Where our attendees come from

On this page we show where our BP17 attendees come from.  People’s home towns are shown in batches of five (most of the time), and for each batch, one is picked with a connection to a landmark in Budapest.  In certain cases a larger city is shown close to the attendee’s home town.

This is a collection of Facebook posts from BP17’s FB page in reverse chronological order (i.e. the latest is on top).


The Ottomans held Buda for well over a century, leaving behind some magnificent bath houses built in the 1550’s. Perhaps the most easily accessible one is Rudas (pronounced with an ‘sh’), pictured here. Completely renovated 10 years ago, it is now open for both sexes every day – also during the night on weekends.
From the conference hotel take metro #2 to Astoria (3 stops), then take bus #7 (3 stops): The bus stops right at the entrance of Rudas.

BP17 attendee map


The latest crop includes a former PM of mine from Osaka. I contacted her just a few days ago on LinkedIn, and she already booked her flight, conference ticket…

The photo shows a Japanese garden on Margaret island, a serene spot just 1 km south from where all the wild concerts of Sziget festival are held each August.
The Japanese garden was created after 1882.

BP17 attendee map


Attendees #121 to #125 come from these places…
Bonn’s most famous son, Beethoven, spent much of his time in Vienna, and he travelled to Buda on a few occasions to visit the spas – but he gave concert only once, in 1800, in the Buda Castle.

BP17 attendee map


This is the most international map yet: attendees #116 to 120 are from 3 continents, including one colleague from Indonesia, a first in BP history 🙂

András Jelky was an unlikely adventurer in the 18th century. Born in a small town by the Danube, he became a tailor, just like his father. At the age of 16 he started wandering in Europe, via Prague and Nürnberg. After barely escaping a forced conscription of able-bodied young men, he ended up in the Netherlands where he soon found himself on a Batavia-bound ship (against his will). After a storm and a pirate attack, he criss-crossed the globe (via Suriname, Canton, Macao, Lisbon, Malta, etc.), before ending up in Batavia (as Jakarta was then called). There he married a local girl, ran an orphanage, and worked as a secretary to the Dutch embassy there, leading to more travels (Japan, Ceylon). Later he travelled back to Europe, spent time in Amsterdam and Vienna (where he was introduced to Kaiserin Maria Theresia herself), before settling in Buda.

BP17 attendee map


4 return attendees and a local student are among the latest five…

Kaiser Chiefs hail from Leeds, next door to Wakefield: last summer they performed at Hungary’s largest music festival, Sziget. (The word means ‘island’, because, well, the festival takes place on an island a few kms north of the centre.)

BP17 attendee list


Attendees #106-110 are from these cities

Józef Bem was a Polish general, and a national hero in Hungary (and in Poland). Born and buried in Tarnów, not far from Rzeszów, at a time when Poland was partitioned, he dedicated his military career to the liberation of his country. After some twists and turns he ended up fighting for the Hungarian cause in 1849. When the war of independence was eventually crushed, he took refuge in Turkey, hoping for a Turco-Russian war. He died in Aleppo just a year later of malaria.
The park around his statue in central Buda is a revered spot, always full of flowers and flags.

BP17 attendee map


The last 5 people registered from these places…
Well, one colleague comes from a small town *near* Donaueschingen, but I picked this one because of the cultural connection.

Budapest is often referred to as the ‘pearl of the Danube’, lying roughly halfway between the mighty river’s source in Donaueschingen and its estuary.
The ‘Danubius’ fountain was constructed in 1883 (a year before the Opera House and Keleti railway station). The main figure on top represents Danube itself, while the three figures below represent three tributaries.

BP17 attendees map


The first 100 attendees on a single map

BP17 map first 100

The latest crop includes BP ‘alumni’, plus a new attendee from perhaps the most famous small town in Europe: Schengen.

This means we reached 100 attendees in just 11 days! (Last year it took us 22 days to reach 100.).

Nyugati (‘Western’) railway station in Budapest was partly designed by Gustave Eiffel’s company, and was constructed 12 years before the famous landmark in Paris bearing his name.
(Locals here are proud to say the station was designed by monsieur Eiffel himself, but there’s no evidence on the extent of his personal involvement. What is sure is that one of the three teams of architects involved was Eiffel’s company.)

BP17 attendee map

The last five people registered from these places… including 2 BP ‘alumni’, and one colleague who apparently only heard about BP17 an hour ago 🙂
Now down to the last 5 EB tickets…

Gyula Horn was minister of foreign affairs in 1989 when this photo made rounds in the world press. Hungary was the first one in the Eastern Bloc to dismantle the iron curtain. What the photo doesn’t show is that ordinary Hungarians were free to travel to Western Europe since January 1988, andmost of the physical barrier between Austria and Hungary had been torn down a few months before this photo was taken in June 1989.
Mr Horn had studied in the Soviet Union, in Rostov-na-Donu, then started his career as a cadre in the communist party – for this reason his figure has always been controversial in Hungary. Outside Hungary, especially in Germany, he’s still considered a hero, as his liberal approach in 1989 contributed to the demise of East Germany, and eventually led to re-unification. In the mid-1990’s he served as prime minister.

BP17 attendee map


The last five people registered from these places…
Legnano made its name in 1176 when a decisive battle took place nearby. Giuseppe Verdi composed the opera ‘La battaglia di Legnano’, first performed in Milano in 1849.
Verdi was also popular in Hungary; his works had been played since 1846. When the Budapest Opera House opened in 1884, several composers, including Verdi, were immortalized as statues on the building’s façade. (I only found this low-resolution photo.)

BP17 attendee map


The last 4 people registered from these cities…

The photo shows the Vienna gate (‘Bécsi kapu’), at the northern end of the Buda Castle. Until about a hundred years ago the main road to Vienna started north, and ran along the Danube.
In colloquial Hungarian comparing something to the Vienna gate means it’s unusually large or wide, especially when referring to how wide a toddler can open his mouth when feeding him with a spoon.

BP17 attendee map


The last 4 people registered from these cities… The farthest one from Arizona
The photo shows ‘Arizona’ cabaret, the poshest bar in Budapest in the 1930’s. The cinema behind it provides a hint on the year. ‘Another Dawn’ starring Errol Flynn came out in 1937.

BP17 Attendee map


The last 6 people registered from these cities… 5 of them return BP attendees 🙂
Nuremberg is now represented by three people. The city’s famous son, Albrecht Dürer was the son of an immigrant from Hungary. A.D. the elder hails from a village called Ajtós, which translates into German as ‘Türer’ (‘door maker’), or, in the local voiced dialect, Dürer.
Pictured is the conference organizer’s daughter in Albrecht Dürer’s house in the summer of 2014.

BP17 attendee map


The last five people registered from Budapest (2x), Donetsk, and Berlin (2x).

There’s a slab of the Berlin wall on Andrássy út in Budapest.

BP17 attendee map


And here’s the next five: 2 from Budapest, and 1 each from Nürnberg, Chemnitz (well, near Chemnitz), and Kyiv.

This little known historicist painting from 1882 by Pál Vágó captures the moment when the wandering Magyars appeared in the Kievan Rus on their westward journey (i.e. around 894).

BP17 attendee map


The last 5 people registered from Budapest, Belgrade, Vancouver, Salisbury, and Nuremberg.
The photo shows Belgrád rakpart, or ‘Belgrade embankment’ in central Pest, opposite Gellért Hill.

BP17 attendee map


From now on I’ll publish a map of the 5 latest registrants’ cities, ideally with a little story that relates to Budapest.

András Hadik made his name in 1740 when he captured Berlin for a few weeks in the 7-years war, a move that earned him the title field marshal from Maria Theresa (who was the very reason why the war broke out between the Habsburgs and the Prussians). His statue is in the Buda Castle.

BP17 attendee map


This is where all our speakers come from.
BP17. One world. Many perspectives.

BP17 speakers map


With the last 7 registrants now 23 countries are represented (including the speakers).

BP17 attendee map


The first 16 people registered from 12 countries.
The Italian town of Corciano holds the record: every 7000th person from there will be at BP17
Update at 21:48:    20 people from 14 countries

BP17 attendee map first 16

100 attendees registered in just 11 days

Record acceleration from 0 to 100

We hit the 100 mark just 11 days after tickets went on sale, in other words 99 days before the conference starts. This is a record speed in the history of BP conferences, and I believe even in international comparison this is an outstanding achievement.

The first hundred attendees represent a total of 27 countries, and include 28 speakers and 2 organizers.

BP17 Translation Conference first 100 attendees


One-day tickets for only 99€ for translation students

Jump-start your career with a student discount at the hottest translation conference of the year

If you’re a full-time student of translation studies in the current academic year, or you were in the previous academic year, and you’re under 30 at the time of BP17, you’re eligible to a 40€ discount off the one-day pass.

In practical terms this means you pay 99€ (+ VAT, if applicable) instead of 139€ (+ VAT).

The one-day pass allows you to attend the first day of the conference on Friday, 5 May 2017, including all catering, including dinner.  You’ll also get the conference bag with the conference magazine and any sponsor inserts.  You get to listen to 12 inspirational talks, and, perhaps most importantly, you get to rub shoulders with real-life translators who already made it.

The offer is available for students from any country.

Please note that the price of the one-day pass may increase as we get closer to the event – the discount percentage remains the same.

How it works

Please send a proof of your full-time student status, together with a photo of your ID card or passport to prove you’re under 30.   Send the files to info@bp17conf.com

You’ll receive a coupon code that you can use in the conference webshop.  Feel free to add more items, but please note the discount is valid only for the 1-day pass.

If you do not have a company yet, try to find a mentor or a senior colleague who has – if you buy your ticket as a business, you won’t have to pay VAT (unless you’re based in Hungary).

BP17 conference magazine

BP17 conference magazine for everyone

We are great believers in disseminating practical knowledge to the freelance translators’ community. Conferences are not within everyone’s reach, so BP now would like to make a great leap forward: reaching out to many more translators out there by making accessible the conference magazine for free on pdf.

Become an author

The idea is simple: we’ll create a magazine that includes relevant articles in the broad fields of business and practice for freelance translators and interpreters.  Former, current, and hopefully future conference speakers, as well as translators out there are welcome to submit their articles.

Possible subjects

Almost anything, really.  What you have say should address a relevant business or practical issue facing freelance translators or interpreters.  Articles should be well-written. If necessary, have it proofread by a native speaker before submitting.  Avoid being too general – focus on a specific issue/subject instead. (E.g. don’t submit an article with a title ‘Social media for translators’ – Try ‘How my 1000 Twitter followers turned into 10 lucrative direct clients’).

Have an idea already?

The length can be anything from a 1/4 page (roughly 150 words), through 1/2 page (roughly 380 words), a full page (700 words), up to two pages (1500 words).  The word counts are rough indications only, still waiting confirmation from the typesetter.

Deadline for submitting articles is 28 February, 2017.

If you’re considering submitting an article, please complete this short survey so that we can plan ahead.

Not all submitted articles will be published.  Some submitted articles may not be published in the printed version, but may be included in the free e-book.

What’s in it for you?

Each author may have a mini ad placed after the article: this can be either text (name, email/twitter handle, language pairs, fields), or a small image file. The exact size will be announced later, after a consultation with our typesetter.

Advertise your services

You may place 3 different sizes of ads in the magazine:  full page (A/4), half page (A/5), quarter page (A/6).  The exact image sizes will be announced later, after a consultation with our typesetter. (Allowing space for the margins and dividing lines.)  You will find these advertising options in our webshop once registration is open.

Ads are available at a discounted price until 14 February: a quarter page ad costs 150€, a half page ad costs 250€, a full page costs 450€ + VAT if applicable.

Targeting the right people

Each conference attendee will receive a free copy of the magazine – attendance is expected to exceed 200 people this year.

Immediately after the conference the magazine will be published as a freely available e-book, reaching a much larger audience around the world.

Signups for the magazine will be collected over 100 days before the conference, and the e-book will be available for free for any length of time after the event.

BP conference attendees are usually high profile freelance translators with at least 5, in many cases at least 15 years experience.  Around 90% of conference attendees usually come from European countries. With the freely available e-book we will be able to reach a geographically much more diverse audience.

BP17 Translation Conference e-book signup form



Introducing our Master of Ceremonies

Roll of drums…
Introducing Konstantin Kisin as Master of Ceremonies

BP17 Translation Conference Budapest - Konstantin Kisin

Konstantin will introduce each speaker, as well as take questions from the audience. Next year we’ll do this differently.
Slido.com is an event app that allows members of the audience to ask questions from the speaker during the presentation – using their mobiles. If you see an existing question that you find relevant, you can vote it up – or ask a new question.
Now I created a test event so that we can get a feel for it.
Open slido.com, enter the event code 4043, then shoot your questions – anything related to BP17.

I promise I’ll reply the top 3 questions Tuesday evening (20 December), and maybe I’ll pick 2 more from the rest. Bear with me, I haven’t used this service yet, so this is also a trial run for me.

Why I organize conferences for translators

I’ve been meaning to write an article on this subject for a long time, but now is the right moment to do it.

Aleppo just fell – and this horrible news touches me at a visceral level. This year has had its fair share of awful news that may have long-term consequences. Brexit in June, Trump in November. You may wonder what these political events have to do with an annual professional event.

After several decades of dismantling political, economic and physical barriers, the world now seems to be set on a course of becoming more insular, more inward-looking. As if humanity had been busy building a new tower of Babel in an attempt to attain a universal good, to experience an everlasting “end of history” – only to wake up to the harsh reality of a new wave of sectarian violence in some parts of the world, and masses of disillusioned and disenfranchised voters elsewhere.

As a conference organizer, I’ve been trying hard to find a speaker who would talk about the possible consequences of a new political order; in which English may be losing its status as a dominant working language of the European Union, in which international trade may be plummeting due to an unpredictable new administration in the United States, in which some tongues, such as Russian or Chinese, may gain significance as source languages. I have yet to find such a speaker, so this is part of the reason why I’m writing this article.

Against all odds I firmly believe that we, as translators and interpreters, are wired to be exposed to other cultures, other worldviews. In fact, we are the very people who bridge these differences; we are the foot soldiers in the eternal fight for mutual understanding. I firmly believe that by bringing together such translators and interpreters from around the world, we can experience something unique: the feeling that we matter, the feeling that what we have to say matters. Also, by building an international community of like-minded individuals whose job is to facilitate communication, we can perhaps make at least a small contribution to make this world a better place.

On a more personal level, traveling and languages have shaped me more than anything else – and I know most of our colleagues share this view. I feel deeply affected by recent conflicts around the world. My first foreign language was Russian – and as a reward for winning a local language contest in my home town at the age of 13, I spent two weeks in a Soviet pioneer camp. A couple of years ago the region around my former youth camp became the hotspot of the separatist movement of East Ukraine.
Six years later, when Hungary was still in the Eastern Bloc, and Britain was run by a female prime minister, I visited the House of Commons. I was inspired by the ideal of centuries-long parliamentary democracy – in a country where the majority of voters now opted to stay out of the European Union that used to be a dream destination for countries in the less fortunate half of Europe.

Another five years later my first oriental journey took me to Syria, with Aleppo being the first stop. Here I experienced for the first time that even though I cannot read the script, and many people dress differently from what I had been used to, they are still open-hearted and welcoming, and a universal sense of humanity connects us. When I see the fall of this ancient city, a part of me is dying – the unquestionable faith in human progress.

A few years ago, on my wife’s 40th birthday, we walked down on 5th Avenue, visiting the odd skyscraper – yes, even that one near 57th street. Back then it was simply an eerily empty block, not the sealed-off lair of a potential real-life Bond villain.

When I was half of my age today, I chose to become a freelance translator so that I can travel more and explore the world. Freelancing gave me the necessary means and the necessary freedom to do just that. Travels have opened me up even more – and also more alert to the events around the world. Wherever I’ve been, the aspect I enjoyed the most has always been interacting with people. Listening to locals talking about their lives, loves, and laughs. Bargaining on the market in the local lingo. Talking to fellow travelers.

This is the most important reason why I’m so passionate about organizing conferences for fellow translators and interpreters. I know most of the colleagues who attend our events think along the same lines. Similis simili gaudet.

BP17 Translation Conference Budapest. 4-5-6 May, 2017. Business + Practice for freelance translators and interpreters. Web: www.bpconf.com. Facebook: http://bit.ly/BP17Fb

Help select the sessions – and win a 100€ discount

Session selection surveys

BP Translation Conferences have always been ahead of the curve in experimenting with new formats, new content, and new conference experience.  Now, for the first time ever, conference attendees can have their say in selecting the sessions they would like to see most at the event.

We received many very exciting proposals that address legit needs of freelance translators.  Most potential speakers submitted 2 or 3 proposals.

How the surveys are structured

The survey lists all the proposed subjects together with a very brief description in brackets.   These are not linked to any speakers, intentionally.  The idea is to filter out any bias for or against any particular speaker.

BP Translation Conferences have always been ahead of the curve in experimenting with new formats, new content, and new conference experience.  Now, for the first time ever, conference attendees can have their say in selecting the sessions they would like to see most at the event.

At this point the goal is to select which sessions to include in the conference schedule. Masterclasses, short talks, and regular length sessions are all listed in the survey, in a randomized sequence. In fact, subjects are grouped in batches of 5, and these batches are shown in a randomized sequence.  This way we can filter out any effects of a particular session being shown first or last – respondents may get tired of grading after a while.

Under each subject you will see a scale of 1 to 4.  A grade of 4 means you want to see that session in the conference schedule;  a grade of 1 means you think that proposed session does not belong in BP17.

All questions are compulsory – please express your genuine opinion, don’t mechanically click the same values.

The whole purpose of this exercise is to democratize the selection process as objectively as possible.

A lucky winner gets a 100€ discount

Completing both surveys takes some time (shouldn’t be more than 5-7 minutes though).  In an attempt to convince as many attendees as possible to take their time to complete the survey, a prize of a 100€ discount will be awarded to one lucky winner.   Please note that a winner will be picked only if there are at least 80 respondents.

The offer is valid for the ‘full package’ only. ‘Full package’ means conference attendance on both 5 and 6 May, plus the welcome dinner on the 4th and the farewell dinner on the 6th.  (Dinner on the 5th will be included in all tickets.)

The prize is not transferable and cannot be exchanged for cash.   To be eligible, you need to provide your email address, and complete the survey by Saturday, 3 December.  Eligible email addresses will entered a certified online draw using RandomPicker.com.

> > Take the survey

You can start completing the survey here.

Who are the speakers behind these proposed subjects?

First I thought of creating a second survey with all the names, asking you to vote for them as well. Then I had the idea of simply listing all applicants here.  By the time I publish this post, I decided not tell you guys any specific names just yet.

We’ll have some return speakers from previous conferences, but the majority of the people will be new to BP conferences.  The first batch of speakers will be announced early next week.

What next

Survey results will be used to support the session selection process.  The conference organizer reserves the right to have the final word in picking the sessions for BP17.

Conference schedule is likely to be announced by mid-December.


The BP story

A short story of BP Translation Conferences

Everybody loves a good story, and we have one 🙂

Translators spend most of their time isolated behind their desks, so we need to go out and meet other members of their species from time to time.  One such isolated translator, Csaba Bán from Budapest, felt a calling to start organizing large-scale events to bring all these colleagues together.

When he finished off a large translation project of some 140k words back in 2013, he posted this feat on Facebook. Within a few minutes, some fellow translators started to remind him it’s finally time to organize another international conference – referring to a large event in 2007 that Csaba first organized under the auspices of Proz.com.

Being in an upbeat mood after delivering 140k words, he quickly called a hotel to secure a particular weekend 11 months in advance, he bought a domain name, and within half an hour after the original post, he announced BP14 Translation Conference, to be held in Budapest the following year.

BP = Budapest

At first, ‘BP’ stood for Budapest. A conference must have an easily recognizable name, and the usual abbreviation of Csaba’s hometown seemed an obvious choice. But well before BP14 even took place, Csaba had the idea of taking the event to other cities in the future – so he had to find a new meaning to BP.

BP = Business + Practice

Listening to some presentations at a translation conference in London in October 2013, the concept of ‘Business + Practice’ was born. This also set the direction the conference was set to take.

With some 150 attendees from 30 countries, BP14 was an immediate success. ‘Oh. My. God.’ / ‘You just raised the bar for translation conferences.’  / ‘So far I’ve only been to ATA conferences, but I enjoyed yours so much more.’ – These are quotes from some of the conference speakers.

BP = Boosting Productivity

As envisaged, BP15 was held outside Hungary: in Zagreb, Croatia, again with 150 attendees. We started to play with the ‘BP’ abbreviation. Soon it took on a whole range of meanings, such as ‘boosting productivity’ and ‘best presentations’.

Still in Zagreb, people started rumours that the next conference might be held in Prague – and a few weeks later Csaba announced BP16 to be held… in Prague.  This time with 180 attendees from 34 countries, BP16 was once again a tremendous success.

BP = Badass Polyglots

The first three BP translation conferences all followed the same pattern: starting on a Thursday with an ATA certification exam and a couple of workshops and sightseeing tours. We close the day with an informal welcome dinner where seasoned conference attendees mingle with newbies to set the scene for the two actual conference days that follow. Friday started with a plenary keynote session, followed by three parallel tracks for the rest of the day and the second day. A more formal (‘gala’) dinner closes the first conference day, while Saturday night we finish off the conference with a dinner/party that lasts after midnight.  Sunday is for day trips, to destinations such as Szentendre, the Plitvice lakes, or Kutná Horá.

BP Translation Conference organizer Csaba Bán with wife Zita Békeffy

BP Translation Conference organizer Csaba Bán with wife Zita Békeffy at BP16 in Prague

BP17 returns to Budapest, with a fresh new format.  The first conference day will take place in a cinema, with a series of short and inspiring talks to the entire audience, while the second day follows the familiar pattern in three parallel tracks in a conference hotel.

BP Translation Conferences are the largest independently organized events for translators in Europe.  We’re not affiliated with any national or international organization or association, nor with any CAT tool provider.

So far, the story of BP Translation Conferences has taken a full circle by coming back to Budapest. If all goes well, get yourselves ready for a BP18 as well 🙂