"Big job frenzy" -> Update

The "Big job frenzy" continues! On and on and on and ...
By now everybody is not only in a frenzy, but also desperate.

Every day I am getting messages from all over the world, ALL translator
sites list an unending stream of "job offers" pertaining to this thing,
AND ... everybody is offering peanuts as payment.
Since most of those people are NOT going to meet the deadline, by now everybody is getting desperate and I get phone calls almost everyday also from all over the world.
Again offering peanuts at first, but when I say no, the offer switches to "we pay you whatever you want".
Now, THAT is very fishy!

One of the first messages came from the giant slave market "Transperfect". During one of the many phone calls I received from TP, the person on the other end said: "TransPerfect is the ONLY allowed/authorized to work on this project".
If that is/were true, how come I am getting millions of messages from all sort of companies? Only one of those company mentioned, that is is a "member of the TransPerfect family" (sounds like "mafia").

Most of the companies located in India, China, Arab countries, South America etc. started by offering 0.03 USD/word. Now that they find themselves in trouble meeting the deadline(s), the offer suddenly jumps by 100% to 0.06 USD/word, which is still only 50% of a half-way decent offer for orthodox language combinations like English/German, French/English etc.
The "whatever you want" thing happened through a conversation over the phone. A call from a company in Egypt. They first offered 0.07 USD. I said no. Next offer was 0.08 USD. But when I still said no, the person offered: "we pay you whatever you want".

Maybe I not getting this right, but somebody (everybody?) seems to be not telling the truth. If they are not explicitly "lying, they still apparently are trying to coax translators in doing their work for peanuts and withholding "what is right" as a last resort measure.

I don't know about everybody else, but I have the greatest problems recognizing this as "honest work". To me it looks much more like an attempt at deceiving / cheating the translators ...



Japanese-English glossary

Three years ago I posted the below text on an acupuncture forum (http://acmac.net/forum/), where it has been viewed about 300 times ... although nobody is responding ...

Maybe it can be seen from my profile, that I am apart from being a (German) acupuncturist practicing for 30 years in Japan also a translator.

During my translation work, I occasionally also get work related to oriental medicine. Here comes the problem then.
To the best of my knowledge (I did a rather extensive search), there is only one VERY little Japanese-English Dictionary of oriental medicine.

So, during translation work I do rely on several "standard" Chinese-English dictionaries and other source. If I find something that suits the context, as well as my interpretation of the matter, I note that term in a spread sheet. Including items like:
-> Chinese characters / Japanese reading in Kana / romanized Japanese reading / English translation / alternative translation / romanized Chinese reading / links (if any) / pictures (if any) / comments / discussion.
(I am thinking of adding German translations too)

My question / request:
Are there any people on this list that speak/write Japanese, who might be willing to help me by contributing a few possible terms?

Wordwide everybody tends to believe that Chinese acupuncture (or oriental medicine in a wider sense) is the one and only "authentic" branch in this field of knowledge. However, it is common knowledge and need not to be detailed here, that in China EVERY piece of information is censored. There is absolutely no reason to assume, that oriental medicine is an exception.
If the world then has access to only one (permissible) interpretation, it very much restricts its horizon.
Here in Japan nobody (I mean of people in power and with influence) really gives a "r**ts a**" about oriental medicine. That precisely provides for real freedom of speech. And given the fact, that there is a 1500-year history of oriental medicine here, the Japanese have quit a bit to say, that differs from the Chinese points of view.
Even with basic concepts like yin and yang, I am always under the impression, that interpretations vary. Therefore the use of Chinese-English dictionaries does not provide satisfactory results when translating Japanese material.

* Material: the Japanese have a funny way of collecting all sorts of "material". To the best of my knowledge (again), the largest collection of Buddhist sripts is found in Japan, the largest character dictionary of the world has been edited by a Japanese and is standard issue in every library. I would have to check, how these superlatives read in correlation to classic oriental medical scripts, but I would not be surprised, if they have here a larger collection .....
And if they do, you could be rather sure, that those not replicas modified to suit communist party guidelines.

I would like to help make some of these materials available to the world. The Japanese themselves are apparently not very keen to do so.
And if anybody could help me out with hints at possible translation (I can provide the file I made so far), this could be a first step.
I also have a lot of fancy ideas (dreams) about other = further aspects, but maybe I should not get ahead of myself.

Thank you.
Thomas Blasejewicz




今何年も表計算ソフトで作業を進めている。今初めて知人、学会、出版社等に声を掛けてご協力を求めた。 声を掛けている人はほぼ例外なく首傾げて「これは難しい」と答えている。決して簡単だと思っていないが、難しいから最初から挑戦しない事私は余り腑に落ちない。



マイクロソフト マフィア



問題は「代用品」は "ない" のだ。Macも同じスタイルで年中「更新/アップグレード」に伴って大金を要求する。Linux はフリー(自由)だが、どうもコンピューター科学の専門家でないとなかなか使えない・・・(私はもう何年間試しているが。。難しい)


English ...

I don't know about you, but to me the following seems a little strange. Am I alone with this feeling?

"Hello friends i have japanese to eng projectof 3 lakh wrds the project is for 15 days so i need multiple translators who can translated atleast 3[HIDDEN] wrds per day..this is a big project so lowest proposal will be given prefrence ..please send me ur cv with per eng word on"

First of all, I had to look up "lakh" in the dictionary:
Definition of LAKH
1:  one hundred thousand <50 lakhs of rupees
2:  a great number
— lakh adjective
Origin of LAKH: Hindi & Urdu lākh / First Known Use: 1599

The all those irregular spellings ... could it be, that the author (a project manager at a big translation company) does not know? Do the translations done by that agency maybe look similar?

"wrds" - What exactly is gained by omitting a single character?
"i" - indicates the author is "humble" ??
"ur" - this change from "your" must also be of some strategic value I just fail to see ...

Maybe these people have been studying with Linus ...

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Excellent ...

Time and again these excellent messages alight in my mailbox:
On 3/18 a message is posted on translator websites, saying:
"Deadline- 20th Mar / Please let us know only if you are available. I want to assign the file to one who have excellent knowledge of the domain."

I do ask: ".. do you also offer excellent rates?"

The answer is: "Surely everyone wants to work on excellent rates. I cannot force anyone to work for us until unless I am offering him expected rates."

When I state the rate Japanese companies pay me:
The best we can offer is USD 0.04/word of translation and USD 6/hour for review. I know it is way below to your rate but hope you can understand the existing market rates."

Natually, on 3/20 (the deadline!) the same post appears again.
Funny, could it possibly be, that some people do not want to work for peanuts? Unimaginable!



"Big job" frenzy

Probably EVERYBODY got this:
"...translating approximately 30 MILLION words of Japanese into ENGLISH for an important business matter." (since this is Jap-Eng, the proper expression would be CHARACTERS and not words!)

I got the same message from a whole series of translation agencies, some of which mention a deadline, others don't. Those that do, say something like "until the end of the month = 2-3 weeks.

Well, 30 million Japanese characters correspond to approximately 75,000 (Japanese standard pages, or 5000 pages a day. That definitely IS a big job. No wonder that one single agency cannot handle this volume and everybody, with reference to the expression "feeding frenzy", is joining into this "big job frenzy".

Naturally (??!??), everybody is asking for the so-called "best rates", which are specified by some of those frenzied companies as 0.02-0.03 USD/target word. The other companies apparenty wait for translators to voluntarily OFFER to work for peanuts. Forget for a moment, that I live in Japan, even in Europe for a common language pair like German-English, a "normal/acceptable" rate is somewhere around 0.10 USD. For a more exotic language combination like Japanese-English, rates SHOULD be higher. In particular for RUSH jobs.

One of the agencies was careless enough to mention that the material is "financial documentation" from Nomura Securities International, Inc.
Isn't that nice.
THAT corporate giant loves to steal (naturally they call it differently!) billions of dollars each year from its clients.
Another company mentioned merge between other very big (=rich) companies (I forgot the names now).
Other people mentioned the "merger of two big corporations" (also very rich companies, but I forgot the names)
Do they really NEED to be so greedy as to employ thousands of slaves that are paid in peanuts? Probably the majority of the translators working on this "job" are neither native speakers (the client officially accepts this!) nor really experts.
I think it is rather obvious, in what kind of documentation this will result ...

Some of the translator sites, where these offers are posted, also show the number of bid the poster received. If THAT is any indication of the real situation ... then they will never make it!

I would really like to have this thing past. The FLOOD of offers/questions/requests of emails swamping my mailbox is really annoying (to put it mildly).

One of my grandfather's favorite sayings was“Use the right tool for the job”
―common-sense advice that applies to a wide range of situations.
Unfortunately, as Mark Twain observed, common sense isn't very common!
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