio; it means that agencies with better LWA score, plus lower LWA/entries, ratio must appear firstly
Claudio Porcellana

Create another B/B variable: LWA/replies ratio; an agency that spend time to answer to all its translators, to say "thank you for your work", doesn't consider translators as numbers but human beings
Claudio Porcellana

Blue Board completely open to all members (paying and not paying).
Giovanni Guarnieri
langnet

An assessment system where translators are assessed by outsourcers on the work which they obtain through the site
Puicz
Troy Fowler
suvasree

Enable members to edit their Blue Board entries
anytime they want
Chinoise

-------------------------------------------

5 - Actions members would take in relation to the forums

Improve the forum search
Viktoria Gimbe
Sonja Tomaskovic
JL Baker

Forum content should not be open to search engines
Mariella Bonelli
Viktoria Gimbe
Marina Varouta
Astrid Elke Johnson

Limited forum posting by translators, including a maximum number of words, to encourage participation from other members who have remained silent way too long.
Belkis Díaz-Vidaillet
Graciela Guzman
María Teresa Taylor Oliver disagrees


Sort the forums by the date of the last post by default and keep the option to sort them by the creation date
Hynek Palatin

Adding a small Agree checkbox after every posting that may allow others to express their agreement instantly, instead of replying just a line (or two) without nothing really important to say. It may even allow a small line, like the KudoZ mechanism.
Juan Pablo Solvez Beneyto
JaneTranslates

A notification flag list for forum posters to track the postings of certain users
Harry Bornemann

Add a forum for proofreading/correcting/editing
Trevor Butcher

In the forum section add some kind of popup button/menu to allow ordering forums by views and by replies
Gianni Pastore

Make subsections in the Non-English Forums
Marta Fernandez-Suarez

Provide more space for criticism (even if not constructive)
Endre Both

Fluent communication with members and users including rules, pre-warning of at least 12 hours before any administrative action
Natalia Zudaire

Less rules enforcement, more freedom of speech
Nikki Graham
Aurora Humarán
Chademu
Bonita Mc Donald
Giovanni Guarnieri
Ivana de Sousa Santos
Amy Duncan
Larissa Dinsley
Natalia Zudaire
Christel Zipfel
Gerard de Noord
JaneTranslates
Silvina Matheu
Andrea Ali
Belkis Díaz-Vidaillet
Ana Cuesta
sarmb
Konstantin Kisin disagrees
George Rabel
Eva T disagrees
desdelaisla
Elena Vazquez Fernandez
CMJ_Trans
Ines Cas

Improve the site's atmosphere, in particular furums
Parrot
Daniela Zambrini

Increased distinction between e-marketplace and community functions. The community should be open to all but the marketplace should be strictly controlled to enhance quality. Edit: tightening up the marketplace side while loosening up the community side.
Sara Freitas-Maltaverne
Gerard de Noord

Freedom of expression with a set of well-defined rules, or code of conduct, when necessary
Wenjer Leuschel
Elizabeth Lyons
Sergio Mangiarotti (emphasis on Netiquette)

Don't remove links to conflictive posting from homepage
Ivana de Sousa Santos

No posting erased without explaining the infringer, in a private email, the rule breached AND how the rule applies to the alleged facts.
Luis Arri Cibils

Don't apply rules arbitrarily
María Teresa Taylor Oliver
Mariella Bonelli, who also asks for better explanations in case of rules enforcement
Antonella Andreella
gad

Clarify policy about false identity
Yaotl

Creation of ombudsman functions (for freelancers and outsourcers) as intermediaries between management and the community.
Luis Arri Cibils

Expand the scope to allow more inoffensive off-topic content
Viktoria Gimbe
María Teresa Taylor Oliver

Less moderating - more moderation from the moderators, less changing the wording of polls, etc..
Jo Macdonald

Enforce also the spirit of the rules
gad

Denounces of abuse should be posted in tickets, not in forums
gad

Initiate a Hindi forum.
Balasubramaniam

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6 - Actions members would take in relation to the community (including moderators, code of conduct, communications)

Membership

Recognise the value that experienced professionals bring to the site beyond their membership fee
Endre Both
Cilian O'Tuama

Rethink membership categories, acknowledging the contributions of some users
CMJ_Trans

Go back to the “Member/Platinum member” terminology instead of “user/member”
Christel Zipfel
Derek Gill Franßen

Less differences between members and users
Balaban Cerit
Chademu
melinak
Ines Cas

Give more benefits to members and fewer benefits to users
Monika Coulson
sarmb
Mariella Bonelli
Elizabeth Ardans
Elizabeth Lyons
María Teresa Taylor Oliver
langnet
Freimanis

Accept only paying members
Angioletta Garbarino also requires verified ID
FRANCINE ALLONCLE, who would allow a 3 month trial period to non-paying users
Harry Djuhari

Two to three different levels of memberships
FRANCINE ALLONCLE

Introduce three different memberships for translator/interpreter membership (only professionals), bilingual membership (anyone who speaks two or more languages) and student membership (self-explanatory). Put restrictions on the first one.
Eva T

Membership levels: members who have a chosen career that has nothing to do with translation (physicians, attorneys, etc.) and therefore are not professional translators should have their profiles marked or pay higher fees
Belkis Díaz-Vidaillet

Introduce corporate accounts (as 'umbrella' accounts covering several profiles).
DSC

Besides the category of user, member, partial member, another category should be created, namely, "former member"
desdelaisla

Membership on invitation or sponsorship only
CMJ_Trans

Restrict membership though an application process, for example only permitting people to join who either have a translation qualification or the relevant years of experience.
Astrid Elke Johnson

Require the use of real names and restrict profiles to paid members (making provision to "grandfather in" a select number of unpaid members who have used the site for X years or who have X KudoZ points).
Robert Forstag

Add Moneybookers as a payment method for our membership and hosting
Cristiana Coblis

Make it possible to pay for memberships and other services in Indian rupees via normal payment methods like cheque within India itself.
Balasubramaniam

Lower membership fee.
Marina Varouta

Make it easier to become a member
Kathryn Strachecky

Move ProZ.com more towards a professional relationship with translators where the site provide a service and translators buy it. On site activity gives no “ownership”.
Konstantin Kisin

Introduce differentiated membership fees while offering discounts on a certain number of languages.
Freimanis

To avoid false status reporting charge membership per declared language pair
Freimanis


Workplace environment / Professionalism

Make the site as friendly as possible
Silvia Sassone
JL Baker

Take a stronger stance against unprofessional behaviour, including patently false claims about qualifications and consistently erratic KudoZ contributions.
Endre Both
Cilian O'Tuama

Focus on quality and verified members, credentials
Magdalena Reyes
CMJ_Trans

Code of Conduct for outsourcers and translators, voluntary, with logo and starting date displayed, penalized if breached.
Gianfranco Manca
Sara Freitas-Maltaverne would make it mandatory
Luis Arri Cibils adds more details
Konstantin Kisin
FRANCINE ALLONCLE
Anjo Sterringa, who is concerned that a CoC for translators is more adequate for an association and would encourage membership in associations having a CoC
sofiablu
Sergio Mangiarotti
FrenchtoEnglish
zappy

Implement a stronger Identity verification program for site users
Gianfranco Manca would extend it to as many users as possible, to the point of making it mandatory or very relevant
Sara Freitas-Maltaverne, who would also include proof that provides pay their taxes
Ana Cuesta agrees with Sara
Luis Arri Cibils would discuntinue service after 3 months to all non-vidded users and allow them only not-for-points KudoZ
cmwilliams
Kaveri
Konstantin Kisin
Silvina Dell'Isola Urdiales
Endre Both
Jonathan Lukens
Cilian O'Tuama
claudia bagnardi
Elizabeth Ardans
Sandra Smallwood-Beltran
María Teresa Taylor Oliver
FrenchtoEnglish
melinak would not implement any compulsory VIDding for LSPs unless more ways to get verified are developed
Ines Cas
suvasree would make VIDding compulsory

Implement a stronger Identity verification program for oursourcers
Gianfranco Manca
Alicia Casal
Silvina Dell'Isola Urdiales
Sandra Smallwood-Beltran

Make identity verification simpler and more practical.
Balasubramaniam
Viktoria Gimbe
Liliana Roman-Hamilton

Expel translators who practice surreptitious defamation of colleagues, with so called "proofreadings" "consultancies" etc.
Alberto Valle

Encourage professionalism, allow (well-founded and precise) criticism of peers as a means of raising the standards on this site
tectranslate

Provide additional guidance for new translators. Before creating a profile, ask translators for their years of experience. Based on this information, guide them towards relevant knowledgebase articles, discussions, etc. so that they will be armed with the information they need both as new translators as well as new members of this community before they set up shop.
TampaTranslator

Enforce members/users professional behavior. No empty and/or multiple profiles.
Texjax
Ines Cas

Improve the "professional" image of the site by seriously limiting the ability to modify the contents of the site by members with non-VIDed profiles, empty profiles, freelancer profiles with "n" working languages and "m" native languages, members in breach of ProZ's clearly defined code of conduct
Rubén Berrozpe

Limit the number of language pairs for freelancers
Cristiana Coblis

Get rid of empty profiles.
FrenchtoEnglish, who would require users to provide details of their credentials and/or professional experience and to give a name, address and phone number which staff should check.
Liliana Roman-Hamilton
Andrea Riffo, who would require location, native language, working languages and years of experience
suvasree, who would also delete inactive profiles


Communications

Improve communication with members and users: communicate what ProZ.com is going to do (i) at an early stage, (ii) well ahead of implementing key features, and (iii) as broadly as possible (where appropriate, outside ProZ.com, too) .
Ralf Lemster
sarmb

More open communication between staff and members/users, in particular more consultation and proper notification in case of new implementations.
Nikki Graham
Ivana de Sousa Santos
Giovanni Guarnieri
FrenchtoEnglish

Treat members with courtesy and respect
María Teresa Taylor Oliver
Luis Arri Cibils
Andrea Ali

Iimprove communication between members/users & the site staff
melinak
ICL

Better tracking and implementation of suggestions by site users
Bonita Mc Donald
Nikki Graham also suggested a "communications page" at http://www.proz.com/topic/52982
Christel Zipfel
Endre Both

Communicate ProZ.com’s plans to accommodate outsourcers and freelancers in the same space, and what's this change going to mean for the freelancers
Rubén Berrozpe
Ana Cuesta

When offering services for outsourcers, don't forget the translators
María Teresa Taylor Oliver
Andrea Ali
sarmb
George Rabel
claudia bagnardi

Keep the site as translator-oriented, not client-oriented
Marie-Helene Hayles

Define whether ProZ.com is there for the benefit of translators or purely a "marketplace"
zappy

Reflect about what you actually wish to make of Proz.com: for translators? for outsourcers? for related specialists? for language students?, for anyone? This could lead you to diversify your business, clearly dividing it into different areas that will attract different kinds of "customers".
ICL

Slow down a bit with the introduction of new features/options/tabs/layouts. Too many new things are being introduced, all the time.
Johanna Timm, PhD
Wenjer Leuschel
Derek Gill Franßen
Katharina Wawrzon
Chinoise

Give more consideration to the way the site and its evolution is presented to and perceived by the community.
Endre Both

Staff should answer e-mails and support tickets, even a “thanks, we’re taking care of it” would be nice.
Jo Macdonald

Deal with support tickets more swiftly at all times
Steffen Walter suggests a(n initial) response time of less than 24 (or even 12) hours across the board
Endre Both
Ralf Lemster, who would incorporate moderators into the process to accelerate handling

Add a live chat
Cristina Heraud-van Tol

Avoid forcing changes on people. For example, allow users to keep their old profile and offer the new one as an option.
Jo Macdonald
JL Baker
Nicholas Ferreira
Ines Cas

Provide information on how the membership money is spent by ProZ.com
Michele Johnson
lexical, who would convert membership fees into shares

Broader localization of the site
virgynet

Team to translate important staff messages into several languages
virgynet

Communicate important changes or implementations or subjects by way of surveys or polls for example, in order to set up something like a "direct democracy".
virgynet


Moderators

Incorporate more moderators
Steffen Walter
Wenjer Leuschel, who would get rid of disqualified ones when sufficient justified complaints against them have been raised by members

Reflect upon the compatibility between ProZ.com’s business model and the extensive use of volunteer work.
Rubén Berrozpe

Consider paying moderators (either in kind or with money) to assure accountability
Dyran Altenburg

Introduce rotation of moderators on a regular basis - to make the doors open for anybody who wants to try. Three to six months periods suggested.
Vladimir Dubisskiy

One year term for Moderators. Come up with a system where we can vote for who our Moderators should be.
Belkis Díaz-Vidaillet

Make the moderator undergo a referendum periodically when a considerable percentage of the forum members agree.
Yaotl

Better behavior by moderators
Angioletta Garbarino
Richard Creech
Belkis Díaz-Vidaillet

Possibility to request an impartial "arbitrator" (either site staff or another moderator) in disputes between moderators and users.
Marie-Helene Hayles

-------------------------------------------

7 - Actions members would take in relation to events (powwows, conferences and seminars)

Promote more events locally. Workshops, lectures, meetings to exchange experiences. Everything that may enhance our vision as translators.
Silvia Sassone

Organise WEBINARS on main topics, and at different levels
Stefania Williams

Have a designated Events Manager, who would become an expert in all matters relating to ProZ.com conferences, powwows and workshops.
Katharina Wawrzon

Increase ProZ.com's real-world presence. Appoint a coordinator for every significant city worldwide and make them responsible for organising simple but regular (quarterly, bi-monthly) CPD events, such as networking sessions
Andrew Steel MCIL, MITI

Conference speakers should submit written material in advance, for review and produce handouts for those attending. They should not use made-up names.
Astrid Elke Johnson

-------------------------------------------

8 - General and miscellaneous actions that members would take

General actions/improvements

Keep everything as simple as possible
Silvia Sassone

Tools should be easy to handle
claudia bagnardi

Redesign the site to make it more user-friendly and easy to understand.
Hynek Palatin
Kaveri suggests a model
lizzy g suggests less clutter and different colours
Sandra Smallwood-Beltran
Vito Smolej (unclutter home page)
News-Group style Fora (i-e. a tree or outline), so that one could clearly see which message answers to which other message.
Riccardo Schiaffino

Add a link to home page everywhere in the site
Cristina Heraud-van Tol

Allow creating RSS feeds to the outside and add or offer feeds from the outside world that may be interesting to the members and visitors.
Vito Smolej

Add some WAP functionality
Harry Bornemann

A PDA version of the ProZ.com page and also a ProZ.com toolbar which works with Mozilla.
Sarah Brenchley

A floating tool bar with time zone clocks from around the world
STEVEN ROBINSON

New features

Add a writable Personal Calendar on the profile, where users can put their due dates and other important dates there
Monika Coulson

Improve the "my lists" function. It is one of the most valuable aspects of the site (for forming lists of potential translators on a project, among other uses) but is cumbersome and slow to use.
Richard Creech

Modify copyright policy on articles, giving more to the article poster
Chinese Concept

An arbitrage panels for situations where both translator and proofreader disagree with each others work over the same text
Mireille Hennevanger-Both

A 'Book Corner' or something alike, where translators can find information about books, dictionaries, glossaries, etc specially related to the profession. With ratings, price ranges, stores that carry the item, etc.
Magdalena Reyes
María Teresa Taylor Oliver
Claudia Alvis

A "bookstore" or store of some sort to purchase software, books, glossaries
Elizabeth Lyons
María Teresa Taylor Oliver

A bookmark tab.
Claudia Alvis
Maria Rosich Andreu
JaneTranslates
Puicz
Cilian O'Tuama would also add private notes, in order to track KudoZ questions, forums threads and users to seek/avoid
Magdalena Reyes
Marina Varouta

Provide paying ProZians with an opportunity to participate in group policies. One option would be for collection, while another could be for Errors & Omission Insurance. In both cases they are expensive items for sole proprietors.
Robert Kleemaier

Continuing Education: Some plans that'd help us grow as a professional. Articles, Links to online courses, webinars etc.
Ritu Bhanot


Business direction / marketing

Remain committed to your dream and your vision. You can't make everyone happy all the time
Derek Gill Franßen
Zhuoqi Mills

Customer education from the site as an authoritative source rather than limiting this to knowledgebase articles by service providers.
Sara Freitas-Maltaverne
Kaveri

Turn ProZ.com into a translation agency
jemo

'European' or better targeted marketing strategies. 'Aggressive' marketing is a thing of the past in my markets.
Gerard de Noord

Move beyond American/European orientation. To begin with, localize the site into Hindi.
Balasubramaniam

Promote/advertise/create awareness/upgrade our profession in other sites, pages, newspapers, whatever.
claudia bagnardi
Trevor Butcher

More visibility, both for translators and the site itself.
Belkis Díaz-Vidaillet
Chinese Concept, who suggests ideas on this line

Do something about ProZ.com's image problem, including KudoZ quality and inaccurate information about native languages.
Michele Fauble

Foster greater participation (in the forums and articles, for example) from outsourcers, project managers and purchasers of translation services.
TampaTranslator

Different homepages for outsourcers and freelancers
Astrid Elke Johnson


Direct link
 
Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:55
French to English
A suggestion about suggestions :-) Oct 13, 2006

You've clearly put a lot of work into this, and I think the idea of asking for feedback was a laudable one.

I also wonder if there were many people who, like me, couldn't think of just 3 "things I'd do if it were my site", weren't sure if it was appropriate to comment on other people's suggestions, couldn't fit it into 250 words, didn't have time to formulate suggestions.... in short, could have contributed but didn't.

I wouldn't want to make your processes take any longer than they already will, but I wonder whether a survey might be appropriate for some of the suggestions? Possibly in the form of a different survey for each main area. I'm thinking particularly of some of the more significant and concrete changes suggested (not the vague "improve quality of X" ones), such as:
- prohibit rates being mentioned in job postings
- only members can post jobs
- compulsory VID
- stop the kudoz points system
- answers to be chosen by peer agreement not the asker
- restrict language pairs
That's just a sample of ones I can remember (:-)) but perhaps gives an idea of the kind of thing I have in mind.

For such suggestions, you could formulate a simple yes/no question, and give members/users (everyone, I mean) 3 simple options: Yes, No, and No vote (to cover, don't know, don't care, no opinion one way or the other).

Please note, I'm not talking about a "quick poll" per question, but a proper survey page, with as many questions as necessary for the subject area.

You could, of course, refine this idea by having paying member votes count as double or whatever, but I think the basic idea is worth considering. Indeed, it occurs to me now, you could consider it as being my contribution to the original thread, as follows :
"If I were running Proz, I'd run a forum thread to brainstorm what people think should happen, 3 suggestions only, 250 words tops, and then put the best suggestions to the wider vote in the form of a survey"


Direct link
 

Linguasphere
France
Local time: 04:55
Spanish to French
+ ...
Thank you ! Oct 13, 2006

Thank you very much for posting this information.

It is very interesting. Nevertheless, it is only the point of view of those who participated in the thread and therefore, it is not the opinion of all the community. Some did not participate to the thread due to lack of time or because they do not speak English or due to other reasons. Personally, I agree with some of the suggestions but I totally disagree with some others.

I would suggest to draw up a questionnaire with all the points suggested (a kind of big poll, maybe in the major languages), with boxes Agree / Disagree and to send it to all members and users.

I suggest this because IMO, every member/user should have the opportunity to give his/her opinion before the implementation of such important changes. In fact, the opinions of those who contribute a lot to forums cannot represent the majority.

For example, many people in the forums were claiming for reduce the limits of KudoZ questions per day, but when you did a poll regarding this subject, most of the community was against this idea. This is why I suggest this "big poll" in order to reach more members/users and have an overall point of view.

Thank you again and have a nice WE.


Direct link
 

Henry Dotterer
Local time: 22:55
SITE FOUNDER
Thanks, Charlie Oct 14, 2006

Charlie Bavington wrote:

I wonder whether a survey might be appropriate for some of the suggestions?

Yes, thank you. We are likely to run some targeted surveys over the course of this exercise, particularly where there are gray areas.

Thanks for your willingness to participate.


Direct link
 

gianfranco  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 23:55
Member (2001)
English to Italian
+ ...
In favour of a survey Oct 14, 2006

I agree with the previous postings to run a survey, or a number of several related surveys (perhaps one for each area as identified above). It would be the best method to probe scientifically the site users' preferences.

In particular:

  • it would help to choose amongst some conflicting proposals
    (more questions per day / less questions per day, or
    improve the jobs area / get rid of the jobs area, and so on)

  • it would compensate the limitations of the previous phase, limited to 3 suggestions
    (some very good proposals may have received only 1-2 mentions, others less important may have received 10 supporting names, almost randomly)

  • the vote could be weighted for members and non members

  • it would receive the largest possible number of opinions, in detail for each suggestion

  • it would allow to identify which suggestions have been mentioned but do not encounter the favour of the majority


    You would also know what to prioritize according to the survey result. For example, a 95% majority in favour could fast track a feature over others not receiving a clear majority.


    bye
    Gianfranco

    PS: I posted before seeing Henry above



    [Edited at 2006-10-14 01:16]

    Direct link
     

  • Henry Dotterer
    Local time: 22:55
    SITE FOUNDER
    If you have not yet posted your "three things", please do so! Oct 14, 2006

    virgynet wrote:

    Thank you very much for posting this information.

    It is very interesting. Nevertheless, it is only the point of view of those who participated in the thread and therefore, it is not the opinion of all the community.

    That is an important point. Thank you. To others: please understand that the plans we will post have not been created based on the suggestions received in this thread. Although they will have been modified in response to the "three things" suggestions by the time they are posted, the general plans have been formulated previously based on input from various sources.

    For one thing, the suggestion list shown here is only one-tenth or so the size of our internal list of suggestions not yet implemented.

    What is more, in addition to our suggestions lists, we have usage data, surveys, face-to-face feedback and other forms of input from members of the community that has helped shape our plans.

    What we have compiled here is just the list of suggestions made in the "three things" thread. We plan to respond to each of these in turn.
    I would suggest to draw up a questionnaire with all the points suggested (a kind of big poll, maybe in the major languages), with boxes Agree / Disagree and to send it to all members and users.

    I suggest this because IMO, every member/user should have the opportunity to give his/her opinion before the implementation of such important changes.

    There are likely to be some surveys, as I mentioned above, and in addition, anyone who has not yet taken the opportunity to tell everyone what they would do if they were running the site ("three things") is invited to do so now, here: http://www.proz.com/topic/55502

    If you get your list in before we reach the relevant section, we'll incorporate it...


    Direct link
     
    Michele Fauble  Identity Verified
    United States
    Local time: 19:55
    Member (2006)
    Norwegian to English
    + ...
    Discussion of pros and cons before survey Oct 14, 2006

    I agree with some of the suggestions and disagree with others. Before running a survey on a suggestion there should be a discussion of the pros and cons of the suggestion.

    Sometimes what may seem at first like a good suggestion may turn out, upon reflection, not to be such a good idea after all - for example, automatic grading of KudoZ answers by number of agrees and disagrees, not allowing disagrees by those who have answered a question, or limiting forum posts.

    Another option would be to have one member/user in favor and one against each make the argument for or against the suggestion before the survey is run.


    Direct link
     

    Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
    United States
    Local time: 20:55
    Member (2003)
    English to Italian
    + ...
    Agree on the survey Oct 14, 2006

    Charlie Bavington wrote:

    For such suggestions, you could formulate a simple yes/no question, and give members/users (everyone, I mean) 3 simple options: Yes, No, and No vote (to cover, don't know, don't care, no opinion one way or the other).



    This is an excellent idea, but I would add one (I think important) element:

    "Formulate a simple yes/no questions, and give members/users 3 simple options: Yes, No, and No vote (to cover, don't know, don't care, no opinion one way or the other).
    The survey should include, for each option (yes or no), an explanation by one prominent member who favors such answer, to explain why answering yes or no would be a good idea. "

    An example could look something like:

    "We ask you to vote whether or not to abolish the point systems from KudoZ.

    John Doe, a full member of this site with 15 years of experience as a professional EN>FR freelance translator, invites members to vote in favor of the abolition of the KudoZ point system for the following reasons: ....

    Jane Roe, a full member of this site with 20 years of experience as an in house D>SP and EN>SP translator, invites members to vote to retain the KudoZ point sustem for the following reasons: ..."




    [Edited at 2006-10-14 06:31]


    Direct link
     
    Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
    United States
    Local time: 22:55
    Member (2003)
    Spanish to English
    + ...
    Keep your eyes on the prize [Abridged] Oct 14, 2006

    Kudos (with an ‘s’) to Henry, Enrique and the rest of the proz.com staff for the time and effort spent addressing the concerns of members and site users.

    I have to say, though, that I’m not sure that the compilation of further surveys and the interminable prolongation and ramification of forum threads is really what is needed at this point in order to move forward with a swift and responsible action plan based upon the feedback that you’ve gathered.

    With respect to the list, it is important to determine the relative weights—and not merely the rankings—of all priorities, including jobs and Kudoz. Are they both “right up there” in terms of requiring urgent labor-intensive intervention in order to assure the future health and wellbeing of proz.com? Or is it more like Secretariat at the Belmont, with the concern about jobs running far ahead of the pack?

    I would caution against any drastic action that would sabotage the overall purpose of proz.com. Eliminating the Kudoz points system would have calamitous results in that it would remove the (admittedly imperfect) system of recognition and exposure for those of us without either an existing web of contacts feeding us a constant stream of well-paid work or the finances that would allow us to mount marketing campaigns to help generate such work.

    So thanks for listening to members, but don’t forget to keep priorities straight: Keep your eyes on the prize….

    Bob


    [Edited at 2006-10-14 19:26]


    Direct link
     
    xxxCMJ_Trans
    Local time: 04:55
    French to English
    + ...
    disagree....(radically abridged - with apologies for telegraphic style) Oct 15, 2006

    Quoting Robert Forstag: "Eliminating the KudoZ points system would have calamitous results in that it would remove the (admittedly imperfect) system of recognition and exposure for those of us without either an existing web of contacts feeding us a constant stream of well-paid work or the finances that would allow us to mount marketing campaigns to help generate such work."



    Robert. I disagree: it's issues like this where views differ drastically that require explanation/exchange. For me the points system is pernicious. I see no benefits at all and rather than letting site managers make arbitrary decisions (based on their preferences?) on such subjects, surely it's better to explain all the arguments and to vote? That would be democratic. Taking decisions on important points without discussion breeds even more frustration. You can acquire points galore by answering questions galore in language pairs galore (tried it - it works!) but what does it prove? And that's only one argument.

    2 Henrys: Surely the point of this exercise was to give people (finally) the chance to air their views. Steamrollering only upsets the masses. 3 proposals/250 words, while understandable, means things left unsaid. Better now to get the bigger picture by briefly listing all points made asking EVERYBODY to mark those they consider important. Also please stop posting important notices on Fridays. Many people, as you must know, fail to see them, whence limited response (counter-productive). An illustration: In a recent meeting on a particular issue, a consultant noted our points grouping them in categories on the board and asking us each to mark our "top 5" without priorities/hierarchy. The result? A relatively trivial item got the highest marks. On protest we found that for all those who'd marked this point it was their lowest priority....Not allowing for priorities can produce stupid results. Let's muse on this and not make the same mistake.


    Direct link
     
    Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
    United States
    Local time: 22:55
    Member (2003)
    Spanish to English
    + ...
    Kudoz points: three fundamental questions Oct 15, 2006

    Hi CMJ,

    Strictly speaking what you say is true: Kudoz points in and of themselves prove absolutely nothing. The three fundamental questions here seem to be as follows:

    1. Is there a significant positive correlation between points earned on the one hand, and the quality of answers awarded points on the other?

    2. Is the quality of answers to Kudoz questions, in the aggregrate, *one* legitimate indicator of competence with regard to a particular subject matter within a given language pair?

    3. Will a non-points system lead to greater participation on the part of competent translators and all this would bring in its wake: better answers; more helpful material in the glossaries; and greater recourse to Kudoz on the part of translators, both novice and experienced, who are seeking help with terms?

    My own answers to these questions are 'yes', 'yes' and 'no'. There is much that I could say in support of these assertions, but now is not the time.

    Bob



    [Edited at 2006-10-15 23:07]


    Direct link
     

    Henry Dotterer
    Local time: 22:55
    SITE FOUNDER
    Let's hold off on KudoZ discussion Oct 15, 2006

    Robert Forstag wrote:

    Hi CMJ,

    Strictly speaking what you say is true: Kudoz points in and of themselves prove absolutely nothing...

    We'll have this type of discussion, but as we're asking that all of you join in going forward section by section, I would ask that we put off this specific one until KudoZ time (the week after next). by sticking to our structured approach, you help us to do more for you with this project.

    The purpose of the current topic is to share the plan and compilation. I would ask that future posters limit their comments in this thread to that, and also to make sure to post only once, with up to 250 words.

    Thank you in advance for your cooperation.


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    Compilation of thread "Let's improve...3 things I would do if I were running ProZ.com" / Action plan

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