I'm Ok with the connect system but I think that UpWork have to take actions from the client side too.
Very often a client post 1 project two or three times with different prices and we waste our connects.
I take time to read the project brief, write unique cover letter and when I post my proposal I notice that the same project is posted multiple times.
At least UpWork can bring back again the ability to withdraw the bid and get back the connect.
One more thing.
I notice that most freelancers bid very low, because they want to win the project.
Freelancers don't panic! -> Work Smart!
We have to adapt to the new system.
re: "At least UpWork can bring back again the ability to withdraw the bid and get back the connect."
Unfortunately, this is the very opposite of the intention of the Connects sytem.
The ability to place bids and withdraw them and get the bid options back is precisely the system that Upwork (nee Odesk) had BEFORE implementing the Connects system.
So this is not a change that will happen.
Scott countered, "The negatives you (meaning John K) point out apply just as much to the initial 60 connects as they do the additional 10..."
But there's a key difference -- I don't have to pay anything extra for the first 60 connects, aside from the 10% fee paid on every contract awarded. The 10% fee is higher than the elance fee, which I'm sure most elancers are aware of, and free connects are a compensation for the higher fee.
I'll make a general observation and then I'm done with this topic. The strategy of reducing the number of applicants by increasing the cost of applying is what prompted Upwork to implement Connects in the first place, and my impression from perusing these forums ever since Connects went online is that many freelancers have found less work than prior to the advent of Connects, and I daresay these freelancers do know how to write a proper cover letter. But I'm no Nostradamus so it is conceivable that Upwork had the right idea but didn't go far enough.
"free connects are a compensation for the higher fee."
Are they? A free account on Elance gets you 40 connects, which lets you apply for up to 40 jobs. On Upwork you get 60 connects, which lets you apply for 30 jobs.