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That's killing new freelancers!

afifield
Community Guru
Amanda F Member Since: Aug 8, 2015
11 of 95

I worked up my profile on here while I waited for my elance to be transferred over. On elance, I started as someone who had multiple jobs, freelancing at the same time, and I just worked and worked! I trained myself more and more and practiced my design hours and hours in everyday to keep up with the ever-changing design world, even with having 10 years of experience! Now I am a full time freelancer and I enjoy it always! You know what, I am still always learning too because you need to keep doing it with what I do! 

 

I still had to work for it to get the rising star and top rated when I transferred from elance. Hard work making proposals, doing your work when you get it well, and more all contribute to becoming top rated and getting more jobs. Many clients know that everyone starts somewhere, and your best bet is to have some experience at first and show it off on your profile to get work at the rate you want. I like Mary's quote on the featured contributor slider because it is so true, and her post is 100% right as well as others who are telling you. Not saying you don't have the skill or experience, but you need to show clients you have experience/skill and you will get more work at the rate you want. One big thing is keep adjusting your profile so it's great, look at good examples of profiles even, and then bid and keep going for it, tweak your proposal if it isn't working good, and you will get there eventually. You have to work hard and smart to be a freelancer. 

researchediting
Community Guru
Douglas Michael M Member Since: May 22, 2015
12 of 95

@Baris A wrote:

Why don't you translate from French to Arabic and vice versa? Maybe that's why.


Baris,

 

Because translation doesn't work like that.

Why are you advising a stranger on what services they should be offering?

Best,

Michael

renata101
Community Guru
Renata S Member Since: Jun 10, 2014
13 of 95

@Baris A wrote:

Why don't you translate from French to Arabic and vice versa? Maybe that's why.


I think this statement needs to be qualified. 

The professional certified translators I know all tell me that translating into a language other than your native language is not considered best practice, and people are not told not to do this. There are probably some exceptions to this, such people who have received schooling in a second language at a young age (elementary school) while speaking their native language at home, but generally, it's not best practice to translate into an adopted language that you've learned later in life. Also, there may be cases in which the client knows about it up front and doesn't really mind.

The problem is that if you suggest you can translate both ways, clients who don't have a lot of experience with translators are likely to assume that it's possible for the translator to deliver native level proficiency in both directions. If you can't deliver that, it's not best practice to advertise it since it's misleading to clients.






barada00
Community Guru
Baris A Member Since: Mar 15, 2017
14 of 95

@Renata S wrote:

@Baris A wrote:

Why don't you translate from French to Arabic and vice versa? Maybe that's why.



The problem is that if you suggest you can translate both ways, clients who don't have a lot of experience with translators are likely to assume that it's possible for the translator to deliver native level proficiency in both directions. If you can't deliver that, it's not best practice to advertise it since it's misleading to clients.




 

Oh man, why? And I'm not asking why translation should be made to native language here. OK, here is the explanation of that post:

 

The OP's native language was/is not English or French. When I posted that, in his profile it was stated that he was translating from Arabic to English, English to French and French to Arabic or something like that. After I wrote that they changed it in their profile. I was not being serious and after it lost its connection my message stood there like a sore thumb. I'm sorry to have caused this confusion.

renata101
Community Guru
Renata S Member Since: Jun 10, 2014
15 of 95

@Baris A wrote:

@Renata S wrote:

@Baris A wrote:

Why don't you translate from French to Arabic and vice versa? Maybe that's why.



The problem is that if you suggest you can translate both ways, clients who don't have a lot of experience with translators are likely to assume that it's possible for the translator to deliver native level proficiency in both directions. If you can't deliver that, it's not best practice to advertise it since it's misleading to clients.




 

Oh man, why? And I'm not asking why translation should be made to native language here. OK, here is the explanation of that post:

 

The OP's native language was/is not English or French. When I posted that, in his profile it was stated that he was translating from Arabic to English, English to French and French to Arabic or something like that. After I wrote that they changed it in their profile. I was not being serious and after it lost its connection my message stood there like a sore thumb. I'm sorry to have caused this confusion.


Okay. I just saw it, and as a general statement, it concerned me.  You might have gotten too much feedback on this one already. I'm not necessarily hitting you with a big stick... But yeah, that's actually what I'm doing.... 

I've seen a lot of people offering translation in both directions. Sometimes I'm hired to clean up English langauge messes that are caused by things people who offer services in both directions -- not pleasant for clients and not much fun for me either because clients feel that I should work for less because they've already paid to have the job badly done the first time. Sometimes it's just clients Google Translating it themselves. Actually, I got smarter about not taking these kinds of jobs because they essentially need to be retranslated -- it often takes as much or more time to "fix" a bad translation than it did to translate it badly the first time.

Although, I've noticed a few people who post on the forum who are not native English speakers but who could probably pull this off, the idea I would like to get across is that realisitically, they are few and far between. People are often overly confident about their proficiency. I live in a place where a lot of people claim to be fluently bilingual but are noticeable weaker in one language or the other... In the worst case scenarios, they're even marginal in both. So people often have a kind of overconfidence about their language capabilities.

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
16 of 95

I generally agree with Renata that "in general" translators should translate into their native language. Full Stop. It's a rule of thumb that does have its exceptions, but generally holds true.

 

The other thing that really irks me frequently is the idea that being more or less fluent in two or more languages makes a person a translator. I have said this many times but I'll say it again because it is true:

 

"Owning a scalpel does not make me a surgeon any more than being more or less fluent in two languages makes a person a translator... (or a writer in either, for that matter!)"

 

Languages are all but tools. Owning tools does not a craftsman make Smiley Wink

elastella
Community Guru
Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
17 of 95

@Renata

 

I hear you.

And to add to what you've said: you can be as proficient as you like - but that still does not make you an editor or a translator.

 

I have lost legal translation jobs to software engineers and people barely out of high school. Or translators with no legal background - almost as bad.

And like you I know which projects ("quick proofreading of translation") not to take on anymore...

millermelanie
Community Guru
Melanie M Member Since: Jul 13, 2016
18 of 95

Well, every single one of us started here with nothing, zip, nada.  Some of us rose to the top like cream, and some haven't gotten out of the gate yet.  (How's that for a mixed metaphor?  Sorry, I've been writing since early this morning, and I'm all tapped out.)  

 

Anyway, I spent the first few days here practicing several different styles of proposals and reworking my profile, adding to my portfolio, etc.  I landed my first job pretty quickly, and they have been steadily rolling in ever since. Admittedly, I am a part-timer here; if I were trying to pay ALL my bills with this gig, I'd be in trouble.  Most of the particular niches I write for, however, aren't big pay-outs (non-profits, etc.)  Nevertheless, I have plenty to keep me busy and turn down almost as many jobs as I accept.

 

What I'm saying is, you've got to work this thing to make it work for you.  You can't just set up a profile, write a few proposals, and sit back and wait for the clients to beat a path to your door.  Way too much competition here for that. You have to beat the path for them, make them WANT you, make yourself MEMORABLE.  Study examples of good profiles and proposals and emulate them, build your portfolio, etc.  Make a job out of trying to get a job.  I focused just as diligently and professionally on trying to get my first job here as I now do on actually DOING a job.  You gotta WANT this thing!  Good luck!

tirmizi_zeeshan
Community Leader
Zeeshan T Member Since: Jul 4, 2016
19 of 95

I do not agree with this. When I made my account, I got invitation for a job from "Upwork enterprise client." I was fairly new with no job history and rising talent badge. I somehow managed to complete half of the target mentioned by client and managed to get a positive rating. I think clients don't trust fairly new freelancers easily but if you make a good profile, you'll get some job invitations. Make sure to add all languages you know and your proficiency with that and also take some tests.

"Not a minor"
inspire77
Ace Contributor
Lahcen S Member Since: Jun 19, 2017
20 of 95

Thank you everyone.

Yes, I know that we all start from zero. I understand this. My point is, there are new freelancers who are as "top-rated" and "rising talent" freelancers in the matter of experience and skills, but since they have no work history or badges on Upwork they got ignored intentionally or not.

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