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I think this client is getting work done for free

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Community Guru
Douglas Michael M Member Since: May 22, 2015
11 of 86

@Preston H wrote:

 

....We should be thrilled to see every sincere job post from clients who intend to hire people and pay them.

 

Horrible English languages skills are welcome from clients hiring editors and writers....

 

Poorly written job posts are not something I see as a genuine problem, because you can ignore them and let a different type of contractor work with the client. With experience, I think contractors can learn to discern between scammers and clients who don't know how to write good job descriptions.


continuing OT: 

 

Preston and Marcia,

 

For a writer/editor, it's a bit more complex than that.

 

English is a horribly difficult language. Its enormous globe-spanning, majority-Romance vocabulary has been shoehorned into a Germanic grammatical structure—a mix further complicated by well-intentioned and ignorant "reformers" from the time of Shakespeare through the 19th century who burdened English with further arbitrary rules and exceptions in misguided attempts to resolve some of its difficulties.

 

Given that—combined the language's post-imperial status as the lingua franca of the scientific world, much of the academic world, and much of Europe and Africa—yes, there are any number of reasons why perfectly legitimate and desirable clients might post RFPs in imperfect and I will allow (with reservations) even "horrible" English.

 

English mistakes made by even sophisticated users who acquired the language past childhood are readily recognizable and easy to account for in an RFP and correct in a text. The red flags typically come from native speakers:

  • those whose errors are so careless as to indicate (and likely be accompanied by) careless thought patterns that are going to be devilishly difficult to render coherent
  • those who toss out misused polysyllables and unrecognized clichés like so much confetti in an attempt to appear more sophisticated users of English than they are, and who expect their prose to come back even more highfalutin—when what it needs is a good scrubbing with an editorial wire brush
  • the slightly-better-miseducated version of the last group: fusspots who will argue over every point of usage, typically in the wrong direction, based on dubious authority

Can you get work from these people? Yes, if you can stomach it. For my part: Life is too short.

 

As you say, Preston, I can and do ignore such posts. My point is that evaluation of a prospect's ability to write an RFP goes beyond weeding out scammers. We should all be so lucky as to be able to also weed out the PITAs.

 

Best to all,

Michael

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Community Guru
Joachim M Member Since: Mar 23, 2015
12 of 86

There's another one:

 

English to German translation of 40 Articles on the financial market

 

Upon receipt of the proposal he quickly sends one of the articles as a "test" translation. As soon as one insists on him awarding a job for this all communication ends. At the time of writing he already has 11 proposals and, I assume, 5-6 translated articles.

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There are also other attempts to get free work. One of them I have experienced today. Since yesterday I have been in touch with a client on regard of a PR job (small budget). I have wasted my time for all conversation because in the end after the agreed budget had been funded, surprisingly two additional letters appeared to be amended as well. I have responded that I will not provide free work and suggested an additional budget for this work. No response. After nearly two hours passed I declined the offer, the budget funded already will be rewarded to the client. 

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Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
14 of 86

lol It's Sunday and you only waited 2 hours for a reply?  The customer already funded, so you probably could have worked that out.

 

I think you shot yourself in the foot on that one. 

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@Jennifer M wrote:

lol It's Sunday and you only waited 2 hours for a reply?  The customer already funded, so you probably could have worked that out.

 

I think you shot yourself in the foot on that one. 


It was an urgent job that had to be delivered tomorrow and I had to start it today. 

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Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
16 of 86

Oh, I see.

 

I learned to stay away from the urgent people for writing. Too much stress especially for the weekend. And most of my urgent invites are people looking for someone to do their school work.

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@Jennifer M wrote:

Oh, I see.

 

I learned to stay away from the urgent people for writing. Too much stress especially for the weekend. And most of my urgent invites are people looking for someone to do their school work.


Yes, sometimes these urgent jobs are strange and not at all urgent. In general if I have time and somebody needs something urgently I try to help.

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Joachim M Member Since: Mar 23, 2015
18 of 86

@Jennifer M wrote:

Oh, I see.

 

I learned to stay away from the urgent people for writing. Too much stress especially for the weekend. And most of my urgent invites are people looking for someone to do their school work.


How did one guy phrase it: Your lack of planning ahead is not my emergency. 

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Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
19 of 86

Margarete,

 

Was that by any chance a Spanish client? Selling rugs?

 

Edit: Jennifer, if it was indeed the same client - the deadline was tonight CET.

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@Ela K wrote:

Margarete,

 

Was that by any chance a Spanish client? Selling rugs?

 

Edit: Jennifer, if it was indeed the same client - the deadline was tonight CET.


Yes, I had prolonged the delivery date to Monday. 

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