Fiverr Community Forum

Sorry, can't read it!

So it’s clearly mentioned in my translation gig to always message me before placing an order.
I think 99% of the time, people do. In other cases, people simply don’t read, or they intetionally? ignore that part.

The other day I got an order which I ended up canceling.
The guy placed an order, asking me to translate some writing on an old scroll.

Was it Japanese? Yes.
Could I read it? No.
The scroll was written in the old language, like several hundred years ago.

I told the buyer that I can’t read it.
He was “shocked,” saying stuff like “But I thought you are Japanese!”

I AM, but I cannot read a language that was written back in the 1600s.
He just didn’t understand though.

I ended up saying “Would you go up to a random person in Egypt and ask them to translate an ancient hieroglyph scroll?”

He DID get my point, but from his message I could tell that he was still thinking I SHOULD be able to read it.

I’m not a historian, dude.


I totally understand you.
I get documents in Uzbek, Mongolian, Bulgarian and Serbian once in a while.
Why? If it’s written in Cyrillic, it must be Russian.


:woman_facepalming: :woman_facepalming: :woman_facepalming: :woman_facepalming: :woman_facepalming: Sorry you had to deal with this…

With that logic it’s like saying “if a HUMAN wrote it, you should be able to read it unless you’re from outer space” :crazy_face: :crazy_face:


I’ve translated old handwritten texts from scans or photos a few times, but luckily, so far, the people had the common sense to message instead of ordering directly, so I could take a look first. Even contemporary handwriting can be too hard to handle, after all … (I often can’t even decipher my own handwriting a few weeks later when I forgot what exactly I wrote :sweat_smile:)


I wonder if someone on Fiverr offers an antiquated/dead language deciphering service. :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:


I do have a Gig for Fraktur/Gothic Type/Black Letter actually, so, antiquated, yes, but the Gig itself says “print only, no handwriting”; for anything handwritten, I’d not offer direct order, custom offer only.
The Gig also is on permanent pause, I’ll only send an offer for it if someone contacts me and specifically asks for it.

I looked up something similar which I don’t offer for someone who messaged me about it once, and found one seller who offered it, so there might be a few.

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Gig on permanent pause and very few offering a similar service sort of reveals that the demand (at least on Fiverr) seems very low. :face_with_monocle:

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From my experience (but keep in mind that I don’t actually have active Gigs with the relevant search terms up), yes, but the few requests for translation of old and handwritten documents are often really interesting jobs. And a Gig with main image of Jones&Croft could be cool … if copyright and all that didn’t exist … Still, though, even if it was in high demand, deciphering scans/photos of old handwritten text on a daily basis … :exploding_head:


Sadly this thing called “common sense” disappears from people’s minds every now and then. :sweat_smile: :sweat_smile: Sometimes the handwriting is so messy I can’t read them at all! In another case a guy asked me to translate this other document which was in Chinese, I told him I can’t read it because it’s clearly a different language.
I think he said something like “Well they look similar, can’t you guess what it says?”


I think in the five years I’ve been on Fiverr less than half of the business I have received here (completed 650+ jobs) actually contacted me before placing an order to see if I could provide my service.

I am a web content/article/blog writer.

I have cancelled VERY FEW orders.

The ones that I did pull the plug on were usually on topics I won’t write about or were too technical that I thought it best to not try to fake my way through writing something that would likely end up in an endless revision loop.

What I am saying here is this: A lot of people don’t bother with the details.

Contacting Sellers in advance to “discuss” a potential job is one too many details for these types of Buyers.


Luckily I don’t need to cancel that many orders, maybe once or twice every 6 months or less?
The ancient scroll cases are the extreme ones, luckily it doesn’t happen too often.

I think the ones that place orders without contacting me TENDS to be the sneaky buyers.
The place an order for the basic $5 when it was actually $15 ( or more), and when I point it out they say “Oh I’m sorry I forgot to read the description.”
I’m sure some of them did actually not read due to laziness, but I bet some of them were
hoping I’d let them get away with it.