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e716495c
Community Member

Are my rights as a project owner protected by Upwork ?

Can a freelancer just take the business that was required by them to develop for me ? or are there legal tools on upwork that bind the freelancer to my project ?

7 REPLIES 7
petra_r
Community Member


Fouad Z wrote:

Can a freelancer just take the business that was required by them to develop for me ? or are there legal tools on upwork that bind the freelancer to my project ?


There are no "legal" tools, no. What exactly do you mean by "take the business that was required by them to develop"?

 

e716495c
Community Member

Hi Petra 

My question is that when i am coming to Upwork for something, i might be hiring someone to develop a completely new idea.

now of course I wouldn't want the freelancer to steal my idea and develop it for their own use. 

so am i protected doing such a thing through upwork ?

re: "My question is that when i am coming to Upwork for something, i might be hiring someone to develop a completely new idea. now of course I wouldn't want the freelancer to steal my idea and develop it for their own use. So am i protected doing such a thing through upwork ?"

 

Upwork provides no such protection, and does not need to.


There are two important concepts to understand, which will help put your mind at ease:

 

1) Upwork freelancers are here to earn money by working for you. An Upwork freelancer doesn't want to steal your idea and implement it on his own. He wants you to pay him money while he helps you implement the idea. Upwork freelancers are NOT the idea people. You are the idea person.

 

2) Your idea has no value. So don't worry so much about somebody stealing it.

This may sound harsh, because YOU like your idea. But it's just an idea.

Without implementation, your idea has no value.

 

Here is an idea: "A teleportation device that a person can step into and instantly be transported from London to Paris."

 

Do you think this is a great idea? You are correct. It is a tremendous idea. But I'm not worried if you or anybody else reading this post steals the idea. Because without implementation, the idea has no value.

prestonhunter
Community Member

Fouad:
I believe that your best strategy is to say to yourself:

"Upwork is a powerful tool for finding, hiring, and paying freelancers. But Upwork doesn't protect my rights as a project owner."

 

If you are proactive in always thinking about Upwork this way, then you won't be led astray by thinking that Upwork offers some kind of protections that it doesn't.

You will know that YOU are in charge of protecting your rights as a project owner. Upwork isn't in charge of that.

 

What can YOU do to protect your rights as a project owner?
The most important thing is that YOU own and control your domain name, with your own domain name registry account. And you never provide login access to your registry to any freelancer.

 

The second most important thing is that you work with a project manager to set up and manage an appropriate source code repository and/or external backup.

 

You asked:

"Are there legal tools on upwork that bind the freelancer to my project ?"

The answer is no.

There is nothing at all on Upwork that binds a freelancer to your project.

Successful clients know that a freelancer may leave the project at any time, sometimes without notice. A freelancer may get hired by somewhere else, or may adopt puppies, or may die suddenly.

 

Will this be a problem for you?

 

No.

Because your project is properly managed, with files backed up and stored in a repository that you are able to access. Plus, you have more than one team member familiar with the source code and database.

 

If one of your key freelancers ("Bill") died today, that's sad, but it doesn't hurt your project because you can assign the work that Bill was doing to Francine and Carla. The project is not in jeopardy.

Thank you Preston. I guess this is the answer i was looking for before i jump in and make a huge mistake.

is signing and NDA with the freelancers enough in your opinion ?

re: "Thank you Preston. I guess this is the answer i was looking for before i jump in and make a huge mistake.

is signing and NDA with the freelancers enough in your opinion ?"

 

I think that an NDA is unnecessary.

But it is totally allowed, and it is enough.

 

If you have concerns about your intellectual property, then go ahead and ask freelancers to sign an NDA. Do this because it will help ease your mind a bit.

 

But also:
You still need a proper code repository and backup.

 

An NDA doesn't protect you if your server crashes and the hard drive is dead and your data aren't properly backed up to an out-of-state server.

Thank you Sir!

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