Whoops! LinkedIn thought it would crowdsource the translation of its site into other languages, so it sent out a survey to LinkedIn members who listed their occupation as “translator.”

“What type of incentive would you expect for translating LinkedIn’s site?” the survey asked.

The multiple-choice responses? Did not include “money.” Nor did the responses include “dinero,” “moolah,” or even “dolla dolla bills.”

linkedin_translation_survey.jpg
thanks to @morrick for the screenshot

The response was pretty intense, as one could expect. The New York Times reports that some Linkedin translators created a group, Translators against Crowdsourcing by Commercial Businesses. It’s on now. There’s even a #LinkedInfail tag now.

The NYT found LinkedIn’s response:

Nico Posner, the LinkedIn product manager who circulated the survey, declined to be interviewed but in a post to [the Linkedin] group wrote that the survey was not asking translators to volunteer per se. He said he was trying to find out whether they would consider “crowd sourcing,” borrowing the term applied to companies like Wikipedia that rely on volunteers’ collective wisdom.

Er.

What, pray tell, is the difference between working for free and crowdsourcing?