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Re: Frequently Asked Questions on TOS changes regarding information sharing and interviews

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Active Member
Alex T Member Since: Nov 19, 2017
11 of 792

Lena E wrote:

Hi Alex, 

 

Many of your questions have been answered in the post. If a client needs to send a large file they can use a filesharing service that doesn't require an email. We also have Dropbox integrated already in Upwork Messages. You can share links to any of your portfolios and sites as long as they don't require an email for the other party to access them.  Also, the Video/voice feature in Messages already has a screen share function. 

 

-Lena


Thanks for the reply Smiley Happy

 

This looks like a war on "emails" rather then restricting contact outside of UpWork.

 

Sending email to get into a privite github reposotory - bad. Sending a link to public reposotory which has contact info, user name and email - good? What if the reposotory is over 20 gigs and privite? they will have to download, host it somewhere, send it, then I need to download and then only see if this work is for me? this is extra hours that I am not paid for.

 

Easy comunication was one of the top priorities why I use upwork and not getafreelancer and many other Smiley Sad

 

 

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Joshua D Member Since: Oct 22, 2016
12 of 792

It's allowed to send a link to a portfolio, and a GitHub profile is essentially a web developer's portfolio, so even if we can't share our GitHub username, I guess we can share a link to our GitHub "portfolio", and the username is included in that. That would be enough for clients to share a repository, but I guess it would be up to the client to determine whether them sharing the repo would be a ToS violation.

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Eli M Member Since: Nov 18, 2019
13 of 792

The screenshare function is so blurry that it makes it hard to read text.

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Community Guru
Kim F Member Since: Aug 26, 2015
14 of 792

Is LinkedIn classed as a social media account?

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Ace Contributor
Andrzej L Member Since: Oct 19, 2015
15 of 792

Introducing changes... Seeing that it's not gonna work well, adding exceptions... I'm sure there will be more exceptions added. And you'll need to introduce 'Upwork police' and 'Upwork Court' to investigate and judge.

A client or freelancer may only share contact information if 
it is for the sole purpose of giving the other party access to a system
that allows them to scope the project in advance.
This allows freelancers to review a project prior to a contract so they can determine
if they have the needed skills, how many hours it will take, etc.

1. Will you review all Message rooms and investigate what kind of contact information has been shared and for what purpose?

2. What if a client send to a freelancer a PDF document as a part of job description, but this docuemnt contains comany name, address, phone number? There were no intention to work outside Upwork, but by your rules should the freelancer report this client and stop negotiation with him?

3. What if freelancer accidentaly send some old document (as a part of portfolio) and there was contact information?

4. What if a client googled freelancer's name and found his web site, LinkedIn, Twitter? Will you give freelancers numbers instead of names? Should a freelancer call 'Upwok Police' if a client messaged him ouside of Upwork (with no intention to start any work without Upwork contract)? 

5. What if a freelancer and a client already worked together on Upwork? What if they worked together on Elance years ago?

6. What if client needs video conference with his team members that had no Upwork account? Should a freelancer say 'Good Bye! I'm not gonna use Zoom, I'm gonna call Upwork Police!'

7. A client and a freelancer always can start 1 hour hourly rate contract and share contact information, isn't it? Should you introduce new kind of a contract (probably with no feedbacks allowed, limited time and limited cost), so a client can create it in one click and then parties can discuss future job using e-mail, phone and whatever they want?

Exception
Our larger business partners often have specific requirements 
and business needs that make it more difficult to use our communications
exclusively. Clients who utilize Upwork Business and Enterprise solutions
are permitted to request and share contact information, as well as conduct
interviews or pre-contract communications, outside of Upwork.
This exception extends to professionals’ communications with an Upwork Business
or Enterprise client.

8. Will you introduce a notification about this exception? Clearly visible but not stupid pop up message box. For example, message room highlighted with a green border = parties can share contact deatils, with read border - they can't do that.

I never broke your rules (I was on Elance since 2011) and not gonna do it intentionaly, but this new rule with growing exceptions is really (beeing honest) stupid and ruins all basic pricniples of modern business communicaions. It's either freelancers and clients ignore your rule and you have to add new and new exceptions or Upwork Police butches everyone and ruins your business and pushing freelancers and clients to search alternative platform.

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Community Guru
Maria T Member Since: Nov 12, 2015
16 of 792

"6. Can I share files before a contract starts?
Users are free to share files via Upwork Messages at any time. Documents can be added into Messages for sharing or you can use an external file share service that doesn't require the use of an email address. Additionally, Messages is integrated with Dropbox allowing users to share files without needing to provide contact information."

 

Still with problems. What if the client has his files in a service that requires email? Should I force him to change his site? Bad!

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Community Guru
Virginia F Member Since: Feb 15, 2016
17 of 792

Maria T wrote:

"6. Can I share files before a contract starts?
Users are free to share files via Upwork Messages at any time. Documents can be added into Messages for sharing or you can use an external file share service that doesn't require the use of an email address. Additionally, Messages is integrated with Dropbox allowing users to share files without needing to provide contact information."

 

Still with problems. What if the client has his files in a service that requires email? Should I force him to change his site? Bad!


What's bad is that once again, U is introducing something that was not carefully thought through. Of course this is not going to work and why anyone would think it would is beyond me. I haven't looked to see if anyone has mentioned this, but the vast majority of clients, especially in some categories, attach all kinds of items that contain personal information. Information that any (scammy) freelancer can read and act on without even submitting a bid.

 

Despite what Upwork believes, there are a lot of clients who find this site very hard to navigate. New clients especially may not be aware that a freelancer shouldn't contact them directly - those are the clients leaving "I've been scammed" posts in the client forum. 

 

Upwork, are you going to start policing every singe job post to make sure it's scrubbed clean? Are you going to let all clients know they can't add attachments that contain contact info? As I think some have mentioned, we are not going to be the client police ... Upwork will have to take on that role. Good luck.

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Artem O Member Since: Jul 2, 2018
18 of 792

As been mentioned before – private code repositories (for example GitLab and Bitbucket) requires email to create user account.

Developers must check the code and project before rolling in.

This is not possible at the moment withouth sharing an email address.

 

What to do?

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Ace Contributor
Laura K Member Since: Nov 5, 2019
19 of 792

You must see how complex these changes will make basic communication? Right?

This will increase the time investment for both clients and freelancers.

It will make it impossible to fully assess and quote potential work, leading to an increase in unhappy clients and failed contracts.

It will, as it's doing to me, drive away freelancers who know better than to rely on a website that will use a continuely growing list of reasons to freeze accounts. My freelance facebook groups are currently full of people discussing how to make the move away from Upwork. I've seen similar posts on reddit.

Upwork keeps responding "we've improved our communication systems" while freelances keep saying "I JUST tried it with a client and it failed". 
Seriously? Just....seriously?

Serious freelancers want to provide the best work possible, and you're doing everything you can to make that impossible.

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Active Member
Elizabeth M Member Since: Feb 26, 2018
20 of 792

Re: Calendly and other scheduling systems

 

"We understand that many users need a way to schedule meetings and interviews. You can use Upwork Messages to quickly discuss and schedule an interview. We are looking at adding new features to Upwork Messages, including a calendar option for scheduling. " 

 

This is very much not an answer to this problem. These types of discussions are often lengthy and complicated. Scheduling systems exist for a reason. 

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