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[Subtitling Rates] per minute rates
Thread poster: The LT>EN Guy

Tomo Olson  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 03:24
Japanese to English
Answers Apr 15, 2018

I added my answers below.

anais lepers wrote:

Hello !

can someone please explain to me the difference between these three and what would be the proper rates/min for all of them.


- Subtitling with a time-coded template.
You enter translations into boxes which have already been created by someone. All you have to do is to add your translation into appropriate boxes/lines.

- Subtitle QC (Proofreading)
Someone QC's the translator's work (Fixing errors, etc.)

- Time-coding
Before you can enter translations into subtitle boxes, someone needs to make the subtitle boxes of certain durations to match the dialogs on the screen. That is time-coding.


Thanks


[Edited at 2018-04-15 17:14 GMT]


Alex Kovalenko
 

HELENE BONNET  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 09:24
English to French
+ ...
Rates for subtitling end 2019 Dec 20, 2018

Hello,
What would be the rates for subtitling now, end of 2018 ?

I had the following proposal :
"The rates for our current translation assignments are $4.00 USD per program minute (translation) and $1.00 USD per program minute (Quality Check).  "
"Payment terms are 45 days net. We transfer funds via PayPal or wire bank transfer." 


I find that waiting 45 days to be paid is very, very, long !!!


Thank you for your opin
... See more
Hello,
What would be the rates for subtitling now, end of 2018 ?

I had the following proposal :
"The rates for our current translation assignments are $4.00 USD per program minute (translation) and $1.00 USD per program minute (Quality Check).  "
"Payment terms are 45 days net. We transfer funds via PayPal or wire bank transfer." 


I find that waiting 45 days to be paid is very, very, long !!!


Thank you for your opinions !



[Edited at 2018-12-20 21:02 GMT]
Collapse


Corinna Jones
Jiajun Liu
 

jyuan_us  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:24
Member (2005)
English to Chinese
+ ...
You may need to spend 20 minutes translating 1 minute of video Dec 21, 2018

Helena Chavarria wrote:

I've done a reasonable amount of subtitling work but always based on a rate per hour of translation time or if I have the script, my usual rate per word. However, an agency has just contacted me asking if I would be interested in forming part of their team; they wrote:

For ES>EN we are offering $1.50 per minute of video for translation and $1 per minute of video for proofreading. These rates are estimated. They could be a bit higher depending on the project’s budget.


[Edited at 2018-02-02 18:24 GMT]


At $1.50 per minute of video, you would make $4.5 per hour. Qualified translators should be paid much more than that. I don't understand how and why an agency offering such a low rate could manage to remain in the market.


[Edited at 2018-12-21 06:19 GMT]


HELENE BONNET
Elite Dede
Elke Schwalm
John Holloway
Cristina Antonac
Bali D.
Tatiana Martins
 

Jocelin Meunier  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 09:24
English to French
Hello, Helene Dec 31, 2018

4$ per minute is very low, but it is unfortunately the "standard" rate across the industry. Some pay even less than that, which means you will have a hard time finding agencies that propose a better rate (not to mention that they tend to reject you if you try to debate said rates). If by any chance you have better proposals, you should not accept this one. Plus, 45 days is indeed very long. The "standard" here as well is 30 days, which is already quite long. I tend to ignore those proposals sinc... See more
4$ per minute is very low, but it is unfortunately the "standard" rate across the industry. Some pay even less than that, which means you will have a hard time finding agencies that propose a better rate (not to mention that they tend to reject you if you try to debate said rates). If by any chance you have better proposals, you should not accept this one. Plus, 45 days is indeed very long. The "standard" here as well is 30 days, which is already quite long. I tend to ignore those proposals since I can somehow make do with my actual clients, but if you can afford to refuse, do not hesitate. The best scenario would be to have some international standard decided by translators, correctors and quality checkers, instead of the industry itself.Collapse


Lou Baroud
Sanjin Grandić
Anna Kolbert
Elite Dede
Josue Aldana
Bali D.
Tatiana Martins
 

Faustine Roux  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:24
English to French
FYI... Jan 4, 2019

I get paid from 4€ to 7€ for French to French teletext subtitling. Monolingual captioning for the deaf. No, it's not just transcription, but it's still much easier and faster than interlingual subtitling.

I read on the ATAA forum that the rate for Fr>Fr teletext subtitling used to be 13€ per minute 10 years ago.

Now, can people stop asking if 1, 2 or 5$ a minute is a decent rate for interlingual subtitling? Because it's not. End of.

Also, just a rem
... See more
I get paid from 4€ to 7€ for French to French teletext subtitling. Monolingual captioning for the deaf. No, it's not just transcription, but it's still much easier and faster than interlingual subtitling.

I read on the ATAA forum that the rate for Fr>Fr teletext subtitling used to be 13€ per minute 10 years ago.

Now, can people stop asking if 1, 2 or 5$ a minute is a decent rate for interlingual subtitling? Because it's not. End of.

Also, just a reminder: subtitling =/= just translation. When you translate a book or a usual manual, if your translation is twice as long as the original, who cares? In subtitling, you usually have to find a shorter phrasing. You also need to look at what's going on on screen : who says what, how, why? Is there a shot change I should be aware of? A scene change? Will the viewers be able to read this very long sentence in half a second?

Seriously, again for those at the back : subtitling is NOT just translation. It's NOT fun (most days). NO, you won't get to "just translate" the latest Tarantino or Spielberg. Most of the subtitling work you'll get is likely to be boring: corporate videos, reality TV, bad sitcoms and TV films, extremely talkative DVD bonus with no script... Nothing very glamorous. Nothing easy.


Also, for those who think that $1 a minute is good enough because "you can translate a film in a day", do you really think you're gonna be given a film to translate everyday?? Do you really think you'll have work every single day? As a translator, do you? Are you given work for every single day of the month? No, you don't. You're likely to be given a film or a few episodes of a sitcom a week, no matter how many subtitling companies you're working with. Now, does 1$/min still seem like an attractive rate?
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Jocelin Meunier
Sylvano
Khalid Sabili
Sanghyo Lee
Cesar Suarez Herrera
Long Nguyen
Morano El-Kholy
 

Sanjin Grandić  Identity Verified
Croatia
Local time: 09:24
Member (2020)
French to Croatian
+ ...
Abomination Nov 10, 2019

biankonera wrote:

Don't know about myths, but what I know for sure is that there is such a rate as ~0.5 euro per 1 minute that one company has as its official rate for translators in one European country.


Abomination was the first word that came to me when I read that post.
So, while the standard rate for foreign language subtitling in the U.S.is ranging from $5 to $ 5,50, translators in Eastern parts of Europe, like me, performing precisely the same work are proposed such low rates just because they are located a few hundred miles to the East, deeper in Europe.
To determine rates solely based on geographic location is discrimination pure and simple.
Any decent person should refuse to work for that rate and tell to whoever proposed them that rate to go to hell.

n.b. I know that this is an old topic, but I just felt the urge to reply to that post since I find that the above-proposed rate is an insult, pure and simple.

If you type into Goggle, "the standard U.S. rates for foreign language subtitling", the return is as follows below copy-pasted this very moment :

"How much to charge for subtitling?
Translation + subtitles = $10/min for most European and other common languages. Translation + subtitles = $12/min for Asian and rare languages. Production companies know these to be standard rates for quality translation and subtitle work."

Any further comment is unnecessary.

[Edited at 2019-11-10 01:11 GMT]

[Edited at 2019-11-10 18:41 GMT]

[Edited at 2019-11-10 18:56 GMT]

[Edited at 2019-11-10 19:04 GMT]

[Edited at 2019-11-10 19:21 GMT]


Andrada Constantinescu
Katia Murguia
Amir Arzani
Cristina Antonac
Ivana Curkovic Seinpaal
 

Hongxia LI  Identity Verified
English to Chinese
+ ...
I do not think the situation got better May 9, 2020

Just got a reply from an agency. Their rates are much lower than any rate mentioned above.

Yanan Pu
Felixwu
 

Tanja Tilch  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:24
English to German
+ ...
Why do you even bother to think about accepting work for these low prices? May 22, 2020

Hi,

One video minute can contain anything between 150 to 250 spoken words.
For 250 words translation with careful re-checking you will already need 1 hour working time.
This does not yet include any time for shortening sub-titles, checking whether the text displays at the proper time, etc.

Thus if someone offers you 3 USD or 4 euros for 1 video minute, you will have earned less than even that with one hour working. You still have to deduct office expenditure
... See more
Hi,

One video minute can contain anything between 150 to 250 spoken words.
For 250 words translation with careful re-checking you will already need 1 hour working time.
This does not yet include any time for shortening sub-titles, checking whether the text displays at the proper time, etc.

Thus if someone offers you 3 USD or 4 euros for 1 video minute, you will have earned less than even that with one hour working. You still have to deduct office expenditures, rent, taxes, healh insurance contributions etc. Make sure you are not paying more than you actually receive in terms of money from your client!

It is really high time that 80% of the people here on ProZ take classes about cost accounting.

Just FYI: A cashier working at a supermarket in Germany gets paid 15-16 euros per hour salary if s/he chooses wll - plus the social benefits her/his employer has to pay. Thus they cost the employer somewhere between 30-40 euros per hour. If the employer wants to make a profit himself, he needs to charge more than that to his customers. If he also employs higher-skilled peopele, they will have higher salaries.
=> Anyone with a BA/MA degree etc. from a university should be earning 60-80 euros an hour - not 3 dollars or 4 euros per hour. A low fee like this would even be 3-4 times less than minimum wages in most countries! It's an outrageous offer which should be firmly declined.

Please everyone do your homework:

a) find out how many words you can sensibly translate per hour
b) find out what serious businesses charge you per hour of service (all you need to do is look at the invoices you receive every week)
c) divide that rate by the number of words you can translate per hour - then you have a rate with which you'll start earning money and make a living from it.
d) If you are not salesperson enough to sell that rate, become a salaried translator instead or look for a different line of work.

This is just some well-meant very serious advice if you do not want to ask yourself after 10 or 20 years of hard work why you are (still) scraping to barely survive while all your acquaintances with other jobs/professions have made a great career, own their house etc.

Best,

Tanja
Collapse


Bernhard Sulzer
Sylvano
Ivet Sanchez
Signe Jase
Fouad El karnichi
Amir Arzani
Fraukje van Boheemen
 

Xiangqun (Shawn) Ye  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:24
Member (2020)
English to Chinese
+ ...
Chinese cheap labor would laugh to death if they get 19 USD per minutes Dec 27, 2020

Sylvano wrote:

theangel wrote:

For 3 USD....everyone (at least all Europeans) should refuse to even turn on the computer...



theangel is right, guys !

I'm subtitling full time in France, mainly for cable TV and dvd, and I do work for rates around... 15 euros/min (19 USD, if I'm right). Many French subtitlers would even consider that a cheap rate, I'm afraid.

French rates for cinema would give you (and me) a heart attack...

Seriously, asking you to translate a 90 min feature for 270 USD is a joke.

[Edited at 2006-08-26 12:47]

[Edited at 2006-08-26 12:48]



I heard from a Chinese translation community that the rate for English Chinese subtitling and translation is 2 RMB ( amount to 0.3 USD ) per minute. I was surprised to know about this.


 

Runjie Jing
Canada
Local time: 03:24
Member (2020)
English to Chinese
+ ...
cheap labor Dec 30, 2020

Xiangqun (Shawn) Ye wrote:

Sylvano wrote:

theangel wrote:

For 3 USD....everyone (at least all Europeans) should refuse to even turn on the computer...



theangel is right, guys !

I'm subtitling full time in France, mainly for cable TV and dvd, and I do work for rates around... 15 euros/min (19 USD, if I'm right). Many French subtitlers would even consider that a cheap rate, I'm afraid.

French rates for cinema would give you (and me) a heart attack...

Seriously, asking you to translate a 90 min feature for 270 USD is a joke.

[Edited at 2006-08-26 12:47]

[Edited at 2006-08-26 12:48]



I heard from a Chinese translation community that the rate for English Chinese subtitling and translation is 2 RMB ( amount to 0.3 USD ) per minute. I was surprised to know about this.


Yes, I once asked for 13 USD/min for a CHI > ENG transcription+translation+time coding job from a Chinese agency. They replied to me that the rate is far too high for their budget. Their budget for transcription+translation is 3 USD/min, and didn't even have budget for time coding. The budget of some Chinese agency is just insanely low.


 

Nadine Nashef
Israel
Local time: 10:24
Arabic to Hebrew
+ ...
These wages are not viable, but finding paying clients is very difficult. Jan 12

You are right in everything you say, the problem is when one goes out into the market to work, most agencies and clients quote and work way below the prices that would be fair and livable wages. This is a very specific niche and there is not enough information out there for newcomers to understand how to price their work. That is why it is not easy to navigate this niche and the clients that would pay fair prices and extremely rare.
I don't think being employed in-house would guarantee a f
... See more
You are right in everything you say, the problem is when one goes out into the market to work, most agencies and clients quote and work way below the prices that would be fair and livable wages. This is a very specific niche and there is not enough information out there for newcomers to understand how to price their work. That is why it is not easy to navigate this niche and the clients that would pay fair prices and extremely rare.
I don't think being employed in-house would guarantee a fair wage for this work. At least I know it's not fair where I live.


Tanja Tilch wrote:

Hi,

One video minute can contain anything between 150 to 250 spoken words.
For 250 words translation with careful re-checking you will already need 1 hour working time.
This does not yet include any time for shortening sub-titles, checking whether the text displays at the proper time, etc.

Thus if someone offers you 3 USD or 4 euros for 1 video minute, you will have earned less than even that with one hour working. You still have to deduct office expenditures, rent, taxes, healh insurance contributions etc. Make sure you are not paying more than you actually receive in terms of money from your client!

It is really high time that 80% of the people here on ProZ take classes about cost accounting.

Just FYI: A cashier working at a supermarket in Germany gets paid 15-16 euros per hour salary if s/he chooses wll - plus the social benefits her/his employer has to pay. Thus they cost the employer somewhere between 30-40 euros per hour. If the employer wants to make a profit himself, he needs to charge more than that to his customers. If he also employs higher-skilled peopele, they will have higher salaries.
=> Anyone with a BA/MA degree etc. from a university should be earning 60-80 euros an hour - not 3 dollars or 4 euros per hour. A low fee like this would even be 3-4 times less than minimum wages in most countries! It's an outrageous offer which should be firmly declined.

Please everyone do your homework:

a) find out how many words you can sensibly translate per hour
b) find out what serious businesses charge you per hour of service (all you need to do is look at the invoices you receive every week)
c) divide that rate by the number of words you can translate per hour - then you have a rate with which you'll start earning money and make a living from it.
d) If you are not salesperson enough to sell that rate, become a salaried translator instead or look for a different line of work.

This is just some well-meant very serious advice if you do not want to ask yourself after 10 or 20 years of hard work why you are (still) scraping to barely survive while all your acquaintances with other jobs/professions have made a great career, own their house etc.

Best,

Tanja


Collapse


Ivana Curkovic Seinpaal
Arianna Schiro
 

Beki Hunt
Canada
Local time: 01:24
Chinese to English
+ ...
Newbie Mar 22

I'm new to subtitling, and trying to get a foot in.
I've realised I've lowballed myself for my first two videos.
Is there an average number of lines for 30 min program?
Is it reasonable to ask to see the script BEFORE you accept it and quote your rate?
Stupidly, I accepted a job I thought would be easy- turns out there are 1500 lines of text in a 48 minute program. I'm working night and day to finish this by the 5 day deadline.
Lesson learnt I suppose- but going for
... See more
I'm new to subtitling, and trying to get a foot in.
I've realised I've lowballed myself for my first two videos.
Is there an average number of lines for 30 min program?
Is it reasonable to ask to see the script BEFORE you accept it and quote your rate?
Stupidly, I accepted a job I thought would be easy- turns out there are 1500 lines of text in a 48 minute program. I'm working night and day to finish this by the 5 day deadline.
Lesson learnt I suppose- but going forward, I don't want to make the same mistake.
Any tips?
Translating/subtitling Chinese to English.
Thanks so much.
Collapse


gordana1980
 
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