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Because we’re worth it: disentangling freelance translation, status, and rate-setting in the United Kingdom

Lambert, Joseph and Walker, Callum 2022. Because we’re worth it: disentangling freelance translation, status, and rate-setting in the United Kingdom. Translation Spaces 11 (2) , pp. 277-302. 10.1075/ts.21030.lam

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Rate-setting is a problematic area for newcomers to translation and established practitioners alike. Survey data generally support the view that translators feel underpaid and that money matters remain a chief ethical and pragmatic concern, but appropriate guidance is almost entirely absent from introductory textbooks on the translation profession and documentation prepared by industry associations remains unsatisfactory. Focusing on the translation industry in the United Kingdom, this conceptual paper explores constraints that limit price formation practices, and argues that translators feel under threat from disruptive technologies, Uberisation, and non-professional translation, now more than ever. We explore the complex interaction between status, internal and external perceptions, and regulation, and illustrate their push-pull relationship with rate-setting within a range of industry ‘educators’, uncovering the ways in which translators themselves, translation associations, and academic institutions directly and indirectly impact upon rate-setting practices. The article concludes by considering potential channels to buoy status and improve rate-setting practices in the translation industry.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Modern Languages
Publisher: John Benjamins Publishing
ISSN: 2211-3711
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 May 2022
Date of Acceptance: 11 May 2022
Last Modified: 27 Nov 2022 00:11

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