Friday, August 10, 2007

General Project Updates and Frequent Visitors

Every week, I start off thinking I will scale back the number of blog posts to a more manageable number, especially given the fact that I am working on many other projects simultaneously that consume a great deal of time, but each day, it seems like there are so many updates to share, that instead of reducing the number of posts, I should be increasing them in number. There simply aren't enough hours in a day!

This week, for example, I received a tremendous amount of emails and calls with support from individuals and organizations, both in the United States and in various countries. Several of these conversations and discussions led me to update the project FAQ, and the revised version was posted on the project website earlier this week.

Some of the questions I have already answered, but merit a bit of additional attention here.

One organization posed an excellent question about whether or not it would be possible to submit a collective submission on behalf of numerous interpreters. In many cultures and organizations, it might be more appropriate to send a collective submission as opposed to having a single delegate. As long as the submission is in keeping with the project goal of demonstrating why interpreters are so important, this is not only acceptable, but a great way to ensure that numerous interpreters achieve recognition. It also provides a greater level of anonymity for those who desire not to stand out as individuals.

I've also been fortunate enough to exchange emails with many university professors, forming great relationships and learning about many of their interesting publications in the process. I hope to feature some more of them in future posts. One question asked was whether I would consider contributions from university professors, and I would be delighted to receive them. While these not might be anecdotes per se, if they are in keeping with the project goal of demonstrating why interpreters are of great value in the world, they would be received with enthusiasm and considered for the project.

Several organizations have also asked it they might submit stories about interpreting assignments they have witnessed, heard about or experienced, and these will also be welcomed, provided of course that confidentiality is observed. Ideally, the majority of submissions will be from working interpreters, but all submissions that support the project goal will be considered.

And speaking of submissions, they continue to arrive. I am fascinated by many of the stories I have been receiving. Some are quite touching, others are laugh-out-loud funny, others are of the kind that make you want to pull your hair out... quite reflective of the life of an interpreter in general, I'd say!

I also want to give a special thanks to the interpreting associations (many of whom have been featured this week) and the telephone interpreting providers who've done a great job in helping me get the word out about the project. So far, I would say that more than 50% of the people who have submitted stories heard about the project through these channels. So, we do have a nice mixture of stories so far from different and diverse perspectives.

Also, several individuals have wondered if they should submit a story even if their writing in English may not be perfect, and the answer is most definitely "YES!" Interpreters are not required to be experts at written language, which is just one of many reasons an editor is mandatory for a project like this! Also, while good grammar and spelling are appreciated, the most important thing is the essence of the story itself. Refining the writing is just part of the editing process, so if you have a wonderful story to share, please do not be overly concerned with English that isn't quite perfect - all writers, even native speakers of English, require such editing.

I want to give a special thanks (again) to CĂ©line Graciet, whose blog continues to generate a lot of traffic to both the From Our Lips project page, and this blog. Not only that, but her blog always makes for interesting reading! One of these days, I will get around to creating a blogroll to include her blog and some other great blogs that I've stumbled across from the T&I world.

I'm also pleased to be using several tools, such as Google Analytics and ClustrMaps, that show me the locations of visitors to this site, and if they arrived at this blog through a web search, what they were searching for that led them here. It's very interesting to see the locations of visitors, and it seems like every day, there are a few new dots on various countries in the map at the bottom of this page. I also love knowing that individuals are finding out about many of the great organizations I've mentioned here through their searches. It is also interesting to compare the stats from the project site and the project blog.

For example, the image on the left is from a screen shot of the top 10 visitors for yesterday, August 9th, 2007, to the project web site. Among the top 10 are Malaysia, India and Hong Kong, Belgium, Austria, Switzerland, Norway and Singapore, in addition to the countries I most expected, the United States and Canada, who appear on both lists.

On the right is a screen shot of the top 10 visitors to the project blog. It's very interesting to me that the blog is attracting visitors from many different countries than the project site, and vice versa. The blog's top 10 countries for visitors include the U.K., Spain, Argentina, South Africa, Poland, Australia, France and Belgium.

The countries in the Top 10 for the blog are all places where I have more contacts of my own, so I suspect that many of my friends and colleagues are helping me to spread the word.

Also, the stats provided to me are quite interesting too when looking at the city-by-city breakdown. Each day on the project web site, the #1 location for the most visits varies. For example, this week, the top spot was occupied by cities in various parts of the world, such as London, Madrid and Ottawa.

However, for the blog, the #1 spot has been consistent -the greater Los Angeles area, where the blog appears to have quite a loyal following, with many readers returning several times in a single day! Because of these devoted fans of the blog, each day, Los Angeles nudges out frequent runner-up Paris and other cities, such as Palmyra and Warsaw, but no other U.S. city even comes close to the number of visits from L.A.-area readers!

The strange thing is that I have received story submissions so far from all of the other cities with frequent visitors, except Los Angeles! Very curious indeed! Well, a special thanks to all of you readers in the vicinity of the City of Angels for your consistent interest in this project, especially your many daily visits to the project blog... but don't be so shy! Get in touch with me and share your submissions - I am sure you have many great stories to share, and I look forward to receiving them!

1 comment:

Martha said...

hello nataly, just wanted to say that i love reading your blog each morning, it is great to see how the project is coming along and i just love the updates from around the world, this is a great site, very informational and well written. i plan to send you a couple of stories as I mentioned last week. keep it up! - Martha