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Avoiding Falling into the Transcription Trap bY The Japanese Translation Company


In a previous article, I touched on difficulties when it came to quoting for jobs, or deciding to accept work at a particular rate, and noted that there are other factors to consider in addition to what the per character rate in question is.

Japanese Translation Companies

One situation where you need to be clear on the scale of work demanded is in relation to a transcription translation job.

This involves receiving an audio or video file in the source language, such as English, and being requested to provide a Japanese translation of the contents in the source language. At first glance, this does not seem such a big deal. It might seem that instead of reading the source text, you are just listening to it. So, what is the problem?

Firstly, you are not guaranteed to be getting sparkling clean audio. My experience has been that it is often the reverse of this, and in fact the end user is asking you to work straight on the audio file because they cannot easily pick up what is being said. This means going back and playing the same audio multiple times. It is then hard to keep the whole sentence in your mind to a sufficient degree that you can translate it directly.

Invariably, the translator is forced to first transcribe the file in the source language and then translate the file. Therefore, this is essentially two jobs in one, and the first part of this job can be VERY laborious. Translation companies or other customers, unless they have actually tried this themselves, will generally not perceive the enormity of this task. I have had Japanese translation companies ask me to translate a 30-minute audio file and given me a 2-hour deadline. Depending on the quality of the audio I would suggest that you will need at least one full day of work to translate a one-hour file.

In conclusion, I am not suggesting that you reject all transcription tasks (although I know many translators who simply do not offer that service), but make sure that you are aware of the scale of the task involved and demand ample time to meet the deadline and sufficient remuneration to make it worth your while. Otherwise, you will find yourself (as I did once but never again) working all night for a pittance to get a job done.



About the Author
Simon Way is a contributing author to SAECULII YK, the owner of the Japanese Translation Company Tokyo, Japan. Visit SAECULII for the latest professional case studies, articles and news by Japanese Translation Service

Copyright (C) SAECULII YK. All rights reserved. Reproduction of this article is permitted with inclusion of the "About the Author" reference as is (including text links, japan-translators.saeculii.com/english/info/contact.cfm), and this copyright information. Articles may not be altered without written permission from SAECULII YK.

Tags: Japanese Translation Company · Japanese Translation Services · Transcription · Translation Company Japan · Translation Company Tokyo







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