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Frequently Asked Questions on TOS changes regarding information sharing and interviews

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Community Leader
Lucio Ricardo M Member Since: May 16, 2018
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The Upwork staff said that if there is needed to share emails for file sharing or if your portfolio, for example your github profile, contains your e-mail, you should tell the client not to communicate through such means until a contract is established. But the new terms of service don't state this execption for the non shraing of contact details. so that, although this permission is stated in this post, Upwork could punish me if I shared contact details before a contract stating to use it only for the file-sharing and not for contact, because such exception for the email address sharing prohibition is not stated in the new TOS.

Also, a concern is because my profile name is my full name and on Facebook I use the same full name (and I think that this is the case of many freelancers), but technically it could be considered as a violation of the TOS using the new text of that TOS.

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Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
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Upwork does not own the freelancers on its books and it does not own its clients. If a client who happens to have an account on Upwork finds a freelancer on LinkedIn, who has also worked on Upwork, this does not mean that either client or freelancer has circumvented. 

 

ETA: If Upwork wants to "own" me  then Upwork is going to have to pay me a retainer. (a liveable wage after tax)

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Ace Contributor
George S Member Since: Jun 2, 2011
533 of 913

Where are the exceptions mentioned in the new TOS ?

 

The agreement between Upwork and myself is on the bases of the TOS document not a forum post! If the exceptions listed here are not specifically included in the TOS, then they are non-binding and pretty much meaningless.

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Ace Contributor
Sean S Member Since: Mar 2, 2020
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George S wrote:

Where are the exceptions mentioned in the new TOS ?

 

The agreement between Upwork and myself is on the bases of the TOS document not a forum post! If the exceptions listed here are not specifically included in the TOS, then they are non-binding and pretty much meaningless.


This (screenshot below) was the offical reply given earlier today regarding similar questions. I'm not educated in the law. I don't know how valid or legally binding any of this is. Just passing along the official response that was given regarding the subject from various people asking.

 

ToS-updates-Valeria.JPG

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Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
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re: "I'm not educated in the law. I don't know how valid or legally binding any of this is."

 

This has nothing to do with "the law." This is about Upwork TOS. (But not ONLY Upwork TOS.)

 

Everything on Upwork is governed by a combination of Upwork TOS, Upwork system source code, and how Upwork employees and users actually use the system.

 

The new policy about keeping communications on Upwork is something we intend to follow because we want to follow Upwork's rules... whether we do that to be collegial or polite or responsible, or out of fear of being sanctioned, or for other reasons. But like many Upwork rules, this is primarily on the honor system.

 

There is certainly no law outside of Upwork, such as within the federal penal code, that suggests that people can't communicate via Zoom during a freelance job interview period.

 

When in Rome, we follow the laws of Rome. When on Upwork, we follow Upwork's rules.

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Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
536 of 913

I think what makes some people uncomfortable is the fact that how things work on Upwork is not ENTIRELY spelled out in the posted TOS.


There are other sources of rules, including policy guidelines followed by Upwork employees, rules enforced by source code, and unwritten rules. There are things that are in TOS which are there for a reason, but which are not necessarily enforced with the same consistency or level of exactitude as other things.

 

This is true everywhere.

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Ace Contributor
Sean S Member Since: Mar 2, 2020
537 of 913

Preston H wrote:

re: "I'm not educated in the law. I don't know how valid or legally binding any of this is."

 

This has nothing to do with "the law." This is about Upwork TOS. (But not ONLY Upwork TOS.)

 

Everything on Upwork is governed by a combination of Upwork TOS, Upwork system source code, and how Upwork employees and users actually use the system.

 

The new policy about keeping communications on Upwork is something we intend to follow because we want to follow Upwork's rules... whether we do that to be collegial or polite or responsible, or out of fear of being sanctioned, or for other reasons. But like many Upwork rules, this is primarily on the honor system.

 

There is certainly no law outside of Upwork, such as within the federal penal code, that suggests that people can't communicate via Zoom during a freelance job interview period.

 

When in Rome, we follow the laws of Rome. When on Upwork, we follow Upwork's rules.


I agree with all of that. I personally view Upwork as Upwork, whether it is official replies or written TOS. It's all, at the end of the day, Upwork saying it. So within that realm, I would just reference whatever Upwork-specific verbiage was in place. It seems that this line of reasoning was also confirmed by Valeria and Vladimir.

This is where my statement of ignorance comes in about law. Wasn't sure if the other post above me spoke about something being 'binding' in a legal sense, maybe they had some other insight outside of Upwork that I was unaware of. Thus my wholehearted claim of ignorance for any outside intervention with the legal system.

 

Thanks for further clarity, Preston.

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Ace Contributor
Valerie S Member Since: Jun 22, 2015
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Sean S wrote:


This (screenshot below) was the offical reply given earlier today regarding similar questions. I'm not educated in the law. I don't know how valid or legally binding any of this is. Just passing along the official response that was given regarding the subject from various people asking.

 

ToS-updates-Valeria.JPG


Keyword here is...WAS...where did this go, I can't find it????? (Not to mention this official response sounds very much fitting of your earlier mentioned Shrek/Pinnochio comparison)...

 

NEVERMIND!  Sorry, I found it.  However, it still sounds like Shrek/Pinnochio.  

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Ace Contributor
George S Member Since: Jun 2, 2011
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Sean S wrote:

George S wrote:

Where are the exceptions mentioned in the new TOS ?

 

The agreement between Upwork and myself is on the bases of the TOS document not a forum post! If the exceptions listed here are not specifically included in the TOS, then they are non-binding and pretty much meaningless.


This (screenshot below) was the offical reply given earlier today regarding similar questions. I'm not educated in the law. I don't know how valid or legally binding any of this is. Just passing along the official response that was given regarding the subject from various people asking.

 

ToS-updates-Valeria.JPG


Have you ever signed a contract specifically saying that you cannot do something and then after signing it the guy tells you ..."oh, don't worry too much, you can still do it under this and that condition" ?

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Community Guru
Maria T Member Since: Nov 12, 2015
540 of 913

George S wrote:

Sean S wrote:

George S wrote:

Where are the exceptions mentioned in the new TOS ?

 

The agreement between Upwork and myself is on the bases of the TOS document not a forum post! If the exceptions listed here are not specifically included in the TOS, then they are non-binding and pretty much meaningless.


This (screenshot below) was the offical reply given earlier today regarding similar questions. I'm not educated in the law. I don't know how valid or legally binding any of this is. Just passing along the official response that was given regarding the subject from various people asking.

 

ToS-updates-Valeria.JPG


Have you ever signed a contract specifically saying that you cannot do something and then after signing it the guy tells you ..."oh, don't worry too much, you can still do it under this and that condition" ?


Really, I think that since when a decision is made against a freelancer, we are told that what he/she did goes against TOS (sadly not specified), I hope that the exceptions are reflected in the TOS.
What will they tell us now?
"Broke the TOS and the exception reflected in the thread on the topic found on page 600"

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