Company tried to sneak crazy low rate into Service Agreement
Thread poster: Taylor Kirk

Taylor Kirk  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:48
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Oct 4, 2010

Hello all,

I recently responded to a unilateral request for rates and resume etc., and sent them. The project coordinator responded saying great, everything looks good, please do this sample. I did the sample and was then sent papers to fill out, as usual. I printed the Service Agreement and looked over it, and the rate stated was $.03 per source word, which is so far from my quoted rate as to clearly be a typo. However, after contacting him, he replied that it was not, and that his cap rate was $.03 per source word for Spanish to English translation.

I am angry that he was fully aware of my rate, yet still got me to do a sample and nearly send all the paperwork. In all of our email correspondence, my rate was in the subject line (from my original quote email). He never mentioned anything about his rate of $.03 per source word. That's why I have included this complaint in the scam section. It was extremely deceptive.

Questions:

1) This service provider and the PM are not on the Blue Board. Am I allowed to give their details here in the forum? I really, really want to, since the company solicited info and a quote from me, and I'd like for translators to know not to respond to this guy.

2) Has this happened to anyone else, being given a ridiculous rate AFTER quoting your rate and doing samples?

Happy week to all,
Taylor


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4leavedClover  Identity Verified
Bulgaria
Local time: 22:48
English to Bulgarian
+ ...
It has happened to me, too Oct 4, 2010

And usually AFTER quoting my rates and doing the sample. Frankly I am tired of doing test translations and being offered almost nothing for my service after that. I used to think these were only "yellow" agencies but recently I did quite a difficult test translation for a seriously looking agency (from my country) and the result was an offer which was way below my lowest rates. Since one cannot make a living on such rates, I'd rather spend my time doing something else. You live and learn

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philgoddard
United States
Member (2009)
German to English
+ ...
. Oct 4, 2010

You should definitely do a BlueBoard entry - after all, it's not necessarily about their payment habits, but about the likelihood of your working with them again, which in your case is zero.

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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:48
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
How to avoid this problem Oct 4, 2010

In my experience it is not enough to include the rate in your email subject, on your resume or profile page. Some agencies/PMs just don't read it.
I never do a test translation unless the requester positively confirms that my normal rates are within his "budget", in other words, they are willing to pay that rate if the test is accepted. I state this very clearly when they request a test.
If I don't get a reply, or they say "we will discuss rates after the test" or give me some other wishy-washy reply, such as "I think we will come to an agreement" without clear confirmation that my rates are in the ballpark, I just don't do their test. End of story.

As to philgoddard's comment:
Please remember you can only enter a Blue Board comment if you actually worked for the client. Doing an unpaid test, or having preliminary negotiations, discussions with them is not enough.

Katalin


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Taylor Kirk  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 14:48
Portuguese to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Learned a Lesson Oct 5, 2010

So this one is for the books I guess. Since I can't post on the Blue Board I suppose others just have to use their best judgment if they receive correspondence from this guy.

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Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:48
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
You can inform people via private email, if they ask Oct 5, 2010

If people reading this thread contact you, I guess you can tell them who this person is.

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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:48
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I never do test translations Oct 5, 2010

I have never done a test translation in 18 years! The only exception is for a long-time client who requests a free test translation to bid on a specific project.

Secondly, I never work without a purchase order. Therefore, even if I signed this crazy agreement, I would have caught the low-rate before starting the job.

If people want to work for .03 a word, let them. They will never advance in life.



[Edited at 2010-10-05 02:02 GMT]


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Company tried to sneak crazy low rate into Service Agreement

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