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having a smattering of attention issues these days...

Community Guru
Hanna N Member Since: Jun 17, 2015
21 of 22

"I still prefer to do a transcript first and then translate - if the translation rate is very good, I might even throw in the transcript for free, or offer a somewhat lower translation rate if they pay for the transcript at my usual rates."


I also prefer to do a transcription first since I want to have easy access to the source material later when I review the translation one more time before sending it off. I honestly do not have enough confidence to start translating directly - wish I did!


I got burned by a translation agency that sent me 57 minutes of audio divided into two recordings. It was one of my first proper transcription-translation jobs, and I was offered 1$ per audio minute -rate. I had earlier told the agency that I would not do medical translations as it was not my field, so when I got the offer on e-mail - Translate an interview from Finnish to English was the title - it being a long audio, I only listened to the first couple of minutes before accepting. It was an interview between two women, and they were both talking very clearly, quality was good, subject seemed to be some new product launching. I accepted. 


What the interview ended up being about (20 minutes into the audio) was biomarkers of heart failure. The product the interview was centered on was a new sort of POC-test related to this. The worst thing was that the interviewer and the interviewed both started using a lot of acronyms that even they themselves were not completely sure of, as 5 minutes of the interview consisted of them wondering if it was BP or BNP or LP or LBP or if this thing without that ending was actually the same thing as that third one. That part of the transcription was an absolute nightmare as I had to keep relistening to it to make absolutely sure what letters they were pronouncing. The speed of the interview went up heavily as well, so the assignment ended up being 23 pages long when typed out - and then I had to get to translating it...


The client of the agency that gave me the job also mixed up two deadlines and when I scraped by to turn the audio back by deadline, I opened my e-mail to 7 messages saying that the translation was late and that I would not be paid for the project. It took me an additional day to forward the agency all the previous communication we had had in regards to the project and for them come to the conclusion that the mess up was not mine. Later I received an QA e-mail from the agency commenting on my unneccessary inclusion of fillerwords (umms etc) in the translation, although at the beginnign of the project I had asked if they wanted a clean translation or fully accurate one and I had been told not to paraphrase anything. The was another unpleasent e-mail exchange. In the end, I was paid my 57 dollars, but those are peanuts compared to the lessons I learned about taking on transcribing jobs. 

Community Guru
Mariska P Member Since: Apr 27, 2015
22 of 22

again. thanks for being candid. 

I think that transcription of subjects I like would be much nicer, so good you mentioned that you have fave subjects. 

interesting about the speech recognition.. i'll have to look into that because i'm not into dangerous things (any longer).

I thought that it would be easy for me to transcribe. I type fast, I type as I hear people talk.. I worked in a call center so I had to type lots of notes and my customers were generally pretty irate so i had  a LOT of typing to do! lol.. I tried a free test online earlier this evening and I kept having to pause the recordings so I know it would be really frustrating but then again it might not be if i try it and keep working at it. I'm one of those people that can handle repetitive things.. up to a point..before i want to gouge my eyes out..   

I also like it because I don't have to worry about a noisy environment as far as actually talking to people. It would be just me and my recording.. so that's kind of attractive. 

anyway, i just got my sennheiser pc 230's that Nikhil recommended and I love them. I'm pretty stoked about them and hopefully I can get some work and make back the money I paid for them. lol.