Webflakes – At least half of their name is right

The people at Webflakes have a great idea for translators: Come work for free!

Yes, it’s yet another business that hopes to profit from other people’s unpaid work (in this case, “language buffs – professional translators or students, active or retired, and passionate people”). Sure, because “passion” and being a “language buff” are plenty enough to call yourself a translator. That, and the URL of Google Translate perhaps.

Translation is a profession, not a hobby. Translators are professionals, trained in their field, not retirees with extra time on their hands.

The people at Webflakes ought to be ashamed of themselves. They won’t be, but they ought to be.

Webflakes says they want to “liberate content from the boundaries of language?” Maybe they could take on a much more important “global cause”: Stop liberating translators from their livelihoods.

Webflakes promises to “share revenues” with translators “once we begin monetizing the content you translate.” That’s yet another fancy way of saying: “WORK FOR FREE. If we get enough ad clicks on your post, and once we’ve scraped off our profit from your unpaid work, there could be something in it for you.”

How does Webflakes decide when “monetizing” begins? At what level of earnings is the translator cut into the deal? What will the translator’s percentage be? When and how often does payment happen and for how long into the future does the agreement last?

Oh, you funny translators and your questions!

Newbie translators who want to explore volunteer translation for résumé-building purposes should stick with legitimate nonprofit organizations that are committed to real “global causes.” (The only global cause” Webflakes is committed to is its desire to earn  money from all corners of the planet.)

Meanwhile, translators who are willing to work for royalties alone should be well informed about the (slim) possibilities of ever seeing a farthing for their labor.

There’s a technical term for businesses that promote this approach to translation. It starts with “d” and rhymes with “nix.”

Which is exactly what you should be saying to the flakes at Webflakes.


About No Peanuts! for Translators

No Peanuts! supports professional translators & interpreters in demanding & receiving fair pay for their work.
This entry was posted in Resistance, Translation#Fail and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Webflakes – At least half of their name is right

  1. I like the part where they inform the reader that they can receive a financial gain. Note the neutral article there. It makes me have a happy, all that good stuff covered in pure awesome and win. How they can market gratuitous insults to our profession that cheaply, it just gives me a headhurty. Only marginally more serious, their business model propounds that people who are desperate and/or incompetent enough should join their shameless overt march on linguistic fail, all in exchange for dispensing with their own claim to being a professional or respectable or both, why not. It’s the common currency of the harebrained who, sadly, appear to breed more efficiently than the smarter ones among us. Once more, it is bad coin that which drives out good coin.

  2. You are mean!! Those poor website shut down!! Webflakes.com does not longer exist. This is their epitaph:

    Dear Translator
    Due to financial issues we are sorry to inform you that Webflakes is about to close its operation on an immediate basis.
    Please treat this email as a notice of termination regarding the license agreement you have executed with Webflakes.
    We want to thank you for your collaboration and wish you luck with your endeavor.
    The Webflakes team


  3. Hi! I’ve been following your weblog for a while now and finally got
    the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from Austin Tx!
    Just wanted to mention keep up the good job!

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