21/11/2013

Crowdsourcing: Conyac pay their slaves 10 USD per day (2000 words)




Conyac pay their slaves 10 USD per day (2000 words)


According to this online PR article, Conyac, a Tokyo based company founded in 2009 by Naoki Yamada, is a young booming company, with promising profits of 50.000 USD a month. It is a startup funded by big japanese firms and its total number of corporate users "exceeds 1,000". It is providing crowdsourced translations online within unbeatable deadlines.

"Since launching in 2009, Conyac’s base of translators has grown to 10,000 individuals around the world who work in 60 languages. Prices range from $3 per translation to a $100 per month packages, and clients usually get their completed projects back within an hour."
"Conyac (pronounced like cognac) is named after the special konjac jelly in popular Japanese cartoon “Doraemon” that gives characters the ability to speak and understand any languages after they ingest it". Read rest here...

Its Crunchbase profile states that its goal is purely to replace translation agencies, and its representatives like to describe its activity as "social translation" (remember this expression, it's the next big thing). Here is another really positive article online:

"Founded in February 2009, Japan-based Conyac matches skillful translators with users who need help in translation. In short, it is a social translation network matching translators and users in one single platform.
To ensure high quality translation work, co-founder, Naoki Yamada told us that Conyac has an evaluation system between translators to maintain the quality. The evaluation work became more efficient after Conyac launched a Facebook application which helps translators to communicate with each other better.
“Our translators are really open to communicate and share information with other translators. We are trying to build up a huge number of translators on Conyac,” said Yamada." (Read rest of article)

According to my own research though, Conyac is a scam agency which does not hire "skillful translators", but non-pros. These so-called "translators" (Conyac uses that word a lot, quite inappropriately) are just random people found on Facebook (no degrees needed to work for Conyac).

A quick search on the net will show you that, like the guys at Dixit who also warmly invite you to become a translator (see blacklist on this blog), the Conyac peeps have the power to turn anyone into a translator, by the magic of a mere click:

Conyac for Business - Translation Solutions

https://conyac.cc/Traduire cette page
Conyac is the Simplest & the Fastest Human Powered Translation Service. You are about to experience a new way of translation.

Become a translator


What do you do when you're on a train, or when your kids are ...

Monthly Plans


Source Language, Target Language, Points(per character ...

Conyac for Personal


( Receive 1 free credit! ) » Register as a Translator / » Conyac for ...


Unlike Dixit though, Conyac don't retribute their slaves with peanuts but with "points" (precisely 500 signs, 5 dollars) while promising to be the fastest agency in the world. Incredible!

So, just like I did it with One Hour, I checked the official website and discovered a few things: first, there is no email or address to contact them.

Here is how these guys introduce themselves: 
"What is Conyac? > Conyac is a human-powered translation service that anyone can join.
Guess what, it's true! It is not selective, anyone can work at Conyac. So 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:
"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/translators
Why 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 this is what translation sounds like to Conyac: 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 (I have received about twenty mails since last week and can't get rid of them, but that is another story). Blunt mails, without even a Hello message or goodbye, they like to get right to the core of things:
"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"
Finally some tangible info. Intrigued, I took out my calculator. Turns out my intuition was a good lead, and that it is indeed, objectively, a total ripoff:
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). 

Looks like Conyac invented the first job ever to be less profitable than watching TV all day.



4 comments:

Translationethics said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Translationethics said...

Unfortunately, Conyac is still going and parasiting the world with their crappy rates and lousy services. And now they want to improve their margins by making the translators they HIRE PAY THEM. What the F? These people have zero morals. BOYCOTT!!

Starting from today, Conyac will take a fee for Market Applications


Thank you for always using Conyac.(日本語続きます)
Since the Market feature has been released, from today, Conyac will take the application fee as below when you get a job on Conyac Market.
Please keep in mind that there will be an application fee when you apply.

If you live in Japan・・・10% fee + Consumption tax
If you live outside of Japan・・・10%
※For example, if you apply for $100, you will get $90.

If you are handling a job right now, please contact to the requester directly about the application fee.

If you have anything unclear about the Market feature, please also check the Market FAQ below.
http://help.conyac.cc/customer/en/portal/topics/740432

Thank you,

Conyac Team

Jules Konan said...

Hi,
I subscribed there to have a look, got “translations” to review. They really allow just anyone to translate anything. None of the translations i had a look at were made by a native French speaker (my language). Instead, some Chinese, English or Spanish speakers are just throwing up words that vaguely look like French from very far away. It's just disgusting, I wonder who would be ready to even pay for such services. I mean, you really get a better translation for free using Google Translate !
It's really incredible and indeed, the pay is terrific.

Olix M said...

hi!
Thanks for this article!
I've just saw their post on facebook, and obviously it gets my attention...
... lukly I saw your article before start doing anything heheheh

like allways... if it looks so good to be real, certainly it is! :)