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Updates to Upwork Messages

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Community Manager
Lena E Community Manager Member Since: Apr 7, 2015
1 of 28

Thank you for your feedback to the recently announced TOS changes. We appreciate your suggestions on how Upwork Messages can work better for you. To help address these challenges, we are working on product enhancements that will be coming your way very soon. This list is not comprehensive and we will continue to improve our message center to fit your needs. We are listening and we will be providing updates as more enhancements progress and rollout. 

 

  • Join a call using dial-in number and pin code. In addition to starting or joining a call from Upwork Messages, you will also be able to dial a number on your phone to join a call, if needed. 

 

  • Scheduling meetings. We will soon be releasing meeting reminders which can be set up in the message center with just a few clicks -- stay tuned for more details in a formal announcement. We noted your feedback and understand the importance of making it easier for you to schedule meetings. We are looking to introduce further integrations to allow for scheduling and calendar access. 

 

  • Messaging to create awareness of the new TOS changes. We understand that many of you are concerned about clients being aware of these new changes. We don’t expect you to bear the burden of educating them. Upwork Messages will display pop-ups and in-product messaging to let users know that sharing contact information before a contract is in place is not allowed.

  • Video calling available in mobile apps. Our mobile apps will soon be updated to allow you to join calls on-the-go, from the iOS and Android apps. Formal announcement coming soon.

 

  • Help guides for setting up camera and mic access. Some browsers are set up to block access to your camera and/or microphone. We’ll provide in-product guidance to check your browser configuration before your next call so you can be sure you’re ready.

 

  • Product fixes to work more seamlessly with your browser’s setup. These fixes will recognize when you change permissions in your browser to give Upwork Messages access to your camera/microphone.

 

We acknowledge that some users experience difficulties with joining a call and have had audio issues during a call. A majority of these issues can be attributed to browser configuration issues as we outlined above, or internet bandwidth and computer issues. Our customer support team will be able to assist you with checking your computer settings and troubleshooting any issues you’re facing. More updates to come, stay tuned!

 

 

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Active Member
Spencer S Member Since: Jun 15, 2020
2 of 28

I see "Schedule Meetings" as a feature in your post but it doesn't look like it's actually a feature. At least not yet. Is that correct? We will not be allowed to share a link with our calendar availability to expedite interview scheduling under this new ToS even though there's no current alternative on the Upwork platform?

 

Also, myself and many other freelancers qualify the clients we interview with by using an intake form (e.g. Google Forms; HubSpot forms, etc.) prior to getting on a call with them. This allows us to make the intitial call significantly more productive (if it is a good fit) as well as completely avoid calls (and save time for both the client and freelancer) if it's not a good client-freelancer fit. Will we be prohibited from using these forms as well?

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Community Manager
Lena E Community Manager Member Since: Apr 7, 2015
3 of 28

Hi Spencer, 

 

No, we will not allow email addresses to be shared for scheduling purposes during pre-contract communications. I know that many of you use calendar services like Calendly to coordinate interview schedules. We are working to release integrations that will help with scheduling in the near future, however, they're not available yet. 

Regarding the form, yes, you can send a direct link to a form for a client to fill out as long as it doesn't require them to provide an email address to receive it. There are several platforms that do offer direct links to forms that you could utilize, including as you mentioned, Google forms. 

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Community Guru
Maria T Member Since: Nov 12, 2015
4 of 28

Messaging to create awareness of the new TOS changes. We understand that many of you are concerned about clients being aware of these new changes. We don’t expect you to bear the burden of educating them. Upwork Messages will display pop-ups and in-product messaging to let users know that sharing contact information before a contract is in place is not allowed.

 

It's OK to add notices to let customers know about the rule, if they're new.
What I was asking was whether the clients are NOW being informed of the changes.
Because, I would like to know what they think about this and what problems arise for them.
Actually, only a few clients have appeared, and I'm afraid that they mostly appeared because they are "freelancer and client" and received the notice as freelancers.

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Community Manager
Lena E Community Manager Member Since: Apr 7, 2015
5 of 28

Hi Maria, we sent notices to all customers, not just freelancers. Clients are aware of these changes. 

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Community Guru
Aleksandr S Member Since: Jun 22, 2015
6 of 28

@lenaellis wrote:

Hi Maria, we sent notices to all customers, not just freelancers. Clients are aware of these changes. 


That's a pretty big statement, but unfortunately it's not true. I have no doubt all the clients did receive updates, but did at least half of them bother reading these emails? Smiley Frustrated

Google sends updates, Microsoft sends updates, Slack sends updates, Upwork sends updates. I'm a client and I don't even open similar emails, they just go to trash immediately.

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Community Manager
Lena E Community Manager Member Since: Apr 7, 2015
7 of 28

Hi Aleksandr, 

 

Yes, not everyone reads emails. That is why in addition to the emails, Upwork Messages will display pop-ups and in-product messaging to let users know that sharing contact information before a contract is in place is not allowed, as mentioned in my post.

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Community Guru
Maria T Member Since: Nov 12, 2015
8 of 28

Hi Lena,
Thank you for answering, but, since it is admitted that not everyone reads the messages (or does not reach them), would it not be better if, to get ahead of work, you start to put those adds now?

 

Because if not, when this starts working, the flood of questions and complaints (even from customers who are already in Upwork) can be unsustainable.

 

 

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Community Guru
Pandora H Member Since: May 11, 2010
9 of 28

Aleksandr S wrote:

@lenaellis wrote:

Hi Maria, we sent notices to all customers, not just freelancers. Clients are aware of these changes. 


That's a pretty big statement, but unfortunately it's not true. I have no doubt all the clients did receive updates, but did at least half of them bother reading these emails? Smiley Frustrated

Google sends updates, Microsoft sends updates, Slack sends updates, Upwork sends updates. I'm a client and I don't even open similar emails, they just go to trash immediately.


That!  Also, neither of my busy clients saw the email. They probably both got it, and either never actually read it, or they trashed it without reading it.

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Active Member
Mahmoud M Member Since: Nov 20, 2018
10 of 28

Hi Lena! I just checked my inbox and for some reason, I did not receive an email about this new change! Can someone please check with me about this problem? I just don't want to miss any important update in the future Thanks!

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