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Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: Paul F.
Date: October 21, 2006 08:00PM
For many years, my mom and I have been picking away at a project...
We have a photocopy of a CARBON copy of genealogical manuscript (the original seems lost to history) written in the early 30's. It's 6 volumes.. approximately 1200 pages.

The copy is legible, but too poor to scan/OCR (beleive me, I've tried a number of times over the years!)
I did not have much luck using MacSpeech voice recognition a couple years ago.

My mom has dredged up the project again..
Now she's considering doing something I suggested nearly 10 years ago.. Pay someone to type it into the computer so we can edit, correct, lay it out, and publsh it.

So here's a question;
Where does one FIND a typist?
And
How much can one expect to PAY a reasonably good, accurate, typist (per page?)?



Paul F.
-----
A sword never kills anybody; it is a tool in the killer's hand. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca c. 5 BC - 65 AD
----
Good is the enemy of Excellent. Talent is not necessary for Excellence.
Persistence is necessary for Excellence. And Persistence is a Decision.

--

--

--
Eureka, CA
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: blusubaru
Date: October 21, 2006 08:08PM
I'm available weekends F-M 90+wpm smiling smiley



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/21/2006 08:08PM by blusubaru.
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: Paul F.
Date: October 21, 2006 08:11PM
So.. how much would you expect per-page? grinning smiley
That's the part where I'm kinda flyin' blind...



Paul F.
-----
A sword never kills anybody; it is a tool in the killer's hand. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca c. 5 BC - 65 AD
----
Good is the enemy of Excellent. Talent is not necessary for Excellence.
Persistence is necessary for Excellence. And Persistence is a Decision.

--

--

--
Eureka, CA
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: AlphaDog
Date: October 21, 2006 08:13PM
I'm not sure where you live, so where to find someone to do a job like this will depend on the area. If there's a community college, or, even better, a voc-tech college that teaches any flavor of word processing, those would be good places to look. Students are always looking for small side jobs, and their rate would probably be lower than going to a professional transcription service.

I did Google "rate straight copy typing" and this was the first hit. It'll at least give you an idea of what others are charging.

[www.superiortyping.com]

I did some thesis typing back in the olden days (like still on a typewriter), and I charged by the hour. That might be the fairest way to go for your project, too, unless those old photocopies of carbon copies are really easy to read. Even the best typist in the world could lose money on a per page basis if they had to stop too many times to figure out what is written on those pages. Or, you could pay by the page and not worry about the accuracy, especially if you'll be going through everything again and editing it carefully.
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: rgG
Date: October 21, 2006 08:13PM
Looks like it might cost a pretty penny to get that done.

[fficial" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">www.google.com]





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: davester
Date: October 21, 2006 08:24PM
I'm wondering if it might be worth trying to enhance the original in photoshop before trying the OCR route. If you figured out a sequence of steps that would substantially clean up and increase the contrast of the original, you might be able to get a high quality OCR program to work. Also, what OCR program did you use...there is definitely a wide difference between different OCR algorithms.



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: blusubaru
Date: October 21, 2006 08:27PM
Quote
AlphaDog
Students are always looking for small side jobs, and their rate would probably be lower than going to a professional transcription service.

Exactly why I posted as I did smiling smiley I have no idea what I would charge. AlphaDog's link says $20/hr, that seems fair, depending on how easy the pages are to read. Let me know what you find, I could always use side work!
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: Paul F.
Date: October 21, 2006 08:42PM
Regarding OCR;
I've tried 3-4 different programs myself, and have given pages to others to try... All to no avail.
There may BE more modern OCR software than what I've tried that would do it.. but I doubt it.

The nature of the copy is inconsistent... some pages are clear and would OCR OK, some are out of focus, some are so dark that the letters bleed together, some the original typewriter strikes leave off part of half the letters (not hard to read, but hard for OCR to see).

After spending dozens of hours fooling with scanning and OCR a few years ago trying to get it to work with the BEST pages, call me a sceptic.


Regarding prices for "manuscript typing";
Those prices are higher than what I expected... but not completely unreasonable...
Between me typing some pages, my mom typing some, and hiring SOME of it out... it might not be so bad...


Per hour may be a standard way to price such things.. but I would think that a Per Page cost would be more attractive to good typists... the more pages they can knock out in an hour, the more lucrative the job overall...


I will see if I can find an old scan of a page to show you what kind of original I have to deal with.



Paul F.
-----
A sword never kills anybody; it is a tool in the killer's hand. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca c. 5 BC - 65 AD
----
Good is the enemy of Excellent. Talent is not necessary for Excellence.
Persistence is necessary for Excellence. And Persistence is a Decision.

--

--

--
Eureka, CA
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: rgG
Date: October 21, 2006 09:14PM
Tell all the realtives that you will give them a CD of the final copy if they will help by typing X number of pages. It might work with a few of them. smiling smiley





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: Effin Haole
Date: October 21, 2006 09:20PM
From the late seventies to the mid 90's I charged $1 a page to type up stories for the newspaper and for students that didn't type.

That was a standard sized typed sheet, double spaced.



Strength without compassion is brutality. Compassion without strength is weakness.

We must train our minds to desire what the situation demands.
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: wurm
Date: October 21, 2006 09:30PM
I used these folks a couple of years ago for some transcription work for a client. [www.elance.com] Post the project and have people bid on the work. Doesn't cost you a dime for posting. They take a cut of the freelancer's take.
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: Paul F.
Date: October 21, 2006 09:47PM
wurm;

Thanks for the link!
Looks like a potentially very useful tool...


rgG;
Tried that a few years ago... (bribing familly)... out of 300 pages in Volume 1, a total of FIVE were typed by someone other than my mom and I.. And those were by my Dad! (and his 5 words an hour typing...).



Paul F.
-----
A sword never kills anybody; it is a tool in the killer's hand. - Lucius Annaeus Seneca c. 5 BC - 65 AD
----
Good is the enemy of Excellent. Talent is not necessary for Excellence.
Persistence is necessary for Excellence. And Persistence is a Decision.

--

--

--
Eureka, CA
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: Seacrest
Date: October 21, 2006 11:57PM
Wahtervr tehy cahrge, I wuodl do it fro lses tahn ha;f.
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: Jack D.
Date: October 22, 2006 02:16AM
Quote
rgG
Looks like it might cost a pretty penny to get that done.

[fficial" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">www.google.com]

Not if you outsource it to India.





- Jack D.




New tasteless sig coming soon!
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: grad
Date: October 22, 2006 04:58AM
PaulF: I will type it up for you. I average about 90WPM, and currently have some extra time on my hands. smiling smiley

Message me if you are interested.



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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: MarkD
Date: October 22, 2006 08:47AM
Typists have gotten away mostly from the per page charge and gone to a hourly or line charge. Last time I had a transcription from a tape done, it was like $4 + a page. I assume it might be cheaper if it was straight typing. Be careful of readibility or sometimes you get lots of ________ because the typist can't read the text--and a page rate, there is no incentive to spend a lot of time do so. Other issues that you will be asked about is the formating, complicated name spellings, legibility of text, etc. That will normally be taken into account when setting a rate.

Colleges or friends are great sources of cheap typists. Court reporters/attorneys/legal offices are good sources of typists or transcriptionists who can also do the work or know someone who is competent and reliable to do the work. Obviously the more like a straight "term" paper/just straight typing, the easier it should be to find someone.

Three final caveats that might be helpful:
1. Make sure you have a "backup" to the paper.
2. Make sure everyone agrees on you getting the digital copy in an agreeable format--whether it is wordperfect, word, etc.

Hope this helps.
3. Do a tryout of say 25-30 pages--should give a sense of how long it will take and how easy the work is--maybe the typist might even want to back out.
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Re: Where to Find, and How much to Pay a Typist for a transcription job?
Posted by: The UnDoug
Date: October 22, 2006 09:41AM
Let's see...there are a few hundred registered users here...if you scanned the pages and we each typed 20 - 40 in... You'd only us each an iPod or something.



[www.zeemaps.com]
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