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I hate the hourly screenshots of the work diary

Active Member
Bransin A Member Since: May 24, 2017
1 of 19

The number one reason why I decided to work for myself after working 4 years remotely full-time with a company is trust. I've lived the days of waking up from bed, and walking over to my computer in the next room. Now we have Slack and chatrooms of when boss can see when you are available and when you are not. My breaking point was when I couldn't go for a walk to clear the head without my previous boss hounding me of, "where are you?". We're living in a 1984 big brother is watching you. Upwork is not helping with this hourly app, and it's damaging to a freelancer.


What this screen capture work diary says is that you are not a good worker. While I wait for over a 3GB file to download to my local machine to get setup and start the job, I make modifications to files for my local enviornment so I can have XAMPP running locally with their domain along with DB import. In the meantime I have Upwork messages coming in left and right, this machine takes snapshots of confidential information. These are screenshots that show to another client of my communication. With the Upwork notifications that appear in my righthand desktop and screenshots happening. How do they expect us to be freelancers with the app they built shows the entire cliental we've been communicating with?


I don't like the fact that when referencing the Upwork app with messages, that it takes a screenshot for the client to see the number of clients I'm corresponding with. How is this kosher for business? 


This is pretty ridiculous!

Vladimir G Moderator Member Since: Oct 31, 2014
2 of 19

Hi Bransin,


NOte that you can use the option to turn off the Messages window if you don't want to use it from the app's Settings. You can download the Upwork app on your mobile device and keep in touch with your clients or turn off the app in certain intervals in order to follow up on pending messages from other clients.


Seeing you're new on Upwork, I'd advise you to review the freelancer resources we shared here, which contain valuable information about Upwork's features and processes, including tips and advice on how to work on Hourly contracts and use the Desktop app.

Active Member
Bransin A Member Since: May 24, 2017
3 of 19
Yes I am new to the Upwork community. Thanks. I've done Elance for an extended period of time. I'm realizing the differences now.
Can you do that with running Ubuntu? Disable the messages windows - can you tell me how?
A little silly that you are telling me to use another device to not give out such confidential information when the built-in app has the messaging sidebar with the clients and all communication. The screen capture works perfectly.
Also the application I am running with Ubuntu, I haven't been able to get screen sharing to work. Is that compatible?
Community Guru
Bojana D Member Since: May 2, 2011
4 of 19

Well... I'm not a huge fan of the tracker either but both of your concerns basically depend on choices you've made. 


1) Take fixed price projects instead of hourly. With Escrow in place they're almost as safe as hourly and you won't have to deal with the tracker at all.


2) If you don't want sensitive info displayed, don't use the time on tracker to communicate with other clients. It's potential grounds for disputing the hours anyway - on that particular client's time you're only supposed to be working on their stuff. I understand some fields have large periods of time spent waiting the machine to do its thing (donwloading in your case, renders for 3d designers, etc.) but if that time is logged as client time, it still needs to be only theirs.

Active Member
Bransin A Member Since: May 24, 2017
5 of 19

I understand what you are saying as "client time" and nothing else. There are some intermittent situations where you are setting things up in the background and messages come in via Upwork - through the application that I am using to keep track of the time. Kind of ironic isn't it?


This is the application that Upwork developed to make things easier versus using a client like Chrome right? Now they are telling me to not use the app (where the time tracker is built in), and to login to the messaging system instead via Browser to reference clients instructions all while to avoid the screen capture.


I don't have an issue with working and the screen capture taking screens. I have an issue with your application that you say is so great, that has no way of hiding clientele communication and privacy.

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
6 of 19

Having screenshots taken is entirely optional.


Using the time-tracker tool instead of logging time manually is entirely optional.


Using hourly contracts instead of fixed-price is entirely optional.


Using Upwork is entirely optional.


Seems like a lot of complaints about things that are entirely your choice.

Community Guru
Reinier B Member Since: Nov 3, 2015
7 of 19

So, put up or shut up?

Community Guru
Tonya P Member Since: Nov 26, 2015
8 of 19

I like "work or whine" better. The whole, "I think everything should be changed to suit my specific needs" thing gets really tiresome. People complain. Someone walks them through how to use the system. The person doesn't like that answer and tells the people trying to help that they simply don't understand why this new complaint is more special than all the others that have come before. Or, they explain how if they ruled the world it would be better. Blah blah blah. If you have a better mousetrap--build it. 


I don't think anyone objects to reading a post that provides feedback or asks a question. But what is the point of continuing to howl at the moon? 

Active Member
Bransin A Member Since: May 24, 2017
9 of 19

To be honest, it's a stupid UI problem they haven't addressed. I've talked with support, and they said they would send it off to the devs for consideration.


Build the ability to hide the clientele sidebar when referencing messages. It boggles my mind and is extremely unprofessional to have an app that takes screenshots, shares the screenshot of your entire existing clientel communication sidebar to the client you are working with.

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
10 of 19

@Bransin A wrote:

It boggles my mind and is extremely unprofessional to have an app that takes screenshots, shares the screenshot of your entire existing clientel communication sidebar to the client you are working with.

 Which is why I don't. I have switched off the messages part of the app, problem  solved. While I am working for client A I am not letting client A pay me to chitchat with client B.


If you want to chat with other clients, log off, chat to other clients, go back to work.


The tracker and hourly contracts do not suit everyone. If they don't suit you, don't use them.