So, I struck up a contract with someone by the name of **edited for Community Guidelines** on this site. They wanted some weird story written with them. They agreed to the hours. And then without telling me, they paused, then canceled the contract before I had my hours put in tonight. I still have our archived discussion, but I can't seem to find any way to dispute that I actually worked for them. And I have a feeling that there isn't, and that I'm likely not protected in the slightest.
I feel pretty naive for believing that I could just freelance for people and not have to worry about them blocking me from logging work that I performed for them, and ghosting me. I won't be surprised if I'm SOL, but there's a little bit of hope that I can get help using the archived messages between us. I just...haven't found a way to report what happened. Usually that sorta thing would be easy to find.
Solved! Go to Solution.
Why didn't you use the time tracker? Upwork is very explicit with the fact that if you log hours manually and not using the tracker, you're not protected in any way. Especially since this task was writing-related, I fail to see why you didn't use the tracker the way it's intended to be used.
You can't dispute hours you didn't log or track.
It is entirely possible that the client reasonably expected you to have tracked your hours. You could politely contact the client and apologize for your mistake of not properly tracking your hours. The client can pay you as a bonus.
Jordan B wrote:
I feel pretty naive for believing that I could just freelance for people and not have to worry
Well, you wouldn't have to worry about it if you had used the tools at your proposal properly.
I've tried finding a way of reached out to them since the PM was archived and wouldn't let me send further messages, but all it says is 'You can no longer message this user' and unless I'm missing something important (which wouldn't surprise me, given how badly I messed up), I can't find their profile or view it either.
Sounds like the client was banned due to a terms of service violation. Either that, or they blocked you. Consider yourself lucky and consider this a lesson. It could have been much, much worse. A malicious client could've stolen several days' worth of work from you with a single click if you logged everything using manual time.
Varun G wrote:
Sounds like the client was banned due to a terms of service violation.
No, it does not. A client who has been suspended and stopped from sending messages looks like this
Well, looks like he blocked you then. Lesson learned.
That said, because he never paid for the work in full (or at all?) he does not own the work. Occasionally google a paragraph of what you've written. If you find it anywhere on the net, you can ussue a take-down notice...
I'm sorry to learn about your experience with this client. I highly recommend that you read up the "Safety First!" section of the freelancer resources we have compiled, and these tips for avoiding questionable jobs for more information about working safely through Upwork.
Hopefully, this will help you work safely on Upwork, help you identify red flags when interviewing/working with a client, and help you stay payment protected while working on Upwork.
When I have an hourly contract, I always use the Upwork time-tracker if possible.
If I need to log manual time for some reason, then I show my respect for the client by recording those hours immediately after a work session.
I do not know the economic situation of my clients. Maybe they have unlimited funds. Or maybe they are on a tight budget. If I do work and need to log time, then I log that time quickly so that they can know where things are at. This helps them in case they really do need to know.
And also: I know that a contract may be paused or closed at any time. So it is a precarious thing to postpone logging hours.
The original poster learned some important lessons with this experience.