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Re: Terms of Service Update 2018

Community Guru
Steven E. L Member Since: May 5, 2015
51 of 128

This entire thread could have been avoided with a modicum of planning and proofreading.

Community Guru
Kim F Member Since: Aug 26, 2015
53 of 128

Other changes I can see are below. There are likely more I haven't found.

 

Was 3.3

When requested, you must provide us with information about you and your business.

 

New 1.6 IDENTITY AND LOCATION VERIFICATION

When requested, you must timely provide us with complete information about yourself and your business.

 

The words ‘timely’ and ‘complete’ have been added with no definition of what these mean.

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That subcontracting is allowed is explicity stated in a new paragraph:

New 2.1

Freelancers are free to use subcontractors or employees to perform Freelancer Services and may delegate work on fixed-price contracts or by agreeing with their Clients to have hourly contracts for Freelancer’s subcontractor(s) or employee(s).

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Change in regard to feedback:

 

Was 3.6

In order to protect the integrity of the feedback system and protect Users from abuse, Upwork reserves the right (but is under no obligation) to remove posted feedback or information that, in Upwork’s sole judgment, violates the Terms of Service or negatively affects our marketplace.

 

New 2.3

In order to protect the integrity of the feedback system and protect Users from abuse, Upwork reserves the right (but is under no obligation) to remove posted feedback or information that, in Upwork’s sole judgment, violates the Terms of Service or negatively affects our marketplace, diminishes the integrity of the feedback system or otherwise is inconsistent with the business interests of Upwork.

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Addition made to non-circumvention (7)

 

For the avoidance of doubt, if you, or the business you represent, did not identify and were not identified by another party through the Site, such as if you and another User worked together before meeting on the Site, then the Non-Circumvention Period does not apply. If you use the Site as an employee, agent, or representative of another business, then the Non-Circumvention Period applies to you and other employees, agents, or representatives of the business when acting in that capacity with respect to the other User.

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Opt out fee increased (7) from $2,500 to $3,500

 

Old (7)

(a) an “Opt-Out Fee” computed to be the greater of the following amounts:

(i) $2,500; or

(ii) 15% of the cost to the Client of the services to be performed in the Upwork Relationship during the Non-Circumvention Period, as estimated in good faith by the prospective Client; or

(iii) all Service Fees that would be earned by Upwork from the Upwork Relationship during the Non-Circumvention Period, computed based on the annualized amount earned by Freelancer from Client during the most recent normalized 8-week period, or during such shorter period as data is available to Upwork; and

(b) interest at the rate of 18% per annum or the maximum rate permitted by applicable law, whichever is less, calculated from the date Client first makes payment to the subject Freelancer until the date the Opt-Out Fee is paid.

 

New (7)

The Opt-Out Fee is computed as follows

(a) interest at the rate of 18% per annum or the maximum rate permitted by applicable law, whichever is less, on the amount calculated in (b), from the date Client first makes payment to the subject Freelancer until the date the Opt-Out Fee is paid; and

(b) the greater of:

(i) $3,500; or

(ii) 25% of the anticipated annualized salary or wages for one year if the Client offers Freelancer employment directly; or

(iii) all Service Fees that would be earned by Upwork from the Upwork Relationship during the Non-Circumvention Period, computed based on the annualized amount earned by Freelancer from Client during the most recent normalized 8-week period, or during such shorter period as data is available to Upwork;

(iv) provided, however, that if the amount in (ii) and (iii) cannot be ascertained due to uncertainty or lack of sufficient information, then Upwork and you agree that fee shall be $3,500; if only one of (ii) or (iii) can be ascertained, then Upwork and you agree that amount shall be used if it is greater than $3,500.

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Community Guru
Phyllis G Member Since: Sep 8, 2016
53 of 128

@Steven E. L wrote:

This entire thread could have been avoided with a modicum of planning and proofreading.


 No kidding. If we ran our businesses the way this whole thing was handled, none of us would have a JSS above 35.

Community Guru
Isabelle Anne A Member Since: May 19, 2014
54 of 128

Others have pointed out the most important issues, but I'm also really curious to know how Upwork can claim the word "Up" as a tradmark?? 

 

Also, as I'm not getting email notifications for Upwork messages (just another bug), is it wise to limit alternative communication methods with potential clients?

Community Guru
Maria T Member Since: Nov 12, 2015
55 of 128

@Isabelle Anne A wrote:

 

Also, as I'm not getting email notifications for Upwork messages (just another bug), is it wise to limit alternative communication methods with potential clients?


 

I think we do not have to pay fair for sinners.
Do they do it to protect new freelancers from possible abuse?
Well, look for another way that does not obstruct the flow of communication to those who already know how this works.

 

If that new rule of the TOS to restrict alternative methods of communication with customers goes ahead, I think it will be a disaster.
Even in the interview stage for a possible job, I often use the mail for communication. I find it more friendly and comfortable, in addition to not having to be aware of the "down" of Upwork (which has given me problems more than once).

 

The important thing, what I want to be reflected, I write it through Upwork. But for constant processing and sending samples, for example, I prefer another method.
And, if I can not give my mail, and the client can not give me his, how do I do it?

Community Guru
John K Member Since: Feb 17, 2015
56 of 128

Perhaps this is not a new provision in the ToS, but I find this example of prohibited site use curious:

  • Selling, trading, or giving an account to another person without Upwork’s consent;

Does that mean there are circumstances under which Upwork would consent to the sale, trade, or other transfer of freelancer profiles?

__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce
Community Guru
Ela K Member Since: Feb 9, 2015
57 of 128

@John K wrote:

Perhaps this is not a new provision in the ToS, but I find this example of prohibited site use curious:

  • Selling, trading, or giving an account to another person without Upwork’s consent;

Does that mean there are circumstances under which Upwork would consent to the sale, trade, or other transfer of freelancer profiles?


Good question.

I can think of at least one case where UW seems to go out of their way to protect a profile that I can prove used to belong to another person (the one you, John,  figured out correctly Smiley Wink) or was 100% fraudulent from the get-go.

Either way, this profile is now obviously - for all the world to see - associated with another provider than some months ago and UW seems to be down with that. And it surely isn't the only case.

 

Also, the fact that it's now possible to sub-contract hourly jobs as well seems to indicate that UW was tired of dealing with complaints about farming operations. I have the impression that it just got easier to thrive in the 'shadows'. 

And at the same time, somebody (and I REALLY want to know who came up with the idea to penalize communication outside the platform prior to contracting!) is seriously trying to make it harder for us to conduct our business. 

The only explanation I can come up with is that either the people discussing the changes do NOT know how

a) this platform or

b) freelancing works.

Quite possibly both. 

Community Guru
Rene K Member Since: Jul 10, 2014
58 of 128

@Ela K wrote:

@John K wrote:

Perhaps this is not a new provision in the ToS, but I find this example of prohibited site use curious:

  • Selling, trading, or giving an account to another person without Upwork’s consent;

Does that mean there are circumstances under which Upwork would consent to the sale, trade, or other transfer of freelancer profiles?


Good question.

I can think of at least one case where UW seems to go out of their way to protect a profile that I can prove used to belong to another person (the one you, John,  figured out correctly Smiley Wink) or was 100% fraudulent from the get-go.


I would love to know how the selling of a profile works. Now that this is officially allowed (and we all know of this German translator who transferred her profile to a Nigerian guy).

 

Let's say I want to sell mine. So how does this work? Do I have to send a request to Upwork? Do they take a cut?

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"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless
Highlighted
Community Guru
Reinier B Member Since: Nov 3, 2015
59 of 128

@Rene K wrote:

@Ela K wrote:

@John K wrote:

Perhaps this is not a new provision in the ToS, but I find this example of prohibited site use curious:

  • Selling, trading, or giving an account to another person without Upwork’s consent;

Does that mean there are circumstances under which Upwork would consent to the sale, trade, or other transfer of freelancer profiles?


Good question.

I can think of at least one case where UW seems to go out of their way to protect a profile that I can prove used to belong to another person (the one you, John,  figured out correctly Smiley Wink) or was 100% fraudulent from the get-go.


I would love to know how the selling of a profile works. Now that this is officially allowed (and we all know of this German translator who transferred her profile to a Nigerian guy).

 

Let's say I want to sell mine. So how does this work? Do I have to send a request to Upwork? Do they take a cut?


 Rene, the usual fee structure will likely apply. In your case though, the fee will only be 5%, since you will almost certainly get more than $10 000 for your account/profile Smiley Happy

Community Guru
Reinier B Member Since: Nov 3, 2015
60 of 128

@Ela K wrote:

@John K wrote:

Perhaps this is not a new provision in the ToS, but I find this example of prohibited site use curious:

  • Selling, trading, or giving an account to another person without Upwork’s consent;

Does that mean there are circumstances under which Upwork would consent to the sale, trade, or other transfer of freelancer profiles?


Good question.

I can think of at least one case where UW seems to go out of their way to protect a profile that I can prove used to belong to another person (the one you, John,  figured out correctly Smiley Wink) or was 100% fraudulent from the get-go.

Either way, this profile is now obviously - for all the world to see - associated with another provider than some months ago and UW seems to be down with that. And it surely isn't the only case.

 

Also, the fact that it's now possible to sub-contract hourly jobs as well seems to indicate that UW was tired of dealing with complaints about farming operations. I have the impression that it just got easier to thrive in the 'shadows'. 

And at the same time, somebody (and I REALLY want to know who came up with the idea to penalize communication outside the platform prior to contracting!) is seriously trying to make it harder for us to conduct our business. 

The only explanation I can come up with is that either the people discussing the changes do NOT know how

a) this platform or

b) freelancing works.

Quite possibly both. 


 It seems that as a sort of compromise in allowing sub-contracting, contracts are now in peril of a dispute for only 30 days, as opposed to 60 days as before. Interestingly, I also noticed that all references to "Payment Protection" for fixed-price contracts have been removed from the updated ToS/User agreement. Unless of course, I missed something.  

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