Recent weeks have seen a moderate stream of sudden requests for interpreting services at extremely short notice. These inquiries seem to have some common characteristics.
- Originated by people who, from the content of their inquiry, appear to never have used an interpreter’s service before.
- Originated by people or entities who do not identify themselves properly (i.e., physical location, proper company name).
- Originated from free e-mail accounts such as gmail, Yahoo, or hotmail.
Uniformed people looking for interpreting (and also translating) services need to understand the things that will make it difficult for them to secure those services. All three of the above (in addition to almost no prior notice) qualify as red lights in going forward with discussing interpreting assignments.
Additionally, it is important to remember that it is less likely to find a good interpreter (or translator) on very short notice. There are exceptions. We make them regularly for our regular clients. But unreasonable requests from suspicious entities are reasonably treated as being suspicious and mostly do not result in us accepting offered assignments.