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INTEREST: MediBang Responds to Allegations Regarding Low Translation Pay Rates


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CatSword



Joined: 01 Jul 2014
Posts: 1413
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 2:47 pm Reply with quote
Ah, the entry-level defense that ignores the fact that people who are entry-level still need to eat.
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Яeverse



Joined: 16 Jun 2014
Posts: 981
Location: Indianapolis
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:00 pm Reply with quote
IMO their statement isn't good.

$1.20 per page with a rate that fluctuates based on title...they should instead offer a pay that, your rate increases as you complete more of our projects (meaning, you get a raise).

Also they should start higher...or...if they want to justify $1.2, just say that our company is targeted towards people who want to get their foot in the door and want experience and we are specifically targeting new/starting translators who want to build their portfolio/resume.
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Heart of the Foreign God



Joined: 13 Apr 2019
Posts: 12
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:05 pm Reply with quote
Seems to me that when you are in the position of earning a raise due to getting more experience they are able to simply replace you with somebody else and keep paying the small amount with no strings attached.
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Thespacemaster



Joined: 03 Mar 2012
Posts: 731
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:12 pm Reply with quote
This seems more like a poor attempt at damage control rather than actual reassurance, as stated in the article itself their is a lot of red flags you can notice in terms of what is actually stipulated in the contract and not a lot of direct assurance or targets that can guide beginners who start working could opt for advancement and increase pay rise, not even a guarantee.

I would still not go for it, if the basic standard is 5 dollar per page as in the western market than this should of started immediately right around that level as this is still way to below the norm and to little as a real pay and its more like a slave wage.
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Greed1914



Joined: 28 Oct 2007
Posts: 3673
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:19 pm Reply with quote
I would certainly hope that pay that low doesn't come with a non-compete. That is normally something that involves some manner of additional compensation, and is especially precarious for a freelancer who has no guarantee that the other party will send them enough work to offset not being able to work for someone else.

At that rate, and the whole "both can walk away at any time", it comes off more like a paid hobby than dependable work.
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Guile



Joined: 18 Jun 2013
Posts: 509
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:27 pm Reply with quote
Translators should be paid proportionately to the quality of their work. Some of the people being quoted for this article are infamous for providing questionable translations and getting snarky when dealing with criticism of said translations. If they're being paid low wages, I say it's reflective of their work.
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zackdavisson



Joined: 18 Feb 2013
Posts: 11
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:33 pm Reply with quote
For new JP > EN manga translators: $5 per page is the bottom rate. Anything lower than that and you are being exploited. Top rates are $20 per page. So look for something in that bracket.
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kotomikun



Joined: 06 May 2013
Posts: 933
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 3:38 pm Reply with quote
Even that $5 "industry standard" is a bit silly given the amount of text and writing-complexity on a page can vary from "literally no words" to "Subnormality in Japanese." But I guess this sort of thing is considered normal in the era of gig work, i.e. treating workers like machines whose time has no inherent value.

Quote:
If they're being paid low wages, I say it's reflective of their work.

Yes, surely the just world hypothesis is true, and capitalists aren't drilling this line of thinking into us to convince us that we're only worth a living wage if we're sufficiently productive. Don't do this to yourself, dude.
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Romuska
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Joined: 02 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:02 pm Reply with quote
kotomikun wrote:
Even that $5 "industry standard" is a bit silly given the amount of text and writing-complexity on a page can vary from "literally no words" to "Subnormality in Japanese." But I guess this sort of thing is considered normal in the era of gig work, i.e. treating workers like machines whose time has no inherent value.

Quote:
If they're being paid low wages, I say it's reflective of their work.

Yes, surely the just world hypothesis is true, and capitalists aren't drilling this line of thinking into us to convince us that we're only worth a living wage if we're sufficiently productive. Don't do this to yourself, dude.


If this forum had a like button I'd hit it for your statement! Seriously, where did this mentality come from? If you do work you should be paid a living wage. Gotta watch out because a lot of places take advantage of folks. Know your worth.
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El Hermano



Joined: 24 Feb 2019
Posts: 365
Location: Texas
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:17 pm Reply with quote
Romuska wrote:
If you do work you should be paid a living wage


It's not really reasonable to expect every job to be able to accommodate every life style.
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lossthief
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Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 831
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:48 pm Reply with quote
El Hermano wrote:
Romuska wrote:
If you do work you should be paid a living wage


It's not really reasonable to expect every job to be able to accommodate every life style.


We're not talking about "every life style", whatever that's meant to imply. We're talking about basic necessities in any developed country. Food, water, shelter, clothing. The absolute bassline.

If you're doing fulltime work (which, make no mistake, translation is absolutely a fulltime workload even if it's not valued like one by some companies), and especially one that requires a specialized skill (read: being able to translate effectively across 2 languages) you absolutely should be paid enough to afford basic necessities. That's literally what the concept of a minimum wage is for.
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Electric Wooloo



Joined: 19 Aug 2020
Posts: 30
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 5:49 pm Reply with quote
El Hermano wrote:
Romuska wrote:
If you do work you should be paid a living wage


It's not really reasonable to expect every job to be able to accommodate every life style.


So living is a "lifestyle" eh? Rolling Eyes Nobody here is saying that they should be able to buy a private jet with their typesetting income, they're saying they should be able to buy food. Good lord.
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nobahn
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Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 4807
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 9:00 pm Reply with quote
Totally agree with lossthief and Electric Wooloo.
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Guile



Joined: 18 Jun 2013
Posts: 509
PostPosted: Tue Jan 26, 2021 11:58 pm Reply with quote
Simply saying people should be paid a livable wage makes you look great and sympathetic, but people never elaborate on what that means. I do not think society has failed because someone can't afford their $3000 a month Manhattan apartment by translating 20 pages of manga a week. Are we talking an instant ramen diet or ordering UberEats every day? Are you living in a downtown city home or in rural apartment? Basically, how much work do you think a translator should do and how much should they be paid for it. "Livable wage" is a weasel word. Be specific. Each of us is going to have a different amount we need. If I was paid $10 a page, I'd have to translate 24 pages every day to make what I do right now which lets me live comfortably. Is that an acceptable pay rate and amount of work?
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ATastySub
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Joined: 19 Jan 2012
Posts: 290
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 12:12 am Reply with quote
Guile wrote:
Simply saying people should be paid a livable wage makes you look great and sympathetic, but people never elaborate on what that means. I do not think society has failed because someone can't afford their $3000 a month Manhattan apartment by translating 20 pages of manga a week. Are we talking an instant ramen diet or ordering UberEats every day? Are you living in a downtown city home or in rural apartment? Basically, how much work do you think a translator should do and how much should they be paid for it. "Livable wage" is a weasel word. Be specific. Each of us is going to have a different amount we need. If I was paid $10 a page, I'd have to translate 24 pages every day to make what I do right now which lets me live comfortably. Is that an acceptable pay rate and amount of work?

Good job really proving the point dude. Like, really amazing work here. In your attempt to discredit people being able to survive your measure is that fact that you're so out of touch with what that is because you're so far above it that you have zero care or sympathy for them. But by all means continue to claim others are weaseling while you ask how much a banana costs.
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