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Translation Workspace / Lionbridge CAT tool
Thread poster: sasp

Witold Hrycyk  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:47
Member (2005)
English to Polish
+ ...
And it screws you on the wordcount, too... Apr 26, 2010

For everyone out there who still consider paying Lionbridge for the immense favor of being on their vendor list, do heed my warning: Translation Workspace cheats on the wordcount, be it willingly or not.

The problem is most acute in projects with high Fuzzy Match and Repetitions counts. While working on one of those today, I stumbled upon a segment that I vaguely remembered having translated a minute ago. Translation Workspace however was absolutely positive this was a new segment a
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For everyone out there who still consider paying Lionbridge for the immense favor of being on their vendor list, do heed my warning: Translation Workspace cheats on the wordcount, be it willingly or not.

The problem is most acute in projects with high Fuzzy Match and Repetitions counts. While working on one of those today, I stumbled upon a segment that I vaguely remembered having translated a minute ago. Translation Workspace however was absolutely positive this was a new segment and I had to cope on my own doing a green-grass translation.

A mean old man as I am, I counted the document stats BEFORE and AFTER translating the troublesome segment. And guess what? Translation Workspace suddenly reconsidered. After a while it vaguely remembered that segment too and subtracted the wordcount from the Repetitions category...

Bottom line: for a segment I had to translate from scratch, I'm paid the low Repetitions rate. That's a good one. Not even a shrewed way to strip me of my hard-earned pennies. That's plain stupid. Nobody wins.

So watch out. Take the document stats often. Analyse. And let THEM know. Lionbridge is not an evil company, not for me at least. Only their ways are twisted.

[Edited at 2010-05-03 10:36 GMT]
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Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
Quality (or lack) will out... May 18, 2010

Did you all get this wonderful mail?

Your trial period is happening now! Lionbridge has already begun to alias projects to "Translation Workspace ready" suppliers.


A sign of things to come... And no, I will not be accessing my trial period. I guess I just won't be "aliased" any projects. Darn.


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:47
French to German
+ ...
Trial... May 18, 2010

Janet Rubin wrote:

Your trial period is happening now! Lionbridge has already begun to alias projects to "Translation Workspace ready" suppliers.


A sign of things to come... And no, I will not be accessing my trial period. I guess I just won't be "aliased" any projects. Darn.


My computer does not even let me download/install the client... so far, so good.

[Edited at 2010-05-18 18:13 GMT]


 

Krys Williams  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:47
Member (2003)
Polish to English
+ ...
I will not be "aliased" either May 22, 2010

I have not activated my free trial period to Translation Workspace.

I have also replied to my first job offer requiring TW by saying I am unwilling to use a system for which I will eventually have to pay the job provider, since I consider this to be equivalent to blackmail.

This is a follow-on to my policy of refusing to accept requests for discounts.



[Edited at 2010-05-22 17:56 GMT]

[Edited at 2010-05-22 18:00 GMT]


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:47
French to German
+ ...
Seeing the positive aspects... May 23, 2010

Sorry to say this for those who have gone with TW, but this system has also positive aspects in that it gives a clear indication to potential clients as per which service provider(s) they should contact.

For high to enormous volumes and low rates, there is this LSP and its (more or less) direct competitors. For more specific projects with higher rates, there is the rest of us.

Maybe this will lead some clients (wishful thinking on my side?) to examine a bit mor
... See more
Sorry to say this for those who have gone with TW, but this system has also positive aspects in that it gives a clear indication to potential clients as per which service provider(s) they should contact.

For high to enormous volumes and low rates, there is this LSP and its (more or less) direct competitors. For more specific projects with higher rates, there is the rest of us.

Maybe this will lead some clients (wishful thinking on my side?) to examine a bit more closer how and under which conditions their translations are processed...

Another positive aspect for me is that the TW client was of course conceived as a Windows-only application; it helps a lot making the right choices.

PS: yes, I am aware of the fact that this is a public forum...

[Edited at 2010-05-23 04:52 GMT]
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Yossi Rozenman  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:47
Member (2006)
English to Hebrew
+ ...
I started to activate my trial period, util... May 23, 2010

I was asked to give my credit card details.

There I stopped.

I sent a query to the support, and this was their answer:

Yossi we collect billing information like your billing address and your credit card information to validate your identity


I really don't know where they get the Chutzpah.


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:47
French to German
+ ...
Chutzpah? No, sorry. May 23, 2010

Yossi Rozenman wrote:

I was asked to give my credit card details.

There I stopped.

I sent a query to the support, and this was their answer:

Yossi we collect billing information like your billing address and your credit card information to validate your identity


I really don't know where they get the Chutzpah.



Hi Yossi,
being "forced" to give your credit card details is not that uncommon when you subscribe for a free trial period. Many (mainly US) companies do this - I even ask myself if this is not mandatory in the United States.

On a personal level, though, I will only proceed when I am really interested in the service in question.

[Edited at 2010-05-23 06:56 GMT]


 

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz (X)  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 00:47
English to Polish
+ ...
Chutzpah May 23, 2010

Yossi Rozenman wrote:

I was asked to give my credit card details.

There I stopped.

I sent a query to the support, and this was their answer:

Yossi we collect billing information like your billing address and your credit card information to validate your identity


I really don't know where they get the Chutzpah.



Somehow they don't need to "validate your identity" with your credit card number when they sign a contract with you, or give you jobs, or pay invoices.

Liox policy is of the good cop PM who offers you jobs without mentioning you paying for anything, and the bad cop e-mailing machine that subtly reminds you how important it is for you to get TW to retain your level of involvement with Liox.

It is fantastic, by the way, that English for "hucpa" exists and sounds almost the same. I'm starting to think that it wasn't us Poles who invented it

[Edited at 2010-05-23 15:06 GMT]


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:47
French to German
+ ...
That's the trick May 23, 2010

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:

Liox policy is of the good cop PM who offers you jobs without mentioning you paying for anything, and the bad cop e-mailing machine that subtly reminds you how important it is for you to get TW to retain your level of involvement with Liox.


This shows how far things have gone. By asking for a trial period for TW, one basically acts as a John Doe consumer buying a service from a previously unrelated third party...

How's that? Maybe that Liox TW management and Liox as a LSP are simply different divisions or even different companies.


 

Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
Because it's a lie May 24, 2010

Yossi Rozenman wrote:
I really don't know where they get the Chutzpah.

Krzysztof Kajetanowicz wrote:
Somehow they don't need to "validate your identity" with your credit card number when they sign a contract with you, or give you jobs, or pay invoices.

Credit card information is NOT used to "validate your identiy", but as Laurent mentioned, it IS standard practice when you sign up for a trial of a service that will later be billable.

Perhaps the lie was unintentional - i.e. the rep means to say "We need to validate your identy" plus "We need to get information for future billing", but is rushed and the two come out together as "We need to get information (for future billing) to validate your identity" - but IMHO it is still an untruth, whether by accident or ignorance (or design).

How much extra effort could it have been to say plainly: "We collect information on you to validate your identity, and we collect credit card information so that when your trial period ends, we can start to bill you for the services you use"?

More and more suspicous...

[Edited at 2010-05-24 07:08 GMT]


 

kchansen
Local time: 00:47
English to Danish
(Un)Free trial May 26, 2010

They need your credit card information because your "free" trial automatically converts into a paid subscription at the end of the trial period, unless you specifically ask Lionbridge to deactivate your account. So they can charge you easily and conveniently without having to bother you again.

Oh, and don't worry about your subscription ending - it is renewed automatically. Ain't that nice?


 

Peer
Local time: 00:47
English to German
+ ...
Enticement to professional misconduct? May 27, 2010

Nobody brought this up so far.

Don't we routinely sign contracts guaranteeing confidentiality to our clients?

How can any serious professional translator even think about putting other client's texts on cloudy external servers of the competition (s)he doesn't control? Will they allow regular inspection of the software and it's administration? My bet is "no".

And anyway, there is NO way they can assure us confidentiality because the only way would be to encr
... See more
Nobody brought this up so far.

Don't we routinely sign contracts guaranteeing confidentiality to our clients?

How can any serious professional translator even think about putting other client's texts on cloudy external servers of the competition (s)he doesn't control? Will they allow regular inspection of the software and it's administration? My bet is "no".

And anyway, there is NO way they can assure us confidentiality because the only way would be to encrypt all segments before sending them to "the cloud" with a key such that they can not decrypt them, but this would make any matching impossible, so the system would not work at all.

For me this is a complete no-brainer. How could they even come up with such an idea?

If feel insulted by such a proposition because it implies that I might be open to such a kind of conduct.
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Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
Can't help but wonder May 28, 2010

To continue to receive new projects from Lionbridge via Translation Workspace, you need to have your plan setup by June 30th.

I would be very interested in finding out in July what percentage of their current translators actually decided to migrate to the new system...


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 00:47
French to German
+ ...
Really? May 28, 2010

Peer wrote:

Nobody brought this up so far.

(.../...)

How can any serious professional translator even think about putting other client's texts on cloudy external servers of the competition (s)he doesn't control? Will they allow regular inspection of the software and it's administration? My bet is "no".

(.../...)


I think I mentioned it somewhere in this thread or in another one. I would not rely on cloud computing or cloud storage in any way, if only in order to save my own precious neck.


 

Peer
Local time: 00:47
English to German
+ ...
Wordcount cheating May 28, 2010

Witold Hrycyk wrote:
Translation Workspace cheats on the wordcount, be it willingly or not.


We're buying the cat in the bag anyway.

It started with Trados many years ago. Suddenly the word rates were lowered by opaque percentages, packed into categories. How can I check these? Are the reductions justified? Are they abstract mathematical notions, or precisely linked to an actual reduction of translation efforts? Why these categories and not others? Nobody gave me any precise answer to these questions.
I suppose that the big agencies who drove this, certainly have comparative statistics, but never gave me any of the data, and it's not because I didn't ask. How can I compare different systems? Different rate weight systems ofthe software? I can not (unless we talk about rather vague impressions or quite complicated tests almost akin to reverse engineering). There never is a description of the algorithms so that I can easily write my own rate verification software to confirm the results myself, nor is there any industry standard for calculating match rates (afaik) which can be used to compare different softwares.

Well, what kind of thing is that??? We are talking about essential information for our payments and contracts, but we are denied this information? Do you buy anything on a market place without assuring correct weights/rulers? Aren't there laws in place against falsifications of measures? And still, we're supposed to accept these opaque conditions under whatever pretext the suppliers of software invent to not disclosing them.

I really blame Trados for introducing this dishonest practice of unverifiability in the translation industry. Before that, we simply counted words. I understand the reasons for the change, but it was not transparent, and we're still sitting on the mess they created by not opening the rating algorithms to public scrutiny. Of course, they still can make up for this by simply disclosing them. All software vendors should simply do that.

And certain agencies indeed do seem to play covertly with these numbers, using different never-discussed trickeries in ways which seem to put translators in worsening conditions. That's what I deduce from the unannounced changes of behavior of diffent software which I did notice. Essentially, it's "same end result, less pay". And less control over the tool, which menaces the "free" part of the freelancer.

Each time a change like this happens, I get the impression that somebody probably "earned" a bonus by pulling the blanket a bit more to their side using these tricks. And trying to discuss these things, there never is an answer or any kind of open discussion. Never (so far at least). Just kind of hollow stares, shoulder shruggung and "we can't do anything about it", "we don't know ourselves", like "we're just following orders". So we're left at the mercy of undisclosed, anonymous procedures. Quite a bad thing, as far as I am concerned.


 
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