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Implied blackmail

Community Guru
Ray C Member Since: Jun 17, 2015
11 of 22

Thanks for that perspective. still i noticed a marked decrease in bites to apllications when my rating dropped below 100 % i don't know if i can afford to absorb a 0 straight accross which ios what this fool is planning im sure. that would probably put me below 70% and then why bother. I think i gotta let this one go

and just be much more careful in the future.


Community Guru
Kathy T Member Since: Jul 17, 2015
12 of 22

Because IMO, of the low budget rates clients can have, and the low proposal amounts that contractors are allowed to bid on here, it attracks more scammers then usual.  These scammers look for newbies. They've (the scammers) have done this numerous times and have gotten away it with it because new contractors are so afraid of bad feedback appearing on their first jobs.


If contractors don't put a stop to this, it will continue and attaract more scammers. I don't think you should give this client a refund and teach him that he can continue to get free work this way. If you respond to negative feedback in a PROFESSIONAL way it will help you more then the negative feedback will hurt you.


As for starting a dispute. Sure you can do that, but the cost of that for you, the client and Upwork is around $200+ dollars. If the payment for this job is more then that, you can go into dispute. And even if the payment is lower, if the client starts a dispute, you can call a bluff and respond to that, (and hope that the client doesn't appear)

Community Guru
Ray C Member Since: Jun 17, 2015
13 of 22

I hear you but if you were looking at a 70% job score i doubt you would be so eager to teach this guy a lesson at your own expense. I've put up with a lot and worked hard to keep my score as i have and no i don't want to cut my income dwn a third which is what that would do to me why don't one of you people who've been here for years  be the example? Your scores wouildn't suffer much at all from it. sorry that's not in my better interest. ANd i don't think respnding to his feedback will make a bit of difference. When you see 70% job success why you even bother reading what they have to say?


Community Guru
Kathy T Member Since: Jul 17, 2015
14 of 22

Ray, I've looked at your profile, You're ranked as Top Rated and have 32 jobs with excellent feedback and stars. Whether or not you give this client a refund he can STILL leave negative feedback that will affect your JSS score.  This feedback is private. it's not the published feedback. Us contractors do not get to see it, or respond to it, but it's figured into our JSS score, probably  more so then the public feedback. I don't know how Upwork responds to  no private feedback, but it probably takes that into consideration also which would affect your JSS score. So, no matter what you do, refund the money, keep the money, go into dispute or do nothing and just leave the job open, it's going to affect your score in some way.


Although a low JSS score might?? effect your ability to get hired which would affect your income, so will a job that you haven't been paid for. Negative reviews in time will scroll out of sight and in time your JSS score will go rise but you'll never get back the money you refunded (and your JSS score will still be affected.)


Clients don't just look at JSS scores. They look at prior jobs you've had the the reviews and feedback you're gotten from them.

Community Guru
Ray C Member Since: Jun 17, 2015
15 of 22

so i should just wait him out, and if he disputes, take him to court (as it were) then the arbitrator will see what an unreasonably frequent libator and caster of undeserved aspersions he is. 

Ace Contributor
Andy B Member Since: Feb 19, 2016
16 of 22

Happens every day, all the time.  That's the risk we take.  In the non-upwork world offline, we'd sue such a person.  But here, scamming for free work is very common and there isn't much we can do about it after the fact.  I've also learned the hard way to QUALIFY the clients before accepting a gig.  OR better yet, don't even apply to work where the client does not have a long term payment history and good reviews.  Even then, bring up that possible situation before accepting the contract - it is totally fair to say to the client when he offers a contract that all though you will do revisions, you both agree that payment is earned upon submission of the first draft.  Technically he can still get away with screwing you over, but it might deter the conmen off the bat knowing you're willing to put up a fight.  

Community Guru
Miroslav M Member Since: Jan 21, 2016
17 of 22

Upwork needs to do something to have new clients better monitored. Currently, many new clients hurry to make job postings before verifying their payment method, so it's hard to tell if they're scammers or not.


If percentage of scammers disguised as new clients remains high more and more freelancers will start to avoid sending proposals to any new clients, especially since monthly amount of proposals is very limited. More and more clients will never get their chances to reach to appropriate freelancer talent. 


However, it seems that there are a bit less these always open, recurring job postings from 'clients' who don't verify their payment, also from bots who appear as new but always send exactly the same job title and description copy.

Community Leader
Stella L Member Since: Jun 23, 2015
18 of 22

Yes, it is a very common and extremely uncomfortable situation. I bet there is a certain ratio of such cases that can be calculated!

Community Guru
Jan L Member Since: Jul 5, 2015
19 of 22

Hello Ray!

As a designer myself I also encountered that type of clients.

I have been blackmailed from a client for 5* review and see that clients really don't care about our effort to produce the work they need. 

I think that majority of those clients are designers too. They know how this works. They are usually bad designers but they are lucky with their job findings (I think they feature work they scammed on portfolio - displaying themselves as waaay better designers that they usually are).

In IRL, we designer charge everything. Here we cannot charge consulting, we are in fact blackmailed by outlook of our JSS score. Everything would be fine if we charge by hour - exclusively. 

You know that there are clients who don't believe that you need to sketch your logo on paper first? I think that skilled designer can make you one quality logo in a week. Not 3 but one. But in order to get like 3 different concepts, designers need to sketch. There is no way to install Upwork app in our bodies, so most of our manual time is up for negotiation if it going to be paid or not.

I wish that Upwork helps the designers here by making some standards that clients need to oblige.  Let's start with real names, brief writing standards and most of all, learn how to respect creatives' time and effort overall.  

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Ace Contributor
Emmanuel S Member Since: Mar 17, 2016
20 of 22

Yes, many times, it happens up to four times, but I always find a way to outrun them.


But, I suggest, if you and the client haven't given feedback, report to Upwork immediately, I think they will find a way to prevent him.