Save the Date—The 1st ProZ.com Virtual Conference for Remote Interpreters

On March 30th, the conference will focus on a selection of learning materials for language professionals and bilinguals interested in entering the remote interpreting market, and resources and platforms to help grow your remote interpreters' business.

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The people behind ProZ.com: Fawad Aslam


It's time for another in our series of posts introducing you to the people behind 
ProZ.com...
 
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Book translation overview

Book translation is a unique field that requires both deep knowledge of the languages and the culture involved. It is not even translation but rather “rewriting” in another language or “re-authoring”, a process which is now referred to by many as transcreation. A book translator does their best to deliver the same idea as the idea of the original text, conveys the style and the energy of the original, and even may create new words in order to show a reader the fantastic world that the author created in their masterpiece. 

Translating a book requires time for inspiration and investigation, as it is a special type of translation process, different from processes one may use for non-literary translation. It is a special zone that a translator needs to get into. Usually with not as much time pressure as with non-literary translation (let’s call it commercial translation), and a book translator becomes an ambassador of the author, of their story and philosophy.

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The people behind ProZ.com: Kevin Kiprotich


It's time for another in our series of posts introducing you to the people behind 
ProZ.com...
 
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Explain the difference between a translator and an interpreter

We asked the popular artificial intelligence tool for the answer.

A translator and an interpreter are both language professionals who facilitate communication between people who speak different languages. However, they do so in different ways and in different settings.

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Middlebury Institute of International Studies Scholarship for ProZ.com members

Dear members, ProZ.com paying members are now eligible for a 25% scholarship toward the following Middlebury Institute in-person or online, degree or nondegree localization programs: Read More

The 2nd Pro Bono Newsletter: all the latest from the project...

Trends in the language services industry: Outlook

Freelance language professionals' outlooks on the future of their work and careers run the gamut, of course. But in general, positivity is up and negativity is down from 2020. The percentage of language professionals who would recommend their line of work to someone who is currently weighing their career options is also up slightly, which is good-- the industry will need all the new talent it can get.
 
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Trends in the language services industry: Clients

Let's take a look at freelance language professionals and their clients.
 
In 2022, a higher percentage of translators reported not having any "regular" clients at the moment: 15%, versus less than 10% in the previous 14 years. Of course, "regular" is somewhat subjective, but it might be slightly more meaningful than a simple total number of clients. The largest group, between 20 and 30% over the last 14 years, report working with 4 to 6 "regular" clients at a time. 
 
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Trends in the language services industry: Income, planning, investments

So let’s talk money.
 
One tendency is to focus too sharply on rates. To be fair, a successful freelancer pays attention to their rates, charges accordingly for their work, and sets rates which allow them to deliver good work and make the living they want to make. However, it can be easy to miss the “income forest” if one is staring too hard at an individual “rate tree”.
 
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Trends in the language services industry: A demographic interlude

Because everyone likes a nice chart or graph, right? Here we go.
 

Years in the industry

 Respondents to surveys and other participants in this report are a relatively “mature” crowd in terms of professional experience. Almost half fall into the range of between six and eighteen years in the industry.
 
Surveys outside of the ProZ.com site indicate the percentage of newer language professionals may be higher than shown here, however, with 10% having been in the industry for just under two years, and another 10% in the 2 - 4 year range.
 
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The ProZ.com Translation and Interpreting Podcast

 

Key Insights from 2022

It's been another great year for the podcast, with a wide range of guests and lots of amazing discussions on translation and interpreting. It really has been an honor to host the show, talk to such fantastic guests and interact with our very supportive listeners.

We're growing as well, with streams up 127% and listeners from 77 countries around the world.

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Trends in the language services industry: Turnover and Attention Economy

You win some, you lose some

 

The percentage of people who are leaving the industry had declined somewhat by 2019. Just under 21% said they were planning on leaving, or had already left the industry. There was a small uptick in this percentage in 2022, to 23%. 
 
Now, bear in mind that these percentages include people who are considering leaving but who have not yet left, and they also likely leave out some who have already left as well. In 2022, roughly 37% of freelance translators and interpreters reported knowing friends or colleagues who had left the industry in the past couple of years.
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Trends in the language services industry: The continued rise of the remote interpreter

There was probably a sort of Golden Age of the Interpreter, where technology had gotten good enough to support and facilitate an interpreter’s work, but where for the most part the interpreter needed to be on site. So you saw a lot of interpreters traveling here and there, near and far, to work at conferences, job sites, business meetings, court hearings, and so on. It sounds almost glamorous, doesn’t it? 
 
Tech advances then reached a point where those plane tickets and travel expenses began to dry up, as it became easier and easier and more and more cost effective to bring the interpreter onto the scene either over the phone or virtually. Not only can remote interpreting be more cost effective, it can also be safer-- think of military applications, war zones, language support during epidemics, and so on. Smart phones allowed us to go mobile with a distant interpreter, and platforms geared towards finding and engaging with a distant interpreter began to pop up across the internet.
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Trends in the language services industry: The need for experts on tech applied to language services

In a previous industry report, we touched on the dynamic of machine translation and the translator, machine translation and the company or client, as well as the segments of freelance translators who were:
 
  1. Embracing MT and MTPE
  2. Diversifying within the industry
  3. Diversifying out of the industry
     
As we saw a moment ago, some translators are getting trained or training themselves in the application of post-editing and dedicating at least some of their work efforts to these projects. Some translators are diversifying the services they offer within the industry, and others are transitioning out of the industry altogether. We’ll look at these last two groups in just a moment, but first, let’s look at this from a different perspective.
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