The scary things deposition interpreters post on social media.

Dear colleagues: There are at least two very disturbing things happening on interpreters’ social media: colleagues posting information and images of distance interpreting conference assignments they do (we will discuss this issue separately at a later time) and interpreters complaining or editorializing depositions they interpreted. It is common to see social media posts by legal interpreters complaining about the things attorneys do...

Our options when the client does not pay.

Dear colleagues: Sometimes freelance interpreters face a scenario where a client agrees to pay a professional fee, and after the interpretation they refuse to pay, make a late payment, or try to pay less than the fee agreed by the parties. It is not unusual to hear from a colleague struggling to stay afloat as a business because of morose or dishonest clients. The first thing we must do is assess the client before agreeing to the...

Our current market and the fearful interpreter.

Dear colleagues: The post-Covid interpreting market looks very different from what we knew before 2020. Distance interpreting brought in globalization at an unprecedented pace, and with that a new set of rules that for now look like the Wild West. Much remains to be done, and many things will happen before the market settles down and we have a clear view and understanding of a more permanent, stable workplace; but for now,...

How COVID-19 affected interpreting.

Dear Colleagues:This is an article I wrote for the ITI. It was published several months ago, and I now reproduce it on my blog:The pandemic has been an eye-opener on the future of the profession, and an opportunity to assess everything I was doing right before this crisis. During the last couple of months, I have strengthened my professional bond with my direct clients. Because of the uncertain future, and complicated present, I saw...

What we learned as Interpreters in 2020.

Dear Colleagues,Now that 2020 ended and we are working towards a better and safer 2021, it is time to assess what we learned during the past 12 months. As interpreters we are constantly learning, and from talking to many of my colleagues, last year was like no other. 2020 was garbage. It was a terrible year for humanity, and for the profession, and it was even worse for the interpreters. Stating the facts does not make me a negative...

Interpreters in the driver’s seat: Distance interpreting need not be from home.

Dear Colleagues:Conditions worldwide continue to keep us isolated. Lack of travel, conferences, and all human gatherings have left us without in-person interpreting work, and business, government, and scientific needs have pushed all events that could not be cancelled, or postponed any longer, to remote meetings. By now, most interpreters have worked with distance interpreting platforms, or at least some other less desirable remote...

What are really interpreter fees?

Dear Colleagues:The following post first appeared on the website of the International Association of Translators and Interpreters (IAPTI). I wrote it for members of the association, but I believe it is also relevant to this blog:There seems to be a mystique around interpreters’ fees; how do interpreters set them, how they charge, what they charge for; what is it that they do. I thought that, as head of IAPTI’s Interpreters...

Is interpreter continuing education online as good as in-person learning?

Dear Colleagues: These months of confinement have changed our lives in many ways, including how we teach and learn. Despite the terrible consequences the pandemic brought to the professional interpreting world, there have been positive effects: a profession more united than ever before, and the possibility to attend courses, workshops and classes remotely from every corner on earth. Professional development, expensive and out of many...

RSI will change the profession. Will it change the interpreter of the future?

Dear Colleagues: Remote Simultaneous Interpreting, and other forms of remote interpreting, will emerge from the COVID-19 crisis more popular and stronger.  It is a great option and no doubt it will get better. There will be good and bad platforms, and interpreters shall continue to work for direct clients while they will continue to struggle with agencies, and defend the profession from existing and newcomer entities’ insatiable...

When clients do not provide information in advance.

Dear Colleagues, We are expected to accurately interpret all subjects from one language into another, often to an audience that knows the topic, sometimes to people who have devoted their lives to that subject. We meet these expectations and deliver the rendition by performing many complex tasks, among them extensive preparation, including research and study of the topics to be presented during the conference, lecture, workshop,...