Freelance translation is often a solitary vocation; due to its requirement for intense periods of concentration, it lends itself best to an isolated work environment. Not for most translators those water-cooler conversations, office banter and friendly chats while making tea or coffee that office-based workers might take for granted.
Where, then, do freelance translators go for a quick fix of human interaction, or brief diversion from the task at hand? Obviously the internet is at their fingertips, but perhaps it offers too many distractions…Any freelancer knows only too well the perils of temptation, and the value of discipline when paid by the project – any loss of productivity equals a loss of income.
Twitter offers a source of conversation, news and networking in a convenient and concise format. As a global network, it’s active 24/7, but you can dip in and out of it as you choose, catch up on earlier tweets, and be selective about what you pay attention to – in short it’s perfect for that quick catch-up that translators crave as lone workers.
So, what is it that translators use Twitter for?
- Networking is a key reason for a freelancer in any discipline to establish a Twitter presence.
- Many use it as a research tool – it’s a quick way to get an answer to a question and there is a general spirit of helping others in the Twitter community.
- Others use it to stay informed about news and current events.
- For the fast-fingered, Twitter can also be a source of new jobs, with many translation agencies tweeting projects as a quick means of finding and placing work with suitable translators.
It seems that Twitter offers the ideal solution for translators to interact, share knowledge, introduce themselves to potential clients and keep up to date with what’s going on in the world. If you’re a freelancer, and don’t yet have a Twitter profile what are you waiting for? Set one up now, and don’t forget to follow @WebTranslations!
Big thanks to @alex_translator, @RainyLondon, @KeramidaM, & @valemassari for helping with this post by sharing your views. Comments welcome as ever!
15 November 2013 09:54