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Re: Low Pay for High Quality

Active Member
Karianne K Member Since: Dec 3, 2014
31 of 59

I am a new oDesk user, after 30 applications still no job offer. I also think that the reason why I have not landed a job yet is because of my rate, not because I am new on oDesk. I have 12 years of work experience, created a strong profile on oDesk, took skills tests and created a portfolio.

 

I understand that some people, due to their geographic location (expecially those living in Asian countries) can work for a few dollar per hour, but I am a native Dutch speaker/ translator and you won't find many of those living in Asian countries. So why expect a Dutch translator to work for less than one dollarcent per word??

 

I was tricked by a Dutch client on oDesk, who offered a fixed rate for a translation. The rate was low but I just wanted to land my first job on oDesk so I applied anyway. After doing a test translation she offered me the job but the wordcount turned our to be 4x as high as advertised and she did not want to increase the fixed rate (I am sure that she did not make a mistake with the word count, she did it on purpose!). She also promised to pay for the 450 word test translation but she did not do that either.  

I explained to her why I could not work for the rate she offered (cost of living), but she just answered that "a rate of maximum one dollarcent per word is the going rate on oDesk", end of discussion.

 

My guess is that many freelancers in Europe and the US, who accept jobs for such low rates, are not paying income tax (and I can't really blame them if they don't)........how else can they put bread on the table for such low rates???? 

 

Community Guru
Dianne M Member Since: Jul 25, 2013
32 of 59

@Karriane,

 

what the manipulative client said about 1 cent per word being the maximum going rate at oDesk is not true. Dutch translators are not that easy to find and I'm sure you will find better clients who won't take advantage of you being a newbie here. 

 

I'm currently based in asia and I won't work for 1 cent per word, even for plain writing (I'd rather write for free here at the forum, ha!).

 

IMHO, walking away from such a predator is the best thing to do at the first sign of shadiness (like when the number of words is not the same as advertised). Those kinds of people are a waste of time and the best way to treat them is ignore their job posts until they are ready to pay decently for work.

 

All the best!



❄❄❄ Just A Forum Contributor --- This isn't against forum guidelines ❄❄❄
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Community Guru
Joachim M Member Since: Mar 23, 2015
33 of 59

@Karianne K wrote:

 

I was tricked by a Dutch client on oDesk, who offered a fixed rate for a translation. The rate was low but I just wanted to land my first job on oDesk so I applied anyway. After doing a test translation she offered me the job but the wordcount turned our to be 4x as high as advertised and she did not want to increase the fixed rate (I am sure that she did not make a mistake with the word count, she did it on purpose!). She also promised to pay for the 450 word test translation but she did not do that either.  

 

 


 You are aware that such test translations are a violation of Upwork's Terms of Service?

Active Member
Gabriele D Member Since: Jan 31, 2014
34 of 59

I do not get upset if a client from India posts low rates (although in translation Indian agencies often act as mediators), but what annoys me is, when clients from the UK, US and Switzerland post jobs that work out way below minimum wage and I do not work for minimum wage either.

 

I am sure they would have approched an agency who would charge at least 5 times as much, so why can they not appreciate finding a translator directly, paying him/her an appropriate rate and getting a good job and better customer service along the way?

Active Member
Gabriele D Member Since: Jan 31, 2014
35 of 59

@ Susan - ODesk is not a place where anyone can earn a living, not in a Western country anyway, however, whose fault is that?

 

I admit this is one of the sites I found when considering translation as a career change, I was happy to get some work, I was happy to be able to gain some experience, but after a while I realised that my skills and experience were being used and abused by clients, many from Western countries who probably were quoted three times of what I was prepard to work for and more. I was working many hours, I enjoyed it, but the more I found out about the translation industry, the more I was left with a sour feeling, because at the end of the month I was left with a fraction of what I would need to live or used to earn.

 

The way I and many others in the industry see it is that you should sell your skills for what they are worth (true, there are many translators whose skills are worth no more than machine translation, and that is free). You should charge a reasonalbe fee even if this is a hobby for you because you are poisining the industry and spoiling it for others who are trying to make a living. You do too, or not? What if your employer or main client decided to just pay you $5 per day because he/she can get good work for that elsewhere? You would soon be out of a job because business is business for most. 

 

Also ODesk as a site, their reputation would suffers even more because professionals wouldn't come here (they generally don't anyway, but it would make it worse). 

 

And why not just charge a reasonable rate or what that means here on ODesk? The clients you will get here may actually care a little about quality. Also, few people I don't appreciate some extra cash. Otherwise there might be some Charities who might appreciate your skills and you can feel good about it, instead you are feeding the bottom feeder clients here who are out to get free work. 

Active Member
James A Member Since: Oct 29, 2015
36 of 59

This phenomenon can be simply explained through economics theory terms of supply and demand. 

 

 

In my mind, if all high quality professionals stop rendering services for low prices, the supply will drop and the demand will increase, thus bring prices back up for us.

 

I suggest that upwork implement a 'suggest price' feature to clients to help them be fair (to give the benefit of the doubt for non-abusers).

Ace Contributor
Jonathan David S Member Since: Sep 18, 2015
37 of 59

No that's not completely true.

 

The high quality providers aren't working for peanuts.  They are out seeking real clients. I don't work for peanuts. I get high paying writing gigs, although that's nearly impossible on here.

 

The problem is there are so many clients on here that expect high quality for almost nothing, and they simply aren't realistic. 

 

Most clients on here are just wannapreneurs, basically. They think they can run a successful business by hiring the cheapest people they can find. They all eventually learn it doesn't work that way. And then they come to the REAL providers and pay reasonable rates.

Active Member
Merlina N Member Since: Oct 24, 2015
38 of 59

I am a freelancer and I can say, I am doing a great job and delivered great results every week. Many times, my client appreciates me for the good job. I have evidence on it through chat messages. At start, he ask me to work on $3/hour and said he will test my skills for few weeks and if he is satisfied he will give me a raise. It's been 5 months now, he didn't give me a raise. I am thinking twice if I remind him about the raise. I need this client because of JSS thing. When I applied for the same job, I bid for $4, the client saw in my profile that I am working with $3, he ask me to work with same price. I didn't agree on it because I know I deserve that amount. I'm I forever in that amount?

 

 

 

 

 

Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
39 of 59

@Merlina N wrote:

I am a freelancer and I can say, I am doing a great job and delivered great results every week. Many times, my client appreciates me for the good job. I have evidence on it through chat messages. At start, he ask me to work on $3/hour and said he will test my skills for few weeks and if he is satisfied he will give me a raise. It's been 5 months now, he didn't give me a raise. I am thinking twice if I remind him about the raise. I need this client because of JSS thing. When I applied for the same job, I bid for $4, the client saw in my profile that I am working with $3, he ask me to work with same price. I didn't agree on it because I know I deserve that amount. I'm I forever in that amount?

 

 

 

 

 


 

Probably not. You do link spam, so you're at the bottom of the food chain in the SEO world. The guy making $300/hour is outsourcing low quality links to you. This has never been lucrative except for the person hiring the link spammers. The site(s) will tank from the link spam or it will do nothing because Google will ignore them. So then the site owner is left to clean up your mess (and the guy who hired you).

 

You have a glaring error in your profile where you claim that you know Google's guidelines but you're a link builder. Link builders are not following Google's guidelines. Someone with a hint of knowledge will catch this.

Ace Contributor
Lars S Member Since: Jul 19, 2015
40 of 59

But even though freelancers receive 3-4 usd per hour, we have to think that they should pay tax on it, and perhaps other fees as well. But it does not bother the clients.

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