JAT Board Face-to-Face Meeting Minutes
October 24, 2008, 1:30pm to 7:00pm
27th floor of the Horizon Mare building in Ariake, Tokyo

Chair: Manako Ihaya (MI)
Directors in attendance: Chris Blakeslee (CB), Manako Ihaya, Jamie Phillips (JP), Phil Robertson (PR), Mike Sekine (MS), Nora Stevens Heath (NSH), Jed Schmidt (JS)
Auditors in attendance: Wolfgang Bechstein (WB), Kiyoshi Chimasu (KC)
Directors represented by proxy: N/A
Minutes kept by Jed Schmidt

IJET19 wrap-up

WB: IJET committee needs to release financial statement, summary of attendance stats.
MS: Committee misinterpreted JAT loan of 1,000,000 yen as a grant, but ended up 920,000 yen in debt. Will have financial report done by end of 11/2008.

IJET20 status report

PR: Led by Michael Hendry, IJET20 is now four months away, aiming for 100+ attendees. Committee will not need more seed funding from JAT. Smaller fees from PayPal mean commissions will be less than expected. Some worries about repaying JAT loan due to falling AUS$, and that hotel is less than efficient. Details here: [link]

IJET21 status report

PR: Will be held on 4/24-25 at Miyazaki Kanko Hotel in Miyazaki. Participants estimated up to 120, with the theme of “Improving the quality of the translator’s life and strengthening translation abilities”. Details here: [link]

IJET22 status report

MI: Preliminarily considering Seattle or LA as venues, currently recruiting potential hosts.

Project Tokyo update

PR: Chaired by Ben Davis, will be held at Tokyo Convention Hall in Hamamatsu-cho. Program is already filled, with many non-members and people from outside of Kanto signing up. Themes include “Translation as a business” and “Starting out as a translator”, attendance currently at 80. Significant promotion activity, both online and offline. Worries about reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses for volunteers outside of Tokyo. Details here: [link]


NSH: New members in Q3: +10, +8, and +3 in July, August, September ‘08, respectively. PayPal growing in usage over furikomi, with less friction after last year’s automation. Most non-renewing members leave because they are no longer translators. Domestic/Overseas split steady at 67% / 33%. Nora is on last term as membership secretary, looking for a smooth handover.

JP: JAT needs to know the real names of its members, to avoid situations in which JAT is responsible for unmemberly behavior, such as libel and business fraud. Manako proposed to add the following to the sign-up form. The motion was passed unanimously:

Manako Ihaya proposes the following changes in membership signup wording:
Japan Association of Translators requires members to sign up with their legal name and full address.

Full Name (English)
Full Name (Japanese)

Displayed full name (English) (optional, this can be used as a pen name)
Displayed full name (Japanese) (optional, this can be used as a pen name)

Mike Sekine suggested that the board add a disclaimer such as the following to the membership application: “By submitting this form I agree that JAT shall not be held liable for damages resulting from any actions or opinions expressed by its members.”


JS: The JAT site renewal has started again, and the new site could be ready as early as the end of the year. The site will be largely the same, but on one framework, integrating the member directory and content into a single site, running on Expression Engine. Archives will also be added, with older archives added later. Jed is also considering using his possible upcoming candidacy as a referendum on moving jat-list to a web-based forum.

JAT contest

MS: We got 82 entries (36 J>E, 46 E>J) this year, and they’ve already been pre-screened. They are currently waiting to be judged.
MI: With 480,000 yen budgeted for screeners and judges for 82 entries, does the budget make sense? Screener payment is an issue: is it enough or too much?


CB: JAT has seen more red ink in the past term than any other recent year, but only because we’ve finally managed to allocate our budget towards things that matter, and also that the past few IJETs have run a loss (possibly as a function of being held in more remote locations). JAT still has quite a cushion of funds that are collecting minimal interest, prompting some to wonder whether it should be invested elsewhere.

AGM / Board elections

Jed proposed that III (3) 2 be changed to: Each member shall be able to vote “Yea”, “Nay”, or “Abstain” for each director or auditor. Passed: 6 for, 1 abstain.

MI: Need to put together an election committee in time to get candidate statements by late March.
WB: The full election results should be published for the sake of transparency.
MI: Do the bylaws need to be changed to accommodate JAT members that want to run for the board, but let their membership lapse and do not meet the one-year requirement? Board decided on “No” for the time being.

Public relations

MS: Activities over the past year will be summarized at the AGM, as well as the TAC meeting tomorrow.
MI: Should JAT submit to present at ATA in New York next year? MS: JAT should consider hosting a party there, to drum up new possible member.

The Board decided that JAT would pay for the nijikai cost for the speaker at the October Tokyo TAC meeting.