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Free, unbiased, public information on translation agencies is hard to come by nowadays. Here are links to reports written by independent and professional translators who have dealt with these translation companies, gathered all over the Internet. This will hopefully contribute to simplifying this search and make you save a bit of time. The aim behind this is also to publicly name and shame those unwanted and unethical business practises which are threatening our profession.
This free blacklist is public and visible to everyone but addressed specifically to both translators and translation buyers, and it focuses on more than 200 translation agencies or brokers with poor practices. It is subject to changes and you can subscribe to this blog by e-mail/google+ to view the regular updates.
To access a list of scammers (CV theft and translators' impersonation) please visit this excellent website, now maintained by the Translator Scammers Intelligence Group: http://www.translator-scammers.com/
The opinions expressed here are my own and those of fellow translators. If you wish to add yours, please provide documentation (emails) to back up your allegations. I will not be held responsible for other persons opinions. If your organisation is listed here please contact me with evidence that the situation has been solved and I will take off your name. Please note that in order to access some of the links you might need to sign in to LinkedIn.
The author and publisher of the above mentioned site make no warranties of any kind with regard to the accuracy of the site content and accept no liability of any kind including but not limited to performance, fitness for any particular purpose, or any losses or damages of any kind caused or alleged to be caused directly or indirectly by the use of or inability to use this list. No liability will be accepted by the author and publisher of the site for the way in which subscribers or other entities interpret and/or use the site's content. This work is the property of translationethics.blogspot.se and cannot be reproduced or modified without permission from the authors.
Who qualifies as a translation agency?
> Anyone employing translators for profit.
Who qualifies for this list?
> Any agency paying unfair retribution, failing to pay, mistreating translators, using bad practices and spreading misconceptions threatening the profession.
What is an unfair retribution/low rate ?
> Freelancers should be able to decide of their own rates since they are not employees. A very low rate is anything under 5 or 6 cents for a regular text and for something a bit specialised, this is clearly unacceptable. A minimum rate for someone living in Europe should be 0.10 euro or 0.12 dollars per word. In reality it is difficult to obtain that rate from most agencies (looks like it is more likely to be comprised between 6 and 9 eurocents per word), so only agencies offering under 6 cents are listed here.
The idea of a price per word is absurd in itself but exists because it simplifies the transactions and contributes to spread the misconception that translations are commodities. All the companies blacklisted here offer way less than 10 cents per word, and make great margins adding no value whatsoever to the translations they sell. They prosper and get away with anything including, for some of them, horrendous communication skills to say the least;)
These practises are truly disgraceful, but they will not disappear as long as translators continue to accept them and put themselves in a victim position. Good translators should be more conscious of their value and bad ones should not be allowed in this business in the first place. Buyers should also be aware that paying an agency about 10 cent per word means the translators are not getting paid enough and will rush through the translation. The result will often be useless and embarrassing for the buyer's company.
God knows how language brokers with horrific reputation such as TransPerfect, The Big Word, Red Bee, Travod and such STILL manage to prosper in this industry. I guess the explanation has been lost in translation. I suggest this article about the importance for newcomers of staying away from "the big guys".
I wouldn't work for
Last update : 12/08/2014
Hazel Underwood (Word Converters Ltd)
Zanoni (Traducciones Zanoni), Perù
Ad Hoc, Denmark
Euroscript Group (update)
Hazel Underwood (Word Converters Ltd)
Zanoni (Traducciones Zanoni), Perù
Ad Hoc, Denmark
Euroscript Group (update)
Transyanu or Argotrad Lucus, Spain
Lingual consultancy services (LCS)
Lingual consultancy services (LCS)
Any feedback or "recommendations" ? Email us at: email@example.com
2B Translated, Belgium - Non-payers
"I've seen your website and I think it can be very useful! Thanks for making it!
I would like to ask you to add translation agency "2B Translated" (Belgium). Be aware they (afterwards) say they have big cash flow problems but they still employ freelance translators!!! Be aware!!! They owe me about 4000 euro!
Please don't work for them because you'll never see your money.
Thanks for taking this message in account."
(Celine M, email 04/12/13)
24translate.net (insulting rates + CV theft + scammers network)
Type of emails sent out by their PMs:
I am Reham from 24 Translate Agency, I hope you are well and available for my offer. Please confirm availability to translate and send the attached with in 15 hours.
Rate 0.02 USD/SW.
Unique Words: 4879 (100 %)
Repetitions: 7776 (10 %) Format: Clean/Unclean files+TM NOTE: THE FIRST 3500 WORDS are ready Please confirm you can do this.
Many thanks in advance, Reham"
A Propos, France (Non payers)
Email 11/06/14:"They don’t answer my emails to pay me for a project!
Name of contact person/ Gaetan Chretiennot et Delphine Lemonnier.
I did a translation for À Propos last April and they were happy with the result. It was an urgent project and I did it without problems. However, I didn’t work for them anymore and once I sent my invoice, they didn’t answer me at all. The most impressive is that it’s a tiny amount of money in comparison with my regular projects." G.S.
A propos Langues SARL
Parc d’innovation – Bâtiment Euclide
Jean Sapidus Street
FRANCE Tel. : +33 (0)3 88 79 89 00 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
A & B Servizi Linguistici Srl Padova, Italy
"AVVERTENZA!ATTENZIONE! Questi non pagano i loro traduttori. In sospeso dall'anno scorso una mia ricevuta per oltre €250..NON LAVORATE PER LORO. Non appena capiscono che devono pagare affidano il lavoro al prossimo e così via. Sono bannati anche da PROZ.
Sorry guys, I'd like to warn you about this company. They paid one invoice of €200 (a series of many jobs) two years ago and I stupidly went on to do more adding up to €280 which I have not been paid for. I have been waiting a year now. Banned from Proz from posting jobs they are serial offenders by not paying they then go on assigning jobs to naive new translators. That's a lot of work for free."
ABCTRAD, Germany (non-payer)
Multiple non payment records on Proz' Blue Board.
WPPF, 7608: non payment case
ABCTRAD Technisches Übersetzungsbüro
Kirchplatz 22, 35447 Reiskirchen
ABC translations Russia - Unprofessional, poor practices
Not to be confused with ABC Language Solutions Inc., Vancouver, nor with ABC translations based in the UK
"Last week (in a weak moment) I accepted a project from this agency without checking them first. Big mistake. It was quite a large project to do in a couple of days, so I only accepted to do half of it as I thought the delivery time was too tight. On Monday morning the PM calls me and says that the other translator didn't do the job and does not reply to calls or e-mails. Unfortunately, I had not yet done my homework and foolishly accepted to do a few more files, but not all of them. The PM wanted me to do 3500-4000 words in 3 hours. I'm not capable to do that in just 3 hours. So I picked a few files, which I knew I could handle within the given time frame. The PM called me many times and tried to push me to work faster. He even asked me to have the remainder of the project ready in half an hour!!"
"Just wanted to report to you my experience of ABC Translation in Russia:
Appallingly rude man named Ivan harassed me by telephone (home and mobile) and then skype, to do a translation of 3700 words. I should have checked them out, but didn’t, lesson learned there. I started the work, and within 24 hours, rude Ivan was again phoning and phoning to find out how it was going. At that point I was near the end so thought I would be able to get rid of him soon. Submitted job on Friday night, and then had him again phoning and emailing asking me to go online, he wanted another urgent job done very quickly. It was a Saturday, I wasn’t pleased as I had plans but I accepted and changed my plans and submitted later that day. Soon after he started the ridiculous phone calls, and emails, accusing me of not doing it properly, machine translation etc etc. I was upset, I had bent over backwards to please this man and this was how I was repaid. The next morning I googled his agency and found all the reviews, that he is banned from a number of sites for non-payment etc. I’m pretty sure he isn’t going to pay me." (Debbie M.)
Abiturient.cz (Payment issues)
Abroadlink, Granada, Spain (late payment after 3!!! months)
AccessOnTime, Florida, USA (non payers)
Accordium associates (non-payer)
This February I performed several translation jobs for Accordium Associates Oy and its owner, Denis Bullat (email@example.com). The amount was not so big - only $40, however the company didn't pay me at all. I was surprised a bit but as I had positive experience of collaboration with them I decided to wait. However, the payment was not received neither this spring nor this summer. I started emailing Denis wondering when I can get my money and heard common excuses that they lost their database "and please send us your records so we could pay you". This was done and I was promised to be paid next week, then in a couple of days, and then my emails and skype messages were ignored.
I'm writing this to warn all of you about working with this company!
See LinkedIn report
Ad Hoc Translations, Denmark (low standards and non-payer)
Sender: S. Agarwal 22-07-2014 09:06"This company AdHoc Translations from Denmark rushed us to deliver the translation of 150,000 words in 8 days at very low price (0.027 E per word, TE). They asked to make daily partial deliveries to check quality on daily basis. Once we completed all daily deliveries and full translation, they refused to pay EURO 4187.48 by making petty false accusation and unsubstantiated statements to use it as excuse not to pay."
Ad Litteram (Irvin Brown)- Belgium (Non-payer!!)
Email from a translator (Oct 2013):
"Agree with high rates for tight deadlines but at the end of story the don't pay. I had to go to my lawyer and just before it went for the judge, they have paid. I have heard from other translators they had the same problem. I have done three big projects for them (in total around 2000 euro). It was about construction, everything what I proposed was OK (0,09€/source word for very technical construction part). But after several mails and promises for paying, they didn't answer any more so my lawyer has taken them to court and just before the trial they paid."
Just to mention that all translators must avoid working with Ad Litteram (contact person: Irvin Brown). He is very nice at the beginning, proposing you several translation jobs but when it comes to paying, he simply does not answer anymore! I sent my invoice end of February with a delay of 30 days. At the beginning of April, not seeing the paiement, I sent him a email. He answered that his accountant has made a mistake in the date. Until now and after several emails, I have not yet received my paiement and no answer to my email."
Agencia GMCA, Barcelona, Spain
"I want to add a translation agency in Barcelona : AGENCIA GMCA, the man is called Mauricio Fuertes (firstname.lastname@example.org). He asked me a short translation but he didn't pay me and never answered my e-mails. Others translators had the same bad experience."
Alpha CRC Ltd Cambridge, UK (non-payers)
Alpha Translation Services.com based in Melbourne, Florida (unprofessional practices, no contact details)
15/11/2013: "I would also like to add The Transcription Agency based in Hythe, Kent U.K. as unprofessional opportunists who are hiding behind anonymity, prey on misunderstandings and become incommunicado when you pin them down. Another unprofessional agency is Alpha Translation Services.com based in Melbourne, Florida. I've noticed they changed their website since I had dealings with them and they do not provide contact details. Congratulations on your efforts."
ALS (UK) based in Birmingham, now Convocco
Unpaid translators angry as owner of firm which went bust sets up new linguistic firm birminghampost.net"Angry translators have hit out after being left out of pocket when a Birmingham business went bust - only to see the firm's director set up another translation firm. They are furious that ALS (UK) director Hayder Al-Ani bought..." See discussion
Ansh Intertrade, India
If a translation agency wants to be a cheapskate, then it is far better for them to hire local students than outsource the work to India. "As an outsourcer for a translation agency, I once sent a translation test to the top ten Indian translation agencies that advertise on the TC website. The results were worse than Google translate!Note that this company only deals with translation companies and not direct clients. For example, a European company outsources a project to India, then the Indian company tries to re-outsource the work back to Europe at ridiculous rates (probably because professional Indians refuse to accept such rates).Take a look at the translations on their website. To be honest, the quality is worse than Google Translate!!!This company bids for jobs from Europe and the USA and then tries to find European or American translators for less than 0.04 USD per word (although they advertise that the rate is higher - not very honest, eh?).Email 30/04/14:Read this thread at Translation Directory to get the picture: http://www.translationdirectory.com/forum/messages/?4401
Appen Butler Hill (very low rates, hire amateurs instead of translators)
Appletrans/APPLENCOMPANY Co., Ltd/appletrans.co.kr
"Beware of this agency: They stopped answering emails when I asked why they are not paying." Click here to read the rest on this report.
Araxi traductions, France (non-payers!)
Translator's report: "Thank you. I would add Another black agency: Araxi Traductions. It is based in France, but their phone number is fake and they didn't pay me for a translation."
ASCO International (Unprofessional and disrespectful)
Read report here
ATP Lingua E.U., located in Graz., Austria
or ATP Herfort, Christine Herfort, Austria (non payer)
I have been working with this highly dramatic person for about 3 months now. Her first invoice was due on March 30 and she supposedly paid on April 2, via bank transfer. To date, the money has not arrived in my account. As she owes me a total of close to $ 4000 and is responding very irrationally (upset) about my requests to provide details/assistance with the payment (even transfers from India get to my account based on the same instructions within 3 business days). It has now been 5 business days and the money is still nowhere in sight.
Do you have any experiences with this company? I urgently need her payment to pay bills and have no time for her super emotional behavior (same with orders - extreme demands, but no cooperation on her part). I have all of my other clients "trained" to use paypal as this gives me control over their payment behavior and is much faster, but she insists on using old fashioned bank transfers for "security reasons."
AXXIA (Fraudulent company, non-payers)
2500 City W Blvd #2400 Houston, Texas USATo read reports : Ripoff Report Other reports
Banu translators, India (Low rates)
BASARI Language Services, Istanbul, Turkey (Late payers)
"Today, December 24th, the invoice is still unpaid.
I was used to working with them approx. once a year. Never met such problems.
I'll never understand why some companies make it so hard for translators to be paid when so small amounts are involved. Don't they realize that this is even more deleterious for their reputation than paying late a big amount?
Who can trust a business who cannot even pay €60??"To be fair, let me add that today, Wednesday December 26th, I received the full payment of my invoice from Basari- via PayPal -, i.e. 68 days post-invoice date and 38 days overdue.
A coincidence, isn't it?!! :-) "
Read more on LinkedIn
Batitercume (lowest bottom feeder, 0.005 USD per word)
Translator's email: "Hi, here is another company sending translators extremely low-paying "offers" which should be added to your list of low-rate companies. They are most likely sending all translators on Proz.com with English listed as their native language this anonymous message. My profile doesn't say that I work with Turkish to English translations. -----Original Message----- From: Bahar Demirci [mailto:email@example.com] Sent: November-01-13 11:58 AM To: ProZ.com Member Subject: About Proofreading Services "Dear English Native Speaker Colleague, We are running a translation Office in Ankara / Turkey and we need a proofreader for already translated files from Turkish by a English Native Speaker. The files are mostly “Academic Articles, Essays, Thesis, Dissertations…” We are ready to pay 1 USD per each 200 words which is the standard rate in Turkey for proofreading. And the payment will be prompt, to your PayPal account given to me. If you are interested about the offer can you please write me an email explaining your education and past experiences regarding to this job. Thank you very much. Best Regards, Bahar firstname.lastname@example.org Batı Tercüme Dil Hizmetleri Dr. Mediha Eldem Sk. No: 55/2, Kızılay / Ankara Tel: (0312) 430 61 33 Faks: (0312) 430 61 33 GSM: +90 555 222 85 58 Çankaya VD, No: 7170211165 This message was sent to you via the ProZ.com directory. Sender: Bahar Demirci
Ben's World / Europa dubbing subtitles (disrespectful, unprofessional, low rates)
I've been working for this company since two years, and i did provide them a good quality service, but always they wait 3 to 4months to pay, and when the payment is over due, they start making up excuses, lying about many things, finding strange errors, sometimes they sent me scripts that were having errors made by them...
Other times they made me cancel a translation project we worked in for 3days, and of course they didn't pay for the work done, but i said ok,...
Now again after we past their sample test for the second time, we translated 11 films, and after two months when i reminded them the payment, they complained about 2 scripts, without showing any details or corrections made, we still deducted the two scripts from the payment, and we emailed them many times, we sent them plenty of reminders,
The manager keeps insulting me in everyway, and he doesn't respect me at all, and now he didn't pay, and said to me three days ago, he can pay anytime he feels like paying... He's so bossy and rude...
I'm still waiting, and i gave him my last warning, but he doesn't seem to care much about it. Thank you"
BEOIMPIGRA or IMPIGRA, Serbia (non-payer)
"I would like to add BEOIMPIGRA or IMPIGRA owned by Svetlana Vraneš from Serbia - a major non-payer (owes many sworn translators thousands of Euros) - I have been contacted by some of the mentioned agencies, but, fortunately, saw their rating as non-payers and refused to work with them. I can heartily advise all colleagues to accept the practice of checking all new job offers against such lists & directories before accepting any jobs - not to be afraid that they'll loose it for a bit later reply. However, be careful with auto-refusal: not all the listed are scammers or non-payers - some of them just offer lower rates which they pay regularly (though a bit later, sometimes)."
Biag Group (Low rates)
"I've had an email approach (via Proz) from Biag Group (www.biaggroup.com) recently, offering US$0.04 per word. They didn't ask for a sample translation or anything, and at least were up-front with what they proposed to pay, but it's still a ridiculously low rate." Excerpt from a discussion on LinkedIn
TheBigWord, UK (very unprofessional, poor reputation, low rates and put pressure on translators to lower prices)
Reason number 1 not to work for them, they are blatant liars who say one thing to someone and another to others, without even supposing people are just as moronic as they are and will never connect the dots:
1) They are poor, so should you be!!
Reason number 1 not to work for them, they are blatant liars who say one thing to someone and another to others, without even supposing people will connect the dots:
They had the amazing idea to write the email below and address it to everyone of their collaborators. They have done it for several months, or even years, taking everyone for total fools. The thing is, the rate was always differents (country, or translator). So this generic mail was just an easy way to get the parrot project managers to bargain down without having to struggle too much.
But poor, that is something they are not, and a little googling can back up this. Profits in 2012 : 65 M USD
By the way this translator has written much more eloquently on the matter than me:
SO here is the infamous email I mentioned to you, in which only 2 details (date and rate) are interchangeable, that every good PM at the pig turd seems to know by heart. It's in bold too for convenience, so they can modify the sentence in a jiffi when needed.
"However, having said all of this, never before has our industry experienced such huge pressure from both the private and public sector to drive down prices. This, of course, is not necessarily for their own profit but simply a reaction to the state of world economies. At thebigword we have endeavoured to keep our rates to the highest possible level whilst enabling us to keep the work flowing to you but at the present time, those rates are not viable in the competitive marketplace. Therefore, with effect from Thursday 18th July, thebigword will change its payment per word rate to 0.038 GBP. These rate changes are not retrospective but will apply to any new work received from Thursday 18th July 2013."
Here an example of a different price: The Big Word - The Small Pay
2/ Reason 2: they have no clue about translation (only greed) Also, their recruitment process could be complete bullshit:
"I only did a test for them (the same text was on a website), I noticed that the text in Internet was a bad translation and I sent them my translation wit comments, links and explanations and told them to review the website (it was something official, Europe niveau) and since then I´ve got no answer.
3/ Unreliable amateurs
And besides the fact their rates are insulting, they don't STICK to the arranged price (if that's not dishonest what is??)
"Be very careful with them. They have cheap rates and when payment comes around they pay less than the agreed upon rate. I stopped working with them after a month"
Conclusion: Run away from the pig turd. Only newbies work for them, because they don't know better. Now you're warned and you're better off.
Blue Elephant, India (non-payers)
"Hello, Please add this agency with those details :
"Don't work for this agency, they do not pay : BLUE ELEPHANT -INDIA- They have just posted a huge project of several hundred thousand words.....Here what this translator's report on that agency: http://www.translationdirectory.com/forum/messages/?4349"
Barýþ or Baris Cagri Borucu, Turkey (non-payer)
His profile in TC (still there!) : http://www.translatorscafe.com/cafe/member133814.htm
Address : acun sok marti apt 8-12 Suadiye, Istanbul, 34740, Turkey
Email 18/06/2014 :
"Thank you for your brilliant blog. It just saved me from collaborating with another non-payer.I'd like to contribute one more name. It's not an agency, but rather a person. I don't know if you would add an individual to your list. Barýþ Borucu, email@example.com.
Short version: I did a rush job for him. He was very responsive and quick until I delivered. Afterwards, he ignored my e-mails for days then came up with multiple excuses. Finally, after many months, he stopped responding. He's now banned from posting jobs on TC and still no response. (The idea he might be dead actually crossed my mind.)
Long version: On Nov 23, 2012, I saw this post: http://www.translatorscafe.com/cafe/job131957.htm. I applied. The poster, Barýþ Borucu, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, responded to me attaching the file and informing me of the deadline, no further questions, although I offered to do an unpaid sample upfront. I reviewed the file and informed him that I'm not specialized in the subject matter. He told me to proceed anyway and that they will proofread it. He emphasized that speed is crucial. I sent the file in batches, as per his instructions. After I was done, I asked for his feedback. Two days later, I e-mailed him again asking for feedback. One day after that, I e-mailed him again asking for feedback and payment. He responded and told me that they were closed and he would let me know the next day. The next day, he e-mailed me saying that he would pay me through PayPal within 30 days, yet he didn't ask for my ID. I told him that it's blocked in my country and asked if he would use Skrill. He said that they don't use Skrill and that he mentioned that in the ad. I copied the ad, which didn't mention anything about the matter. He apologized and asked me for my Skrill ID. He said he'd pay "from another account then when it is due". That was on Nov 30, 2012. On Jan 1, 2013, and then again on Jan 9, I e-mailed him asking for updates. He responded on Jan 9 saying that he was away for a month for an interpretation job and that he'd pay me on Friday (Jan 11). On Jan 14, then again on Jan 16, I reminded him that I wasn't paid. He said that he was still waiting for confirmation from Skrill. I e-mailed him again on Feb 9, Feb 21, Mar 6 and Mar 23. I never heard of him. I reported him to the website (TC), he was banned from posting jobs and still didn't respond to anything. Keep up the good work, folks."
Other complaint on TC:
"He was paying for the game translation conducted by me in installments He paid for the first 4 parts then after I delivered the project he disappeared suddenly does not respond my mails. He even deleted me from skype. And he still owes me 442 USD"
Date of feedback: 18/11/2012 19:56 "
Bostico, Andreea Boston (Low rates, unprofessional practices)
Bzzy Beez, Romania (non pros, non-native=crap + non payers!!!)
"They did not pay me a small project and they do not reply to my msgs."
Contact: Anca Ciuteanu
Senior Project Manager
Bzzy Beez Translations
Phone: 0040-0766 055 785
Most translation agencies pride themselves on the quality provided
by the work from native speakers. Although Bzzy Beez agrees
with the need for native speakers, we know it's not needed for all
parts of a questionnaire.
Every questionnaire has a number of questions that are too basic
or too easy for you as a client to waste a lot of money on
expensive translations by native speakers. Anyone who studied French, can translate "What's your age?" into French."
Capita Translation and Interpreting (UK), greedy irresponsible company, now collapsing due to a BOYCOTT from interpreters
It looks like this company is finally getting the backlash they deserve for its unprofessional practises and greediness. The boycott (due their decision to cut transport cost and low rates of 20 pounds an hour) of Interpreters has had a serious effect on their reputation and they are on the verge of collapsing.
Their history so far: "Capita is the company that acquired Applied Language Solutions in Dec 2011.They subsequently were granted the exclusive interpreting contract for British criminal courts, and then bungled the job to a fair-the-well through poor decisions (cut interpreter rates, refusing to pay travel) and management, resulting in the current mess in court interpreting in the UK. I refuse to work with them on those grounds alone.They also have a poor payment record (to be fair, some of which was inherited from ALS) but there have also been several negative reports on Payment Practices and other forums since the takeover. Subscribers can see details on:
June 2014: Crapita rates:
"I was recently contacted by Capita for ongoing translation work for the Ministry of Justice at a fairly offensive rate of:
"These projects are paid at £50 per thousand words of translation and £2/4 per minute of audio for gist/full transcription"
I still wanted to give it a try, so I translated the test piece, passed, and was then asked to submit a (non-refundable) £75 Enhanced Criminal Bureau Check. Has any of you ever worked for this agency and do you think it is worth the investment?" Link to discussion
CD Translations UK (Payment delays)
Report on LinkedIn: "I did my first job for this agency in May. Communication seemed really efficient and professional. They had no track record on The BlueBoard, nor on Translator's Café so I went a head, confident that no news is good news.
The invoice was sent a few days later and reception of said invoice confirmed.
In July, the invoice was 2 weeks overdue, so I sent them a reminder. Again the response was reassuring.
Yesterday, much to my dismay I find that the invoice still hasn't been paid. I send a new reminder threatening legal action, and get a prompt answer accusing me of not having responded to an e-mail sent from the accountant in July (an e-mail that never reached me). I do want to believe them, but being 2 months behind on a payment of 1300 Euros is not reassuring."
Payment issued 2 months 10 days late. Read this discussion on Linkedin
Century (UK) - Low rates (3 euro cents)
The translation was highly technical and these people had a "budget" of 3 cents per word (which, should work out at about 3 euros an hour). When this translator refused the job, so they granted her a generous 4 cts instead, which she again refused. It is not an unusual story but at least now you know what to expect from Century translations. Her story in French :
"Ils m'ont proposé 0,03 euro par mot source, de l'anglais au français, pour de la traduction très technique. Ils ont finalement accepté 0,04 à condition que je garantisse une bonne qualité... J'ai refusé bien sûr."
Translations (to avoid)
Clark translations, Iowa, USA (non-payer)
"Fast forward to today, after numerous emails, phone calls and messages to which I and other translators who worked for this agency have received no replies, the website has now gone down and all emails are being bounced. My invoice is now over 2 months overdue and I'm really unhappy about this. For reference, the agency was Clark Translations, run by Bianca Clark. I've still not managed to get in contact with her and the invoice is still overdue, which is why I'm now putting her name and the name of the agency out there."
Clarus Language Solutions - Valencia, CA, USA (Late payer)
From a Payment Practises site : " I did a couple of jobs for Clarus Language Solutions last year. Mike Devlin is very pleasant to work with, but I had to email him multiple times over several months in order to get paid.
ComTranslations, India (scammers: have their payment avoidance techniques and offer the insulting rate 2,5 dollars a min for subtitling)
Contact person there: email@example.com
Translator's report : "To request the payment of your current earnings, you need to have reached a minimum of $100 for translations and $50 for subtitling.) ....Ils paient USD 5,00 par chaque 2 minutes de sous-titres."
New thread: LinkedIn, april 2014
"Pay 3 cents a word, pretend there are problems with the quality to get a 50 per cent discount and so on..."
Comment left by D.C, 13/03/14:
I was just just checking the list and saw that ComTranslations were mentioned for trying to avoid payment and ridiculous rates. I have had a short and not so sweet story with ComTranslations and they were a month overdue with paying my work of translating subtitles into Danish for House of Cards. Since the whole new season was just about to go public on Netflix on Feb 14, I sent them an email on Feb 12, telling them that my lawyer had advised me to get Netflix to hold back the Danish season because of their missing copyrights (belonging to me until full payment). I had my money in my account the next day. Just saying. You DO have weapons. ;-) "
Common Space LLC (Offensive rates)
Context GmbH (Non payer)
"We have had massive problems with payments. Big translations, but no money and a lot of excuses... Google listing n 1 ads"
Convocco (Cf ALS, same company)
Conyac, Japan (Tokyo) - Exploit low paid non-pros, insanely low 5 dollars per 1000 words
This is a scam agency that hires non-professionals (no degrees needed, pay them by "points" (500 signs: 5 dollars) and promises to be the fastest agency in the world. There is no email or adress to contact them on the website).Here are some shameless explanations on their website:
"What is Conyac? > Conyac is a human-powered translation service that anyone can join.
It's true, anyone can work for them, and i signed in 2 seconds without showing proof of my degrees.
"Simple and Fast Translation: >Where normal translation agency and online translation takes more than 3 hours to get your results back, "Conyac" can provide you with your results 15 minutes, the fastest. "
" There are thousands of translators from all over the world ready to process your request."
Mail received one week only after I signed in (with the intent of publishing more on this blog):
"Hello, Thank you for signing up with Conyac. We've noticed that you haven't logged in for a while. Have a little spare time? Why not translate at Conyac and earn yourself some extra money. Link:
https://conyac.cc/translatorsWhy translate at Conyac? You can work as often as you want during your spare time. If you have a laptop, a tablet or a smartphone, you can work from virtually anywhere. Use your language skills to earn a little extra money during your free time."
So yes, this is what it sounds like for them: a little job on the side for anyone with a tablet and vague notions of 2 languages. You have a little spare time, why not earn some wee pocket money? Pretty insulting...
If you are looking for "pocket money" here is what you ll get with them:
"you got a new translation request on Conyac. From: English To: French Letters: 662 Reward: 66
https://conyac.cc/questions/158378/work?utm_medium=email&utm_source=conyac---------------------------------------------------- Many translators are waiting for your review. Review for them now English => French https://conyac.cc/translations/12215/reviews"
So 10 points for each 100 letters, that means you'll need to translate 5000 letters to get the 500 points which are worth 5 dollars. So 5000 signs = roughly 1000 words, that's about 5 dollars per 1000 words instead of 120 dollars (normal pro price). It would be much more profitable doing nothing.
Copypanthers, Istanbul, Turkey (Crowdsourcer, promise peanuts, and don't pay them + don't pay "reps", ie -30%)
Another intruding broker with low practices. A virtual company with 5000 likes on Facebook. Thanks Facebook for making all this crowdsourcing possible. Their modo: "Let's put everyone (Translators, proofreaders and writers) in the same basket, pay them peanuts, and stuff our pockets in the meantime".
Comment from translator: "They pay translators per hour and charge clients per word.What they are doing is using people with no experience or skills and 'train' them to become 'great' translators."
Website: "Our offer is simple: we help you monetize your language assets: you can work as much as you want and we pay you 30.5 Turkish Lira (±11 Euro) per hour. It's also great as an extra boost for your income. Register now at
http://www.copypanthers.comTranslator, proofreader and writer jobs. Sign up and get work today! copypanthers.com
If language is your thing, whether it is as a writer, translator or proofreader, we have the jobs for you! Sign up and start getting jobs this week. *****"
Recent report: "Their rates are indeed ridiculously dump-priced (less than 0,03e per source word). I have to admit I've done some work for them since I have quite little experience as a freelance translator with translating as a main occupation. In addition to their low rates, their word counting practices were to me surprising: they counted almost a third as repeats, even when I had to revise and edit the "repeats" for suitability in context and click through the whole document. And as a topping, the peanuts they'd pay for several hours of work, they haven't paid yet...
I prefer to be anonymous but thought it's worth having word spread. Thanks for your blog. It helps me a lot in this jungle. "
Corporate translations (pharmaceutical), USA. (Loss of professionalism: fixed price, no selection anymore, rushed translations)
Now assigning projects to the first translator available: turnaround time becomes the most important factor. They just select a translation selecting the most suitable translator. Here is their announcement:
"Corporate Translations has recently been selected as the preferred supplier for a number of large pharmaceutical companies and their clinical research organizations. As a result, we have more work to outsource to our freelance linguists.
Being a preferred supplier of translation services to major pharmaceutical companies comes with additional commitments such as stable pricing and faster translation turnaround times. In order to meet these commitments, Corporate Translations is currently improving its process for placing projects with individual translators in order to accommodate these important customers. Reducing the amount of time spent placing translations will provide you with more job opportunities and more time to complete the translations.
Corporate Translations will now be issuing service requests in a slightly different way. Service requests will now be offered to you at a flat rate, which will be clearly marked on the request. In addition, these service requests will be offered to a small group of linguists at one time with an acceptance deadline. The first linguist to commit to the service request will be issued a purchase order signifying that they have been assigned the project. This will result in service requests being placed sooner, allowing you the maximum amount of time possible to complete the translation task and still meet the client's deadline."
Cosmic Global (Low rates and unsafe deals)
"Cosmic Global as a company is unfortunately a joke. I received a similar offer months ago asking if I could do a 250k word translation. Payment would have been 30 days AFTER I would have returned the whole translation.
...Kindly let us know if you could accept 0.04 Euro per word for translation.
Hope to work with you in our project.
Awaiting your response.
Thanks & regards,
Cosmic Global Limited"
Cosmopolitan Translation Bureau, Inc. in Chicago Illinois, USA (scam, non-payers)
They accept a semi-decent rate, and are agreeable over the phone at first, sending newcomers to the market a lot of work all at once. Then they don't pay. They have no intention of ever paying.
Phone calls were ignored, as were messages and emails. The "secretary" was belligerent and rude over the phone.I finally got paid when I informed them I would be filing taxes (in the US) including a 1099 Business Loss form. The US IRS considers any money not paid to me by Cosmopolitan to be income Cosmopolitan must declare. I got a check within a week. I posted about the situation on a Proz forum and immediately got several responses from people asking if it was Cosmopolitan. After someone suggested the 1099 trick, many of us got paid. Several interpreters in Chicago were attempting to put together a suit. I know the company has had to change names a few times because it has been sued before.
S.S, Email 14/04/14
Coté, Pierre, Montréal (Non-payer)
From WPPF, 7649:
"Coté has been refusing to pay $3000 several years ago.
I managed to find his (undisclosed) new address and sue him formally. Eventually an audience is scheduled in Montreal, in October. Any details about him (possible misconduct elsewhere, professional details etc.) are welcome. And reciprocally I can supply details. Please contact me personally.
Cristal Traduceri (Low rates)
Crystal Hues, India (Low rates)
Cutting Edge (low rates)
Professional : "This agency will pay you 0.02 USD per word for medical files." http://www.translatorscafe.com/cafe/tools.asp?pn=fameagencies
Day Translations, USA (Low, late/non payer)
From WPPF: "VERY LOW PAYMENT, LATE OR NEVER"http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/WPPF/conversations/messages/7773Day Translations Inc.
711 South Howard Avenue Tampa, FL 33607 United States
Email 20/07/14:Hello,First, I wanted to thank you for creating this site. I think it's very important for the translation industry to have a go-to place where scam and otherwise unprofessional and low-pay agencies are consolidated.Out of curiosity I went back on Glassdoor recently to see what other reviews had been posted about Day Translations, and almost all of them positive (perhaps created by the agency in response to my damning review? Some of them were posted soon after mine.). When the site asks for cons about the agency, one response was: "There are no cons because this is the kind of agency every freelance would like to work with. No problems at all." Another con: " I only wish they would call me more. I love working for Day Translations!" One review title: "One of my favorite agencies to work for!" I find it hard to believe these could be real..."
Second, I wanted to add my experience with Day Translations to the information already posted. This is the review I wrote of the agency on Glassdoor several months ago, which I entitled "Greedy corporate monster":
"Day Translations only pays $.05/word, an extraordinarily low rate for Spanish translations ($.10/word being the norm). Despite this egregiously low rate of pay, the organization expects absolute perfection--even though, ironically, the Translator Orientation Powerpoint is chock-full of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes-- and always has very tight rush deadlines for which we translators are not compensated accordingly. Rush translations are simply the norm with this organization. Nor are translators compensated for the great amount of time it takes to painstakingly replicate the exact formatting of the original document. Moreover, the constant oversight by managers to make sure we meet these absurd deadlines took away the very freedom I enjoy about being an independent translator. All of these qualities reveal that Day Translations only cares about making money, with absolutely no regard for its severely underpaid employees. After all, Day Translations realizes that if one person doesn't accept the exceptionally low rate of $.05/word, there are always others that are willing to work for such slave wages."
Delta International (non-payer)
"(With all these) we have had massive problems with payments. Big translations, but no money and a lot of excuses... Google listing N°1 ads"
Dialectus/Digimedia (Isabel Monteiro), Portugal (non-payer!)
"That agency, from Portugal, was recently banned from advertising on ProZ, and reported to owe in excess of 250 000 Euros to various professionals having worked for them. They contacted me for a contract over a year ago, for which I was never paid a penny of the $1000 they owed me. And that
in spite of repeated promises to do so.
Their website now seems to be down."
Dialectus, Trad.Técnicas Legendagem e Locução, Lda.
Rua Manuel Ferreira, 17B
Alto de Stª Catarina
Contact telephone +351 4144123
For all of you, in Portugal, victims of Dialectus, you might want to consult the following site and register a denuncia:
Diamond translations or Cristal Trans, Italy (CROOKS, insulting rates, non-payer, horrible reputation, advertise on Proz, Fake addresses, )
From a payment practices site: WPPF
"Every time they tried to force work down my throat was at such a low rate that the whole conversation wasn't worth the effort. They just couldn't take no for an answer and such extremely low rates (Karine G)"Thanks for your answer. I actually had a decent proposition and worked for them for a few projects during this month (monthly invoice system). Serious end client and good communication. Then I found alarming posts on forums and I started to freak out." (Chahenda A.)
I worked for a full month for this agency supposedly in Syracuse, N.Y.
I sent them my invoice, as requested by a P.M. Adrien de Miras. He mailed me back that he received it and will transfer it to the financial department ASAP. Since then nothing, around 4500 € gone, and I can't find any lead to reach them. This guy had projects for Hyundai, Samsung and Schneider Electric. How come?
Can anybody help me with any info please? I lost a lot because of this man, even health wise, I want to be sure he gets what he deserves."
Chahenda A., Freelancer translator
I have a great solution if you can: it is to contact his clients and tell them all about this guy, showing purchase order, copies of work you did for them. Forward an email to all the clients he advertises on his site warning them not to use him again? And leave messages on all the forums mentioned here: Linkedin, proZ, TD, and WPPF...
Email from Roisin, 07/04/14:
"I saw that you have listed Diamond Translation. I was offered normal rates by this agency, did lots of work for them (and am still to this date fighting for payment). But recently, the same "project manager" (only with a different spelling) seems to have forgotten he has already "used me", started sending POs from a different company altogether, CristalTrans, which is also a scam. I have found several websites which discuss this issue, so be careful! They also seem to have a profile on Proz.
May 2014: Non paying case where they owe 1500 Euros to a translator: see link
Digimedia (See Dialectus above)
DIXIT Language Solutions, France (bottom-feeder)
New: Read my article on this blog.
These guys have an agreement with Proz who granted them their quality label and entire support and full list of translators - without informing them or asking for permission. Their slogan:
"Dixit Services The ProZ.com Certified Pro Network A network of certified translators Unique price 0,06 € / Word All languages"
A translator's comment: "As for the home page of dixit, it is a "textbook" example of bad writing and is full of howlers......"Become a translator"? The implication here is that if you sign up, you "become" a translator."
If you have 20 years of experience, if you are an expert in your field, if you have the rarest language, if you have a Phd in translation well you are being offered the same lousy rate as someone who hasn't got any of the above. But then you'll probably also have "other cats to whip" as we say in French and will not need to work for this sweatshop who also sells bikinis on the side, allegedly (?).
WHOEVER THESE GUYS ARE PLEASE BOYCOTT THIS PLATFORM AND PROVIDE MORE INFORMATION ON THEM.
DL Multimedia, Spain (non-payers)
"Hands off DL Multimedia in Spain, or it will cost you dearly. They owe me thousands of Euros (I stopped working for them some time ago) and their promises concerning payment never came true.It's a long story... Are there other translators with the same problem with regards to DL Multimedia? It might be useful to get in touch, maybe we can build enough power to get some payment out of that company after all."
D&M Peru (late payments)
See WPPF June 2014
Dream Studios, Czech Republic (late payer)
Email, 9/11/13 : "I am writing you in order to let you know that Dream Studios, an agency based in the Czech Republic, has contacted me for a proofreading job and they haven't paid me. Although it's only a 10 Euro job, I thought this would be an information of interest for my fellow colleagues.Thank you for your time."
Since all communication with Mr. Alexandre Autrand and Dream Studios has failed and I will probably never retrieve the amount they owe me, I thought at least I should let people know about this company and their behaviour towards freelance workers. Below you will find some e-mails from Mr. Autrand. I should also let you know that although I've been trying to reach him and the company, I haven't heard from them since October the 1st.
Teresa Bento, Freelance translator, Portugal
- July 26th -"Dear Teresa,
I hope you are doing well.
We have a first job for you : it would be for the proofreading of the slogan of a video that our client wants to launch in Portugal.
I will send you the copy in English and the translation in Portuguese on Monday 29th Morning. Our price is 10 euros and the deadline is on Monday 29th, 4pm GMT. Could you tell me as soon as possible if you are interested in taking this job ?
Thanks a lot,
Expo 58, Letenske sady 1500
170 00 Praha 7, Czech Republic
T +420 220 397 531 F +420 220 397 601
E firstname.lastname@example.org "
Dear Teresa, I would advise you to adopt the common professional practice of charging a minimum hourly fee of at least 20 euros (or whatever the amount is in your country of residence). Experience has taught me it always proves necessary, these small assignments take much more time (incl invoicing and in this case keeping track of the payment) It will also deter "cheap" unprofessional companies from wasting your time! Some agencies ask you to waive it off occasionally in exchange of the promise of a long term job. This is not acceptable. My reply is always no, on a first punctual job. Because there is a pretty good chance there won't be a follow up. Also because 20 euros is still very (too) cheap, because there are some hidden time consuming related parameters to take in account: research, invoicing, checking payment, responsability in case of problem...
DRR Global LLC, New Jersey (Jay Rossi, late, non-payer)
"Hi, I already subscribe to your blog and value it a lot.
I have an addition to make to your blacklist -- or someone who doesn't pay a translator for four months is not yet considered a late payer? They were supposed to pay in 45 days (which I already consider late!) according to their own rules.The company is DDR Global, LLC, of New Jersey, and the person of contact is Jay Rossi, Principal.email: email@example.comI checked them out, but not too thoroughly, and couldn't find anything negative. And I thought, well, why bother for US$66.00 anyway! No great harm done.However, I feel I should make it known in case someone else decides to work for them. So I published it on WPPF list for good measure. Soon after, I got email from Rossi apologizing and asking me to wait a couple of days. When nothing came, I complained again. Another empty promise. So far I got nothing else.I hope you can add them to your blacklist.Thank you and regards,"H.V
Easy Language, London (payment issues)
A professional " I Did one job for them in March, they have not paid yet. I sent them several reminders, but they stopped responding after the first". Non-payers: EasyLanguage, London
Elanex (bad practices, unacceptable contract)
"Their terms of service agreement attempts to force translators into giving a 50% discount for fuzzy matches. If you want to receive any projects from them you have to sign this agreement. In case of word rate the following standard Elanex compensation formula applies unless otherwise specified in the SOW:
New translation: 100% of base per word rate Fuzzy translation: 50% of base per word rate Exact translation: 0% of base per word rate
No bloody way. Unless THEY pay for the CAT tool you are using, why on earth should THEY get a discount? (Even if they did, giving a discount would be debatable)
"Not such good news on ProZ.com, where there are a number of non-payment
reports. The outsourcer has been banned from that site since January 31, 2011"
"I have worked with them many times
They pay always between 45 and 60 days but offer only $.06 and lower. So you make the math "
From WPPF (http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/WPPF/conversations/messages/7758 and 7753)
Links to reports on ProZ:
Equivalangue, France (Non payer)
Email 15/05/2014 14:30 R.G
I would like to warn other freelance translators about the French translation agency Equivalangue. In September 2013 they contacted me and asked me to do a translation job for them. I did, and they kept sending me work. In December they paid what they owed me for my work during that year. I had no reason not to trust them when they gave me more work in 2014.
I worked almost exclusively for Equivalangue in January, February and the first week of March, which resulted in quite a large sum of money that they were going to pay out in the second week of March (due to their payment terms of 45 days after they have received the invoice). Mid-March came and nothing happened. I emailed them several times about when I could expect to receive the payment. Each time they came up with various excuses, said that they would pay soon and that they were sorry for the delay.
It's been two months since they were supposed to pay me, but I still haven’t received the payment for my work in 2014 and I would therefore like to advise other translators against working for Equivalangue. They may pay at first, but after a while they will cease to pay you. Currently they owe me 1225 euro."
Euroscript Luxembourg (winning tenders for the EU Commission with low rates, 4 times lower than an acceptable rate. To BOYCOTT)
October 2013: "Hi, thanks for your excellent blog. I would like to contribute with this job offer I receiver from Euroscript:
Are you a freelance translator, with in-depth translation expertise in the indoor and outdoor cleaning solutions? (floor scrubber-dryer...) Are you available and do you translate in the following language combination?
English into Italian.
If so, euroscript Luxembourg, a leading multinational language services provider would like to hear from you. We have a huge technical/marketing project: brochures to translate and we are looking for the very best translators to join us.
What we expect from you
■Higher degree in translation or equivalent
■Italian native speaker
■Proven track of translation experience in marketing texts
■Proven track of translation experience in marketing texts and
in technical texts
■Highly service minded and strong sense of keeping to deadlines
What we offer you
■Long term partnership, where you are considered as a true co-worker (as opposed to a fake or illegit one)
■Personal contact to the Project Manager team
(You'd think it's a prerequisite...)
■Fair payment conditions and punctual payments
(Well thank you that's incredibly generous of you to pay the exact amount on time, you really didn't have to)
■Good opportunities for personal development
(Thanks, I can't wait to learn all about "indoor and outdoor cleaning solutions (floor scrubber-dryers)"
If you are interested and meet the above requirements, please fill free to contact me with your full CV at dalila.Aitbraham@euroscript.lu
At lats but not least, the rate proposed for this project is 0,055€/sw. (Indeed that is not something to be frowning upon, it's almost as much as a McDonalds employee gets paid!)
If you have any questions, please contact me anytime.
I would need a reply by Monday, 16 2012 9:00 Luxembourg time at the latest. We are always pleased to hear from experienced and professional
translators who are at home in the world of marketing, technical
and technical writing
Cordialement / Best Regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen
Dalila Aït Braham | Vendor Management Department
euroscript Luxembourg S.à r.l.
I replied saying that I cannot accept anything lower than 0.08EUR per source word, and she said:
Thank you for your email and unfortunately our margin is very tight and we cannot afford this rate.
UPDATE Email 23/07/14 Euroscript is paying 4 cents per word for LEGAL texts to be used by the EUROPEAN COMMISSION, which is 4 TIMES LOWER than what pros normally charge for this type of texts. Impose rates and translation program (Trados) to lower it (impose trados discounts for repetitions). Shall I remind you that the European laws and regulations go through this underpaid intellectual labour ?
"Thanks for posting your very helpful blacklist, I am a freelance translator and find it very useful. There are a couple of agencies I'd like to report to it.
I'll start with Euroscript Luxembourg, which is already on your list and has won several EU translation tenders in the past.
In May, they sent me yet another of their frequent requests for documentation so that they can bid for a contract with the European Commission. They mention the rate they are offering at the very end of the long request (you'll have to scroll down to the bottom): EUR 12 per EU page of 1500 chars (approx. 250-300 words). Even by their standards, this is startlingly low. I declined this "offer" and gave reasons. The email is below.
As you may be aware, it has introduced a system of paying translators per "Trados page", whether or not they work with a CAT tool. In practice, what this means is that whatever rate I quote to them, I receive a fraction of it once they send me a "pre-invoice" at the end of the month detailing the Trados breakdown of each job, which may or may not be accurate for all I know. I have just told them I am raising my rates substantially, so I imagine I won't be getting any more work from them.
I will send you details of another agency (which isn't on your list) shortly.
Thanks and keep up the great work on the blog!
----- Forwarded message from Dalila.AitBraham@euroscript.lu -----
Date: Tue, 20 May 2014 18:06:42 +0000
From: "Ait Braham, Dalila" <Dalila.AitBraham@euroscript.lu>
Subject: Offer_Direction Générale CONNECT: DG CONNECT_ RO into English
Presently, euroscript is looking to secure a contract with the European Commission by responding to a call for tender for the translation of notifications and Commission decisions under Article 7 of the Framework Directive 2002/21/EC (as amended by Directive 2009/140/EC) SMART 2014/1071.
DG Connect manages the procedure for notifications and consultations as laid down in Article 7 of the Framework Directive of the new Regulatory Framework for Electronic Communications.
This notification and consultation procedure consists in the analysis and assessment of the draft measures as proposed by the European National Regulatory Authorities (NRAs) to be imposed on the identified e-communications markets. These notifications are received in one of the 22 official EU languages and, in order to carry out the analysis of the notifications as foreseen by Article 7 procedure, these texts need to be translated into English under tight deadlines.
The subject of the contract is the translation of these notifications, their technical annexes and related messages, as well as responses by National Regulatory Authorities. This project will involve translating from and into any EU official languages.
Starting date of the contract: end of 2014. euroscript won this contract in 2007 and has also been renewed in 2011.
The project « DG Connect ». It is a long-term project (4 years).
1/ General Requirements
- target language = mother tongue English
- expertise in the domain (electronic communications networks and services, competition law)
(samples documents can be found under: https://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/newsroom/all/1003)
- Usage of CAT tools are a must and Trados Studio 2014 is preferable.
2/ Candidate profile
æ Profile 1 - minimum qualifications
- 3 full years of translating experience in the language combination
- University degree and/or master degree in translation
æ Profile 2 - minimum qualifications
- Any other University degree
- 4 full years of translating experience in the language combination
æ Profile 3 - minimum qualifications
Non-native EN speakers with the following competences:
- In-depth knowledge and competences in English ? close to native abilities
- Post-graduate experience in translation of min. 3 full years (into EN)
- Expertise in the requested domains
3/ Signed Documents to be submitted to the client
- europass CV in English (please use attached template)
- Annex 7: (see attached template: Information sheet)
- Annex 6b (see attached template: Letter of Intent)
- Annex 8: Computer and Telecommunications Equipment questionnaire
- copy of University diploma
- Confidentiality agreement
*Please use a blue pen when signing the documents.
- Scanned documents should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org<mailto:email@example.com> as soon as possible
- Originals should be sent to euroscript Luxembourg by post at the following address at the latest by the 6th of June 2014.
Mrs. Stefanie Trahe, Bid Manager
55, rue de Luxembourg
At last but not least the standard pricing for a translation service is 12? per European Union standard page.
*EU page = sp1500 characters without spaces.
Should you have any question or suggestion, please feel free to contact me anytime.
Thank you very much for your time and support!
*please do not change the subject title when replying.
Cordialement / Best Regards / Mit freundlichen Grüßen
Dalila Aït Braham | Global Vendor Manager
euroscript Group (Luxembourg office)
T.: +352 31 44 11 445 | F.: +352 31 44 11 339
55, rue de Luxembourg | L-8077 Bertrange
Eurostreet Società Cooperativa, Biella, Italy (Low rates, bottom-feeder)
They offer a ridiculous 11 Eur per page of 1500 signs minus spaces.
More on this page: "Eurostreet ’s prices have dropped more than a third from the price list they posted in 2010.How could Eurostreet possibly still be in business? Well, you could write and ask Claudio Ranghino, who is supposedly Eurostreet’s “legal representative” (firstname.lastname@example.org)."
Eurotranslations, Spain (Bottom feeder)
Email 23/07/14: "Hello again, Below is the email correspondence I recently had with Eurotranslations, an agency based in Spain. They asked me to quote for a Romanian-English legal translation and said that they specifically wanted a UK English-speaking translator. When I told them my rate, they tried to persuade me to accept half of it, saying: "considering our clients are Spanish we cannot offer high budgets". I have worked for Spanish agencies before, and what Eurotranslations offered (EUR 0.04-0.05 per target word) is low even by Spanish standards, and insultingly low for a legal translator working into UK English."
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2014 16:44:38 +0200
From: Eurotranslations <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: [ProZ.com mail] Legal document (bankrupcy file and power of attorney) 800 words
Thank you very much for taking the time to get in contact regarding this project.
On average, considering our clients are Spanish we cannot offer high budgets and consequently we usually pay between 0.04 and 0.05 per target word to our translators.
Do you think you could possibily a lower rate on this occasion?
I look forward to your response.
Translation Project Manager
Temple 5, 1º
07001 Palma de Mallorca, SPAIN
Exchange Data International Ltd (insulting rates and attitude)
"Thanks for your blacklist of translation agencies, it is very helpful. Would it be possible to add Exchange Data International Ltd? Last week they offered me a whopping 7.5 GBP per hour. I replied:
"This would mean that, even if I put in 10 hours each day, I would end up with GBP 40 per day after taxes, and approximately GBP 800 per month. That's far from the minimum salary in Belgium, and I assume/hope in the UK as well."Here's what they replied:"I am afraid freelancers here don’t go by the minimum salary, they work when there is work. The pay is not negotiable I am afraid."Of course, I declined the offer. I had already done a test translation for them. I would like to warn other freelancers so that they don't waste their time.Thanks!Best regards,Bjorn T."
Expert of Translations (SCAM alert)
"Expert of Translations is a phantom company based in the Palestinian territories. It is linked to Translation Secrets, Gentle Translations, Amazing Translations, Powerful Translations, Languagemet and several other agencies that steal CV identities to get work.
The person behind Expert of Translations is called Stephani (a fake name). Do not accept any projects from this person. If you do, not only will he or she steal your identity, but you will also received no payments for work completed.
Feel free to contact me regarding this agency."
FEA Translation and Language Solutions (Incredibly low rates)
"If you visit their website, you'll see they also pretend to have branches all over the world, and the job ad I saw said "FEA Translation and Language Solutions Australia". I paste the message below for you to be aware of this new case.
Thank you for your email and for sending us your CV .
We are happy to inform you, FEA Translation and Language Solutions confirm acceptance on said subject concerning the cooperation with you, we agree to pay 0,010 USD per source word.
Please find attached our database form for translators which we would appreciate you completing, signing and returning to us.
Please accept our congratulations on the adoption of our family and our thanks for your enthusiastic attitude.
We recognise that our greatest asset is our translators; It is our people who deliver brilliant work. Who give the company its personality, who shape its culture, and who innovate. That´s why we believe in treating our people with respect, looking after their welfare and allowing them the freedom to be themselves, to flourish, and maximise their potential moreover to produce the best results for the Company & clients. It is our policy to assist our people to enable them to achieve their aims and aspirations.(...)"
Indeed, they really know how to show their gratitude for all this profit they are making in your back. By promising to treat you with respect. What a deal!
Frühbeck Translations, Esperanza Frühbeck (CROOK, RUN!! owes thousands)
FOX Translate (Low rates)
"If so, I would like to have a discussion with that individual, privately, about rates. I would be happy to provide information about my own target, "acceptable", and "desperation" rates in return."
gb-translation.com (insulting rates+non-payer)
"Proposent des prix très bas (0.02 Euro par mot) et ne paient pas."
Gentle Translations (Run! Scammers network)
Omar AKA Agatha Wear AKA Lego Trans/Petra Trans (see note 18, TSD). Lonaverbas/Professional Translator Team are also closely connected to Gentle Translations (aka Languagemet/Translation Secrets and many other scam operations).
GIGAVINE (unacceptable rates, about 0.03 USD p w, suspicious practices)
"That is true, Ari. One person from an agency I used to work with a few years ago and stopped sending assignments altogether told me flatly that they were using machine translation for Spanish. They charge the end client a little less than they did a few years ago, the end client is happy that they have lowered their rates and meanwhile the agency is making more than they did 5 years ago, keeping all the profit. I've seen flagrant mistakes in the Spanish version of more than a few translation agency websites... I guess the trend is spreading. Instead of translators doing away with the intermediaries, intermediaries are doing away with us."
I bothered checking the website and, as usual, they only work with the best of the best. "Our technical translators have a professional background in the fields they specialise in, so you can be sure that their work will be accurate and easily understood by a specialist audience.
Giantsc Translation (China) - (Offensive rates)
Globalwise Conversion technologies
Hello Veritas see Veritas (nasty business practises, won't pay)
Hispanic Voices: Philip Ward & Kitzia Huerta (fraud and theft!)
Article online: "The owner of a foreign-language interpreter service pleaded guilty to theft Monday in a billing-for-services scheme that authorities say cost a Washington state agency hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Philip Ward, 41, of Mountlake Terrace, pleaded guilty in Thurston County Superior Court to three counts of first-degree theft. Ward’s wife, Kitzia Huerta, 37, had pleaded guilty in October to one count of first-degree theft in the same case (...) By pleading guilty, the couple admitted to defrauding L&I from February 2006 to September 2008 by billing for interpretive services that never occurred, inflating bills for services that did occur and using the provider numbers of certified interpreters to bill for services provided by uncertified interpreters.
Prosecutors from the state Attorney General’s Office contend the fraudulent billings amounted to well over $600,000, making it L&I’s largest case ever of interpreter fraud. As part of their guilty pleas, the couple has agreed to repay the state. The court will determine the amount of restitution at a hearing in Thurston County on Dec. 9.(...)"
Read rest of the article
HQ (low rates)
Inaword, USA (Stella Hayes Fridman,"retired" non-payer!)
It's great to have this list. Thanks!
I have a new one to add: Inaword (California). Although this translation company is no longer in operation, I'd love to know if anyone else is owed money by the owner, Stella Hayes Fridman, who refuses to answer emails. She owes me about $2,000 from 2012. Could you please post this? Thanks!
ATA-Certified Translator (Spanish < > English)"
Instant Translations (low rates, suspicious practices)
Read a report:
http://www.instanttranslation"I inform you that I've answered to a job post on TranslatorsCafe.com, and when I received the response from the agency, in which they include a link to sign up, once you register you have to activate the account, and you will finally be asked to "verify" your Paypal account by paying USD 1.- to be able to get some work from them."Be careful, as this is not the first agency which does the same...More complaints :http://www.translatorscafe.com/cafe/job149739.htm
Integrated Language Solutions, India (Non payer : Rohini Arora)
See report on LinkedIn.
Mail 02/03/14I was recommended to take a look at your site. What do you need to add a company to your list? I am in the middle of a fight to get paid by: Integrated Language Solutions. http://www.proz.com/blueboard/7265
As you can see there are several other translators that have been scammed by Rohini Arora, whom I believe is the only person with this company. I haven't put an entry on the blue board yet, because she can comment and the comments are lies. I have been in touch with a few of the other who have given her bad reviews and they have still not been paid. I also have a support ticket open there to try to get help with pushing her to pay.I was a fool to get lured in by her, but she paid my first invoice and I thought it would be ok. This seems to be her m.o. Anyways, I want to get the warning out there where ever I can, so no one else gets ripped off by this 'person'.
Intersol Inc., California, Susan Turbitt (non-payer)
"I wasn't paid by Intersol Inc. based in CA:
http://intersolinc.com/Over 3k, invoices due more than one year. This company is owned by one woman Susan Turbitt, but they have PMs, too. She stopped to pay after several years of collaboration - with delayed payments, but with interesting projects. I informed the ProZ community about this. I still didn't get my money from this lady. And she still exists, with many profiles on ProZ (one was blocked by the stuff, after another collegue and later me wrote on the BB about nonpayment) "
InText (insulting rates)
"Proposed translation at $10 a page and editing at $5 a page."
ISO translations/Universal Translation Services, Las Palmas, Gran Canaria (Very low rates, brutal rate drops last year)
Email 12/02/14: "I wanted to thank you for your whole blog and your handy black list. I came across it not long ago, while looking for some info in ISO translation on the web I think. Anyway, I've just remembered that some more info were needed about ISO translation, so here (below) is the email I received after applying (I saw on Linkedin that they were looking for some new translators), maybe it helps.
I replied asking if those rates were negociable, but I did not receive any answer, and this was about one month ago so I guess that it means that they find enough translators working at those rates (!!). Keep your blog, it is great! Best, J."
"Thank you for your email. We are using special software, which is a communication program between the project management and our translators. Without this software, you will not be able to work for us. Please note that you need to have a fast internet connection in order to use the program.
1. If you have applied as a translator, please download the software and register. You will get the possibility to download a test translation. Please upload this test translation again into Tranwise so we can analyse it. ( For example, if you want to register as a French to English translator, look for the French text in the document, translate it into English and upload both source and target language as it's important for our linguists when analyse it.) As soon as your test translation has been approved, you can log into Tranwise with the username and password you have registered and receive all the job announcements in your language combination. You are free to accept the offered translations but also to decline them. In Tranwise you will also see your payment sheet of all the jobs you have translated or proofread for us. In the first week of every month, we transfer the money.
Please note that we offer a fixed rate for translations which is 0.03Euro per word and for proofreading 0.005 Euro per word"
Mail (14/03/14) "Hi, I see that you already have an entry on ISO translations. I would like to add the following info.I got the exact same message, including the all-time kicker:
Please note that we offer a fixed rate for translations which is 0.03Euro per word and for proofreading 0.005 Euro per word.
However, I'd like to point out that I first got a private message (request for Swedish - Dutch translators) via TranslatorsCafé from Universal Translation Services (www.universal-translation-services(dot)com). Apparently ISO translations is a subdivision of Universal Translation Services, based in Las Palmas, sunny Gran Canaria.
I asked if their proposition was meant to be a joke and that I was willing to consider a reasonable offer, but got no reply.Kind regards, and keep up the good work"
Janus Worldwide, Moscow, Russia (Ridiculous rates)
"They pay ridiculously low rates and want discounts when you're good and they actually like you :) I have never worked with them, but they approached me in 2011, following is a quote from their agreement:
"The company embraces the concept of key suppliers in its work with freelance translators, reserving its core translation workload for the most loyal, productive and highly‐skilled professionals. This is what makes the company’s collaboration with Vendors so effective and so profitable. In return, the Vendor will offer a discount to Janus WWI based on the results of his work within a calendar year. The size of the discount is calculated according to the table below:"
In 2014, they asked me for my rates and then replied:
"We are very limited in budget and the maximum we can propose is 0.04 EUR. I am afraid you cannot accept that."
You can make your own decisions based on that.."
JR Media Services (subtitling company), Burbank, USA - Non payer, RUN!
Email 29/06/2014 from F.
"They pretended their client IBM had a tight budget !!), and said they didn't receive my emails containing the words "invoice", "payment", "money". I was paid over a month late. They gave me excuses which were different than those they gave to my colleague (account manager is ill/on holiday...)"
Read this blog: http://unpaidandpissed.wordpress.com/2010/05/17/jr-media-services-skips-out-on-provider-refuses-to-pay/
"How can JR Media Services, with big Hollywood studios as their clients, have unpaid invoices dating as far back as July 2009. Unbelievable. What’s more unsettling is the fact that JR Media Services’ CEO, Max Beno, has completely washed his hands, refusing to pay the provider the $23,507.96 owed to them.
Now THAT’S INCREDIBLE!
All I can do is warn any company who wants to provide services or goods to JR Media Services. JR Media Services will not pay you. They will get your goods and/or services and leave you holding the bill. And don’t hold your breath either honey cause you aren’t getting paid by JR Media Services. The ‘JR’ in JR Media Services stands for JUST RUNAWAY."
JTI - Juris'Traduction International (France) - Late or non payments
"I did a translation for them, the invoice was supposed to be paid on October 20, sent several messages to Tomy Green and Catherine Pouré (owner) unsuccessfully. No reply from them."
"Average LWA score 2.2 overall, past year 1 (low and lowest respectively) - Since the address is the same as for JTI Development, I think we can assume these are the people you are dealing with. I suggest you get paid up to date, but do no further work for them."
"On the societe.com website (in French), I found that this agency is pursuing its activity even though a "loss of capital" has been declared on the 2nd of March 2012 (http://www.societe.com/societe/juristraduction-internationale-development-502283146.html). I worked for an agency owned by JM Pouré , which also had declared a "loss of capital" on the 9th of February 2012 and is now bankrupt. This agency had a legal translation branch but the URLs I have got do not work any more. I can't be sure that these people are linked. It's quite a coincidence."
"I have not been paid for an invoice whose settlement is now two months overdue - five emails have been ignored - no reply - the telephone and fax number do not respond. I have left comments on Payment Practices (paymentpractices.com) run by Ted Wozniak who has left a comment here too. I am paying a debt collection agency called D&B Collection Services to extract the payment from this agency. My advice is not to work for them."
JTI - Juris'Traduction International: 153, avenue Charles de Gaulle, NEUILLY SUR SEINE, France, 92200
Kernel Quality Translations, Paola Martinenghi Non-payer (she actually plans not to pay you)
"First of all thank you so much for your blog which represents a great contribution for those of us who make a living out of our hard-earned credentials.
Here's the name and details of an Italian agency and related owner who is totally nuts. The owner, Paola Martinenghi, recruits translators offering somewhat fair rates yet when it comes to paying she totally disappears - no payment whatsoever-so some of us who had the disgrace to work with this agency are spreading the word in the attempt to save other translators (and clients as well, as I'm told they're increasingly dissatisfied especially with deadlines never met).
Here's the details.
Kernel Quality Translations
Thanks for sharing, I recommend you to report this person to the local authorities as soon as possible.
KONSUL - very late (8 months) or non-payment
"Some time ago I accepted an emergency job from this outfit for a fixed fee. I delivered well within the time allotted. On my next billing cycle I invoiced them, and have heard nothing since despite a reminder. I gather that this outfit doesn't usually purchase translation services, so there's a good chance that no colleague will be stiffed by them, but just in case, here are the contact details
" WARNING: Damian Pajnkiher (KONSUL - PAJNKIHER & PARTNER) Also in my case he proofed untrustworthy: the invoice is now 5 months overdue!Payment received on 19/10/2012 - Invoice date 15/02/2012, so 8 months late.
Kwintessential ltd, Sommerset, UK, Katia Wickens (Skype name Katia Reed, PM) non-payer :
Email received 2/11/13:
"I am Proz member and I got cheated by kwintessential. I am a LinkedIn member and posted a discussion on this topic. You can see the link here
I am attaching some documents along with the NDA that I signed.
-- Regards Parvathi.Pappu
Skype conversation (from delivery of the translation)
[11/5/2013 6:07:51 PM] Katia Reed: thank you
[11/7/2013 6:02:43 PM] Paru: Can you provide feedback on proz..only if you are happy with my work
[11/13/2013 7:11:07 PM] Paru: Katia, feedback and PO
[11/21/2013 7:32:09 PM] Paru: Katia, waiting for the PO and the payment...No need to mention that the PO or feedback never arrived, Miss Katia Wickens vanished.
This is a lesson for whoever still accepts to start a translation without a PO, this is exactly the risk you take. NEVER DO ANYTHING WITHOUT A PO (state it too!! that's also your job, educating your client) or don't deliver the translation until you get that PO : that will teach them.
It doesn't matter who you are dealing with, even if you know the collaborator well, they will very easily forget about you and your little PO and you'll end up having to harass them many times. Once you give away your work like this, you have no guarantee left you'll get paid. That is sad but true, many PMs out there will just choose to forget all about you.
Language Insight (Bottom feeder)
"I just received this 'generous' offer from Language Insight (http://www.languageinsight.com/), a UK based agency, for a transcription plus translation job. Here is the e-mail conversation:
Rosie: We are in need of linguists who specialise in medical transcription from Portuguese- English.We work with Portuguese audio and transcribe directly into English. These are usually medical interviews with doctors or patients for market research purposes.Our rate is always charged per recorded minute rather than per word. Our rate is £1.40 per recorded minute.My response: Dear RosieThank you for your e-mail. You are looking for people to transcribe and translate, from Portuguese audio into English text, and are willing to pay £1.40 per minute of audio? Have I understood correctly.Rosie: Yes that is correct.My response: I see. That being the case, and assuming that one hour of audio contains around 5000 words, or 83 words per minute, this would mean a rate of around £0.0168 per word. My normal rate for medical translation is £0.08 per word. Considering that for a translation and transcription project I would need to work without the aid of a CAT tool, or else I would need to transcribe the whole audio file and then translate it, which given the subject matter, would probably be necessary in any case.
In terms of time, the job as described would probably take around 10x the length of the recording, depending on the quality of the audio and the complexity of the subject matter. So the offer is likely to be worth around £8.50/hr [£2 more than the UK minmum wage], and may be even less. Obviously I could not possibly accept the job at such a rate.I will propose the following, and as there are two jobs here, I will quote them separately. For the transcription (Portuguese audio to Portuguese text) I will charge £1 per audio minute. For the translation (Portuguese text to English text), I will charge £0.08 per word.
Unsurprisngly, I've not heard anything back.I was also offered other (non-translation) work by this agency at insulting rates."
Languages International. Inc. (Beverly Wall and Chelsie Fink) USA. - Non-payers
4665 - 44th Street SE
Grand Rapids, MI
USA 49512-4052Translator's email 7/11/13 : " They asked me for a job in December 2010. I sent an invoice for $ 1,530,24 on 31 December 2010, but after having promised twice to pay immediately, they have not answered e-mails. I am currently using debt collection agency to collect this debt for me, but they have disputed my claim although I have a valid PO which Chelsie Fink sent before I started working.It would not hurt to publish this in your black list and ask if anyone else has been treated similarly to me."
Language Master International/Elvita Puke
Languagemet (Scammer, id. thiefs)
(scam, notorious bad practices, fake photos, unrealistic deadlines)
Others names : Expert of Linguists, Palestine Territories, PM: Stephani (fake name), fake address: 2/1, Hifa St., Alfei Menashe, 43351 Israel (fake address), Skype: Ch.Trans, firstname.lastname@example.org, Paypal ID: email@example.com GTrans, no website, linked to Gentle Translations/Translation Secrets, Languagemet/Purity Translations/ Amazing Translations among others; non-payer, CV identity thief.
Lengo Trans (Scammer!)
"Another non-payer to watch out for is Agatha Wear, LengoTrans. They are a scam that pretends to be a legitimate agency"
PS Omar AKA Agatha Wear AKA Lego Trans/Petra Trans (see note 18, TSD). Lonaverbas/Professional Translator Team are also closely connected to Gentle Translations (aka Languagemet/Translation Secrets and many other scam operations).
LEXCODE (Low pay)
Discussion on Linked In
"Here is another translation job for $250 / 6500 words = $0,03846 per word!! Here is the full text of the original "ad":
"We are in urgent need of a skilled freelancer to translate an English Maintenance Manual (Main condensate pump) to DUTCH.
- Deadline is on September 21, 2010 at 8:00 a.m. Korea time (GMT+8).
- The file has around 6,500 words. The project rate is USD 250.
- Educational/Work background in mechanical engineering & technical translations is an advantage.
To all qualified applicants, please email your resume ASAP at [email removed*]. Kindly mention your location so we can work our our time difference. :)
Looking forward to your email!
Christine Ignacio (LEXCODE Project Coordinator)
Deadline: September 17 the end of the day"
Martin Lleonsi (Low rates)
Lionbridge (Hell to work with)
Linked In report: (...) the one and only client I have ever had, that I would not even want for my worst enemy is Lionbridge because of the following reasons:
1. They won't send you that much work to make it worth your time.
2. PMs and other staff members don't answer emails.
3. Rates are OK, lety's say they are within the standard, but you'll end up investing a lot more time than you would for any other project for any other client.
4. They demand you use their software and apps for most projects, but their software and apps are unnecessarily complicated, don't represent a real help for translators, learning how to use them will take a long time you're not being paid for, and the worst part is there are errors, bugs and glitches everywhere.
5. Support for the use of their software is non-existent. Not even their own staff knows how to use their own software. They even admit the software is faulty.
6. Most tasks come along with silly requirements such as a number of additional fles to deliver for their statistics. It is just additional work that serves no purpose at all, and will make you waste your time.
7. I believe they don't pay translators as it took me nearly 6 months to get paid for the one and only task I completed for them, and only after spamming their emails every single day and shaming them in forums and else.
8. All translators I have met in person or online have either had awful experiences with them or heard the worst comments about them.
9. It is terribly disorganized as one PM doesn't know whether another PM has said or ordered something, they don't even know how their own company works, and they never solve any issues at all.
In summary, don't go there at all, just stay away, avoid them like the pest."
Lingosaur (spam: who are they? more info needed)
Online agency asking their translators to evaluate each other free of charge. Never got offered any paid real job from them. To be more precise, it's been 3 years since I signed up, still no job offer, just these impersonal spams once in a blue moon:
"Hi, we need your help. A fellow translator has submitted his sample translation and it needs to be rated by you. Please follow this link to proceed:
http://www.lingosaur.com/en/trans/ratelangpairs/Thank you for your time! This email was automatically generated. If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org."My answer in this case will simply be something along the range: Hi (stranger), why don't you FECK OFF ? :)
Lingotek (very late payments, crowdsourcing, cheap machine translation, zero quality)
Email 03/12/13 : "I know two translation agencies that I thought suitable for the blog post + helpful to share with other fellow translators. LingoTek, Utah, USA: Although they are already on the list and someone pointed out their late payment, I have been having the same problem. I have worked on 5 projects with them since early 2013 and 100% of the payments are late so far. Thanks and regards,"
You should write about this move toward crowdsourcing translation work. It is really an ominous turn of events. I was recently approached by these guys:
Here is their video, very alarming--we are, as if, to meld, Borg-like, with a "machine,", i.e., software. The rate I was offered was 0.03 USD per machine-translated word. We all know that the current state of machine translation means that editing it is labor-intensive, to put it lightly.
Needless to say, I told them to "frack" off.
Lingua FX International, Turkey (very demanding for the rate they offer)
Discussion on LinkedIn: "just got this "great offer" - USD 0,05/word... and quite a long requirement list for experience:"
"At least 5 years extensive experience in translation sector;
Should be native speaking and has the capability to translate from English to their native languages and vice versa;
Using CAT tools, Trados 2009 or 2011;
Experience in working and cross-checking with reference material (glossaries etc.);
Demonstrable ability to follow instructions;
Ready to accept our fixed rate of USD 0,05/word for translation services
Ready to accept payments net 45 days following the end of month in which the service invoice is submitted
Ready to handle short sample translation in which the quality check is to be made by the native speaking third party.
Clearly another slave contract."
Lingua Genesis (SCAM ! Incredibly rude and unprofessional, ask you to pay to register)
Translator's report: "A certain Carl Dundas contacted me through ProZ some time ago, saying that they were taking applications for my language pair and specialisations. I obliged, albeit after quite a long time due to a protracted office & house move and not being able to access the documents he required (CRB check amongst them).
Today he replied saying that the application looked complete but have I sent his colleague 3 quid registration fee.
I replied saying that I was surprised, as it is not customary for potential clients to request payments from service providers and that I was leaving it up to him to decide whether he wanted to work with me. I also requested that he removed all the information I sent him from his email and drive if his decision is negative (they contained confidential information: scan of passport, CRB check, marriage certificate as my CRB was in my maiden name). In response I got this:
"I do not care for your arrogance and bad attitude, young lady, and for wasting my time. Rules are in place for security and I am surprised that you would throw away potential work opportunities for the sake of a minimal fee."
Whilst I'm not bothered about three quid and I would have happily sent it to them as a means of proving that I am a real (business) person if he gave me a professional and valid reason, I am shocked that someone can be so arrogant, unprofessional and pompous in such a short message.
AVOID!!! Rest on LinkedIn
WPPF: "anyone knows this company, Linguagenesis?I feel very weird.
Several days ago I applied an over the phone interpreting job from them on proz, just now, I've received their email telling they've got other interpreter to do it, then they suggest I register online for their business, but they'll charge me £3 for registration fee, and even said I'm required to supply an insurance to work as their qualified freelancer. the point is the insurance costs £60, and if they apply the insurance on my behalf, they will charge me only £40.
Have you ever experienced this?"
"NEVER NEVER NEVER (I have 39 years of experience in translating technical text all over the world, and NEVER EXPERIENCED such a thing. Be careful! Teresa"
Lingua info, India (spam material)
Email 19/03/14, Edward Whiteside:
"I received this message via TD from some cheeky bugger in India
Scope of work:-
English To Hungarian Translation Requires
Currently Approx 10000 words
Our max offer 0.03 USD
Project In Hand
Files in PDF and word."
Lingua Translations Belgium (non-payers)
Could you please blacklist this Belgian company: Lingua Translations Contact Name: Ir. Y. Altintas Address:
Winkelstraat 58BE-2890 Sint-AmandsMob: +32 477/574 855
Mob: +32 477/574 855Fax: +32 52/523 789 Email: email@example.com
They owe me 100 Euro and are not replying to my emails for more than 2 months. I have already asked to blacklist them on Proz as well http://www.proz.com/blueboard/28973
Thank you in Advance.
Lingua World Services, India (Unprof., Low rates)
"Thank you for running this wonderful website.This is really helpful indeed.I would like you to add "Lingua World Services" which is one of Indian translation agencies.
Their rate is extremely low (as 3 USD per word) besides sometimes they ask "additional requests" to edit the translations.These additional requests occur due to bad organization. Basically they do not count the total words and do not edit document format to type in before passing these projects to translators.
Then they try to offer lower price saying "There are lots of duplicated words" which was total incorrect.It is totally nfiar to do those edits with only 3 USD and takes long hours to do that.
Also they do not pay if you don't ask hard.They eventually paid out all my pays though it was way too over due and they sometimes did not respond to my inquiries about the payments although they respond to me real quick while I was on any projects.
The translation coodinator is polite though the agency is very disorganized and extremely late-pay.Please be aware.Thank you."Saki A
Lingual consultancy services (non payer)
Hey! Just found your site, and I have another company that doesn't pay for services - they promise, but never deliver!
Lingual Consultancy Services Pvt Ltd (LC)Office: +91-11-32315394
Lionbridge (shameless rates, zero concern for quality)
" Received this morning from a giant in translation industry, known for their ginormous tendering and no follow-up:
"We are currently looking to increase our pool of resources for a project to improve/validate Machine Translation (MT) output for a big online seller in the market. [...] High linguistic quality is not expected. Typos, punctuation, small grammar mistakes and other issues that do not affect purely the meaning of the translation are not to be corrected. [...] We are considering paying this work by word or by ad. If by word, the rate offered would be around EUR 0.0175/word. The rate takes into account the increased productivity due to MT and the lower quality expectations."
The last line is my favourite." (28/01/14)
Discussion on Lionbridge (linkedIn)
Livetranslation.com (spam material, bottom feeder)
Email 14/03/14, R.P:
Hello:I want to ask you to blacklist the following associated agencies: Livetranslation.com and web-translation.comFull article can be found here: http://www.linkedin.comReasons for listing:- a Translator fee of £0.03/$0.05/€0.035 per word exclusive of Value Added Tax (if applicable).- imposing the requirement of an Insurance Policy, paid by the translator.Thanks T.E., by R.P.
Logic Lingo, Ivan Madrigal (Spain) - Non-payer
Email from a fellow translator :
"Please allow me to add a very interesting specimen to your list.I worked for Ivan Madrigal at Logic Lingo (based in Spain) as a freelancer in 2010, and after 3 years of weekly reminders, he still hasn't paid his debt. As a result, I have contacted a lawyer in Spain, and can forward you any relevant emails. Thanks and have a lovely day!"
Lonaverbas/Professional Translator Team (CV identity theft scammers: Omar Salah Ibrahim Al-Balawi)
According to this website www.translator-scammers.com, (note 69 at the bottom of the page), The scammer, Omar Salah Ibrahim Al-Balawi is the mastermind behind Lonaverbas www.lonaverbas.com
Interesting stuff revealed about Lonaverbas:
- Fake addresses
- Fake identities
- Stolen CVs
- Fake credentials
Mail 09/03/14"Hello, Your website is brilliant. Well done! Please list this agency (scam operation - see note 18 & 69 at Translation Scammer Directory). Lonaverbas/Professional Translator Team (CV identity theft scammers). They pay 0.04 USD pw for technical translations.
Manta Translations (go to Orbe)
Maremagnum (and other aliasses) - Arrested for non payment of translators
"Spain - The owners of a translation agency arrested for non-payment of translatorsGreat news which can let us hope that things may change.
The Spanish authorities have arrested the two managers of a translation agency who didn't par its translators. Moreover, they used to impersonate some real colleagues in order to get the jobs. Currently, the financial damage is estimated at approx. Euro 20,000, but the investigation is still ongoing."
Mayflower, India (spam material, insulting rates)
This was posted on www.paymentpractices.net last year:
11 Dec 2012 - Posted a 20k legal job, DE>EN, for delivery in 6 days offering INR 1 (USD 0.02)/word.
More on WPPF:"I have done a paid sample test for them. Then I had to send a reminder to get the payment. They paid.It seems that, as many other agencies, they hire professional translators to pass tests and get jobs but then they hire other translators for a low rate." (Message 7723)
More recent reports (2014): LinkedIn
Medium (undercutting, crowdsourcer : hiring amateurs and passing it for professional work)
"I found your email in your blog: http://translationethics.blogspot.ca/ which is quite a fascinating read. As you probably know, Medium (a blogging platform from Twitter co-founder) has decided to go with a crowdsourced translation. To be precise: a post-edited machine translation. Which is a terrible idea for such creative website as Medium. I wrote my opinion about it in my blog: https://medium.com/translators-thoughts/e727bafb5029I would appreciate it if you could share it with your readers on your blog or in other social networks. Have a fantastic weekend!"
"Info copied from Proz. This site even has a picture of a Hollywood celebrity (Mario Lopez) presented as a translator:"
Mittal Publishing, India (SCAM)
Laila Mohamed (SCAM)
MO Group International (Bruxelles) - Non-payers
Report received by email :This translator has been waiting since november 2011 for his payment (so nearly 2 years). Despite promises from the group, then threats of starting legal action, the agency refuses to answer.
"L'agence concernée se nomme MO Group International, basée à Bruxelles. Malgré de très nombreuses relances, celle-ci ne m'a toujours pas payé une facture datant du mois de novembre 2011. Au début, ils me promettaient que ce serait fait "prochainement" mais depuis plusieurs mois, je n'ai plus la moindre réponse, y compris pour les mises en demeure via recommandé avec AR.
L'agence étant basée en Belgique, ma société de portage n'a pas les moyens d'aller plus loin dans la procédure, et je vais sans doute finir par laisser tomber. Mais au moins, j'aimerais dénoncer la pratique par tous les moyens possibles."
Mondragonlingua, Spain (insulting rates)
"This Spanish agency is working on the translation of United Nations documentation from English into Latin American Spanish.The first time they contacted me they asked for my rates per word. I said 0.06 euros per word; 0.03 per word for revision. This is my rate for agencies. I think it's a normal, decent rate.
I got an email offering me work for 0.012 euros per word. I responded a kind "thank you but no." and reminded them they asked for my rates, and of course I was willing to negotiate, but not to accept such a low payment. Got no answer.
Today again the same project manager contacts me again. Again it is a huge document, with very short delivery delay and again it's the same laughable rate: 0.012 euros per word.
I responded firmly "please do not contact me again unless you have a serious proposal" and reminded them of my rates.
This is a joke, but I'm not laughing."
Moscow Translation Agency (insulting rates)
"They pay translators as low as $6.25 per page and as low as $3 a page for editing. Translators also lose out some more when receiving payment because the company does not pay for PayPal fees or bank transfer fees. I lost over $50 off the amount that was owing to me when they sent a wire transfer."
MuchDo Tr. (Low rates, non-payment)
Professional in LinkedIn : "I just got an offer for EN-FI translation for 0.03 USD per source word, of which i kindly declined. This translation was only for 300 words and they would have paid the invoice in 30 days or later. "
My Genco (Bottom feeders with low rates, employ anyone)
"On MyGengo, I did a test translation for them about a year ago. It took them about 3 months to get back to me to say my test had been approved. Since then precisely two job offers have come in, the latest today, offering US$0.03 per word. Since it was only 122 words, the job was worth $3.66! Not worth turning on the computer for! As has been said before, we don't HAVE to take these jobs, but given the name of this group, just thought I'd do a bit of naming and shaming. Come to think of it, I haven't taken on any agency work for more than 6 months now, since I've yet to come across any that pay more than about US$0.06 per word. What's going on out there?? Or am I asking too much??"
Read more on LinkedIn
Mytranslation.com (Bottom feeder)
"I received an email from Mytranslation.com in July. It didn't exactly inspire me, but I thought I would click the link to see what they were about. On the website, you can clearly see the job size (word count) and the amount paid to the translator. In some cases, the rates are as low as $0.04 per word, but most seem to come in at $0.065 per word, and they don't seem to apply any minimum charges to short jobs. (One job payment is currently listed as $1.30 for 20 words!) These jobs include legal and technical jobs, which of course should cost more money.When I asked the person who emailed me where they found my details, all they said in reply was that they had found it on a translator directory website - they weren't willing to state which one."
Myword Localization (rush work, non-payer)
"In September, I was assigned a (proofreading) project by Myword Localization, LTD., (offices in Israel, Romania, and the United States). I had 8 hours to proofread a contract that was translated from Italian to English.
Prior to the assignment, I spoke with one of the company's managers who tried to lowball me, however, he finally agreed to my price because he needed it done "yesterday", and wanted to go home. We agreed on the terms and how much work the document needed.
I sent them back the assignment with my edits and invoice. I received a "thank you". Hours later I received an e-mail complaining that the work was not up to par, and sorely lacking. I responded but refused to go back and forth as I had too much work to do at the time.
30 days later - the company refuses to pay the invoice. I have contacted them and have kindly reminded them of our agreement, and how "urgent" the project was, (few hours deadline). I also reminded them that failure to pay any part of the invoice without an amicable resolution is theft of service
To be continued."
Native Speaker Translation, Ukraine (Insulting rates, non payers)
Comment: "bad payers and extremely low rates"
"An israeli agency which refused to pay because they pretend to have no cashflow.NBN, Shimon ha tzadik 31 Street, EladBelow you can also see there email address.The amount they owe me is not big but they will never pay."Projects@nbntranslations.com"
Nextone Media, London, UK (Trying to pay 4 Eur for the translation-localisation of 10 articles)
"I'm talking to my Italian mother tongue colleagues and I want to warn you about Nextone media, their advertise is "CHI SIAMO: La nostra società Nextone Media, è un'azienda leader nella pubblicazione di portali e magazine in tutta Europa.
Il focus è la pubblicazione di guide targetizate in inglese.
CHI CERCHIAMO: Cerchiamo conoscitori lingua inglese, che vogliano crearsi una seconda entrata facilmente sul web. Il candidato dovrà tradurre in italiano ed inserire su un nostro portale contenuti su nostra richiesta.
RETRIBUZIONE: Il lavoro, naturalmente retribuito, permette un arrotondamento mensile considerevole e richiede poche decine di minuti al giorno ma da fare con passione e in maniera costante. Il pagamento avverrà ogni fine mese.
METODO DI LAVORO: Il collaboratore potrà lavorare da casa in maniera autonoma scegliendo i tempi e gli argomenti da trattare.
Il collaboratore prescelto avrà user e password e potrà in totale autonomia tradurre e pubblicare i propri contenuti sul web.
Si richiede serietà, capacità di scrittura, conoscenze base nell'uso del pc, conoscenze della rete.
Vi preghiamo di inviare i vostri curricula a firstname.lastname@example.org "
I sent my resume and they answered that they would have paid 4 Euro per 10 articles!!!"
Read comments on LinkedIn
OCE Translations (Eddy Elshout, serial scammer), USA (fake office)/Belgium, non-payer
Thanks for the compiled list. Very useful indeed. I would like to name another translation company which would fit nicely in the list.
OCE TRANSLATION, owner Eddy Elshout
They have one office in Belgium and a fake one in the US.They owe me approximately €2000.They start paying initially -to gain your trust- and then add up a few important project -mostly institutional and legal- and then they vanish.I have sent them a recorded letter in Belgium but it bounced.I have made some enquiries in the US and was told by the Chamber of Commerce where they are supposed to be that they have a bogus account.Thank you;Should you need any more details, I can dig that out. About 4 years ago but I have go the documents.
Their online profile on Translation Directory:
"OCE Translations was found since 1997 with head office in Belgium. Since 1997 till now we have generated a vast amount of experience in translating scientific, technical, legal documents, marketing and business etc. We have worked with over 350 different companies and government organizations and are looking forward to building a business relationship with you. We provide professional translation services in over 120 languages."
Profile on Proz: VERY BAD Blue Board rating since 2005
Profile on MC : http://www.merchantcircle.com/business/OCE.Translations.LLC.336-218-8846/review/read?cid=699703
Eddy Elshout is apparently a long-lasting SCAMMER:
Report: "I wanted to give minus 10 stars! I have also been robbed of almost 300X worth of work by this person in 2007; sent emails, have sent collection agency letters, but no one responded yet he has the guts to keep on sending translation requests! Just received one today (...) How can some people get away with so much fraud?! Thanks! E. Melo (june 2009)"
Report: "Eddy owes me 192 euros for a translation I did for him 6 months ago...where the hell are you eddy?? he better has a good reason for this long silence..."
Report: "Eddy simply does not pay and after the work is done he stops communicating, I jumped on this as well, once got paid and second time for big big work nothing. I just wondering how his company get such big clients to work for. NON PAYER EDDY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
"Eddy Elshout owes me 548.21 euros for a translation done 3 months ago. After reading these reviews I too have my doubts about whether he will ever pay. The phone number he gives in the USA is phoney by the way."
One Hour Translation (insulting rates and poor quality, unselective platform, employ literally anyone)
Read article on One Hour Translation from this website
One Sky (and ONE cent! Run!!)
Read this thread
Orbe translations/Manta Translations, Romania (Low payer, fishy, deceitful, still appearing regularly on Proz)
Read all about them pretty much everywhere and on Translator Leaks. Excerpts :
"Orbe Translations and Manta Translations are, to begin with, one and the same company. Both are registered to Javier Bergero at Lautaro 642, Córdoba, Argentina (543514616764, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org).The agencies, however, send messages from an IP in Romania. They also claim to have had an office in Turin, Italy since 2002, though they do not appear in the Turin yellow pages and their phone number (02.36311200)"
"Interestingly, Orbe/Manta also profess to provide translations exclusively using teams of in-house translators which is, first, a fairly obvious lie for the volume of business they claim and the geographic area they say they cover. But they only adopted that model because of their concern about the terrible "suffering" of freelancers, which they aim to remedy:"
Parrot translations (Low rates)
Pearl Linguistics LTD (very reluctant payers, be prepared to harass them for your money)
"I have been working for them as interpreter for few months, they don't pay anything if you don't chase them a million times even just for 1 payment, and they will promised you they will pay today/tomorrow.. Believe me it's all b***sh*t. Finance team very rare you can get through. Even get through full of lies and attitude, awful company. I'm seeking for legal advise ATM.. I can not believe a company like this still running, disgusting."
"I have worked for Pearl linguistics for more than 2 months. They never paid me any money. So be wise and think before you work for them."
"They don't pay even minimum hourly wages to their translators. It is a sweatshop. translators and clients: you have been warned! "
From an interpreter (Current Employee), London – September 30, 2013:"I would not advice to work with Pearl Linguistic company as they are do not paying what their are promising. I work for them all August this year but I still not received a payment for August on the end of September how their promised. Last month i made enormous phone calls so that theirs financial office make me a payment for July.I spend for my CRB check £50 to work for them + my travelling experience for interpreting work from June by August this year all in total £180 and received a payment just £60 of my work when i had every week up to 5 days a week work with them from 1 to 5 hours of my interpreting work for this company. I would not advice to work with Pearl Linguistic LTD you will have enormous problems to receive your payment."
"Staff seems professional and pelite, although they do not pay on time. Everyday for over a two weeks trying to contact finance department by phone, email- unfortunately no response. Shame..."
Pemex English library
Planet of People Fishy organisation and unclear website, more info welcome (Because they are « non profit » (are they really?), they expect you to work for free)
"Another one to add to the list. It's an agency that proposes that the translators do work for free in order to get on their "database". This is completely unprofessional and of course I did not agree to it. You don't mix charity with business. Please remove my name from the e-mail before posting it to your list. Here is an excerpt of their proposal :
"To be in our database and maybe have your personal link from one or several English language pages of our site, we would like to propose you to consider the possibility to provide some voluntary support to ‘Planet of People’ by doing some voluntary translation (Russian>English), or proofreading/editing of our already translated texts. Below the text(s) translated by you there would be your signature (Translated from Russian by XX) serving as a link to your information in our database or anywhere else.Since the "Planet of People" Foundation is a non-profit organization we propose all our potential translators to consider the possibility to provide this sort of some voluntary support to the project.
If you can afford it, please inform us about it. If not, we will understand it quite normally, and it certainly would not prevent you from collaborating with us if you are interested in it."
If I could afford it, (which won't ever happen since translation is not my hobby, yes I have a life) then I will donate my free work to a more respectable organisation Wikipedia for instance, not some fishy one nobody has ever heard of.
Point Expression Translation, Taiwan (VERY unprofessional, low payer)
I've been a freelance translator for about 9 years. I started translating while living in Taiwan before going to graduate school in the US. I worked with a company called Point Expression (http://www.point-expression.com.tw/en/index.asp). The starting rate (with no room for negotiation) was 0.4 Taiwan dollars per full-width source Chinese character, which works out to 0.01 US dollars. They also searched/replaced all full-width Chinese punctuation with half-width Chinese punctuation (to save them a few more bucks). I had to complain before they would leave the punctuation alone. I was with them for a year before I got a raise to 0.45 TWD (still 0.01 US dollars according to currency converters).
The owner is rude and constantly tried to teach me how to write in English, even though he hired me and gave me a lot of work. My last project for them was supposed to be a book, I got about 1/3 of the way through, the company claimed that their client was unhappy, they never paid me for the portion I completed, and I never heard from them again. I don't know if someone ended up translating the book. I worked with a lot of companies since then and Taiwanese companies generally paid very little; but Point Expression was the lowest I encountered. They occasionally post on Proz.com with the absurdly low rates (around 0.02 USD). I would also like to thank you for maintaining your website; I've worked for a few companies on the blacklist and I don't anymore, so I also hope that someone out there will find this information useful. Thanks for your attention and let me know if you have questions. Best, W.C
Thanks a lot for sharing!
"I’m a Japanese translator based in Budapest, Hungary.I recently worked with Point Expression Translation (Taiwan) for Japanese to English project. The pay was not good ($0.05 per Japanese character), but I decided to take part in their project because I’m not a native English speaker and I wanted to gain experience in the tech/engineering field. And I didn’t find this company in your blacklist.I finished working on April 29th, but I haven’t heard from them since regarding payment, and I’m wondering if they are a nonpayer. PO issued in advance has no number of characters and I’m waiting for the character count analysis.Project manager Loren was disrespectful and chaotic. Loren’s e-mail address is email@example.com and I needed to include firstname.lastname@example.org in all correspondence. I have never seen any e-mail address with “@point-expression.com.tw.”This is an ongoing and unconcluded issue, but somehow I feel this urge to tell a relevant third party before I send them a message asking them what’s going on. I’ll report my conclusion to you later. I hope they pay, but I still don’t recommend working with them.No need to reply for now. Thank you very much for your attention.Best regards,E.T"
Thanks a lot for sharing!
Polyglot (Very low rates, machine translation editing)
"The job post available at http://www.proz.com/job/691829 offers €0.026 EUR to €0.03 EUR per word for English to French translation of 2,500 words, with Trados preferred."
New discussion currently going on on LinkedIn about Polyglot
PoliLingua, Moldova (bidder, unprofessional practices, low rates)
Email from 5/11/13: "Here's another company you can add to your list.
They are called PoliLingua and they are also in Moldova (like Travod).
When calculated per word, the project that they proposed is about $0.04 per word.
They must be sending mass e-mails through Proz.com because their message was not addressed to any one person in particular: "Hello, We have a financial report we need translated into English, see details below: Source language: Russian Target language: English Word count: 5136 words Source format: MS Word Delivery format: MS Word Payment: $205 by PayPal, 30 days from invoice. Deadline: November 8th, 10 AM London time. Please advise availability and I shall send you the files. Many thanks, Ruxanda Chirosca. PoliLingua Ltd. email@example.com
PNA Solutions (late payers)
August 2014: Huge debts they don't pay on time:
"I have just checked ProZ Blue Board and found a comment thatALBIRAN (freelance translator)has just inserted (Aug 6, 2014) about this PNA Solution.He says that he is still waiting his payment (USD1,246.86)for almost 60 days, with no reply from ths agency.Have a nice day"
Premiere or Premier Language (UK): fraud, non-payer
http://www.premierlanguage dot com"Several translators (myself included) undertook legal action against them last year. We are owed varying quantities, ranging from several hundred Euros to thousands. They simply ignore us. "Regards from Spain, Ángel Domínguez, CT
From WPPF (7707) : "I'm reposting with the correct spelling for this agency so it can be located in future searches. Note, also, that Premier Language is banned from posting jobs on ProZ.com""Thank you so much for your help and the information you're sharing with me, this is a real shock to be, but now i know how they are dealing with everyone, we could use any information to sue them in London or their other office and explain how they are banned and fraud..."
Previous : "Hello,
I worked on 165k words on over 500k words project for Premiere Language UK, We completed the 165k words in 6days the field was legal, fiancial, and the language Italian to English, of course we expect an editing to the file that was done by different translators in a rush time, even some people collapsed because of the pressure and abondoned the project, after sometimes, we were asked by our client to edit, or there will be a discount, and we did edit the whole, in 4days... And we believe we provided high quality work by qualified professionals.
So now, my client is saying that she wait the payment, then she pays us, Premiere language forced my client to 40% or 50% discount and even though we agreed at first, yet no payment was made, no prooves provided regarding quality or corrections done by their proofreader...
I called Premiere language plenty of times, and they were so arrogant and rude, and yet they are not replying us... Always managers aren't available, i don't know what kind of company has only receptionist taking details and leaving messages, but in two weeks, nobody got back to me, or replied to my enquiry.
Premiere language office in Canada square in UK, which is an expensive place, i believe this is their way in keeping the business going... They are thieves.
Right now i'm planning to do anything to get my money, and i will do my best to sue this company, and my client if she doesn't pay soon...
Please i'm seeking any help, any details you could provide us about this company and their rude atittude that could be a plus.Any good agencies or lawyer that could handle this case, some client come only by force, not with ethics and good manners, they only take advantage of you, and abuse you in every way.
I also got a client from UK, he shows up after few months and paid small money and requested me to wait, while he paid others quickly because they are from other countries like Israel and Portugal...
I have noticed unfortunately a discrimination also from certain client and would love to sue these people are well.
We are all human beings and professionals and deserve respect, in all my life and while working as a freelance manager, i always respect those doing their work right, even the one who didn't and came to me, and say ok, sorry, i let go with them, and didn't want to spoil their name, trying to give them chances...
But companies that act like they are Top companies, and yet they're theives and liars, i have no pity for these...
Please help, i'm ready to provide you any detail, any proove, that these people caused me and my team a lots of damage... " (WPPF, 7703)
Prolingua (Payment issues)
Professional Translators Team (or Lonaverbas), Istanbul, Turkey : SCAM (Fake profile and address, CV thieves)
Their signature is the following (except it doesn't lead anywhere: website gone, Proz profile erased):
They are still in business and offer jobs to translators through ProZ.Details: Professional translators Team162 Lourmel STBridgeport, CT 06606United Stateshttp://www.ptteam.us/
Mars 2014: "Dear Translator, Professional Translators Team is looking for an experienced Danish to English (US) translator to take a job of 3000 words (including reps) and deliver the translation by Tuesday 05:00PM GMT.
Others receive offers from <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Report: Professional Translators Teams is a scam organisation (see Note 69 at www.translator-scammers.com). They are also known as Lonaverbas/Bonaverbas and claim to be based in Turkey. However, they address they give is a fake one. http://www.proz.com/profile/1413019
They are involved in CV identity theft (I speak from experience here) and they also use the made up character of Robert Wiscon and John Troops to bid for jobs. The author of Robert's CV is Mr Omar.
The person behind this scam group is Omar Salah Ibrahim Al-Balawi (aka Agatha Colten, Jessica Wear, Kathy Jack, Jhone Welson, Alham Abdulrahman and several other names).
Other fake names include Sonia Erkan and Caroline Wilsonn. Another key character in this organisation is Gulser Baran (probably a fake name as well).
Report from a translator, oct 2013 : "Found this translation agency on Proz.com. They have the nerve of offering 0.038 max per word for a legal translation of 6,000 words! What's worse, they have a perfect BLUE BOARD rating. (They still have it, it's kept hot for them, for when they'll be allowed to post again on Proz).
"That is a very tricky name for a company, as it makes it hard to google. USA is not part of the title, right? Does it have another name as well?? The only place I found it was in that Proz listing (which I cannot get into) and nowhere else..."
Read more on LinkedIn
April 2014: now this company is BANNED from PROZ, who still posts their offers though
How the hell did they get a perfect blue board rating on their site last year? 3 options:
1: PROZ either does not check anybody
2 ProZ gets dirty money all the time from agencies (on top of yours)
3 ProZ does not give a puck about anything.
Protranslating (Crappy rates and quality 0,015 $ per word, so 10 times less than the acceptable rate for professionals!!!/Cheap tricks: promise "consistant" future work to convince you to accept bad rates)
"I used to work for them several years ago. They don't treat their employees well. It's a sort of mafia like organization, with only family members or good friends in the management positions. There was a lot of turnover in the mid-management and translator positions. My first boss was great but he was quickly fired, then the next boss was fired a few months later and they installed a friend of the CEO's son instead.....sigh. What can I say!" CB, email 09/04/14
Type of offers they send out to translators:
" Thank you for contacting us! Because we are providing a large amount of work we are offering $0.04 USD per source word. This translator will be working in our Web department so the job will be on-going and consistent, we also require you to take a brief evaluation in order to determine your translating style. This will also show you the type of work you will be doing, it’s nothing technical. If you are interested in this consistent work, please let me know so that I may send you the evaluation."
2850 Douglas Rd.
Coral Gables, FL 33134
P: 305.371.7887 ext. 325
ProTranslating is ISO 9001-2008 certified. Our quality management systems have been audited and meet world class standards." (This ISO cert. means nothing with regards to translation, it is what they call a marketing trick, I would call that a big lie!)
"They also offered me as top rate USD 0.04 per source word. And the other point is that they lie about the "consistent work". They change project managers periodically, so you'll got to be really lucky to receive great loads of work during the year. So they tell everyone the same. Once they offer you this, you'll receive some assignment only from time to time..."
Rest of the discussion on LinkedIn
"First of all, thanks for your great work with the blacklist. It's extremely useful. I'm sending you a proposal I have received from Protranslating. They are offering a rate of $0.015 USD per source word. I don't need to say more. In other emails I'll send you comments about other agencies.Best regards, F. G"
From: Lauren Vega <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, Dec 9, 2013 at 7:18 PM
Subject: RE: English to Spanish freelance translator
Thank you for your interest. We are seeking native Spanish linguists to join our team. We are currently offering a rate of $0.015 USD per source word. We do guarantee a high volume of work. A brief translation evaluation would be required of each linguist.Please reply to this email if interested in learning more and proceeding to the evaluation.Look forward to your response,Lauren VegaRecruiter
Clients of Protranslating include big law firms and the White House. The rates they pay to translators are unacceptable. The president is a Member of the ATA. See my previous comment.
PSD International, Slovenia (Ridiculous rates, lowering quality standards)
This company has chosen to buy their "quality" standards ISO and EN from Bureau Veritas rather than from decently paid translators. What a shame. That makes you wonder what this EN15038 is REALLY worth. They also like to mention they are:
"Proud member of BNI EMONIKA Group Slovenia and ARENA Group GermanyI am happy to help you open the doors to new clients."
P.S. I know a lot of people and each one of them knows more people.
As you can see in the attached email, PSD Translation is offering €0.03 per source word for translation and €0.01 per source word for editing and proofreading. I will appreciate if you include them in the blacklist.Best regards,Fabiana G.
"Dear Fabiana, Thank you for your e-mail. We are highly interested in cooperation with you.
Rates we propose for future collaboration are:
Translation: €0.03/source word
Editing/proofreading: €0.01/ source word
Trados grid will be based on TM, which will be sent in order to meet requirements of specific projects.
If you agree, kindly let us know and we will enter your data into our translators’ database. When we receive an inquiry that includes your language combinations and areas of expertise, we will contact you.
Saša Hudnik, Project and HR Manager
PURITY translations (Low rates)
Type of offers they send out to translators:
"I actually have a large project (17145 words) in need of translation into German. It is due by 2-June-2103. I would need this to be completed in memoQ. We are subcontracting this from another agency and I can offer you USD 0.035"
Qtrans Team (Low rates)
Type of offers they send out to translators:
"We have a new request for translation from Russian to English
Total word count: 1050
Rate: 0.04 USD
Deadline: 9/8/2013 1:00 PM Cairo time
Payment via PayPal
if you are available please email us the soonest
Hany, Qtrans Team"
RC Group (Cyprus) and other names (Bad practices)
"Please be aware of the RC Group (Cyprus) and their contacts Victoria Danielyan and Souren Arakelyan. The company also uses the name "Russian Client" and/or "Cyprus Translations".
They do not abide by their own contract regarding the payment terms and agreed rates. They insist on your services 24/7 and when you, for some reason, are not available, they blame you for their failure with their customer, threaten you and in the end do not pay."
Rectangle translations, India (ridiculous deadlines and rates)05/03/14 on Translator's Café (who are supposed to filter out this kind of rubbish offers under 5 cents)
" Dear All, We are looking for translators who can translate 11k words in 3 days. Domain is technical. Mode of payment - Paypal. Rate 0.03 USD/Word. If interested pls apply for the same."
RED BEE MEDIA (Subtitles, extremely low rates)
"Rates offered : 5 Euros (about 20 cents a subtitle!!) per minute, whatever the text is (in my case it was an eighteen century drama from my native language to my source language, extremely long and "talkative" dialogs."
The normal rate should be (in France) According to the SNAC (french union for subtitlers) 3 Euros per subtitle !
Article in French : "Pour le cinéma, le tarif syndical est de 3,90 euros le sous-titre. ... Côté télé, le tarif syndical est de 2,80 euros le sous-titre, mais dans la pratique, les prix varient énormément et peuvent chuter jusqu’à 0,20 euro. Le problème réside dans le fait que notre travail est de plus en plus intégré dans un forfait global facturé sur la durée (à la minute, à l’épisode ou au long-métrage) et négocié entre le producteur ou la chaîne et le postproducteur. » Pour l’Ataa, le mode de rémunération forfaitaire n’est pas satisfaisant car il ne correspond pas au travail réel fourni : en effet, le nombre de sous-titres ou de lignes de doublage d’un documentaire ou d’un long-métrage peut varier du simple au double."
REV. COM (subtitles, low rates)
When I check how my website is doing by googling "German interpreter Orlando", this company comes up very high. So I took a look and was stunned ... You should see this, they list their rates. It's unbelievable: $1/min of audio for transcription (offering 50 cents, it says on the recruiting page. $.12 for translation. Without seeing the text first or even knowing the language??? Yet the website appears so legit with a cool staff photo and all and all these promised regarding quality. "Technology" is supposed to make it all possible. What am I missing that is happening in our industry that makes this viable?"
Rheinschrift (Constantly late payments)
Excerpts from a discussion on LinkedIn:
"I have been working with this agency for some months. I do not want to start a discussion about their rates but rather I would like to point out the constantly late payments. There are not so many entries on the Blueboard of Proz.com but the recent ones speak a clear language. Of all the four invoices I sent them till now, none have been paid on time. I have heard of one colleague who has had the same experience, pointing out that freelancers were told they couldn't pay them because their end clients had not paid yet. Another factor is that you can only create an invoice in the online file management system after a job that you have delivered is approved, which itself can take anywhere from one day (experienced recently) to two weeks or longer... prolonging the period from invoice creation to payment to up to 100 days in some cases (delivery of the translation -> around 2 weeks till job is approved ->creation of invoice -> 60 days till payment (according to contract) -> delay of payment of maybe 2-3 weeks)"
"On another note, I checked this agency's profile on ProZ and they say they belong to German BDÜ (< http://www.proz.com/profile/796007?sp_mode=corp_profile >)? Does this make any sense at all, people? That caught my eye."
"No, that doesn't make sense. However, it always makes sense to check the "Impressum" on a German website. The "Impressum" page on the Rheinschrift website indicates that "Rheinschrift" is rather a brandname of Ursula Steigerwald, a freelance translator and a member of BDÜ, it is not a registered company like GmbH or AG."
RixTrans - Insulting rates
Romo Translations (bottom feeder offering c. 3 eurocent per word)
"Here is another agency that pays very low rates. It claims to be based in the UK, but quotes rates in USD:Kindly be informed that we pay $50 per 1,000 words. If you are happy with the price, please let us know and we will send you the document so you can have a look.Kind Regards,
Ana GalvezSenior Language Project ManagerRomo TranslationsWinchester House|3rd Floor259-269 Old Marylebone Road
London NW1 5RA
Barbara Sandre - Late/non payer
Safety Translations (totally unsafe, location unknown, scammers network)
Email from C.F, 03/04/14:
Hello,I recently stumbled on your blog and agree with you totally with regard to ratings. Last year I sent a test translation to the 10 top Indian translation agencies and I received translations that were of lower quality than Google. Outsourcing work to India will just work out expensive in the end.
Here are some non-payers (and CV identity thieves) you can add to your list:
PMs: Omar Issa, Khaled Trans, Samer Ghali and Ahmed Eideen.
Sangiovanni edizioni (italian publishing house, non-payers!)
It took this translator 17 months (sending numerous exhauting reminders) to get paid only a third of her money. She is still waiting, 20 months later, for the rest. Despite the injunction, this publishing house is not in any rush to pay the 3 translators it hired: this is simply service theft at its worst.
Inviato: venerdì 29 novembre 2013 12:08 A: Elisabetta Nifosi Oggetto: Re: R: [Translation Ethics] New message received. Le 29/11/2013 11:05, Elisabetta Nifosi wrote :
"Here is my story... I was contacted by Sangiovanni's and offered to translate a book. I signed a contract on 20 January 2012. As the deadline was 25 March 2012, we decided to have other two colleagues to work with me. The three of us signed three separate regular contracts.
The translation was delivered in time and accepted by the client, who actually published the book in April 2012. The payment was due within 120 days from publication. We did not get our money so we started to call the client asking for it. They kept on saying they would pay us soon, but never did. We then decided to ask for the help of a lawyer, who actually was able to convince the client to pay us in 3 installments, otherwise we would have asked the court to issue an injunction. The three of use received the first installment. I received it on 22 July 2013. The second installment was due in August/September, but never arrived. After contacting the client several times, our lawyer decided to ask the court to issue an injunction. We are waiting for it...That's it!
I would have may other things to say about the fees and professionally offered by TransPerfect since some years, but I saw you have plenty of material on that company! Thank you for your commitment! Wishing you a great day,
Elisabetta Nifosi EN, FR > IT Translator and Language Consultant AITI Member (Italian Association of Translators and Interpreters) STRADE Member (union of Italian translators working for the publishing industry)
Update June 2014: they finally paid!! without interests
"I wrote you some time ago about my experience with Sangiovanni’s editor, Italy.The client finally paid us last week, 9-15 June 2014!!! We only got the net amount due, without interests asked by the court and taxes (which should be paid by the client on our behalf next month, according to the Italian law)." (18/06/2014)
Sare Translations (Leire Berasaluze) - Non payer
"I worked in November 2013 for Leire Berasaluze and we agreed about the payment to be made in December 2013. Since then, she does not answer me and did not pay the 260€ she owes me.Her website: https://sites.google.com/site/saretranslations/Her proz profile: http://www.proz.com/profile/68752Best regards,
SDL, UK - insulting rates and shameless bidding practises (about 2 cts/w.): to boycott
Giant translation company and translation software provider, which acquired Trados in 2005.
"Since Mark Lancaster founded the company in 1992, SDL has continued to provide enterprise-ready, innovative solutions."
They offer very low rates and poor quality standards: http://www.linkedin.com/groupItem?view=&gid=3415770&item=ANET%3AS%3A5807481561645346816&trk=NUS_RITM-title
SEPROTEC, Spain: CV theft, low paying but high profit, using students for certified translations
"SEPROTEC is a spanish agency, it has spread all over the world, with headquarters in the world's most expensive cities. It has won all public tenders from the Spanish Ministry of Justice and Police for years, paying court and police interpreters 8 euro per hour rates while the Spanish Administration was paying them 50 euro per interpreting hour.
Recently, they campaigned to get Translation and Interpreting BA students to do their work placements with them, offering a 300 per month fee and promising to hire them as in-house staff after the placement. Students were asked to do legal translation, which in Spain is a regulated profession that only sworn translators can perform.
Recently the Supreme Court in Catalonia has admitted a sue against them for presenting false documents in order to win public tenders in the Spanish administration; these are precisely the CV's of qualified translators and interpreters who never worked for them.
They still operate mainly in Spain, so a lot of the information regarding their activities is mainly in Spanish. They have, however, been linked to severe shortcomings in court interpreting services in high-profile cases (the Prestige oil spill, the Operación Puerto doping scandal), as well as poor rates and delayed payment. See below some articles in Spanish:
Big thanks to Jose Miguel Aguilar for providing the above information.
Sfera studios, USA - insulting rates, subtitles sweatshop: pay 7 USD an hour max!
"Very good blog! Please find attached an email with their rates! No need for further words! Good luck with the information and keep it going, please!" Paula T.
"Dear Paula T.,
Congratulations on passing the subtitling qualification test!
Sfera is dedicated to providing a streamlined environment for producing high-quality subtitles. Our web-based editor and other industry-first features will help ensure that you spend less time on non-value added tasks.
Below, please find our translation and proofreading rates. In evaluating the rates, we encourage you to try the tools and our workflow process. In addition to the special tools, you will be provided with a well-timed English template to help you focus on the translation process. We are confident that you will find it faster and easier than traditional subtitling jobs.
Translation: $2.3 USD/min. of runtime. This includes translation, review of one's own work, and final acceptance of any corrections.
Proofreading: $0.32 USD/min. of runtime. This includes a watch-through and corrections.
To complete your registration process, please
click on this linkto access the Master Services Agreement. After reviewing the agreement, please print, sign, and upload your executed copy by logging on to sferastudios.com.
Once we have received your signed agreement, you will become an active freelance member of our subtitling network.
Sferastudios e. / firstname.lastname@example.org 2001 / Wilshire Blvd, #410 / Santa Monica, CA 90403
Skansa translations (Payment issues)
SIA euroscript Baltic in Riga, Latvia (pressure translators to lower their rates)
Email received from a translator (6/11/13):
"First of all, I would like to thank you for your effort to make it public. I really hope it will be the step towards fair remuneration to translators, who have dedicated years to get their degrees. Unfortunately, Eastern European countries have still a long way to go until prices of at least €0,1/word will be paid for the people who actually do the work. Based on my own experience and on what I have heard from my translator colleagues/friends, most of Estonian translation agencies do not want to pay more than €0,04/word. To give you an example:
You already have Euroscript Luxembourg in the list, but its subsidiary SIA euroscript Baltic in Riga, Latvia is practicing the same kind of tactics. The company's main client is the European Commission (DG ENTR) and I am certain the client does not pay the company as little as €0,05/word. What I find particularly low on the company's part is that they offer an Estonian freelancer half of the money for the same work than they offer their Swedish freelancer, (i.e. literally, the same DG ENTR texts need to be translated into all EU languages). Yes, the living costs in Sweden are higher, but life in Estonia is getting more and more expensive (especially after Estonia adopted the euro). If the Estonian translator is lucky, s/he will be offered €0,04/word. But I have also heard of offers less than that. As a comparison, two Swedish colleagues of mine, who also translate (freelance) for SIA euroscript Baltic, earn about twice as much. One of them earns 0.075/word and the other 0.08/word. Sound fair to you?Neither fee meets the "at least €0,1/word" level, but to be honest, I would be happy to get paid what the Swedes do for my translations into Estonian. The company obviously has the money but they basically "threaten" to leave you without work, unless you agree to their terms and prices. Unfortunately, there are always poor students willing to work for even less than that, so, the market is spoiled. Lucrative for the company, not so much for the freelancers. I find it very unfair. (...) After I sent them my quote, I received the following reply:
Before we proceed to the next recruitment step, I would like to finalize the cooperation rates. I would suggest the following gross rate scheme:
Translation from English and German into Estonian = 10.00 EUR page (1500 ch.)/Translation from English and German into Estonian = 0.04 EUR source word/ Translation from Estonian into English = 11.25 EUR page (1500 characters without spaces)/Translation from Estonian into English = 0.045 EUR source word / Revision = 3.00 EUR page (1500 characters without spaces) / Revision = 0.012 EUR source word
I’d like to note that these rates are highly competitive within our current EU projects and would ensure you are allocated frequent and voluminous translation/revision jobs.
Please let me know what you think."
"Makes me want to question why even ask me the quote, if you have a fixed price you will offer me anyway? I tried to negotiate a bit higher price, but was basically told that this is the best it will be - take it, or leave it."
This is a classic situation, where out of nowhere the PM is telling you what to do and what to say your rate is. It is completely absurd and revolting but that's what works best for them. Until of course you say no. They then deflate and go bully someone else. I would suggest the following actions:
1) Confront this person with the disparity of the rates they impose from one language to the next.
2) Ask for a higher rate under which you will not accept the project.
3) Contact the end client (in the case the European Commission, who is being conned just as bad as you are) on behalf of a local group of translators or with the support of your national association and raise their awareness on this issue, stressing that the end client should be able to get in touch directly with the translator, it's the basics to ensure quality and credibility!!
Whatever you do, it is important not to undersell yourself and to say NO to such disrespectful offers. These people will soon find themselves short of competent translators which will quickly show, and make their association to the European Commission cease.
http://silverside-usa.com (fake postal address)
Simple translation, location unknown (virtual office) - Suspicious bottom feeder
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/WPPF/conversations/messagesWhy not?1/ They pay less than 0.05 USD/0.03 E2/ It takes them 45 days to pay you the pittance they owe you3/ They are completely opaque about who they are and where they are based, however they ask YOU to provide ID, passport etc.Note: never provide this doc to a stranger, your TAX registration number should suffice!!!
Smartword, UK (Machine translation bottom feeder, 0.01E/w)
Read comments on LinkedIn
An "outstanding offer" posted on ProZ by Smartword - the job includes editing a machine translated legal contract/terms of service. 15k words with a maximum allocated budget of 225EUR. Yay!
Posted on ProZ by a March 2014 registered company with, of course, no Blue Board record. But from their webpage it is obvious that is part of their operational practice to offer different levels of translation with the lowest at bronze - "post editing of machine translation".
A translator's report : "I applied a week ago to work wih this agency since they put an offer on ProZ saying they were looking for more translators in my pair. They sent me back an huge Excel file I had to fill with personal data. I took me a whole hour. Yesterday evening, I got the following message :
" The rate quoted by you are not suitable not acceptable according to our experience and knowledge. Currently we can offer you USD 0.02/word for translation and USD 4/1000 words/hour for review. Payment through PayPal, Money Booker, Bank wire transfer within 30-60 days from the date of invoice. Please let me know if rates and terms suit you."
COMMENT FOLLOWING THIS THREAD : "Hi Lisa, First of all thanks a lot for your warning about Somya Translators and a quote of their message to you. It was very interesting for me to know because this agency has got over 120 positive feedbacks given to them by translators at the TranslatorsCafé.com Hall of Fame & Shame and because of that they are on our list of Top 20 Translation Agencies as Rated by TC Users (they take the 4th position among 'best' world agencies!):
Yesterday I quoted your message in the Hall of Fame & Shame thread dedicated to Somya Translators (I have granted you temporal one-week free access to our Hall of Fame & Shame):
Barkha Kumari, a representative of Somya Translators, has just posted a message requesting me to remove my unmasking posting because 'that was specifically for one low budget project'.
Do you, folks, believe that was just ONE low budget project and all other Somya Translators projects are decently paid? I don't..."
Another report from a Freelance interpreter and translator (de|en|fr)
"I have received similar offers from somyatrans in the past and still do from time to time. They pay you via Paypal after 60 days. They do offer very low rates, i.e. $0.03 to $0.04 for English->German translations and $5 per hour for "proofreading" of translations in this language pair; they expect a turnover of 1,000 words per hour for these "proofreading" jobs."
Speaklike (fake company, non payer)
Email A. S., 11/05/14
Thanks again, A."There are some positive translator reviews on the Internet about the good practices of SpeakLike, probably published by the owner himself. I naively took the chance doing a few translations in my spare time.I would like to inform you of my experience with SpeakLike."Hello,First of all, thank you so much for your blog.
They owe me a small amount of about $70 dollars, and I have very well realized that they will never pay. With a look at the facebook page, one can now see that some translators are even organizing a lawsuit against SpeakLike because they intend never to pay their translators. This company does not even bother to check their facebook page where comments written everywhere say, "I want my money!" I realized it is a fake office in New York - if one calls the office, no one ever answers, and there is only a voicemail which say, "SpeakLike."
Stealth Translations (Low rates)
Type of offers they send out to translators: “Hi _____, We have a 1-page document that needs translated from Russian to English today if possible. Would you be available? The rate would be €0.04/word. Please let me know if you'd be available, thanks! With thanks and regards,
Karen McCoy Project Manager
stickerkid.com (possible scam, non-payers)
Email received, oct. 2013: "There is one more, but I'm not sure if they belong on your list as they are not an agency. It is an end client, for whom I translated a few files. The first invoice was paid before the due date, the second invoice was due a long time ago and has not been paid yet. The job is still uncompleted as they have not sent me all the source files I had agreed to do. They do not reply to any reminders. The name of the company is stickerkid.com."
Stiil traduction (unprofessional practices)
These people refused to pay shoddy results while imposing unrealisting conditions (which were : 10 pages of legal translation in 24 hours). None of the translators hired have managed of course (they should have refused in the first place that goes without saying), and the project manager refused to pay them and urges them quite roughly to "quit complaining or we'll sue you". A professional attitude from a PM would be to request a deadline extent (since the beginning would make sense, how hard is it to anticipate ? The formula is 1 human, 1 day, 2000 words. Remember ? Here is this strange Email, both unprofessional and hilarious (for french speakers).
"(...) vos collègues qui eux-aussi ont rendu 2/3 de la traduction ne seront pas payés (le client ne paiera pas). Votre traduction est médiocre. Les carottes sont cuites. Cessez de vous plaindre ou nous engageons des poursuites contre vous.'
Témoignage de la traductrice : "Le travail confié était le suivant : 10 pages de traduction juridiques envoyées un mercredi fin d'après-midi pour le lendemain soir, si j'avais eu un délai ça aurait été possible. On ne peut pas faire vite et bien. Ils doivent demander à plusieurs traducteurs avant de tomber sur une bonne poire qui accepte.'
Straker translations, New Zealand (Low rates, low quality machine translation reseller)
money-making leech providing computer-generated junk and promoting misconceptions on how professional translation works company claims that their 5000 translators (!!! since when is that a good thing?!) can translate 1000 words per HOUR and pay them about 20 Eur per hour for that (so 0.02 per word. Wow. I did not know New Zealand was located in Chindia!).
By the way people, the reason why companies like this have so many translators in their 'pool' is not because they are so successful and global that they give work to everybody. It's because they always welcome someone cheaper than you, who'll compromise in case you don't.
Lots of info on this LinkedIn thread
Translator : "I was working with them for a discounted rate and they were paying until they assigned to me a larger assignment. Then they told me that they are not going to pay the amount we agreed and they payed only less than 1/3 of the money (...) They said that I am asking too much and when I said that they gave me the assignment knowing the rate, they said that my work is no good. After 25 years in this and having worked in two countries in-house and freelance I felt insulted so I phoned and I asked nicely to be paid. They told me "what a good translator I am ????" but they never paid me. I strongly suggest to stay away, I have lost well over a thousand..."
About this common issue I'd like to explain something to agency staff who may be reading this : firstly, when you criticise the quality of a translation you MUST use a reviewer's report to back up your allegations. Secondly, you are STILL obliged by law to pay the contractor, whether the client pays you of not, because you have recruited them (with samples, tests, credentials). Learn your lesson and just do not hire them next time. Finally you should know, if you want to remain in this business, that you get exactly what you pay for. Come on: 2 cents a word is never going to get you anything decent. Oh but wait of course you don't evaluate the quality of the products you sell, because you don't understand all these languages. You are just middlemen. So what's your value exactly?
Translator: "As a student of buzz words, I've noticed that the words "business model" appear frequently in articles on the translation industry. It's no secret that the only reason translation firms exist, is because they find translation clients and take a cut on the translators' work. How big their piece of the pie should be is highly debatable.
- Their "piece of the pie" should not be at the expense of not paying decent rates to translators. The fact of the matter is that they are, on the strength of their claim that translators can translate 1,000 words per hour, charging their clients low rates and undercutting respectable agencies, while underpaying translators. They cannot possibly be delivering good quality translation work to their clients on that basis and they are encouraging translation clients to have false expectations about how long it takes to produce translation. That is damaging to translators and to other translation agencies."
Streetwise, Eddie Street (Scammer)
"STREETWISE TRANSLATIONS. This company is owned by a man called Eddie Street. The company describes itself as “the leading translation company in Slough” LOL!It has been in and out of business for years. I am still owed money from 2010 (several hundred pounds). When I tried to chase the payment, the company “disappeared” from the horizon for a while. They are now apparently back in business – do not work for them. I know there are quite a few others out there who have also been exploited and robbed by this company." M.G.
T.M. Solutions - Languages Translation Bureau, Simi Agarwal (bullshit all star entries in ProZ blueboard, have been exploiting translators for 2 cents a word since 2004, long-lasting bottom-feeders)
Agarwal from T.M.Solutions - LanguagesTranslation Bureau just
posted this job on Proz: "400 pages of Pump Manual English to
Russian" with a deadline on August 31,2013.
I sent a short email asking a representative sample or entire project file to estimate total cost/time. In response I got a lengthy "test" file that I was supposed to complete "as soon as possible in next few hours." (yeah, right) and indicating that "payment will be USD 2000." to which I replied again asking clarification if $2,000 for the budget for entire project – and yes, that is actually right! 2 grands for 400 pages of technically intensive content. That is anywhere from 100,000 to 140,000 words (based on 300-350 words/page + illustrations), or $0.014...$0.02/word rate. How cool is that?
Refraining from usage of most of the powerful words that are coming to my mind now to a short conclusion: this is the last time I ever respond to any translation jobs originating from India! I will not waste another second of my time on this BS! I advise that you all avoid this and similar "offers" from
how did this company manage to get 77 all "5" ratings on Blue Board???
I wish proz implemented a private translator-only comments section under each of the jobs posted, so translators could share their thoughts right away, and that feature alone would result in 99% of translator drawing away from such companies, which would hopefully lead to better trends in the industry for us fellow translators. I'm afraid Proz just doesn't give a flying puck as long as we pay them our membership fees on time, whereas outsources don't have to pay a damn thing to post these outrageous offers."
Agreed 100 percent!!! One year after this comment, FFS STILL has 77 not-suspicious-at-all 5 stars. And Proz is still a not-suspicious-at-all portal.
Agreed 100 percent!!! One year after this comment, FFS STILL has 77 not-suspicious-at-all 5 stars. And Proz is still a not-suspicious-at-all portal.
Talks Hub, Romania - disrespectful selection methods
Email 10/12/2013 01:25
"Last September I applied to Talks Hub as a freelance translator. I completed four test for different specializations (Marketing and hospitality, Software and IT; Websites and Technical). On October 29th I received the generic response you'll find attached.
As you can see, it is not clear if WE have not been selected because we failed our tests or because of our rates but, just in case, they advice us about grammar, spelling, fluency, etc. However, if our skills or general responsiveness time (???) improve significantly, they will be glad to take us into account.
This is clearly an unethical business practice so I will appreciate if you include them in the blacklist.
First of all, I thank you for taking your time to register in our database of potential translators.
For those of you who have also found time to respond to our call for translators and delivered the translation test, I thank you for your time and effort to complete the test, and patience awaiting for response.
Although you have not been selected to our first phase of contracting, please note that we would like to keep in our database for future assignments, based on your availability, and contact will be made individually, when case.
It is possible that your fees are currently too high for our payment policy, or your test may have been currently rejected based on one or more of the next criteria, for which we recommend further improvement:
* grammar and spelling errors
* text is not fluent in the native language
* mistranslated terms
* erroneous understanding of our translation instructions
We will be glad to reconsider applications from you in the future, should your skills or general responsiveness time will significantly improve.
Thank you for your time, and best wishes in your future professional activities and personal development,
TDR Translation & Language Service LTD (CROOKS Fake tests, crap rates, can't write properly, but great Blue board rating)
"Hi there,I love reading your blog and its a big help to me. I am a newcomer, I was working as an in-house translator for the recent years.Anyway, I might request to ad TRD Translation & Language Service LTD, to your blacklist.As the company had a really, really good rating on the proz.com bluebord (what I clearly don´t understand after learning their rates), I applied for a project with them. They answered my email within minutes and asked me to do a proofreading test (without any information about their company, rates, payment terms and methods). The test was a full CV which made me suspicious - it looked like it was google translated and more like a regular assignment.
I got back to them and told them that I can not do the test without information on their prices ect. as I am not sure, if I would collaborate with them (and do the test) if their prices are too low.
This was their answer:"New translator work with our company start with 0.02, it’s negotiable after we get positive feedback from clients."No professional translator EN-DE living in Europe could work for this rates (even if they would double it). It is even a insult to people who study translation and keep up to date with the latest technologies and programs. I think this company is a good candidate for your low rates section.
"Hello,I’m contacting you since I’d like you to add an agency to the blacklist (however, I’d like to remain anonymous).The agency is TRD Translation and Language Service LTD. They offered me 0.01$ per word and when I told them that it was an extremely low rate, the contact person tried to play the victim telling me that he had a lot on his plate and asking me not to let him down. At that moment I really needed the money so I accepted (my bad), but then it got even more unprofessionnal : I never had the total word count, he just kept sending me documents one after the other in a way that it was impossible for me to organise myself. I collaborated with them in december and after several emails telling them that I needed the money, I was paid 60$ in january (total was of 200$). I kept harassing them with emails and in february they replied telling me that they had been « on holiday » (is there only ONE person to run the company or did they all go on holiday at the same time ?) and that they wanted me to start working on another project immediatly (I quote). Obviously I told them that I wouldn’t continue to work with them since they still hadn’t paid me what they owed me from the first time. In the end I was paid, but the lack of seriousness of it all startled me.I also want to thank you for keeping up with this list, it’s of great help !"
Team Translation, San Marino, Italy - Bad business and professional practices, low paying
25/11/2013: "Just read this very interesting documentation and thought I might be able to contribute - I do not work in the domain any more but I had several assignments for this Team Translations (first based in Perugia, then in San Marino) and it was not a particularly pleasant experience: in all honesty, I did get paid with not too much hassle but they are very unprofessional (for example, one of the files I sent them had to be zipped as it was huge and I had to specifically ask them to check whether the file opened properly or not - otherwise they would have send it to the client as-is, i.e. just forwarded my mail) and the rates are low. Also, the first time they contacted me they were outright rude when I told I was not interested in a badly-paid and rush assignment, to then call me for a half an hour trying to convince me to take the job after all. Last but not least, I naturally gave them the list of my fees right from the beginning but each and every time, they tried to lower the price nevertheless.
If needed, I should still have some mails left I exchanged with them but they are on another machine I do not have always access to. "
Very best and keep up the excellent work! A.K
Tecco (teccotranslations.co)-Charles Azzopardi / FRAUD!
"Scammer working under the name of Stephan Jones, see very slick website under teccotranslations.com. (Alias’)This person is also known as Charles Azzopardi/John Brown/Stephen Jones/Adam Matthews/Mathieu Blanc/ Crystal Sample/ John Sutton"
Paypal and Moneybookers:
email@example.com / www.proz.com/blueboard/34805
AZZ-Translations Language Services / www.azztranslations.com/ www.proz.com/blueboard/38729
Tecco Translations / www.proz.com/blueboard/38864
Another report on LinkedIn
TEK Translation International SA based in Madrid, Spain (Non-payers)
Email received, oct 2013: "I've just received the link to your blog throug LinkedIn. I'd like to give you one more name to add to your list - but I don't want my name to appear nowhere, thank you. The translation agency is TEK Translation International SA based in Madrid, Spain. The still owe my a bit less than 1800 Euros from 2012 (spring).If you check on proz you'll find there a very long list of negative feedback, too."
Telematic Solutions, India (Low rates, forced feedback)
Report on Translator's café: "This peanuts-paying Indian agency was also on TC Top 20 list with their 40 positive feedbacks but we found out that almost all those feedbacks were given to them under pressure and as a result we have deleted those 40 positive feedbacks and deprived this agency of their job posting rights at TranslatorsCafé.com."
TermWiki (Very low rates)
Tetras SRO, Slovakia, also based in Germany (greedy, low rates)
This shameless agency expects the translator to provide a proofread translation for a few cents per word... getting the proofreading sorted and free of charge. What THE HELL DO THEY DO? (appart from pocketting the money earned by someone else?)
Textcase.nl (Low rates + late payers)
Email 11/06/14: "Textcase paid me after 6 months". M.B
Textmaster.com (Low rates)
Textservice AB/CEAB/Mattias Bergström, Sweden (Non-payer)
"Mattias has a non-payment to me of over 500€. The debt is based on a rate of 0.05€ per source word. He has tried various tactics to avoid the payment. No longer responding to emails since approximately 1 year.
He has successfully managed to accumulate positive ratings on ProZ (for payments under 50 euro, I checked with the reviewers.) He also has managed to remove the negative ratings there (e.g.. mine for over 500 euro.) - This is for those who don't realize that the BlueBoard serves only one purpose: To advertise the (worthless) site membership.
He also uses a fake address and phone number, which go to a paid 'office service' in Stockholm. He lives and operates in Helsingborg, which is where his companies are registered.
He has run a number of translation agencies into bankruptcy since the late 90s/early 2000s from what I can tell. His business model is apparently still largely based on non-payment.To be regarded as a criminal.
ALSO:textcase.nl paid me after 6 months!Much more to follow as I go through my project history right nown! Many thanks for your excellent site!
The Transcription Agency, Hythe, UK (unprofessional, no contact details)
15/11/2013: "I would also like to add The Transcription Agency based in Hythe, Kent U.K. as unprofessional opportunists who are hiding behind anonymity, prey on misunderstandings and become incommunicado when you pin them down. Another unprofessional agency is Alpha Translation Services.com based in Melbourne, Florida. I've noticed they changed their website since I had dealings with them and they do not provide contact details. Congratulations on your efforts."
TLS Bureau (Insulting rates)
Discussion on LinkedIn: "I've just had a look at their website, and they highlight their cheap rates as a major unique selling point. Straight from their home page: 0 - 10 k: £0.06 p/w; 10 - 20 k: £0.05 p/w; 20 - 40 k: £0.04 p/w. Needless to say I haven't bothered registering with them, but thought you might like to know!"
"Also taken straight from their website:
<<Every individual or company is indifferent>>
No more comment needed! "
TLS Translation Company - tlsbureau.com"We Are leaders From € 0.038 p/word Get to know us!"
TLT GmbH (Non-payer)
"With all of them we have had massive problems with payments. Big translations, but no money and a lot of excuses... Google listing n 1 ads"
TRADSPOT, Spain (Non-payers!!)
Translator's email (oct. 2013):
"Hello, compliments for your initiative: SOOO NECESSARY!
My unlucky/turned-lucky experience was with TRADSPOT (Madrid, Spain) Good fee, kind. Compliments after the translation. But the payment did not arrive. Several emails, and again and again excuses. Till I warned I would make it public in a List of Shame, and the payment was immediate.
Some weeks later a read a complaint in that LoS from another Translator for the same issue.
I wonder if Black List should be the same as Warning List, but here is my experience."
Translator's email (12/12/13):"Thank you so much for your initiative, it is so necessary.I would like to tell you about Tradspot, which is an agency that is already included in your list. In the case reported by the translator in your case they finally paid, but not in my case. I revised a couple of translations for them about a year ago, and some months after the date when they should have made the payment I sent them an e-mail asking about it. Just excuses and more excuses, so my e-mails went from politeness to telling them that I would report this case in lists of shame. This is the part that is different from the translator who told her story on your list: I never got a payment, just more excuses.You can see some of the e-mails we have exchanged below (I have more, but I think this is enough)." (Available in Spanish upon request)Best regards,Auria R.
Traduix, Belgium (non-payers)
"Hi and thanks for this very useful list!
Today I decided to add my experience with Traduix, based in Belgium.I did just a few translations for them this year, 2 invoices not more, but when it was time to receive the payment (which I had to ask as it was not arriving) they told me there was a problem with my swift/bic number, which btw was regularly indicated on the invoice, and I never had problems with any other customer before.In November they told me the payment resulted to be done (but still no money on my bank account!), and they asked me availability for a new translation. This time I refused it and kept asking for the payment, which never arrived.This could really be just my problem, but I was curious to know if somebody else experienced problems with this agency!Thanks!Silvia"
Email from R.R, 14/04/14:"He was supposed to pay on December 23rd, 2013. End of December he could not pay because the bookkeeping people were on holidays…. In January 2014, he could not pay either because there were construction works going on in his office. All of these were unforeseen events, of course. There were lots of mails to and fro: I was a shame for the profession, I should be stopped of working in this profession, does money make me happy? (!!), and should I ever dare publish something about this, he would see to it that I did not ever work in this profession again. Interesting to see, that suddenly at this period several translators put good notes into his blueboard … because they were asked to …."
Translator's report: "I want to add a translation agency in Argentina called TRADUXPRESS. this woman is called Marita Sanchez, or Maria Concepcion or M. Schmidt. She didn't finish payment, never sent invoices or answered calls or e-mails. Her address is a fake."
Translate 24, Germany (very unprofessional)
Company : translate-24, Kuhnweg 55, D-64291 Darmstadt in Germany, Mr. RodenbergerNot only did the guy change my translation adding mistakes in my text, but he as well told me that he would pay me if the client accepted the translation and if he paid.Which means, he put a risk on my shoulders that I do not have to bear. I am not responsible for a text he tampered with.And anyway, if his client pays or not, is not my problem. My client is the agency.I told him very clearly the consequences of his not paying me, and he paid, finally."
Translate Plus Limited (dishonest methods, greedy leeches)
Professional on LinkedIn :
"I was contacted by Translate Plus last year who asked me for a discount of more than 50% of my usual rate. Bigword is infamous for asking their translators to lower their rates. Would not work for either of them. "
"Translate plus have been mentioned here as trying to push prices down.Their latest trick is:
You do not lower the prices, they accept. Next, they do their proofing on the uncleaned files and when they send you their 'final' check it is another set of bilingual files. They ignore your warnings as to these are not the clean files.
In the end they will send you a letter that due to quality issues the will reduce the invoice by 20% and thus get the rate they asked you to reduce to up front. And if you try to answer this last letter, the person having written it is on her annual leave. Last but not least during a project the project managers may rotate several time in my case there were three."
Translated.net, Rome (To boycott: low rates, unprofessional bidding practices, fake office in the US +hire unqualified contractors, use machine translation)
Translated SRL - via Nepal, 29 00144 Rome - ITALIE
ATA corporate member
Translator's report : "I have just a fair amount of time filling out an on-line form for a company based in Rome by the name of "Translated". When I got to the final page, it asked about rates per language combination. The maximum possible in the drop-down list was 0,09 € per word, so I filled that in, but it came up with a warning. This is verbatim:""Accept a lower rate: we can offer you more work
Suggested rate: Euro 0.035 ""They must be taking the #### but unfortunately I realise they are not! I was quite hopeful after I saw that they didn't advertise on the basis of "competitive prices" or anything similar on their homepage, and they had good reviews from ProZ on their site, but this takes the biscuit!"Their website advert:"Translated provides professional translation services in over 1,600 language combinations and has been intelligently putting 24,652 customers in contact with over 65,116 translators throughout the world for over 10 years."I really hope they are lying here: where do they get 65116 translators, who would accept such rates: wait they are probably mistaking the term "translators" for "cheap slaves".
Another report: "This agency, apart from stretching the boundaries of acceptable pay, issue revision jobs for translations completed to an eye-poppingly poor standard.
They appear to employ non-qualified translators to stutter through the most difficult of material (example: contracts) before expecting professionals to revise the material at lightening speed. This is a very time-consuming and laborious process for it requires the reviser to re-write vast swathes of text, far more than what should be expected.
Be warned: avoid this agency at all costs. They are highly unprofessional and exploitative, and need to be flushed out of the system!
"And I note something phoney about the address. There is an office building at 285 Hamilton in Palo Alto (which could be just a mail drop, for all I know), but there is no such address as 288 Hamilton across the street. That entire block is occupied by Palo Alto City Hall (although their mailing address is 250 Hamilton)."
Could this possibly be another case of virtual office??
Translation Doctor Ltd (insulting proposals)
English to German Translators required
We are a small, friendly company who pay by Paypal or international BACS (Amex).
Our standard rates for this language pair are 0.06 euros per word for translation and 20.00 euros per hour for proofreading.
Please check our positive feedback on the Proz Blue board from existing and past collaborators and we hope that you will consider us. Please do include a current, up to date CV when replying and Skype id.
What a "friendly offer". Too bad that no one can make a decent living in Germany at These rates...
Translation Kings (Insulting rates ... and attitude)
Email received in october 2013: "Hello, I just wanted to suggest "Translation Kings" to the blacklist. Reason: unacceptable low rates (<2 US dollar per word) and not very nice (sarcastic?) PM. Please, read the exchange below. :) I highlighted in yellow the "best" passages.
"Hello, Thanks for your interest in translating for us.
How much would you be able to handle in the next 10 days?
Our budget is 0.015$ per word. Extremely low budget due to a massive order of 1,000,000 words. If quality is good, we will consider you for future jobs as well. We are from Translation Kings and have regular jobs available. We require an invoice from you and can pay via paypal or bank transfer. Payment will be done within 7 days of finishing your part. Kindly let us know (asap) if you are willing to take on this project.
M., Translation Kings"
5/19/2013 9:57 PM, reply from the translator :"Dear M., I'm sorry but I'm used to higher rates and I feel that I can't accept such a low one."
Answer from this lady: (both sarcastic and misspelled)
. Kind regards,
Translocacell (notorious non-payers)
I can "recommend" that you add Translocacell. They owe me money since 18 month, I am currently suing them and my lawyer told me, he already had several clients suing this agency for money.
Doreen Tautz, certified translator
Translation AZ, Fort Myers, Florida, USA (non-payer)
This company appears to be one of those who need to be harassed about one million times in order to pay a little invoice. Imagine what happens when it comes to paying a large invoice.
Report on Linked In
Translation Cloud LLC, Jersey city USA (Rude and unprofessional, non payers, insulting rates)
"I think you should add Translation Cloud to your blacklist.I worked for them as a freelancer to translate mobile apps into French.- The rate is too low: 0.03$ per word.- They don't pay if you don't harass them.- They don't care at all about quality. The French punctuation rules were not respected and the text is mostly Google Translated. Proofreaders erased my work to use Google translations instead.- They're very rude when you ask for payment. The person in charge of the financial side told me:Me:I attach here a list of invoices that you have not paid to me.
There is a total of 38 jobs, which amounts to $489.49.
Please ensure they are paid promptly,Finance guy:I didn't look into ever invoice on that list, but as you can see from
the attached file, top invoices have already been paid over PayPal in
February/March, while new invoices are scheduled to be paid on May
Please keep your accounting records more accurately.Me:My records are very accurate.The last invoices are scheduled to be paid in May only because Matt took care of sending me the missing confirmation emails yesterday.Finance guy:These emails are sent to you automatically upon completion and
approval of your projects. Just keep an eye on them and don't
procrastinate till last moment.Me:This is the second time you're being very rude to me about invoices. When I don't receive the confirmations it's because the projects are not marked as complete on your side.
I find your language very unprofessional and would appreciate if you remove me straight away from your system. I work with enough other agencies not to waste time with people who insult me and pay such a low fee on top of everything.Finance guy:Matt, please remove this translator from the system. We will not be
working with people who can't keep track of their invoices and then
start being rude about it."
I am still in their system by the way.Thanks for your useful list!" S.B.
Translation Gardens (Problems registering)
"I just signed up with Translation Gardens. The registration was a pain, because at every slight error the registration form would "forget" all my language pairs (though there was no error there) and I had to re-enter them in addition to fixing whatever the actual problem was. Having done that, I would like to know whether anybody else in this group is on that site, and if so what results you've had, if any."
Translation secrets (Scam alert, steal your CV, ridiculous rates, shall I continue?)
Others names : Expert of Linguists, Palestine Territories, PM: Stephani (fake name), fake address: 2/1, Hifa St., Alfei Menashe, 43351 Israel (fake address), Skype: Ch.Trans, firstname.lastname@example.org, Paypal ID: email@example.com GTrans, no website, linked to Gentle Translations/Translation Secrets, Languagemet/Purity Translations/ Amazing Translations among others; non-payer, CV identity thief. "
What they want to keep secret is the following practises:
CV Theft case / Here is a scary email from them (I let you enjoy the amateurism his phrasing):
"Now I will tell you our system, I work as a project manager for three years, I deal with 8 languages and I have a group of translators for each language, I ask the translator if he can give me the permission to use his CV with our clients if he agrees I send to him an agreement to sign it, and he becomes the most important translator in the team, our programming department makes an email and marketing the email with the translator's CV for our clients, then I receive the projects in this email, when I receive a project I ask the translator (who gives me the permission to use his CV) if he can take the project ( he has the Priority right ) if not I ask the group of translators.
So let me ask you can you give me the permission to use your CV with our clients?? if you agree please sign the attached file and send it back to me.
Waiting for your answer.
Sincerely, Fatma Slum."
No thanks, get your own diplomas and credentials!!
If you are still using CVs rather than Language Service Provider promotional material (see useful resources for translators on this site) please protect your CV, with watermarks, PDF format and so on. And do not put them online for download or with caution !
TranslationTop Co. Ltd. (China) – notorious non-payer
"In 2011 I was contacted by the Chinese company Translation Top Co. Ltd to translate a document from Catalan to English. After completing the job I issued an invoice on 22 December 2011. Despite various e-mails to the company, I have not received payment for the job, over a year later. On one occasion I was told I had already been paid, but when I checked there was no record of the payment. I should have done more research before accepting the job, as a search online reveals that many translators have worked for this company and then not been paid. Translators should therefore avoid working for this company as they are likely not to be paid, and companies requiring translation services should avoid contracting a company with such dubious ethics. Posted on 17 January 2013
Translit, Ireland (very low rates)
What they are willing to pay for English to French: 4 cts/word.
Email 30/11/13: "I would like to signal the Translit agency based in Ireland. I contacted them not too long ago. In the application form, they said to specify my rate or if working for 0.04€ per source word would be fine. When I gave them my rate, the PM didn’t even want to negotiate and said that they were only willing to pay 0.04€. I think their practice is really dishonest..."
This rate equals about 7 euros an hour in France, once you've paid your tax. Something no professional translator would accept. I would not call that practice dishonest though, just greedy and ignorant. This is a behaviour typical of agencies that focus primarily on profit rather than quality, with no consideration for the sustainability and good reputation of their business. The only solution for freelance translators is to refuse their conditions and let them die off. They no doubt will get (and provide) the kind of quality that goes with such low budgets.
TranSolution, India - Arijit De (non-payer)
This 'translator' does not pay his subcontractors.
His profile seems sort of inviting, and his company has, as expected, a majority of positive entries in Proz's Blue Board. However he seems far from professional:
Email 26/06/2014 (from A.N)
"After speaking to the one called Arijit De who runs this company TranSolution, as it was agreed I hired a studio to record Kannada voice over for which I payed 500 rs from my pocket. Then the transolution company asked me whether i can arrange for voice overs in other two languages (Malayalam and Bengali) and they will pay for all the 3 voice overs together. As I knew some friends who can record these languages , I spoke to them and arranged for it. Since I was the one who spoke to the voice over artists directly , I payed both of them 1000 rs each. But later TranSolution didn't pay me a penny.
So I last 2500 from my pocket. And didn't get money even for my voice over. Companies cheat translators by not paying money for their work. But this company completed its project with my money.
After sending series of emails for 6 months, I gave up. It was really disgusting how they cheat translators who believe them and work with them."
TransPerfect (TO BOYCOTT until they sink : low quality, zero proofreading, greedy rates, unexperienced proofreaders, toxic company, fake positive reports, non-payers)
Report on Glassdoor: "The WORST company in the world"
" The other day, a newbie PM called and said that another PM (one who has been around for a while) had suggested me for a "fun and exciting" job writing the narration (in English) for a 40-50 second advertisement ordered by a major U.S. retailer (not WalMart or K-Mart, but not an upscale place). The offered price? $25. Yup, US$25 for writing the script for a 40-50 second video.The PM told me that writing advertising copy was a new field for Transperfect. This was my reply: "Thank you for your inquiry, but $25 for copywriting for a large company like X is ridiculous. They'd pay an advertising agency much more. If TransPerfect is really accepting $25 plus company's overhead plus profit margin (=$100 or less?), then there is something seriously wrong with its
account executives. In any case, I'm very busy this weekend." Like many of you, I received better rates from Transperfect in the 1990s.
" I just did some googling to find out what the going rate for advertising copywriters is. For free-lancers, the average is about $83 an hour. That's a useful bit of information to have."
My own experience : When I started I was contacted by them to be a translator. But then they realised that I only had one year experience in the business. Therefore they offered me another job : Proofreader !! (Yes, the one who corrects the 10 years of experienced expert translator!) Here is another Transperfect proofreading offer sent by a translator (oct 2013):
" Here's one for THE list. Diana Chemparathy (she can be found on LinkedIn) offered me bi-lingual proofreading for US$ 0.01 per word, telling me that "2,000 words per hour is the norm in this industry"! The proofing/editing/reviewing (she never really clarified what she meant by "proofreading") was to be done over the weekend and came with very detailed formatting instructions as well as two separate style guides. The work was highly specialised and not to be undertaken lightly, as it consisted of pages of faxed medical case notes, pathology reports and culture results, some handwritten.Needless to say I turned the job down flat. The agency she works with/for is TransPerfect. I complained directly to their head office but never received a reply.
Well done you for initiating this blog and list and thank you!"
READ this blog's article about TP for more info
Transpac localization company (Vietnam), (Employer attitude :) ask for free tests to get contracts
An "Employer attitude" consists in expecting and asking things from your employee to help you with things that are mainly in YOUR interest. The translator is not an employee. He is not getting any salary from the wannabe employer. So why should he feel like helping for FREE, knowing that in return for his efforts, he gets one little job paid peanuts. Type of Emails they send out (all these spelling problems are authentic):
"Hi, This is XXX from Transapc Localizaiton Company. Nice to meet you! Here comes a test that needs to be translated from EN into Spanish, Please check the details and confirm whether you can take it ASAP. Can you help us to translate for free this time? Notes from our client: Wordcount: 231 . This is a massive client of ours so again needs to be perfect. The translator must have an engineering/technical background to traslate the attached into Spanish. The technical aspects need to be perfect - they do a massive amount with us. Kindly let us know when you can deliver this task. Please do not start untill you get my confirmation. Thank you." (From linkedin)
WTF?? Translation tests should be PAID your normal rate (I charge for tests over 150 words, rare exceptions made for serious agencies or clients). Just like any work (whatever the purpose is) deserves a salary. Otherwise you end up with people translating a huge text cut in little "tests".
Thanks to Krzysiek for pointing out that this company is not to be confused with Transpac technology (based in China) which appears to be an OK company.
5/11/13: "Hi! I have been working with Transpac but it looks like it is not the same Transpac you mention. If I'm correct, you listed a Vietnamese company, whereas I've been translating for Transpac Technology (a Chinese company). Now, the only issue with them is the fact that you have to remind them about payment after 30 days though they always pay."
Transquotation - Ask for membership fees
One of my rules is to not pay for work but to work to get paid, plus who likes to waste their precious time ?
"It's a job-shop site that looked good at first, so I signed up and provided the usual details. Then they hit me with a membership fee demand. That was annoying enough, since they only mentioned it after I had gone through the registration ..."
Trans Titles (very low rates)
$4 per minute, advertise on ProZ
Type of emails they send :
"We require excellent translators with computer terminology understanding, and good spelling and grammar. Work start is immediate with first deadline at the end of the weekend. An English transcription is provided. Rate is ONLY per video minute, which measures about 150-180 words in a minute.
Most is fluent speech mixed with technical terms, translation needs to be like all subtitles - fluent and understandable."
Translator's comment : "So I decided to bid. How I was surprised when the project manager offered me a real "treasure" - $4 per minute! Simple calculation showed that they offer $0.022 per word."
Transyanu or Argotrad Lucus - owner : M. J. Rodriguez -, Spain (Non payer)
"My name is Sara de Albornoz and I am a freelance translator based in Spain. I would like to warn you about a non-paying agency. They owe me more than 500 euro and have now stopped answering my attempts of communication, after three months of giving excuses.
They contacted me as Transyanu, but their invoicing name was Argotrad Lucus. They are based in O Saviñao, Galicia (Spain) and they also work or have worked with the names Artrad and Comunicarte. They appear in Proz's Blueboard and other sites as non-payers. The person who contacted me was Isabel Rodríguez Losada and I believe the owner of the company is Miguel Pérez Rodríguez.
I hope you could include them on your black list. Thanks for the great job you do compiling all those non-payers."
Travod, Moldova (fake offices+low rates)
Read my article (1/12/13)
"I just wanted to tell you about my last experience with Travod, agency who sent me the following message last Monday:
"We have a new project. The details are below:
Language source - destination: English - Spanish
Translation Area: General
Number of units: 433
Price per Unit:0.020 USD
Total Price: 16.670 USD "Travod is a joke of a company. I received several similar "offers" from them but the rate they are proposing you are even worse than the 0.04-0.05 USD they proposed to me. I also noticed that their payment terms are 3 months after the work is due. Ridiculous! Who would ever agree to these terms? How do companies like Travod stay in business? I had to put them on my e-mail black-list to avoid receiving these insulting "offers".
"I pointed out that Travod pretends to be in the USA but they are actually in Moldova! This is clear from the IP address. (read the rest of report)
This week (17/10/2013) I stumbled upon a very interesting piece of information on LinkedIn : Travod pretends to have offices in Paris!!
"I made a translation for Travod. It took 12 days before I received an answer to my many reminders asking if the translation was fine and for a PO# so that I could invoice them.
They replied that all needed info is published on their website www.travod.com Checking the website it says that they have offices in Paris at 44 boulevard des batignolles. After checking at this adress there is only a church! Moreover, I checked the French chamber of commerce and there no company called Travod registered in France. So beware, personally I will never work with them again and I should feel lucky if I ever get paid for my translation."
Read more on Travod:
Latest discussion on them: http://www.linkedin.com/groupItem?view=&gid=3415770&type=member&item=5836209056192155652&qid=580156a7-eeac-4268-af6e-9f77e098387d&trk=groups_items_see_more-0-b-cmr
Trust Traduzioni (Novara, Italy) - Shameful practices
It all started with a scandal in 2010 when Trust Traduzioni very confidently published this job announcement on Proz.com:
Dear Translators,We are looking for new team members to include in a translation project for the Italian Ministry of Tourism. The Ministry has begun sending us—and will continue to do so throughout 2010—materials from the site http://www.italia.it that need to be translated into English, French, German, and Spanish.
The “cartella” imposed by the Ministry is 2600 characters and the price is 9 euros gross with payment after 90 days (this condition is also a requirement of the Ministry). The price is extremely low, but translators should consider the large amount of work on offer and the ongoing nature of the project. If you are interested, contact me via email, telephone, or Skype. We already have files ready for translation that need to be assigned with some urgency. Your participation is appreciated."
Hem. That is embarrassing. After a wave of infuriated mails and petitions knocked them hard in the face, the Ministry had this mortified answer:
The Ministry of Tourism has published no announcement of any kind regarding a search for translators nor has it authorized any other party to do so. With regard to the announcement that appeared a few days ago on the http://www.proz.com internet site, and in which untrue information was imputed to the Ministry of Tourism, an official complaint has been filed with the competent authorities against person or persons unknown. In addition, the Ministry would like to make clear that it does not apply and has no intention of applying the fees and conditions indicated in the announcement.
Trusted Translations, Argentina (Shameful rates)
Email received on the 9th November 2013:
"Claiming to be based in Florida, instead uses staff from Argentina (cheaper!) and pays crappy rates.I have been in their database since 2006 and they have been offering the same rates ever since. When I asked to revise my rates, they replied "You signed for those, remember? They are fixed".
Service Languages Unit price per word in U$STranslation English to Italian 0.040Edition English to Italian 0.020Proofreading English to Italian 0.010
When they are panicking because they can't find a translator working for peanuts, they say they can "combine your rate" (translation + edition = $0.06) if you perform a final reading of the job before delivering.
Sometimes they subcontract from other agencies, but whether direct client or not, the rate is always the same. Impossible to negotiate rates, really the bottom chain of the translation industry."
EN > IT translator
Unbabel (worst agency in Europe: 1 cent per word, recently bumped up to 2cts, still the worst rates in Europe)
"I found this ad published in another group, I took a look and fond out that this anonymous company (no company info on the website) was selling human post-enditing of MT translations at 0,01 Eur/word ... At this sale prices, I'm wondering what's the rate paid to poor humans working for them! Take a look yourselves ... https://www.unbabel dot co
My remark: I attempted to add a couple of comments to the discussion but both were blocked ..."LinkedIn discussion
Email R.P, 13/03/14
"Unbabel has increased it's prices!I have received an email from Unbabel.com that contains the following, among other offers:
- translate your website or app: export your PO or XLIFF file and send it to us. The average website, with 5.000 words, will take us 2 days to process and cost you $100 (or $0.02 per word, 5 times less than other translation services)."
Underwood Hazel see Word Converters, UK: "mentor": exploitative crowdsourcing, builds up reputation on other people's work through Proz
Universally Speaking, UK (late payments)
"They appear to be the king (or queen?) of late payments among game localization agencies. Their payments are always late no matter how big/small the amount they owe. You need to beg to get paid with several emails back and forth. If you have access to ProZ Blue Board, check their 1-out-of-5 rated status and find how badly they are operating"
Check : http://www.proz.com/blueboard/18404
Thanks and regards, Ayako T.
Universal Translation Services (see ISO translations, same cie): low rates
Valuepoint Knowledgeworks Pvt. Ltd (Late payer)
Translator's email (6/11/13):
"First of all, thank you for this great site! At last something is actively done against tricks like this. I confirm the low prices complaint against Protranslating and would like to add "Valuepoint Knowledgeworks Pvt. Ltd" to the list (even though they eventually pay, I has to ask for each payment specifically and several times even after their own 45-days-payment-deadline had passed. The communication was slow and at least one invoice contained a false rate. I warmly suggest everyone to avoid dealings with this company).
*How long in total did you wait for payment? (Dates)
I sent them the invoice on September 3rd. Their payment time was 45 days. They should have paid by Oct 15th but didn't. They THEN promised to pay by Oct 26th but I received the payment by Oct 30. Their overall business practice sees to be "we pay when you ask for it, not when it's due and we should actually make the payment on our own initiative as contractually obliged".
*Did you incur late fees? No
*What made them pay? My numerous e-mails, one of which was as follows:
"Please answer my last two letters (titled XXX and YYY) by the EOB of Tuesday, 03.09.2013 or I'm forced to file an official complaint to your superiors, detailing your actions (delaying, not sending PO in time, then sending PO with false info and THEN not responding to my queries in a reasonable time frame). However busy you may be, I find it hard to believe that you cannot find 3 minutes to change 2 numbers on a PO and then send it back to me.
Should my potential complaint to your superiors also yield no results, my displeasure will result in the termination of our agreement and a Proz.com BlueBoard entry warning other translators not to cooperate with your company. Your superiors will also be notified.
I have been nothing but professional in my dealings with your company and I expect the same professional attitude from you.I truly hope we can still salvage this situation."
Kindly live up to the professional standards of the industry, please.
*Did they apologise?
Well yes but when someone says they're sorry but doesn't actually make any changes to go along with that, what's the use?
*How many times did you have to ask for your money and for how many tasks? > 2 tasks, about 6-7 times
All the best, Kaspar M., English-Estonian translator
VERITAS (now Hello Veritas) translations (nasty business practices, won't pay)
"Anyone else have experience with this company? I did some jobs for them last year that took months (and numerous emails) to be paid. Now they are back with machine translations that they want me to proofread. "
Viewglobally (insulting rates)
Found on LinkedIn. Now I've seen offers like this before, but this PM is very optimistic to hope that a native norwegian is ever going to take on that job. Norway is one of the most expensive countries in the world and the rates of native translators are amongt the highest in the industry. Is this company extremely ignorant about their own business or just pretending to be and chancing it? This is a truly insane offer.
Hope you are doing well. We have engaged into ongoing project, for which we need more assistance with. We are translating a large document, subject is travel.
Fairly easy text that has to be translated into Norwegian. Since this is really large project the rate is not the greatest, but with high expectations to continue for over next 6 months.
Let me know if you could agree with the rate of 0.045 USD per word for this project and whether you are able to perform a test (which will be paid for if it passes).
Looking forward to your prompt reply. Best Regards,
22 Sv. Stepono street, Vilnius, Lithuania
VISTATEC (Late or non payers, low rates)
"For those of you who are approached by VistaTec in Ireland to carry out review work, I would strongly advise CAUTION.
This company employs hundreds of reviewers to do work on various accounts (for numerous mainstream software companies and providers).
Reminders to pay invoices are ignored by their accounts payable department for weeks on end (sometimes for several months) and payment is ONLY received after you threaten to stop work or call in the services of a collection agency. Account managers can do very little to help you, as they claim. The same account managers will send you new work even though payments of invoices are still outstanding. "
Other email received (october 2012):
"I just saw your post on Linked In and wanted to add one of our problem payers. Vistatec. They request a 45 day payment term, and I agreed. My payment terms 7 days. However I was not expecting that I would need to hound them to pay. They have paid some of my invoices 90+ days for most. I am still waiting on payment and many others.
Here is a spreadsheet that is about 2 weeks old listing # of outstanding days. Their rates are shocking. I will never accept a job from them again." I confirm that most of the contractors on the list have oustanding invoices dating from more than 3 months, list available upon request:
VOCABRIDGE (Formerly: The Language Team Ltd ) (suspicious lack of reputation, no info available)
VOXORBIS (ridiculous rates)
"Just got this e-mail from Voxorbis. The rate is offensive but obviously they don't even know what they're dealing with as they are expecting an output of 100 minutes a day!! Yikes!"
We have a subtitling project of about 4,000 minutes from English
into Norwegian to be split between several translators. The videos
are already transcribed into English. The topic is entertainment
from regular TV shows.
1. It is extremely important that the translators are native in
2. We offer USD 2.00 per VIDEO MINUTE for translation and
3. The videos are already transcribed into English. You will be
working on a platform “Amara”. It is very user-friendly and we
will give you some instructions on how to use it.
4. You will do BOTH the translation and proofreading.
5. The deadline of this project is 12:00pm (PDT) March 29, 2013.
We are expecting the translators to translate 100 video minutes
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
Your prompt reply is much appreciated.
WHAT the Hell?
1/Norwegians have a high standard of living, this rate is ludicrous for anyone in Europe, especially them.
2/One person cannot be both the translator and the proofreader of their own work!!!
3/Expecting 100 min per day is asking for the moon, even if this video is baby talk (from what I know, the average is 40 min per day).
4/This shows total incompetence and ignorance about subtitling. Obviously, this person needs to be educated about their own business.
WEBGROND BV- ANNE DIJKSTRA- (Very Low rates)
(Bad practises, pressure on lowering rates : 1 cent a word) Type of emails they send :
"You can look at it this way, we can only pay you 3 cents a word, but each month our customers send us 1.500.000 words, so we can send you work multiple times a week" /"The text is very simple. We understand that there are a lot of highly qualified translators available at proz.com. We do not need those services here. This is a 1,000,000 word job and this has to be done on a certain low budget. We will have a lot more translation work from this particular customer in the near future so if done correctly we will give that to you as well.We pay within 7 days of finishing the job. $0.01 USD to $0.02 USD per word Further payment details: Cheap, but a lot of work. And its simple. "
Webflakes (Shameful practices, expecting free work from non-pros)
These people should be closed down, read this article, it's infuriating!
Web-translation.com (spam material, bottom feeder)
Email 14/03/14, R.P:
Hello:I want to ask you to blacklist the following associated agencies: Livetranslation.com and web-translation.comFull article can be found here: http://www.linkedin.comReasons for listing:- a Translator fee of £0.03/$0.05/€0.035 per word exclusive of Value Added Tax (if applicable).- imposing the requirement of an Insurance Policy, paid by the translator.Thanks T.E., by R.P.
Weirdoz.de (Ha. Apparently yes, they're for real)
Win All Translation & Language Solutions Co. Ltd. (ask for rush translations and don't pay)
Website name / winalltranlation.comTranslator's report : They asked him for urgent translations of medical certificates and never paid, it's been two months.
"Ils m'ont demandé une traduction urgent de trois certificats médicaux et passés deux mois ils ne m'ont pas payé.Salutations amicales, P. R"
Wiz Corporation (fishy, fake information, strange/low offers+non payers: accused of fraud)
"When I searched the IP address I discovered it's from Romania. It was sent from email address 'firstname.lastname@example.org'. Here's the email:"
I am Alain Dubois, project manager of WizCorporation, a
translation agency specialised on technical field, but we
translate as well other types of files (marketing, legal,
medical etc.) As we continue to expand our business we search for new translators that would like to collaborate with us on long
term.We pay 8 Euros per folder (1500 characters) and can ensure
payments on time, 30 days via Paypal. Please let me know if you are interested in our proposal and available for a collaboration.
I look forward to your feedback.
Are you available for a translation job today?
Report: "This agency still owes me 200 euros for the translation I did for them in July and now they ignore all my emails. Beware!"
Report: "Dear All I have some information about wizcorporation.eu, syncrotranslation.de, wikitrado.net, team-translation.it, transitus-goup.com ..... I'll explain to you who is under they translation agency syncrotranslation.de. This domain is registered under the name of Mihaela Visan who is the girlfriend of Mr Marian Vlad. He is a very ambiguous man who has many translation agencies around the world. one of them is Wikitrado in Cyprus, another is Team Translation, another is Transitus Group in Italy... another is Eurotranslation in Seychelles... Vlas'd father has anothet agency calles Ideal Data Studio in Romania.... the other people involved are Emanuele Anzuini and Cristina di Somma (Vlad's Shareholders in Tranistus group).
Vlad, Di Somma and Anzuini have been calles by the Fiscal Autorities "Guardia di Finanza in Perugia" because they did not pay taxes, tax fraud, false invoices etc.etc... for at least 1.7 million of euros. if you look for Marian Vlad you will find the history of what he did.... interesting look at translator cafe too!!!!
Now it seems that there could be another Traslation agency ( very strange...) wizcorporation.eu, in Romania (IP 188.8.131.52 located close to Rupea in Romania) .......check also the blog "segno di caino.blogspot.com" and search for Marian Vlad!"
Word Converters - Hazel Underwood, UK/ Proz mentorship: exploitative student crowdsourcing
"Hazel Underwood (aka Word Converters): advertises own rates on ProZ as 0.10 eur/word, however her main activity is being one of said forum's more prolific mentors to novice translators.New translators are provided with work and - most importantly for them - feedback and advice. In return, they are expected to work for a rate of just £0.03/word (sometimes even weighted)...I have heard from a couple of people who have confirmed that no feedback whatsoever is forthcoming, and instead turnaround times are generally extremely short/hours unsociable/no extra payment for intricate formatting/etc. The fact that there would appear to be almost 60 people on their books could explain the lack of feedback - sub(sub)contracting takes time..!Agencies are perfectly entitled to offer ridiculously low rates, just as translators are free to decide what they accept. What is disturbing/unfair in this case is that it targets novice translators, and the rate is justified by the 'support' angle, which is untrue. ProZ don't seem to care very much about the quality of their programme, which on paper is a great idea, either."
Further details (no official website but company info): https://www.companiesintheuk.co.uk/ltd/word-converters
Wordans, Montreal (unprofessional, disrespectful)
Excerpt from Ripoff report:
Report from a translator : "I asked him if he needed me to finish them at all, as I was uncertain of if he still wanted the translation, to which he finally admitted that no, he did not. Throughout all of this I was a student at school, and I wasted a number of possible studying hours completing this translation. I have recieved no financial compensation, and at the very least I would have hoped that the CEO of the company could have gotten himself together and notified me that he did not want the job completed I am highly unimpressed, and I feel cheated. " wordans.ca, 5605 avenue de Gaspé, Suite 604 Montreal, Quebec Canada
Workplace translation, Leeds, UK. (low rates and slow payer)
Email 29/06/2014 from F"Never paid on time, always needed a reminder, until they had "cash flow problems" and paid half on my invoice a month late and the second half another month later. Wanted me to do more work for them, but when I refused to take any more work until my invoice was paid in full, they said, and I quote, "Your late invoice is now back to the bottom of the list". Two of my colleagues had the same problems with them."
Worldbank LLC India (dodgy, low rates, NDA)
"Caution may be advised. According to Payment Practices, there were recent reports of late and non-payment on unidentified WorldOne office (17 offices world-wide) posted to WPPF and Trad Online. On the other hand, direct responses from 2004-2006 were mostly positive."
Details available at http://www.paymentpractices.net/Subscribers/Agency.aspx?id=1662
Wolfestone / Eco Trans (Low rates)
"A couple of weeks ago I got in touch with Eco Trans, a company based in Wales, as I am particularly interested in environmental issues as a specialist area (as well as legal and financial). The people at Eco Trans told me they were owned by Wolfestone Translations, a much bigger outfit. I applied to them, and they sent me an email with a test translation attached. They said however that they saw that my rates were "quite high" and that they normally offered bet. 0,045 GBP and 0,05 GPB p/w. for my combination (GER > ENG). In other words, £45 - 50 per thousand words. I wrote back and said "thanks but no thanks!"
WordDoc (USA) (Non-payers)
" These people don't pay their bills, even after 10 reminders. I've been trying to get payment from them for 5 months now and my e-mails are just ignored. If they do send a reply,..."
WordEdge, India (bottom feeders)
"Look at this stuff from Word Edge: My answer was: please expect to receive millions of greatings from me. For free!
We are discussing a very potential project for translation from
English to Italian. Our Client is a leading enterprise in the
automotive industry. We are expecting to receive millions of
automotive diagnostic products and software related documents for
translation in to Italian. Based on the volume our current rate for translation is
Wordminds (Decreasing/insulting rates: 0.02 E p w!!)
There is a new job we would like to propose to you:
Required service: Translation
Source-target language: German - French
Rate per word:0.040 EUR
Total amount: 307.040 EUR
Deadline: 11-05-2014 08:00:00 (Central European Time)
Let us know if you are interested to work on it.
PS: You should never start the translation without our final confirmation.
If you don’t want to receive such emails, please let us know
Here is my answer:
Hi there too!
I can do the job!
Would you agree to lower the rate? I can do it for 0.030 EUR...
And guess what: I had no reply from them yet ;)"
June 2014 : down to 2 cents
See this thread
Traducciones Zenoni, Peru (tries to pay 1 eurocent a word with impossible deadlines, and then threatens translators who reports her practices to the community)
My tip to Ms. Giuletta Zenoni: when you choose to be a bottom-feeder, expect pros to identify you as one.
"Hello! I recently got in touch with Traducciones Zenoni after seeing their post on Forotraducción, a Facebook page, in which they stated to be looking for an EN to ES translator for a 13,000 word contract (see original screenshot of FB post & see emails below). After contacting Ms. Zenoni last Monday, she proposed a Wednesday deadline (yes, for a 13,000 word contract) and a payment of 150 USD. I replied saying that this is not only unethical, but that as the head of a translation company I expected more from her. I also told her to visit the No Peanuts webpage, to help her understand why a qualified and experienced translator would of course reject such an offer. I also reported the post to the FB group, and it was deleted. After my reply, she sent me several threatening messages, which I promptly ignored.Nevertheless, I feel that I should warn fellow translators about this company and their business ethics.Please let me know if you would like further information in order to support my case for this agency being blacklisted."
Zamenhof translation (Low rates)
ZOO Digital - Subtitling (Low rates)
"They offered $5 a minute and thought that $450 for a 90-minute feature was a good deal. Rather sheepishly, they admitted that it wasn't very much but at least - IF they liked you - you'd have a lot of work."
office 310 220 3939 | facsimile 310 220 3958
2201 Park Place, Suite 100 | El Segundo, CA 90245
AfterwordPlease note that this black list gets longer every week. Your contribution to validate a peer's report or to add a new name is very welcome. Please write to:
The aim of this blog is to inform young translators, buyers and clients about the translation industry, and to name and shame non-payers and unprofessional behaviour.