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!