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Who makes an offer like this?
Thread poster: George Trail

George Trail  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:57
Member (2009)
French to English
+ ...
Jun 28, 2013

I got this email containing a job offer (supposedly) which I simply couldn't believe...


"I hope you're doing fine, Can you work on 45k project at a total
rate of 1700 USD, deadline is 2nd of July.

We could take two or three translators to work together as a
team.

Add me to your skype please for fast communication.
Thank you
[Name and agency]"


 

LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:57
Russian to English
+ ...
There is nothing strange about this -- these days Jun 28, 2013

a total Theatre of the Absurd. I just wonder when these companies will be forced to close down due to the type of work they are doing. Some really decided that it is a great business to MT text or have it translated by a very cheap, unqualified translator, and then pay for editing -- the type of editing where you almost have to retranslate the whole text. Business thinking does not always work -- maybe in sales, but not necessarily in the more artistic and scientific fields.

As to this offer -- it will take about 3 weeks of full time work, and it is worth approximately $6,000 (or more).

[Edited at 2013-06-28 16:51 GMT]


 

Orrin Cummins  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 16:57
Japanese to English
+ ...
It's the nature of the work, perhaps? Jun 28, 2013

I think one reason translation is like this is because it happens quite often that the end client does not speak the target language, and therefore has no idea of the quality. Only much later (if at all) would they ever find out, from a native speaker or otherwise fluent person, how terrible the translation actually is. By that point in time, the unscrupulous agency has already made their 500%+ markup, so what do they care - most times they can still be found working the same con to a new batch of unsuspecting clients. That is, if the agency hasn't self-imploded and been reborn into a new translation company with a new name (but the same old business practices) like a disease-ridden phoenix rising from the ashes to plague mankind once more.

In some other industries, shoddy workmanship is immediately apparent to everyone. There are no language barriers to hide ineptitude.


 

LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:57
Russian to English
+ ...
This is not the nature of the work, for sure. Jun 28, 2013

This is the misunderstanding what translation is about and what it requires and a total disrespect for translators. If you don't know what you are doing -- don't do it. If some agencies do not know what translation is about let them change their profile and start trading fish, or something like that.

 

Nicole Coesel  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:57
Member (2012)
Dutch to English
+ ...
I received the same "offer" Jun 28, 2013

and subsequently immediately deleted it after seeing the offering country. No offence - yet a professional, let alone native spreaker performing this kind of translation volume is, in my book and by now, a no-go and therefore immediately discarted to the Trash Department.

I am less happy with the fact that ProZ allows for these kind of "offers" to appear at all since they do bring a certain amount of destruction to the market.

I am serious about what I do and how I do it, and therefore these "offerings" are not even considered to be a an option.

However, given the current economic circumstances, I do understand the willingnes of some individuals to accept this kind of "proposal". They are free to accept, just as I am free to refuse to work for such a fee and try maintaining a certain level to our profession.

I do hope readers understand.

Kind regards,
Nicole.



[Edited at 2013-06-28 17:42 GMT]


 

Orrin Cummins  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 16:57
Japanese to English
+ ...
Preaching to the choir Jun 28, 2013

LilianBNekipelo wrote:

This is the misunderstanding what translation is about and what it requires and a total disrespect for translators. If you don't know what you are doing -- don't do it. If some agencies do not know what translation is about let them change their profile and start trading fish, or something like that.


Tell it to the agencies, not me. I am a freelance translator and I take great pride in my work. I have no impact on what anyone else does, though.


 

Anett Lindner
Germany
English to German
Just an idea from Darth Translator Jun 28, 2013

... why not open a fake email address, accept the job and then disappear forever.

This would be a complementary response to their approach to business though not a very decent act or something I d ever recommend. But the thought of it makes me smile.

KR

Anett


 

LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:57
Russian to English
+ ...
There is nothing wrong with such offers being allowed here Jun 28, 2013

At least we know this way that such offers exist and there is something to make fun of.

The people who accept those jobs probably put it through MT and then change their names and disappear after they receive the payment.


 

LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:57
Russian to English
+ ...
Not to you. Jun 28, 2013

Orrin Cummins wrote:

LilianBNekipelo wrote:

This is the misunderstanding what translation is about and what it requires and a total disrespect for translators. If you don't know what you are doing -- don't do it. If some agencies do not know what translation is about let them change their profile and start trading fish, or something like that.


Tell it to the agencies, not me. I am a freelance translator and I take great pride in my work. I have no impact on what anyone else does, though.


It was not addressed to you personally, just a response to your post.


 

Gad Kohenov  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 10:57
English to Hebrew
+ ...
It reminds me Jun 29, 2013

Of a mail I received from someone in Latvia. He "only" wanted me to "read" the translation he did and tell him if its OK. In other words he did a MT (I saw if from the text) and now wanted me to do it again ("proofreading") and for free.
Afther what I answered him I suppose he will not go out of home for a week!
The fact that Proz allow such "offers" if worth than such personal "offers" as the one I receive from time to time.
We are paying members and these "offers" ruin our livelihood. The bid system also is based on "who will be the greater patsy?" Surely not me. I refuse 90% of offers received. If everyone did it, such agencies will be irradicated.
Times are difficult? So what? We still have to pay our bills every month!
Do you want to be volunteers? Do it in an hospital after your work hours.

G.K.


 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:57
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
At what point does this become unacceptable to you? Jun 29, 2013

George Trail wrote:
I got this email containing a job offer (supposedly) which I simply couldn't believe...


Well, your post is no different from many of the other posts about this topic, so let's try to make it a little interesting: tell us at what point would this offer have become an acceptable proposition?

* Are you bothered by the fact that you'll be working with other translators?
* Is the deadline too short for you? If we suppose 15 000 words per translator, what sort of deadline would you find "barely acceptable"?
* Is it the rate that is too low for you? If so, what is the lowest rate that you would have considered, given the stated deadline?
* Or is it the fact that you were requested to use Skype that ticked you off?


 

Isabelle Derson  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:57
English to French
+ ...
Price+ deadline Jun 29, 2013

Samuel Murray wrote:

George Trail wrote:
I got this email containing a job offer (supposedly) which I simply couldn't believe...


Well, your post is no different from many of the other posts about this topic, so let's try to make it a little interesting: tell us at what point would this offer have become an acceptable proposition?

* Are you bothered by the fact that you'll be working with other translators?
* Is the deadline too short for you? If we suppose 15 000 words per translator, what sort of deadline would you find "barely acceptable"?
* Is it the rate that is too low for you? If so, what is the lowest rate that you would have considered, given the stated deadline?
* Or is it the fact that you were requested to use Skype that ticked you off?



I think it's above all the price and then the deadline.


 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 09:57
Member (Apr 2018)
French to English
Darth Translator Jun 29, 2013

EN2DE wrote:


... why not open a fake email address, accept the job and then disappear forever.

This would be a complementary response to their approach to business though not a very decent act or something I d ever recommend. But the thought of it makes me smile.

KR

Anett


LOL Anett that's the best idea I've heard yet for dealing with this sort of agency.

I think it's perfectly feasible provided your address is darth.translator@gmail.com

...I mean, what are the chances you'll ever get paid?


 

Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 09:57
English to Polish
+ ...
+1 Jun 29, 2013

Gad Kohenov wrote:

Do you want to be volunteers? Do it in an hospital after your work hours.

G.K.


Or sign up with TWB or some other NGO, but not commercial, for-profit agencies that work for commercial for-profit clients.


 

Edward Potter  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 09:57
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
It's all good Jun 29, 2013

Both the offer and the protesting are legitimate. This is what price adjustment is all about.

Those who protest publicly might consider a few things. Whether it is true or not, you might be giving the impression that you don't have much work. Or perhaps you may be perceived as someone who is angry or jealous against those who agree to such a price. Such things may not be true, but life isn't always fair.

These low offers serve an important purpose for our industry. Newcomers who have a tough time getting their foot in the door can gain valuable experience from taking these jobs. They will learn customer service, billing, collections, etc. After having done a good job they can ask for a recommendation from their new (albeit low-paying) customer.

Conversely, the offering party will gain experience on what certain prices will bring as regards talent and reliability.

There are many things to be gained (for certain people) by accepting a low paying job.


 
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