Monthly Archive:: February 2008

Dear Client…

Interestingly enough, I’ve been asked more than once, “How does a freelance translator fire a client?” Although “part ways with” might be a better term than “fire,” this phenomenon definitely exists, and is a customer relations issue that translators have to deal with. I think that there are a few reasons for this: the supply

This blog's banner photo

I’ve received several e-mails from people asking about the banner photo on this blog. I purchased it from iStockphoto, and the photographer is Hanoded Photography. Those of you who have traveled in the Himalaya will recognize this as a Buddhist Mani stone, bearing the inscription “Om mani padme hum,” often translated as “Hail to the

The new ATA compensation survey: some interesting statistics

The current issue of the American Translators Association‘s Chronicle includes an article on the results of the most recent ATA compensation survey, which uses data gathered for the year 2006. The survey is interesting enough that I’m thinking of purchasing the full report ($45 for ATA members, $65 for nonmembers), but even the summary that

Happy International Mother Language Day

Today’s post in Global Watchtower, one of my favorite translation-industry blogs, is entitled “Language Death and Why it Matters.” The article presents some very interesting insights into the importance of linguistic diversity and some of the reasons behind “language death,” which occurs when the last living speakers of small-diffusion languages die.

Getting things done

When asked why they failed at freelancing, many former freelancers say that they simply couldn’t deal with the unstructured nature of the freelance day and ended up working out/watching TV/cleaning the closets etc. instead of working. Succeeding as a freelancer (translator or any other freelance job) requires that you be able to meet tight deadlines

IBM's new English>Arabic translation device

Here is an interesting article from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer on IBM’s new English>Arabic translation software and hardware, with an interesting comment from ATA public relations guru Kevin Hendzel. I actually found the most disturbing part of the article to be the statistic that of 1,000 employees at the newly constructed U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, only

It's not just Facebook…

Here’s a post from the blog of Canadian communications consultant Deborah Zanke, dealing with poorly done translations at 5-star resorts in Cuba (which are understandably popular with Canadians at this time of year). She poses the question of whether these translations should be criticized if the resort staff’s spoken English is excellent, and also highlights