I know that the burden of applying for jobs is for the freelancer and you should choose jobs that are best suited for you. However, I am of the opinion that Upwork should have a minimum rate for some of the professions like writing.
There has been an increasing number of clients with a screaming set of rules and then demand to only pay $1 per 500 words. I think like there is minimum pay in other areas of employment, there should be some regulations or discouragement of such clients. I personally would never work for such people but, I feel for the naive newbie who is desperate to get job and gets hooked working for 6 months for peanuts. Just my thoughts.
Please know that Upwork does not support contract rates under $3.00 per hour (including the Upwork Service fee) for hourly contracts. The minimum rate for hourly contracts is $3 per hour, while the minimum rate for milestones are at $5.
If you see jobs that have rates lower than what has been mentioned above, you may flag the job post and appropriate actions will be taken against the job post.
@Timothy G wrote:
I think like there is minimum pay in other areas of employment,
Employment, Timothy. Employment. Freelancing is a client/provider relationship, there are no laws regulations or whatsoever in client/provider contracts.
Your job history has an influence on what kind of client you will attract on Upwork. You cannot reasonably ask for higher rates while the clients can see the rate you're already accepting.
(Edited to comply with community guidelines.)
So $1 per 500 words is a big problem but $2 isn't? Because you've worked at that rate in the past.
This is an open market (mostly). Clients can ask what they want. Freelancers can ask what they want.
You get to set your own minimum rate, like everyone else.