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

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Community Guru
Pandora H Member Since: May 11, 2010
61 of 790

Nick G wrote:

I have been doing some data analysis off and on concerning the previous thread. Here is some interesting data for my fellow freelancers from the first 100 pages of it.

 

  • There were 36 instances in which a person with no history of communicating to the group discussion registered the day of their first post and posted a positive message about the new change.
  • Of these 36, 35 of them were anywhere from 1 phrase to 1 sentence in length. The other one was 2 sentences long.
  • Of these 36, 24 of them had their profiles blocked from public view.
  • Of these 36, the other 12 had public profiles with 0 hours worked and 0 jobs hired for.

 

I can't tell you my conclusion of this evidence, because I'd like this post to not get deleted. It might anyway, but I'd suggest you all crunch those numbers and reach your own conclusions.


To be fair:

 

I had a short meeting with a contractor on my clients team, who I recruited a couple of months ago. She's been around Upwork since 2007, but does not bother with the forums. After what I told her, it looks like she will be paying a little more attention. 

 

Point is, people who have been around a while but don't read the forums really have no clue. On the other hand, some of those other comments in the original thread were pretty questionable.

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Community Guru
Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
62 of 790

undefined:

I have been doing some data analysis off and on concerning the previous thread. Here is some interesting data for my fellow freelancers from the first 100 pages of it.

 

  • There were 36 instances in which a person with no history of communicating to the group discussion registered the day of their first post and posted a positive message about the new change.
  • Of these 36, 35 of them were anywhere from 1 phrase to 1 sentence in length. The other one was 2 sentences long.
  • Of these 36, 24 of them had their profiles blocked from public view.
  • Of these 36, the other 12 had public profiles with 0 hours worked and 0 jobs hired for.

 

I can't tell you my conclusion of this evidence, because I'd like this post to not get deleted. It might anyway, but I'd suggest you all crunch those numbers and reach your own conclusions.


 

These questions have been around for a long, long time...

 

https://community.upwork.com/t5/Freelancers/Top-Rated-freelancers-are-HAPPY-people/td-p/87515

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Community Guru
Pandora H Member Since: May 11, 2010
63 of 790

Ela K wrote:

 


 

These questions have been around for a long, long time...

 

https://community.upwork.com/t5/Freelancers/Top-Rated-freelancers-are-HAPPY-people/td-p/87515


I remember that. It was both wierd and funny.

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Active Member
Anton K Member Since: Sep 9, 2016
64 of 790

I use Calendly or another scheduling software to coordinate interview schedules. Can I do that via Upwork Messages?
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. 


No, no you can't do it "quickly". I use calendly because I can send a person in Australia a link while they sleep, they can set up a time to talk while I sleep, and then I can wake up in the morning to find out that I have a call first thing at 9am. Works great. 

 

Without Calendly, this process would literally take days of back and forth and will still be super prone to errors because time zones mixed in with daylight savings (that has been cancelled in many countries around the world) are confusing. What this means is that I spend more time using Upwork Messages (for which Upwork doesn't get any money) and less time actually working with clients (for which Upwork earns its fees). Who wins?

 

So this calendar integration feature better be available (and working well) on 6/26. And please stop the BS with "oh you can easily do this with Upwork Messages". No, you can't. Just be honest and say "We're working on a solution, but please use Upwork Messages in the meantime".

 

But beyond that, the problem is that you're creating a bureaucratic nightmare. "Just remind the client to not contract you off of Upwork" - seriously? I'm going to need to do legal disclaimers in every client conversation? 

 

And sure, you might jerry-rig some kind of solution for calendar integration by 6/26, but it won't be as good as Calendly or similar services who literally live and breathe this stuff. This is the same for other platforms like Zoom, Google Drive, etc. They are better apps and will always be better apps and clients will always prefer them. You won't outcompete major software providers in their own niche.

 

Honestly, what all of this tells me is that Upwork management is completely clueless about how their platform is used. Which doesn't bode well for the company. Thankfully, it's now publicly taded, so if it tanks 2 years down the line because of nonsense like this, somebody will buy it on the cheap and will (hopefully) do a better job.

Active Member
Anton K Member Since: Sep 9, 2016
65 of 790

What's moronic is that with all these exclusions, it will now be just as easy to evade detection if you wanted to take things off of Upwork. Just create a google doc with your contact info and send the link to the client, with the legal disclaimer to "please don't take this off of Upwork".

 

So y'all just created a whole bunch more rules that will significantly disrupt how freelancers work, but you will literally have 0 impact on people flouting Upwork's ToS.

 

Way to go.

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Ace Contributor
George S Member Since: Jun 2, 2011
66 of 790

You know that a rule makes no sense when just to make it work you need a ton of exceptions. So now before answering any question during the interview I need to go through the rule book to see if an exception applies. What a mess!

 

All of us understand that we cannot take work outside the platform and we're all fine with that. I repeat here again, with this move Upwork is only showing further that they have no trust in us. We, freelancers, built the success of Upwork through years of hard work and they don't trust us? why?  You can put harsher penalties for those who take work outside the platform, I'd be more than happy with that but stop with this nonsense.

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Active Member
Zvonka B Member Since: May 26, 2020
67 of 790

Lena E wrote


- 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 

 


- What should I do if a client or freelancer shares their contact information or requests mine?
Let them know that sharing contact information before a contract has started is against the TOS and that all communications prior to the contract starting must take place on Upwork. We also encourage you to let us know if a TOS violation has happened by using the Flag as Inappropriate option throughout the platform. You can learn more about user reporting here.

 

 

 


I guess we will have to rewrite our concerns one more time.

The biggest one is that we are all surprised that you don't know how freelancers work or communicate on your own platform.

Regarding sharing files, as a video editor, my clients almost never want to send their files via link so that anyone with a link can access their footage. They always want to give you and only you acces wich requires sharing an email adress.

In general as freelancers, we learned not to create any inconvinece to our clients, which means that if they have files in google drive, we will use drive, if they have them in OneDrive, we will use OneDrive and so on.

Any inconviniece for a client is simply too much for ask.

I can't imagine asking a potential client to move 50GB of footage from drive to dropbox and then on top of it share it via public link.

This is just something we don't do. We use whatever tools they use and go along as much as possible.

 

 

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Active Member
Anastasiia H Member Since: Oct 26, 2018
68 of 790

So, just to clarify - maybe it was somewhere here or in the old thread, but anyway -  if the client wants to send me a large file - for example, Google Drive link, but a direct link, without using email (it can be done if the file can be viewed only by the users who has the link and that's all)

Is that OK, can I access that link, or send the direct links to the files like these?

Thanks!

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Community Guru
Pandora H Member Since: May 11, 2010
69 of 790

Anastasiia H wrote:

So, just to clarify - maybe it was somewhere here or in the old thread, but anyway -  if the client wants to send me a large file - for example, Google Drive link, but a direct link, without using email (it can be done if the file can be viewed only by the users who has the link and that's all)

Is that OK, can I access that link, or send the direct links to the files like these?

Thanks!


It's not unusual for files to be given permissions settings that more or less say

 

"anyone outside our domain can edit and view this file" - And this is just for sharing a file via a link with no account info in it. 

 

So yes, it can be done, and it's within the 6/26 TOS. Of course, I know not all clients will understand how to do this, so my suggestion would be that if you need this to happen a lot, you write up instuctructions for how to send file links to you, while being complient with the lame contact restrictions.

 

Edit: Adding that depending on the customers Google Drive setup (it can vary quite a lot), you may NEED to use a google account of your own to open the file, but you DO NOT need to share said google account with the customer. This is just a security precuation on Googles part. I don't have the exact wording handy, but I have to do all sorts of silly permissions for sharing files with customers quite often.

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Moderator
Valeria K Moderator Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
70 of 790

Hi Anastasiia,

 

Yes, you can use sharing tools and code services that allow for sharing out links to the files without requiring an email address.

~ Valeria
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