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Rating and voting now open for most pairs in the 2014 annual translation contest
Thread poster: Jared Tabor

Gerard de Noord  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:03
Member (2003)
German to Dutch
+ ...
Clicking on the stars should be encouraged Aug 6, 2014

Hi Jared,

Because tagging and commenting feels more honest and professional than just clicking those stars to rate a translation, few people actually rate the translations into Dutch. It was only yesterday that I found out that comments don't influence someone's score.

This should be made clearer to our judges.

Cheers,
Gerard


 

Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:03
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Violation of Contest Rule #1 Aug 6, 2014

Jared Tabor wrote:

Hi Katalin,

Katalin Horváth McClure wrote:

Jared,
When someone submits a translation to this contest, is there a checkbox or something that says "I swear/certify/state... that this translation is my own work."?
What happens if it comes to light that someone submitted a translation that was not produced by him/her? Will the translation be disqualified?


The checkbox reads:
"I have read and agree to the contest rules. This translation is my own and I have not had access to anyone else's translation of this text."


As Elizabeth states, MT or other tools can be used in elaborating an entry. This would not be grounds for disqualification. Regardless of the tools used, a poor translation is a poor translation, and the tools to mark it as such are there.

Jared


Jared,
If someone checks that checkbox, saying it is his/her translation, and in fact, it is NOT, as it is a verbatim, unedited, exact copy of the garbage that Google Translate spits out, then IMHO that person is violating Contest Rule #1, and also lied by checking the checkbox.
The person did not use GT "in elaborating" the entry, but took the "work" of GT (whatever garbage it is) and submitted it as his/her own. Anybody can check it by copying the source text into GT.

Yes, this time it will be weeded out (after all, it is garbage), but frankly, I don't understand why we have the rule and that checkbox, if it doesn't matter whether one complies or not.
When a violation is crystal clear, like this case, I would expect the rule to be enforced, otherwise it is a joke.
If this does not call for disqualification, I don't know what does.
Katalin

[Edited at 2014-08-06 19:38 GMT]


 

Christel Zipfel  Identity Verified
Member (2004)
Italian to German
+ ...
Are you really convinced? Aug 6, 2014

Jared Tabor wrote:

1. Participants who have submitted an entry are in a unique position to evaluate entries. They have worked on the same text, and their insight is likely to be different, though not more or less valuable, than participants who have not submitted an entry.

2. I don't see participants who have made an entry making efforts to "rate down" or otherwise harm other participants' chances of winning any more than those who have not made an entry do. If they did, the results would be somewhat a waste of energy in comparison to the outcome. And those who rate or vote are not swayed by others' ratings. Results have shown that those evaluating entries make their own decisions at the moment of selecting which translation is the best, thankfully. This is one advantage of a contest like where members of the community involved are intelligent, work with and are accustomed to scrutinizing language, and are not necessarily willing to make a decision based on the anonymous word of another (which is what comments and ratings are until the end of the contest).

Negative ratings or dislikes on entries are more common, across the board, than positive ratings or likes, regardless of whether participants have made an entry. Why that happens may be an interesting discussion on its own.

Jared


For point no. 1, I agree absolutely.

For point 2: I have participated once - many moons ago - and was second (I believe), but it came never across my mind that I could rate and vote other contestants, and wouldn't have anyway. I found this out only recently and could hardly believe it. How can you be sure there are no participants making efforts to "rate down or otherwise harm others' chances of winning"? I wouldn't. I have seen people that are ready for everything in order to get some stupid KudoZ point.

Do you really think they wouldn't jump at the chance if this was offered in a contest, somehow still more important?
Not everyone is collaborative, collegial and so on. Anyway, a contest where you can rate your other contestants is unheard of, come on... ! Of course, I understand this generates traffic, but it is not fair in any case.


 

Josephine Cassar  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:03
Member (2012)
Italian to English
+ ...
Suggestion Aug 6, 2014

It is optional till now to justify why you "disliked" a certain phrase/word, with regards to spelling, punctuation, mistranslation, etc. I think it should be made obligatory, not optional, so one is obliged to provide a reason for things that are not immediately apparent. Even as far as spelling is concerned, sometimes, there has to be an explanation, and there are also instances where one dislikes something for more than just one reason. A good thing is that one can then answer and post commen... See more
It is optional till now to justify why you "disliked" a certain phrase/word, with regards to spelling, punctuation, mistranslation, etc. I think it should be made obligatory, not optional, so one is obliged to provide a reason for things that are not immediately apparent. Even as far as spelling is concerned, sometimes, there has to be an explanation, and there are also instances where one dislikes something for more than just one reason. A good thing is that one can then answer and post comment on those "agrees" or "disagrees". Someone marked a word with a "disagree" when the reason provided showed it was correct, so someone else marked a "disagree", thus cancelling it and the same happens with the "agrees". One might agree, then someone sees that that needs a "disagree", but reason should be compulsory, not optional. It is fairer like that, and less squabbles, as one cannot dispute a reasonable justification which is public.

[Edited at 2014-08-07 06:54 GMT]

[Edited at 2014-08-07 06:55 GMT]
Collapse


 

texjax DDS PhD  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:03
Member (2006)
English to Italian
+ ...
Skewing the results is easy Aug 6, 2014

Jared Tabor wrote:

Hi all,

The subject of contest participants who have made an entry being able to participate in rating and voting was also brought up in the release announcement for this contest in May, and I responded there, http://www.proz.com/post/2295398#2295398 . Basically,

  1. Participants who have submitted an entry are in a unique position to evaluate entries. They have worked on the same text, and their insight is likely to be different, though not more or less valuable, than participants who have not submitted an entry.

  2. I don't see participants who have made an entry making efforts to "rate down" or otherwise harm other participants' chances of winning any more than those who have not made an entry do. If they did, the results would be somewhat a waste of energy in comparison to the outcome. And those who rate or vote are not swayed by others' ratings. Results have shown that those evaluating entries make their own decisions at the moment of selecting which translation is the best, thankfully. This is one advantage of a contest like where members of the community involved are intelligent, work with and are accustomed to scrutinizing language, and are not necessarily willing to make a decision based on the anonymous word of another (which is what comments and ratings are until the end of the contest).

Negative ratings or dislikes on entries are more common, across the board, than positive ratings or likes, regardless of whether participants have made an entry. Why that happens may be an interesting discussion on its own.

Jared


Hi Jared,

I was the one who brought up the issue and we already discussed it in the past.

While I do agree with your first point, I still do believe that in the final phase of this (and any) contest no participant should be allowed to rate the work of his/her peers.

Simply put, who contributes to the final decision should be impartial, that's it.
I think that Proz should take that into account, and it can still be implemented.

In the first phase constructive and honest criticism does no harm - this stage merely separates the good from the not-so-good - and I see the usefulness of the commenting feature. (I wish there was also a "neutral" option, or the possibility to ask questions to the participants so as to foster a more positive approach.)

However, during the final stage the number of finalist translations can be so small that skewing the results is not only possible but absolutely easy to do, especially considering that lately I haven't seen many voters to begin with (at least in my pair).

Just to give you an example: if in the final stage one out of four finalists placed one disagree to each competitor and nobody else votes, that subject becomes the undisputed winner.

In conclusion, I respect your standpoint but I am quite surprised by it.

Kind regards,



PS: In order to avoid to rely on the contestants for rating, voters participation might be encouraged by a prize drawing among the (non-participant) voters, just to throw an idea out there...


[Edited at 2014-08-07 01:22 GMT]


 

Emanuela Pighini  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 16:03
Member (2008)
German to Italian
+ ...
unfair voting system Aug 8, 2014

I also think that it is unfair to let participants vote for other entries. I have submitted my translation and I am noticing way too many negative comments which are wrong. They pretend to correct things that are absolutely right. Some of these negative comments are totally nonsense. It is evident that there are people trying to rate down other contestants' translations.

 

Elizabeth Tamblin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:03
Member (2012)
French to English
. Aug 9, 2014

Emanuela Pighini wrote:

I also think that it is unfair to let participants vote for other entries. I have submitted my translation and I am noticing way too many negative comments which are wrong. They pretend to correct things that are absolutely right. Some of these negative comments are totally nonsense. It is evident that there are people trying to rate down other contestants' translations.


It is possible to disagree with the negative comments on your own piece, and leave a comment explaining why it is wrong.


 

Emanuela Pighini  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 16:03
Member (2008)
German to Italian
+ ...
. Aug 9, 2014

Elizabeth Tamblin wrote:

It is possible to disagree with the negative comments on your own piece, and leave a comment explaining why it is wrong.



I know and I've done it.

I think it is nevertheless interesting to compare one's own translation to other translations of the same text, but I agree with the people who said that the evaluating system is not fair.
The fact that I have to go through all these meaningless comments and comment back citing the dictionary for words that are obviously right makes me perceive this contest as not very professional in a translators' community.

There have been reasonable comments too, but on my entry about 70% of negative comments are pure nonsense. I think that's too much.


 

564354352 (X)  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 16:03
Danish to English
+ ...
Machine translation Aug 9, 2014

It seems that someone has beaten me to it, i.e. submitted a machine-translated entry to the contest (English > Danish). Not a pretty result. However, as a contestant myself, I will refrain from commenting on that particular entry, or any other entry, for that matter. Besides, it would be an all-red text as there is so much to 'dislike' and really nothing to 'like' in that entry.

Machine translation 0 - Professional translation 1


 

Josephine Cassar  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:03
Member (2012)
Italian to English
+ ...
@ Gitte and Machine translations Aug 9, 2014

Even in my language combinations, I saw an unbelievable amount of machine translations, so the dislike button just has to be used. I usually provide a reason and, maybe a link too. @ Emanuela, I too had dislikes where the marked word was wrong, but then it does not mean it is put to right, so I agree that this is not fair. Someone should vet them, and if a word is correct, and has been marked with a "dislike" wrongly, surely, that should be marked back as correct? I also noticed that, depending ... See more
Even in my language combinations, I saw an unbelievable amount of machine translations, so the dislike button just has to be used. I usually provide a reason and, maybe a link too. @ Emanuela, I too had dislikes where the marked word was wrong, but then it does not mean it is put to right, so I agree that this is not fair. Someone should vet them, and if a word is correct, and has been marked with a "dislike" wrongly, surely, that should be marked back as correct? I also noticed that, depending where you are in your submission, you are more likely to be vetted if your entry is at the top, rather than if it is at the bottom as people-myself included-get tired of checking some 87 translations and being consistent-i.e. if you marked -(for speech)wrong for the first submission, you will consequently mark every -(for speech) in all other submissions.Collapse


 

Susana E. Cano Méndez  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:03
French to Spanish
+ ...
Taggig and rating: not anonymous? Aug 11, 2014

Georgia Morgan wrote:

What I don't much like is the fact that our ratings and comments are not anonymous. I don't want to create bad feeling between myself and any other colleagues, but I really would like to pick fault with bad grammar, wrong lexis etc. I also like highlighting phrases I find particularly good, but this is easier to do knowing the translator/contestant will see your name. I have no interest in "winning" but I do find the whole process fascinating, I must say.


I absolutely subscribe your words, Georgia. I have tagged and rated some translations, but I wouldn't have done it if I knew the processus of tagging wasn't anonymous. I am a teacher and I enjoy seeing other's translations; I also learn a lot, because I have seen my translation tagged too (we can see it, it appears on top). But I can't see the tagger's name. Are you sure that at the end our names will come out along with tags and ratings?


 

svenfrade  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:03
French to German
+ ...
Can we have negative stars please? Aug 14, 2014

I would like to have negative stars or something similar for those unedited MT entries. Some entries are so bad that I don't want to give a better rating than a 1-star one, but at least somebody tried... (Although I hate to think that those submitting that type of entry may still call themselves "professional" translators.)

However, I would like to differentiate between substandard human translation and abysmal MT and have a button that sends those entries right to the bottom of the
... See more
I would like to have negative stars or something similar for those unedited MT entries. Some entries are so bad that I don't want to give a better rating than a 1-star one, but at least somebody tried... (Although I hate to think that those submitting that type of entry may still call themselves "professional" translators.)

However, I would like to differentiate between substandard human translation and abysmal MT and have a button that sends those entries right to the bottom of the page (or the last page) so don't keep coming up as serious entries. To be quite honest, I don't know why people submit such junk and steal their colleagues' time who take their time and try to evaluate contest entries.
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Ali Bayraktar  Identity Verified
Turkey
Member (2007)
English to Turkish
+ ...
Extension Aug 14, 2014

Hi Jared,
Could you please extend the deadline for entries in the contest Exploring the desert: "The Doomed City"?

It is about to end within 5 minutes.


 
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