In this case study we look at an Editing after machine-translation service request we received from Dr. Marques, a researcher from Brazil. This client is in need of a translation Portugueese into English, in order to submit it to a journal. First, what about a “normal” translation?
Freelancers to translate in the language combination Portugueese into English are available anywhere in the range 8 to 10 cent USD per word. A translation agency charges 12 to 15 cent per word, but that would include project management and maybe proofreading. If you want to hire a proofreader seperately, it would cost 3 to 5 cent extra. So at the minimum, a 10,521 words manuscript would cost 1000 USD in order to get it into the level required to submit to an impact journal.
Peerwith offers the Editing after machine-translation service at a very competitive rate of only 5 cent per word, which potentially saves Dr. Marques 500 USD. Now, what about the quality?
The initial contact
Dr. Marques had some previous experience with Peerwith and decided to give “machine translation” a try for one of his manuscripts. Even though he was not sure what to expect, the researcher was positive that both Peerwith and the expert would meet his expectations.
Dr. Marques requested a service directly from the profile page of the expert he chose, Josh Pennington . As the number of words and the language combination had been indicated in the request, Josh could offer the researcher a quote within just 15 minutes after the request had been posted. The client accepted the quote right away and uploaded the manuscript. Just to be sure, the expert asked the researcher to confirm whether he wanted to make use of the Editing after machine-translation service, and the client confirmed. For $470, Josh would edit 10,521 words after a text in Portuguese had been translated into English by a computer program supported by Peerwith.
Josh delivered the service within six days, which was three days before the deadline set by the client. The message that accompanied the delivered work read:
“Hi Leonardo – I have completed your project. I’ve edited the English considerably, post-machine-translation, to ensure it reads with proper English style. I’ve left a few comments for you to address as well. I look forward to your reply and collaborating with you again and your colleagues! Best, Josh.”
Dr. Marques was very happy with the work Josh did and left him a good rating. Also he commented to Peerwith:
“Wonderful service! First time using Machine translation + Copy editing and I recommend it!”
For the translation of academic texts in the modern Indo-European languages, we can feel fairly confident in the accuracy of machine translation (MT). This is specifically because the MT does exactly what we need, “literal translation”, which matches the type of content most often found in academic texts. The expert then can compare the Post-MT English text with the original to ensure that no figurative language was lost in the MT. Your Post-MT editor will be an academic as well, and therefore they understand the requirements of academic English better than your average freelance translator.
We are lucky with clients like Dr. Marques that try us out and the result is clear. The service Josh delivered was invaluable for this client, as it was fast, high quality and at a very competitive price.
Interested? Try it out as well!