Yesterday I flew back from Lisbon where I had been attending the Tradulinguas Legal Translation Conference. This was the first time I have attended one of their conferences. I was attracted to it because of the focus on Legal Translation. I was impressed with the organisation and the venue, the range and quality of the sessions, the number of delegates and countries represented. Congratulations to all concerned!
I did not get time to see much of Lisbon but I liked what little I saw. Note to self – next time, add a few extra days just for sightseeing, and preferably before the conference. I say this because I missed most of the first day dealing with a migraine. But it is also a good idea to have a few days to aclimatise and learn how to get around, use the metro etc.
In terms of the sessions I attended the word that stands out is Corpora. I think at least 3 of the sessions I attended on the second day were about collecting corpora and putting them into useful formats. These techniques of course can be applied to other areas of translation – not just legal.
From the round table discussion at the end the thing I will take away is the concern among professionals that no matter how regulated the profession the market still allows unqualified or less-qualified people to undercut us. I know this is a serious concern to people in my local network. Whilst it may be gratifying to know we are not alone it does not solve the problem. My belief for what it is worth is that quality will out in the end, but we may have to wait a long time – perhaps too long for many of us. One thing is certain, we must not drop our prices. Personally speaking when I reach the stage that I have to cut my prices, that will be the day I retire from the profession.