Sunday, May 19, 2013

The return of Anthony Blackman???

At this point in time (June 2009), it had already become clear to me that Glenn Paquette was in the CIA—along with others—and though I had been put on guard and had some reservations, I basically assumed that the overture of Glenn introducing me to Anthony was a good faith overture of introducing to others in the network, so to speak.

This post is about Mr. Anthony Blackman, whom has been named on this blog, but the reasons not described in detail. The following series of emails is not something that seemed desirable to make public, and since Mr. Blackman had been removed from the scenario after I sent copies to the DOJ, I didn’t bother going into the matter further on the blog. He has resurfaced, however, and I don’t know if that means the DOJ hasn’t prohibited his being posted here or what has transpired in the interim of the past couple of years, but he is now online as working at an English conversation school that was newly established in April 2010:
According to the information under the above link, Mr. Blackman has been married (since 1995) to a Japanese woman with whom he has two daughters. (current page, he's gone!) (web archive page!)

He describes himself here as having "co-founded English Buffet, Kyoto's largest school": 
You can use this e-mail if you like as well.
I only use it for communicating with Mr. Takamiya and for receiving email
related to translating.

Date: Fri, 19 Jun 2009
Subject: 翻訳

Here, he forwards me the email request for the job. In the forwarded message, the Japanese client indicates that he is requesting an estimate for translating the four files, including Operating Manuals and GUI screenshot, in the attached zip file. He comments that the amount of text is quite large (about 110 pages of manuals in the Japanese originals), and asks for both an estimate as well as the date the completed translation will be ready for submission.

Sat, Jun 20, 2009
got it!
Anyway, Takamiya and I met last night for about an hour and he handed me 4 operating manuals and asked me to give him a translating price estimate by SUN. night. 
This doesn't mean we get the job, it just means we are now IN THE BIDDING for the job.
So, I would like to meet you tonight after 10pm if possible or tomorrow morning or early afternoon to show you the stuff.
And by the way, do you have the ability to access ICHITARO word pro?

In this message he basically reiterates that there are four manuals, but claims we are only “in the bidding”.

Sat, Jun 20, 2009
I found your e-mail on my **** account and took it out of SPAM, so now e-mail posted to either 3 accounts will reach me now.
I use a MAC at home and was unable to open up his file.  I have hard copies of it though and will be taking it with me tonight and tomorrow.
If you just happen to drop by Starbucks on your way home after the movie, I might still be there.  Or could we meet at about 230pm at STARBUCKS?

Mon, Jun 22, 2009
Here are two e-mails I got from Mr. Takamiya.
I believe they speak for themselves.
インターネットで 英語日本語 一文字¥
 日本語英語 一文字¥

**** さん <***** > wrote:
前回(今年の1月)の見積は 9万円と3万円で出しています。
この値段で計算すると一文字¥6 くらいになります

I figured that 10yen per character was probably a little too high, but now he is quoting 3yen per character.....that's more than just a slight difference.

I told him I will still do it at 3yen per character, but I will need at least 2months because I couldn't possibly treat this as a PRIORITY JOB.
At that price, it is more of a hobby than a job.
I doubt he will take such a ridiculous offer of 2mos.
But WHO translates at 3yen a character?, you were saying yesterday that agencies charge 12-15yen
Oh well, we'll see.
We apparently have differing views on appropriate salaries.

Note that he did not forward me the email from the client here in the same manner as the first communication, for whatever reason. It appears that maybe Anthony wrote the first Japanese text himself, attempting to portray the client as demanding a reduction in the rate by half, from 6 yen/character to 3 yen/character, whereas the second passage simply mentions the rate for the last job (6 yen/character).
His apparent willingness to immediately accept the job at half of the rate he received for the previous job and less than a third of the rate discussed with me is disingenuous, so the conversation is already unraveling into an attempt at subordination. Note that at the time in question I had been translating patent specifications, manuals, business documentation, etc., for about nine years, and had sat for the Japanese bar exam for patent attorney.

Mon, Jun 22, 2009
hi anthony,
needless to say that rate is out of the question. like i said, i will go as low as 7.5 yen per character, with a 7 day time frame and mandatory terminology references. 
also, there is no way that it is more to translate from english to japanese than japanese to english, so either he has the figures backwards (in which case 6 only 25% less than 8), or there is deception going on somewhere in the chain. in either case, it doesn't matter what illiterate person he tries to get off of the internet, probably someone in india, but he can be my guest.
the only people i work cheaper for are people who send me a high volume of legal and government documentation.
responses like his--stating simply something he saw on the internet with no further knowledge--are one of the main reasons that there is so little viable business activity here in kansai. it's practically an insult to my intelligence, but nothing personal, of course. on the other hand, a lot of people don't regard translation as a very highly skilled profession. especially low and mid-level management types. it would be nice to have some more consistent work locally, but he is being too greedy. the other local work i have here pays 10 yen per character.
best regards,

I had obviously become a little disconcerted at this point, and it seems like I may have been drinking before composing this message. This was a point in time when there seemed to be an increase of outsourcing to translation companies in India, and I had been asked to check text that was written in somewhat broken English without the typical flaws found in English translations by native Japanese speakers, so I entertained the possibility that the ridiculous rate might be connected to that, as only in a country with a very low cost of living would such a rate be feasible. Things had been slow, and that trend had been somewhat worrisome. In fact, the downturn had compelled me to sit for the bar exam, but that takes place in May, just after what had been the busiest time of year for me work wise at the end of the Japanese fiscal year in April—one reason I didn’t pass that test…

Tue, Jun 23, 2009
hello again anthony,
i noticed that in editing my last message i left int he phrase "like i said" which shouldn't be there, as i had said i would go as low at 8 yen initially, but am willing to go a little lower with more time and references seeing that things are slow at the moment. 
on the other hand, please note that there will have to be a contract drawn up for freelance translation services, with a viable company, be it tsa or whoever. i assume that this company tsa is an actual registered business, right?
i don't want to waste any more time on this project until it begins to seem less sketchy.

Tue, Jun 23, 2009
Regarding your first question about TSA, I believe all the correct paperwork is in order and we are registered as a business.  We spent nearly 6mos in meetings planning this out and it has always been my assumption he took care of that aspect.  which is also why he doesn't want to suddenly drop me and start dealing with someone changes, the unknown, business cards, etc....  or whatever....... In the 13 years I have been in Japan, I have daily unpleasant surprises as I get to know "THE REAL JAPAN".
My answer is always the same...........'WHATEVER!'
Anyway, I sent him an e-mail yesterday saying I will do it for 3yen, but at MY COMFORTABLE PACE.   He then set my KEITAI ablaze with a bunch of phone calls last night and early this morning, but I was watching TV and re-arrranging my sock drawer and couldn't be bothered, so I finally gave him a call this morning to see what he wanted and he is going to submit the proposal at 7yen for the 3 manuals, The Ichitaro formatted one will be declined as I am unable to open it.  The PDF file will be sent to me in its original WORD format and he would like all three done in 2weeks and that is how he will submit the BID.
3 manuals (all WORD)
2 weeks
7 yen per character
I would like to work with you because you are professional and know what you are doing.
I, on the other hand, am still a complete rank below novice in this world and need to get my feet wet.
Anyway, I will let you know if we get the project.

In this message he attempts to teach me about “THE REAL JAPAN” and preaches the adoption of an unquestioning disposition of resigned acceptance in the form of “WHATEVER”. He subsequently reverses that order and defers to me as “a professional” and himself as “a complete rank below novice”, despite pointing out that he had been in Japan for 13 years, which was about the same length of time I had been in Japan at the time.

Hello Anthony,
That's a very low bid to be submitting as a company, but under the circumstances I am agreeable to taking it on and helping you get started. One thing I'd like to clarify is what the 7 yen represents. Is that what you are offering me? If not, what are expecting in terms of remuneration? 
Also, get the references as soon as possible, as I could start looking at those from Thursday. It will be necessary to evaluate how viable the previous translations are and whether or not further research will be necessary.

This email was sent on June 24, and I received no reply for over a month.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009
hey asshole,
it's very rude to waste peoples time and not respond to emails regaridng work. not to mention unprofessional.
are you a freemason? cia? it would certainly seem so.
i suggest you get your shit together, because i'm in mode for such bullshit.
how about your buddy takamiya?

My scrawl betrays the anger, and I didn’t even bother to fix the typos of things such as “I’m in no mood for such bullshit”. Since he was introduced to me by Mr. Paquette, he had been something of a question mark from the beginning, but at that point I’d become convinced that he and Paquette were in collusion and aimed to waste my time, frustrate me, and generally prevent me from being productive not to mention trying to subordinate me. It was the following month that I first decided to visit the American consulate in Osaka, and sent a series of follow-up emails, finally receiving the reply posted here on the blog dated September 16, 2009.

Thu, Aug 6, 2009
you started out talking about a project similar to ones you had received 3,000-6,000 per page in the past from the same person. the situation gradually changed drastically to the point when i agreed to work for less than the rate we originally talked about, and you tried to get me to work for 3 yen per word, which is an insult.
the job started out as part of a continuing relationship you had established with this guy, for which you declared wanted no compensation. wound up being something we would "bid on".
i just talked to takamiya over the phone, and he says that you finished the job already.
you a deceptive, manipulative individual. you wasted my time and i am seriously pissed off about your duplicitous bullshit. YOU SUCK.

Not only had he sent me the files and forwarded me an email directly from the client, he had also given me the client’s phone number. I decided that Mr. Blackman had made one mistake too many in doing that, basically, and called the client. During the conversation, I asked the client if he knew that Blackman was an officer in the CIA. I asked him if he knew what the CIA was, etc., several times because he was a bit uppity so I wanted to make sure the message got through.

Thu, Aug 6, 2009
First of all, concerning all the words in your e-mail.
In the last 40yrs I have been dealing with people, I have never seen the need to be rude or sarcatic.  It's childish.  If you're upset about the lack of e-mails.  That could have been handled with a differently worded e-mail. 
There are two things at the end of my last e-mail that speak very clearly.
1:  I don't do this for a living.  I am a complete beginner and unfortunately and against my wishes, he still wishes to deal with no-one else but me.
2:  The last line says 'I will let you know if we get the project'
I have heard nothing back from him since that last e-mail and I have no interest in contacting him directly.  I decided it was in your best interest that I stop writing e-mails unless there was in fact something pertinent to tell you concerning the project.  As of this writing, there is still nothing to tell you.
Anthony Blackman

Well now, you can write an email when there is some impetus, apparently.

The drastic difference in rates from the start of the discussions and in reference to past work and rapid vacillation were entirely suspect, and the fact that you didn't respond to the last email I sent you was even a little on the bizarre side. Let's just lay it to your poor communications skills.
You and Takamiya are clowns, and I obviously don't want anything to do with you. I didn't make my way out here to join some freemason circus. 
I'd rather not be bothered about going to the consulate to inquire whether I'm being harassed by some rogue with ties to the Japanese underworld, perhaps, wasting my time, plumbing me for information, or whatever the objective, but you are on the radar, pal.

My last email to Mr. Blackman.

Fri, Aug 7, 2009
Yes, I heard Mr. Takamiya received your phone call.  He wanted me to remind you that all jobs go through me and then on to others as I need.  He prefers to deal with no-one else.....because we spent 6mos. behind closed doors working out the details and he's not going through it again with a complete stranger.
The project I did for Mr. Takamiya was something completely unrelated to what I first showed you.  It was completely revised downward that I could do it in just a couple of days without any help.  I am still waiting on the bids for the 4 manuals that I wanted you to do.  
You know, Darren, I don't get you at all.  You're over 40yrs old and this is the best interpersonal communication you could muster.  
Manipulative?  get you to work for 3yen?  Insult you?  CIA?  Freemason?
Where did all that come from?
Did you forget how this relationship started?  I was approached by Takamiya with an offer to do some translations?  I really wanted to steer clear of any more difficult translations and so I went looking for a qualified translator and I thought you fit the bill.  Manipulated you?  I went offering you work!!  Money for you!!  I didn't make you sign over your first born!  I simply showed you what was offered at the time.  I even paid out a quick 15bucks out of my own pocket at the internet cafe so that you could see the file as quickly as possible.  I told Mr. Takamiya directly that it is better to deal with you directly and stop going through me.  Again....I was going out of my way to help you secure work...and I REQUIRED NOTHING OUT OF YOU, NO DEPOSIT OF MONEY OR LIEN AGAINST YOUR HOUSE or ANYTHING!  I made sure that this would not cost you anything!  I simply thought you were the best translator to a big project and I went out of my way to work you into this company.   You told me your bid, I gave it to him.  He gave me back an e-mail about a lower bid at 3yen.  Not a contract....just information from him about some prices out there on the internet.   Again, I REQUIRED NOTHING out of you.  I simply kept you informed.  A few weeks passed, he sent me a file to translate and asked if I could do this quickly and I did.  If I can translate something by myself without assistance and meet the deadline, I damn sure am going to do it.   It wasn't the 4 big manuals he had promised, it wasn't even close.  THAT IS STILL IN THE PIPELINE!  They still need them translated.  They are still going to go through me and then if I can not do them within the deadline, I am STILL going to go looking for translators to help me.  
Deceptive?  I don't tell you what I do every hour of everyday.  And neither do you...but I have never thought you to be deceptive.
Insult?  I have never called you a dirty word in my entire 40yrs on this planet.  If the price is too low, you simply have to say 'No, thank you'  
Wasted your time?  Are you moving soon?  It took me 6mos. of midnight meetings with this guy before I even saw a dime.  I thought you would be appreciative if someone could help you find work for the short and LONG TERM.  Because, last I checked, you were nowhere close to retiring or dying.  

I did make a mistake.  Because, I am just starting out with this translating stuff, I jumped the gun a little bit and gave you more info than you needed to know.  I thought I was doing the right thing.  And, I didn't keep you informed as much as I should have.  As you pointed out, you don't like to waste your time and I thought it would be best if I just waited until I had contract and translations in hand before contacting you again.  

I still believe you can translate from Japanese into English very well and up until these e-mails today, I had still wanted to use you for the big stuff he will eventually give me that I cannot handle.  I teach 63 English classes a week, I have over 200 students and there is no way I can handle 4 operating manuals.  It's just not possible.  I need one or more translators.

You'll still do well in Japan, but in our particular relationship, you got 10% of the facts, dreamed up the other 90% and lost your cool.  I have no choice, but to no longer consider you for either SHORT or LONG TERM projects.
Good Luck in Japan.  Hope everything works out for you.

He admits mistakes and tries to lie his way out of it in a rather amateurish manner. Note the number of students he claims to have had then, and look at where he is working now, not to mention anything about the bogus company he tried to convince me existed.

Fri, Aug 7, 2009
Hey Glen,
I'm sure you were just trying to help me out and send me some translation work by introducing to me Anthony, and I appreciate that.on the other hand, the way I got dicked around by that guy and the conceited salry man at the company was just too far fetched.
At any rate, I've had enough of uncouth dealings with foreigners that have been here in Kyoto longterm, and many seem to have dubious connection to the place. I have enough stress dealing with the domestic criminals to have to worry about suspect gaijin. That was kind of the last straw in my unquestioningly trusting the presence of any Americans or other foreigners that have been in this area long term. I've been questioning whether people might belong to the secret society circle for a number of years now, now I seem to have to be more proactively vigilant, shall we say.
If he turns out to be under the employ of the government of the usa, he will be called to account and made to not repeat causing time wasting and frustrating fiascos such as that to which I have been subjected by his acquaitance. He is not the only person capable of having people waste their time, or lose sleep over nonsense.
At any rate, I hope you don't take it personally,

I made sure to let Mr. Paquette know that I was not happy with what had transpired, and that the next step of seeking recourse to the authorities had basically been decided.

Sat 8/08/09
Hi Darren. Yeah, I understand you anger with this Anthony guy. It was originally my impression that he was just going to introduce you to the person and then get out of the way, but it seemed that he wanted to keep having a hand in it, which makes me think that he was trying to take a cut somewhere. Not very honest. I think it's hard to find honest people to work with.
Anyway, I don't take your anger personally.

Mr. Paquette tries to dissociate himself from Mr. Blackman, but the stuff about taking a cut is disingenuous, as nobody works for free, especially if they are starting a company. Maybe my understanding of “free enterprise” is all wrong and I’ve got this backwards...

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