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melikee
Member

Is it allowed for a freelancer to copy paste another freelancer's profile?

Hello everyone!
I am not very knowledgeable about this issue so all of your answers are highly appreciated. 
I have been an active user here for 5 months, and constantly try to improve myself and my profile. I updated my profile overview, portfolio etc. a few times, but never copied a sentence from someone else's profile. It is not like I invented something new but I just tried my best to highlight my skills with my own sentences. 
I sometimes check some other freelancers' profiles, especially the successful ones or other architects from my country or the ones who took the same jobs with me, etc. There was another architect,  who took the same job with me a while ago. I remember checking her profile and thinking she had a nice portfolio and completed successful projects before etc. I totally had a positive thought. But today I was just randomly searching to see the ranking of my profile, and I saw her profile again, and the first sentences of her profile just grabbed my attention. When I checked her full profile overview I saw that she recently changed her overview and literally copied and pasted my profile overview with really minor changes. Here are the screenshots of my profile and her profile. I omitted her name so I guess it may be ok to add the screenshots (?)

Isn't it a bit unfair that somebody else just copy-pasted my profile overview?
It is not perfect or excellent. It should not be that hard for somebody to spend a few minutes and create an original profile overview. Is it allowed on Upwork to do that???

Edited: screenshots are removed as the issue is (hopefully) resolved.

ACCEPTED SOLUTION
petra_r
Member

No, it is not allowed and you need to report her. I am not sure if yours is quite enough copying to get anything done. 

 

Also google a phrase from your profile to see how many more there are. I frequently find people who steal some or all of my profile and have them dealt with by Upwork.

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23 REPLIES 23
petra_r
Member

No, it is not allowed and you need to report her. I am not sure if yours is quite enough copying to get anything done. 

 

Also google a phrase from your profile to see how many more there are. I frequently find people who steal some or all of my profile and have them dealt with by Upwork.

Thank you Petra and Aleksandar for your quick replies!
I am glad to hear that it is not allowed. I reported and also sent the link to Aleksandar. 
Googleing a phrase is a great idea. I guess I will be able to catch only those whose profiles are public if any, but still very helpful!


Melike E wrote:

Googleing a phrase is a great idea. I guess I will be able to catch only those whose profiles are public if any, but still very helpful!


I find mine on other platforms I'm not even on as well....


Petra R wrote:

Melike E wrote:

Googleing a phrase is a great idea. I guess I will be able to catch only those whose profiles are public if any, but still very helpful!


I find mine on other platforms I'm not even on as well....


Wow! Some people are really desperate...

Now you've reminded me to Google my own profile overview - I just found a bunch of matches on other websites, especially one that begins with a 5. There's even a company that builds actual decks (i.e. out of wood) who has stolen my paragraph about doing PowerPoint pitch decks! SMH.


Christine A wrote:

There's even a company that builds actual decks (i.e. out of wood) who has stolen my paragraph about doing PowerPoint pitch decks!


WAHAHAHA - I wonder where they hired their "writer"


Petra R wrote:

Melike E wrote:

Googleing a phrase is a great idea. I guess I will be able to catch only those whose profiles are public if any, but still very helpful!


I find mine on other platforms I'm not even on as well....


I actually found a guy that used mine on LinkedIn as a post then tracked him back to Upwork, which for some reason wasn't showing in Google.

djondinium
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Melike,

 

Could you please send me a private message with the profile link so that I can send a report to our team for investigation?

Thank you.

~ Aleksandar
Upwork
stevenayoung
Member

I have a related question... Does anyone know (or can someone from Upwork comment on) what happens to the reported accounts? Do they get a polite message from Upwork support telling them to change their profile, or do they just get banned?

 

I have quite a few copycats (most are probably coming from some blog I used to work at) but I don't want to destroy anyone's livelihood. I briefly considered sending messages from my client account, but that would require making a fake job invite and I'm pretty sure that breaks the TOS.

Hi Steven,

 

While I can't share any details about our process or the action taken, feel free to share the profile URL's with me via PM (click on my name).
Our team will review them further and if any violations are found, proper actions will be taken. Thank you.

~ Goran
Upwork


Steven Alexander Y wrote:

Does anyone know (or can someone from Upwork comment on) what happens to the reported accounts?


The ones who have stolen mine tend to fall in two categories: Either the text gets changed, or the profile vanishes for good (maybe because they had a history of policy violations.)

This is of course not allowed and you can report those people BUT i suggest that you think about your positioning if this is a problem for you at all. If your profile can be just copy-pasted by a random person for any benefit to them, it probably suggests your services are not unique enough and you won't have any tangible competitive advantage... You should think about becoming more specialized, and make some UVP which just simply can't be copy-pasted away.


Alexander N wrote:

 If your profile can be just copy-pasted by a random person for any benefit to them, it probably suggests your services are not unique enough and you won't have any tangible competitive advantage... 


 **Edited for Community Guidelines**

g_vasilevski
Retired Team Member
Retired Team Member

Hi Petra,

 

Could you share the profile URL with me via PM? Thank you.

~ Goran
Upwork


Goran V wrote:

Could you share the profile URL with me via PM? Thank you.


 

There are at least 2. I was just trying to show Alexander that profile thieves are not as discerning as he may think.

Well... 
Now that this person copied and pasted my profile overview with the same sentences, she claims that she has prizes from architectural design competitions. Apparently, she does not have such a thing. But I listed my prizes on my experiences, added those projects to my portfolio, and anyone can find them with google. Also, I am a LEED AP (passed 2 different exams for that, finished various projects with sustainability features, I have the certificate and I am listed on USGBC's website), so she just changed being a "LEED AP" with being a sustainability expert (thanks to her, at least changed this). 
I listed the services I provide based on my portfolio, I have samples of each of them. Surprisingly "the services she will gladly provide" (did not even bother to change the words) are the same as mine, word by word, even though she did not complete most of the listed services.
I think the problem is not my skills but mostly about people being dishonest about their skills and being too lazy to create a template for their profile overview. 



Alexander N wrote:

This is of course not allowed and you can report those people BUT i suggest that you think about your positioning if this is a problem for you at all. If your profile can be just copy-pasted by a random person for any benefit to them, it probably suggests your services are not unique enough and you won't have any tangible competitive advantage... You should think about becoming more specialized, and make some UVP which just simply can't be copy-pasted away.





Then they are just shooting themselves in the foot. Some people will ask them to show any of those awards and certifications, and very quickly, failing to do so, they will be dumped from Upwork in no time. This goes beyond stupidity here...

 

Just calm down and carry on with your work - this isn't a place where your nervous system could really afford worrying about every idiot around. Too many of them.


Alexander N wrote:

 

Just calm down and carry on with your work - this isn't a place where your nervous system could really afford worrying about every idiot around. Too many of them.


I don't think we should be told to "calm down" when our profile text and portfolio pieces are stolen. If a client sees some con artist with the same profile and portfolio pieces as me, how will they know that I'm not the one who copied the other person? And I don't think that it's great for any of us when clients get cheated here; it makes them a whole lot less likely to use Upwork again. I often wonder how many potentially good clients end up abandoning their job posts after they receive proposals from thieves and liars. 


Alexander N wrote:

Just calm down and carry on with your work -


Seriously? How incredibly patronizing and actually rich coming from you...

 

Just because something doesn't bother you does not mean it should not bother anyone else. She's also been perfectly calm. 

 

Alexander N wrote:

I wouldn't bother at all if that happened to me.....


And that somehow qualifies you to decide how others should feel about it and gives you the right to tell her to "calm down?"

 

Would you have written the same thing had a man posted what she did? Why do certain men think it is acceptable to treat women as if they're hysterical and to tell them to "calm down?"


Melike E wrote:


I think the problem is not my skills but mostly about people being dishonest about their skills and being too lazy to create a template for their profile overview. 


Of course this is the real reason. 


Alexander N wrote:

This is of course not allowed and you can report those people BUT i suggest that you think about your positioning if this is a problem for you at all. If your profile can be just copy-pasted by a random person for any benefit to them, it probably suggests your services are not unique enough and you won't have any tangible competitive advantage... You should think about becoming more specialized, and make some UVP which just simply can't be copy-pasted away.


How patronising. You're kidding yourself if you think that this can never happen to you (assuming that it hasn't already - have you Googled your own overview?). People who plagairise profile text (and steal portfolio pieces) don't care whether it applies to what they do or not, because they have no qualms about making false claims; they just hope to fool clients long enough to get hired. Why do you think there are so many freelancers who have bad reviews? Because they don't actually know how do any of the services that they claim to provide, or at least not at a high enough standard to attract clients without resorting to dishonesty.

I wouldn't bother at all if that happened to me because i am always doing very technical interviews with every client and i can't imagine how a dumb copy-paster could make it past that.


Alexander N wrote:

This is of course not allowed and you can report those people BUT i suggest that you think about your positioning if this is a problem for you at all. If your profile can be just copy-pasted by a random person for any benefit to them, it probably suggests your services are not unique enough and you won't have any tangible competitive advantage... You should think about becoming more specialized, and make some UVP which just simply can't be copy-pasted away.


You are missing the point in my opinion.  I see people copy my profile and I honestly don't care because I don't even like mine but I haven't figured out what to change it to.  But the problem for me is that these people shouldn't even be on the platform.  If they can't even come up with their own UVP, and have to steal my content, then how are they ever going to succeed on here?

 

Plus, it's just overall dumb to think you can take someone else's thoughts and apply them and it will work out.  These people are almost entirely just another set of deadwood proposals clients have to wade through to get to the meat.

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