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Hello!

Is there any way for us to comment on job reviews by senior translators? Often there are points in their comments I do not agree with, or I would like to explain a translation choice (like in a recent review where I was told to check dictionaries while working for a choice the senior translator deemed wrong, something I took some offense to as I do check dictionaries and I take care in considering the word choices.)

Thank you.

10 comments

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    mirko

    Hi,

    You can fill this form, and (hopefully) the ST should get back to you.

    HTH

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    Christoph Rupprecht

    The problem is that yes, the ST gets back to you - but it doesn't really change anything. I've had nothing but problems with the Japanese ST, but there seems to be no way to "review the reviewer". We are stuck with a ST whose grasp of the Japanese language is not what it should be, who likes to find mistakes based on a very peculiar interpretation of the rules, and who has little regard for context. Yet, as you pointed out, the ST doesn't hesitate to make offensive comments.

    It's one of the reasons I rarely bother to work in this language pair anymore, it's just not worth the hassle. :) 

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    jnutter1179

    I have to agree with this. 

    An additional problem is that the majority of the time, translations are only reviewed if the customer leaves low feedback scores.

    Our profile scores are based on our last 5 reviews I believe. If they only review ones customers were not happy with, we will get unreasonably low scores. 

    They don't review, and thus don't include, the other 19 out of 20 that were 5/5 scores. Unnacceptable. 

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    copperhound

    I don't know if they necessarily only review low feedback ones, from my experience, anyway. My main issue is the unprofessional (snarky) tone some of the reviews include, and giving scores of 5/10, for instance, for a single error. The mistakes pointed out were legitimate on my part, and I welcome the feedback, but I think Gengo kind of needs to decide what it wants to be as a company. Offering yourself as a "good enough" translation service to customers with low fees is fine, but holding translators to strict deadlines and perfect quality standards doesn't really jive with that. For .02 a word, most of us aren't going to put in the time to double-check that everything's perfect, sorry. Not my company so whatever happens isn't really my concern, but Gengo's gonna exhaust the talent pool pretty soon, I feel like.

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    Megan Waters

    @Christoph: I'm sorry you feel the ST in this language pair has been rude and made offensive comments to you and other translators. This is not at all what we want from our STs, and is very unprofessional of them, too. I will make sure we warn them about their comments as the feedback is intended to help our translators develop and grow. I'm quite surprised to hear this actually :(

    @jnutter179: The STs don't just review jobs that have low scores. They review jobs that have been rejected by customers, jobs by new translators, and also jobs completely at random to give a fair assessment of the translator's level.

    @copperhound: The reviewers do use a strict method of assessing translators' work. This weights particular errors as minor or major and deducts from the score accordingly. They also use this reviewing system based on strict guidelines. We built this system to make it as fair as possible for all translators and so STs can't just mark an error because they feel like it or personal reasons etc. However, I agree that some STs have been known to stray from our guidelines and we are doing more to monitor their reviews and educate them.

     

     

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    jnutter1179

    Megan,

    I apologize if my comments came off as completely negative. 

    Please let me clarify. 

    I know that reviews are done for various reasons. I have had some very good ones done. 

    Some were very positive and some were negative, but with good reason due to errors on my part. Furthermore, some had very good comment and criticisms. 

    The problem lies within the overall system of it all.

    While we do get random reviews, the frequency of them is very low and so we get them far and few between. 

    Our workbench scores are only based on the last 5 reviews correct? 

    If we regularly get 5/5 feedback scores, but those jobs don't get reviewed they will not be included in the the review score. 

    Now let's say for example that over the last 20 jobs, 18 were 5/5, but 2 were 1/5. 

    Those 2 will almost certainly be reviewed and probably receive a low review. 

    This is sure to ruin the translators overall workbench score and not give an accurate score of their abilities and track record. 

    If a translator gets rave feedback scores the overwhelming majority of the time, their workbench score should reflect this.

    I think that the system needs changes and/or there should be more random reviews.

     

    As far as review guidelines go, you have to remember something about the language pair. 

    Japanese and English are vastly different languages. 

    It's not like, say Spanish to English, where vocabulary are fairly similar, have similar roots, and maybe just slightly varying nuances. 

    There can be many interpretations of Japanese phrases into English. 

    So, how one translator (say a senior one here) and another (say the one who worked on the actual translation) interpret a particular thing might be different. 

    This does not mean that one is "wrong" and the other is "right". They might both be completely valid, but the senior translator has the authority to mark it "wrong" because they don't see it that way. 

    It's far more subjective than other language pairings. 

    So, in that sense it is for personal reasons. 

    Don't get me wrong, there are times when something is totally translated incorrectly and it is completely fair to mark it wrong then, but there is a lot of grey in this pairing. 

    I hope you do not feel offended by these comments. I am not trying to be overly negative. Just trying to explain how some of these features and standards can make translators feel sometimes. 

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    sue.hajdu

    I completely agree with junutter 1179 who I feel has a nuanced sense of how things operate for working translators.

     

    YES!!!

    if we regularly get 5/5 feedback scores, but those jobs don't get reviewed they will not be included in the the review score. Now let's say for example that over the last 20 jobs, 18 were 5/5, but 2 were 1/5. 

    Those 2 will almost certainly be reviewed and probably receive a low review. >>> YES, THEY DO. INEVITABLY SOMEONE JUMPS IN STRAIGHT AWAY AND LOOKS AT THOSE JOBS ONLY. THERE IS NO OBSERVATION OF THE TRANSLATOR'S OVERALL VOLUME OF WORK (which may not be 18 other jobs, it could be DOZENS more) or the rating that they had for other jobs. And sometimes these low ratings are the result of the client being pissed off about other things (such as a previous version of the translation that they rejected and they still have a sour taste in their month -- or them getting annoyed by questions rather than seeing them as the translator's efforts to ensure accuracy) and the client, inappropriately, gives you this low score.This often seems to spark off a chain reaction, with the senior translator deliberately looking for things to mark down.

    This is sure to ruin the translators overall workbench score and not give an accurate score of their abilities and track record. OF COURSE.

    If a translator gets rave feedback scores the overwhelming majority of the time, their workbench score should reflect this. INDEED IT SHOULD.

     

    AND I ALSO AGREE that Japanese is sometimes a much more problematic language pair than others for the reasons stated, but also, let's not forget the expectations that Japanese customers can often have of service providers, which are out of line with expectations in other cultures. Meanwhile, translation is a cross-cultural exercise. For a low job rate, to expect top-notch service in terms of re-writes etc. is somewhat out of line, I feel, and if we get a low score on such jobs because the client expected "so much more"... then the senior translator jumps in...then pushes your score down in the search for "errors" meanwhile accusing you of not having checked dictionaries or done spell checks....well, this does result in an unfair and frustrating situation for the translator. I agree that the system requires review.

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    Ken

    What happens, wenn there are errors in the revised translations made by ST at the time of quality review?

    I have received good reviews so far but now I have suddenly received a bad score. There were no errors nor missing sentences in my translation. My translation was approved by customer.

    And I have found that the ST made mistakes in his version. I mean really "wrong".

    Before ST criticize someone who might have even longer experience than he has (or better knowledge in some special filed like patent for example), he must be 100% sure with his correction! Otherwise, how can I rely on the score which he made then?

     

     

     

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    kcornish

    Does anyone else feel that there have been an amazing amount of reviews lately which are extremely strict to the point of being silly? I was marked with a score of 2 as I wrote "the below points" when the translator said I should have written "the points below". Without arguing which is better, for such a small mistake in standard level where the actual context of the translation is not affected in the slightest, such a low mark is maddening. I have been reviewed 15 times in the last month, all with similar minor errors and very low marks - all 3 or below. As a result, I am risk of being removed from translating for Gengo.

    Is gengo trying to cut back on the number of translators for Japanese - English?

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    Lara Fernandez

    Hi kcornish,

    I'm sorry to hear about your experience. I'd like to take this opportunity to reassure you that we're not trying to cut back on the number of translators for Japanese to English, and to remind you of the existence of a Request for Re-review Form that you can fill out in situations like the one you describe above, when you don't agree with a job review you received. 

    I can't promise that the score will change in 100% of the cases, but this is the best way to bring your concerns to our attention so that we can take a closer look.

    If you still have the details for the job that you mentioned as an example, please feel free to fill out a form at your convenience.

    Thanks,

    Lara

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