"Complete our Post MT translation on Google TT"... "um, no thanks"
Thread poster: DJHartmann

DJHartmann  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2014)
Thai to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
Feb 9, 2016

"The translation will be done in the Google Translator Toolkit. You will have to edit the machine translated text so that the final text is a ready-to-publish, high quality translation."

At a rate of 0.05 Euros per word.

My response (I don't expect to hear back from them):

"I’m sorry, but I do not accept ‘Post MT' translation jobs. I do not recognise Google Translator Toolkit as a professional translation platform.

I would be happy to help you with this for $0.xx per target word (English), which I will complete using my own CAT software.

Looking forward to hearing back from you."

I've stated again and again that we all need to boycott Post MT jobs!

Best regards,

DJH

[Edited at 2016-02-09 15:57 GMT]


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Ed Ashley  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:25
Member (2015)
French to English
+ ...
I've seen it from both sides Feb 9, 2016

I once went for a job interview with a small company that had a really nice atmosphere and a good team of linguists. They were looking to expand, potentially taking me on as a project manager. Then out of the blue they had to shelve my application after losing a major contract. They did contact me again a while later when things had picked up again, but I had moved on. Anyway (I ramble), since then the only freelance contact I've had with them has been requests of this very kind: post-editing machine translations. I haven't taken on any of them. It surprised me because they seemed like a professional, quality-focused outfit. I think that big customer they lost might have re-surfaced and used their purchasing power to drive down prices to the point where it was no longer viable to use actual translators. Maybe they should have said no, but if you're a small business and you've got staff to pay, you're between a rock and a hard place, at least until you find better behaved customers!

But yes, as a freelancer, I am with you. I enjoy the creative process of translation, whereas I can't imagine anybody actually enjoying post-editing. But there will probably always be people willing to do it, perhaps because they too need to pay the bills. Nevertheless, it's a pretty sad state of affairs.


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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:25
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Post editing Feb 9, 2016

Buying and selling "post-edited" translation (at a reduced rate) is like buying and selling cubic zirconia jewelry. At first glance the product looks just like a diamond. It's only after looking closely that you discover that the cheap diamond you bought is worth next to nothing.

Agencies selling "post-edited" work are under the delusion that their "translators" will take the time to spin MT spaghetti into proverbial gold, but in reality, they are not being paid enough to care, or being paid enough to read the source document thoroughly.

MT can be used as a tool if you want (and provided no confidentiality obligations are breached), but it is by no means a justification for any reduction in rates.

Cost savings for PeMT are a marketing gimmick.

The problem is that to the untrained eye, a machine translation looks 85% done and they think all we need to do is fix the remaining 15%. However, that supposed 15% represents 90% of the work involved in translation.


[Edited at 2016-02-09 20:16 GMT]


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Serena Basili  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 08:25
English to Italian
+ ...
Pure poetry! Feb 9, 2016

LegalTransform wrote:

Buying and selling "post-edited" translation (at a reduced rate) is like buying and selling cubic zirconia jewelry. At first glance the product looks just like a diamond. It's only after looking closely that you discover that the cheap diamond you bought is worth next to nothing.



Couldn't have said it in a better way!


I also never accept post-editing jobs since I had the chance to "check" a very short post-edited translation from Italian into English for a friend of mine a couple of years ago. It actually took me more time to rewrite it in a proper manner that could seem at least written by someone with a decent grasp of English than to translate it from scratch - which is what I eventually did.


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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 14:25
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
Continuing movement Feb 10, 2016

DJHartmann wrote:

"I’m sorry, but I do not accept ‘Post MT' translation jobs. I do not recognise Google Translator Toolkit as a professional translation platform.

I would be happy to help you with this for $0.xx per target word (English), which I will complete using my own CAT software.

Looking forward to hearing back from you."



The translator market structure is rather non-interactive. It means that we have less bargaining power against agencies who swiftly move to lower costs and higher efficiency. MT is a mandatory tool for this mission. Many translators hate it but I ask myself "Can I still resist the technological progress on the translation world?." Post-editing quality standards are now being exploited and implemented here and there.

Soonthon L.


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Mirko Mainardi  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 08:25
Member
English to Italian
+ ...
True Feb 10, 2016

Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.) wrote:

DJHartmann wrote:

"I’m sorry, but I do not accept ‘Post MT' translation jobs. I do not recognise Google Translator Toolkit as a professional translation platform.

I would be happy to help you with this for $0.xx per target word (English), which I will complete using my own CAT software.

Looking forward to hearing back from you."



The translator market structure is rather non-interactive. It means that we have less bargaining power against agencies who swiftly move to lower costs and higher efficiency. MT is a mandatory tool for this mission. Many translators hate it but I ask myself "Can I still resist the technological progress on the translation world?." Post-editing quality standards are now being exploited and implemented here and there.

Soonthon L.


Sadly, that seems to be the case... and I guess that, with software and hardware continuously improving, things will be moving more and more in this direction in the very near future.

Just yesterday I received a similar offer from an agency (no GTT, though...). In that case the project involved both "human translation" (yes, we're at a point where this needs to be specified... It's that bad) and MT-PE of the same source texts, in order to help them improve their MT engine and make it "learn"...

To me, this sounds like shooting yourself in the foot, as a translator, but I'm sure this is happening all across the board as we speak...


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Serena Basili  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 08:25
English to Italian
+ ...
Mirko, that's the point! Feb 10, 2016

Mirko Mainardi wrote:

Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.) wrote:

DJHartmann wrote:

"I’m sorry, but I do not accept ‘Post MT' translation jobs. I do not recognise Google Translator Toolkit as a professional translation platform.

I would be happy to help you with this for $0.xx per target word (English), which I will complete using my own CAT software.

Looking forward to hearing back from you."



The translator market structure is rather non-interactive. It means that we have less bargaining power against agencies who swiftly move to lower costs and higher efficiency. MT is a mandatory tool for this mission. Many translators hate it but I ask myself "Can I still resist the technological progress on the translation world?." Post-editing quality standards are now being exploited and implemented here and there.

Soonthon L.


To me, this sounds like shooting yourself in the foot, as a translator, but I'm sure this is happening all across the board as we speak...


And as professionals we all should reject similar offers, because we MUST protect our business, skills, expertises, professionality and years of efforts.
MT is getting better just because of humans, it can't get better by itself.

[Edited at 2016-02-10 10:20 GMT]


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Texte Style
Local time: 08:25
French to English
in a nutshell Feb 10, 2016

LegalTransform wrote:

Cost savings for PeMT are a marketing gimmick.

The problem is that to the untrained eye, a machine translation looks 85% done and they think all we need to do is fix the remaining 15%. However, that supposed 15% represents 90% of the work involved in translation.


[Edited at 2016-02-09 20:16 GMT]


And the mistakes are all the more difficult to hunt down and ferret out and tidy up! Mistakes made by computers are so weird. There are no spelling mistakes or other tell-tale signs that you'd spot in a text produced by a poor human translator. These little signs ring a warning bell, so you pay more attention. With MT mistakes just don't have any "human" logic to the point that I don't get any feel for what's needed and I just end up wanting to re-write the lot.


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Gabriele Demuth  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:25
Member (2014)
English to German
Suggestion Feb 10, 2016

Serena Basili wrote:

I also never accept post-editing jobs since I had the chance to "check" a very short post-edited translation from Italian into English for a friend of mine a couple of years ago. It actually took me more time to rewrite it in a proper manner that could seem at least written by someone with a decent grasp of English than to translate it from scratch - which is what I eventually did.


I haven't done it before because I think it would be hard and boring work trying to edit, and I would probably resort to deleting the segment and retyping it anyway. However, as it is more work and if the client really wanted that done you could offer a higher translation rate to cover the extra effort this requires.

However, I have seen lists of words where MT does make sense.


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DJHartmann  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2014)
Thai to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
TOPIC STARTER
Ideal for us, but they're cheapskates Feb 10, 2016

Gabriele Demuth wrote:

If the client really wanted that done you could offer a higher translation rate to cover the extra effort this requires.



Ideally yes, or offer a rate per hour. But this defeats the purpose of the client using MT in the first place. They want it done for as cheap as possible.

There are some forms of news now written by computers. These include sports scores, weather updates and other things that offer pure facts. There may be a place in the market for MT to cover such things as this. As soon as the clients try to MT other forms of prose, this is when problems arise. If only there were agreed upon rules or standards in our industry regulating this!!!!


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DJHartmann  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2014)
Thai to English
+ ...

MODERATOR
TOPIC STARTER
Food for thought Feb 10, 2016

There are some very interesting points made here by Christelle Maignan (Translators' Coach): http://coachingfortranslators.com/2015/05/10/what-does-the-future-hold-for-translators/

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