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mahadi_du
Member

Is it allowed to ask for unpaid trial?

About an hour ago I received a message from a potential client. She is asking "Are you available immediately for a 3 hour trial (unpaid)?"

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

Now my question is, is it allowed to ask for unpaid trial work?

 

 

ACCEPTED SOLUTION

I can comprehend this happening to a newbie, but the OP has 98% JS & 600+ hours. The "client" needs to be terminated with extreme prejudice. Robot Mad

__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce

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24 REPLIES 24
katrinabeaver
Member


@Md. Mahadi H wrote:

About an hour ago I received a message from a potential client. She is asking "Are you available immediately for a 3 hour trial (unpaid)?"

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

Now my question is, is it allowed to ask for unpaid trial work?

 

 


No it is not.  It is against ToS.  Please take a screenshot and report the client to CS.  

"Fairness is giving all people the treatment they earn and deserve. It doesn't mean treating everyone alike-Coach John Wooden"
versailles
Member

Whether it is allowed or not doesn't matter. You simply don't do this. Your "client" will never pay you anything. They are just looking for naive people to whom they can give few hours or unpaid work.

 

Once they're done with you, they will drop you and go for someone else to scam.

 

Considering the quality of your profile, you don't need to waste your time with this.

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"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless

Wow, talk about nerve -- it's one thing to ask for a free trial, another to specify 3 hours. Look at it this way, if someone asks are you available to do 3 hours of free work immediately, I doubt you would agree. Changing one word from 'work' to 'trial' doesn't change the result in any way.

__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce
Anonymous User
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@John K wrote:

Wow, talk about nerve -- it's one thing to ask for a free trial, another to specify 3 hours. Look at it this way, if someone asks are you available to do 3 hours of free work immediately, I doubt you would agree. Changing one word from 'work' to 'trial' doesn't change the result in any way.


Another example of job offers that seem to be ok but during the interview the bogus client attempts to diddle the freelancer.

I can comprehend this happening to a newbie, but the OP has 98% JS & 600+ hours. The "client" needs to be terminated with extreme prejudice. Robot Mad

__________________________________________________
"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce
Anonymous User
Not applicable


@Md. Mahadi H wrote:

About an hour ago I received a message from a potential client. She is asking "Are you available immediately for a 3 hour trial (unpaid)?"

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

Now my question is, is it allowed to ask for unpaid trial work?

 

 


Uncredible! Asking for 3 hours of unpaid work, accompanied by a smiley. Chase this dame off the platform with a smile(y)! Smiley Happy

cristina-popa
Member


@Md. Mahadi H wrote:

About an hour ago I received a message from a potential client. She is asking "Are you available immediately for a 3 hour trial (unpaid)?"

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

Now my question is, is it allowed to ask for unpaid trial work?

 

 


 If you enter a restaurant, can you ask for an unpaid trial of the menu? Can you eat and not pay after 3 hours of bingeing on their menu? Doubt it.

kat303
Member

The thing is, when this job is reported, by either submitting a ticket or clicking on the flag as unappropriate link, how long will it take IF this job is taken off before x amount of new contractors --- who do not read Upworks TOS  -- do the work.

 

It's one thing to report a job, it's another to finally, IF, it's taken down hours or days later to have enough time for this client to scam 4+ newbies to do their job.

 

What this client is doing is getting their work done for free from contractors who THINK that this will lead to a great paying job and a long lasting client. All it will do is enable the client to get their work done for free. They even get to pick which work they like the best for free.

Legitimate clients who hire contractors on Upwork know that it is not acceptable to ask contractors to work for free.

 

Or, if they are new, they will welcome being informed about Upwork's rules and they will comply with these rules.

 

So, what is left, if you see this kind of thing, are clients who really have no intention of paying contractors.

 

So contractors should not think to themselves: Well, regardless of Upwork's rules, I'm going to go ahead and do this three-hour test, do a great job of it, and get hired for a great job.

 

That's not going to happen. The client requesting you to work three hours for free is getting what he wants out of you, and then he's done. He's not hiring anybody.

 

This kind of thing is despicable, and clients shouldn't do it even if it is allowed on the site. But even contractor who does free work like this for these clients is ALSO contributing to the problem.

lysis10
Member

Dear Marie,

 

I'm happy you think I'm a perfect fit. I feel that you are the perfect fit too. I require a 4 hour non-refundable deposit as a trial. If I'm happy with your money, we can continue working together. 😄 😄 😄 😄

 

Make sure to include smileys.

Let me propose something that WOULD BE helpful, but I doubt Upwork will implement it. (Though they should.)

 

Many contractors, including many of us who regularly comment on and offer advice about scams, are more than capable of making a determination about whether or a job is a scam. We are more knowledgeable about the subject than customer support workers.

 

We should be able to directly remove a job or client from the marketplace, with the click of a button.

 

This could be a job or client that we encounter directly, or it could be one we read about in the Forum and are provided a long to by the person reporting the incident.

 

The job or client would be blocked. Jobs would not show up in the marketplace. Clients would be blocked from posting jobs or accessing their funds.

 

Blocking clients would trigger a review eventually by Upwork representatives. But blocking a job would not trigger a review. The job is simply blocked, and the client is notified. The client can appeal, triggering a review by Upwork, but that is not automatic.

 

I AM NOT SAYING that all Upwork contractors should be granted these privileges. But there are dozens of us who obviously could do this and be trusted with the privilege, and there can be a process put into place for other contractors to apply and be approved to have this authority.

That's an excellent suggestion, Preston, and one Upwork should take advantage of. It would be a free service to them.

 

I agree that not everyone should have that ability, but I can think of several right now who have the necessary experience, including yourself, John K, Jennifer M, Rene, and others that I'm probably unintentionally omitting. 

Heath, I think almost everybody who we see here in the Forums regularly offering tips on this subject could be relied on to accurately block scam and fraudulent jobs.

 

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that a job posting is out of line when it is asking prospective applicants to do a 3-hour unpaid test.

 

And of course many job postings are innocent-seeming. They only reveal themselves to be frauds when the communications between "client" and contractor begin. That's why my suggestion includes the ability to block a client or job based on communications we see reported in the Community Forum.

 

Once again, most regulars here know that whenever a "client" asks a contractor to accept a check, cash it and send in money, etc., that this is fraudulent. We don't need Customer Support to tell us so.

Your idea Preston is fantastic, it's called crowdsourcing ad many platforms do this already. Upwork will not implement it because it has no immediate dollar value. It has a dollar value although, but on the long term.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless

Offering free work, Preston? ^^


@Susanne D wrote:

Offering free work, Preston? ^^


 No! That's charity work! 🙂

re: "Offering free work, Preston?"

 

In all seriousness: I'm offering LESS work.

 

Upwork is asking us to go through a lot of ridiculous hoops in order to report fraudulent jobs and predatory clients.

 

Upwork currently wants contractors to open up customer support tickets, suggesting that we are using Upwork resources  to fix personal problems with our account, which is not the case. They want us to spend time communicating with customer support workers who may barely be able to understand what we're saying... take screenshots of communications and file report.

 

I imagine my suggestion would take LESS time, and also be more satisfying. I don't need to check back to see if a job that is obviously fraudulent was taken off line. Because the button I click will do just that.


The client will be notified. He can appeal if he wants to, but he won't apeal. Because he knows that any additional scrutiny from Upwork into his activities will only make things worse for him.

 

Even if I'm reporting a job which is not obviously fraudulent on its face, and which only became clearly so once communications began, using this tool to upload some communication transcripts or screenshots would be easier and more satisfying to use than having to go through customer support. And clearly more appropriate. Filing customer support tickets is counted as a negative metric against me (or it should be). Helping make the marketplace a better place for everybody should not count against me.

I don't think Upwork will actually give any of us the ability to block obviously fraudulent/scammer jobs or clients from appearing in the marketplace. They'll have a "reason" for not wanting to do this. Their "reason" will only seem like ane "excuse" to me, though.

Anonymous User
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@Preston H wrote:

Let me propose something that WOULD BE helpful, but I doubt Upwork will implement it. (Though they should.)

 

Many contractors, including many of us who regularly comment on and offer advice about scams, are more than capable of making a determination about whether or a job is a scam. We are more knowledgeable about the subject than customer support workers.

 

We should be able to directly remove a job or client from the marketplace, with the click of a button.

 

This could be a job or client that we encounter directly, or it could be one we read about in the Forum and are provided a long to by the person reporting the incident.

 

The job or client would be blocked. Jobs would not show up in the marketplace. Clients would be blocked from posting jobs or accessing their funds.

 

Blocking clients would trigger a review eventually by Upwork representatives. But blocking a job would not trigger a review. The job is simply blocked, and the client is notified. The client can appeal, triggering a review by Upwork, but that is not automatic.

 

I AM NOT SAYING that all Upwork contractors should be granted these privileges. But there are dozens of us who obviously could do this and be trusted with the privilege, and there can be a process put into place for other contractors to apply and be approved to have this authority.


At least, all jobs that are flagged should be put under quarantine at once. Freelancers do not flag just for fun. Thus a lot of fraud could be prevented easily.

 


@Jennifer M wrote:

Dear Marie,

 

I'm happy you think I'm a perfect fit. I feel that you are the perfect fit too. I require a 4 hour non-refundable deposit as a trial. If I'm happy with your money, we can continue working together. 😄 😄 😄 😄

 

Make sure to include smileys.


 Great advice. Thumbs up.......

kochubei_valeria
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Mahadi,

 

Requesting free work is not allowed according to the Upwork ToS. I'll forward your report to the team for a review.

 

Thank you.

~ Valeria
Upwork


@Valeria K wrote:

Hi Mahadi,

 

Requesting free work is not allowed according to the Upwork ToS. I'll forward your report to the team for a review.

 

Thank you.


 Thanks a lot Valeria for your answer and initiative. Actually I am concerned about new freelanccers who would probably agree to take free trial and won't get anything in return. My sole purpose of this post was to make awareness about the issue and was expecting to hear that Upwork would take a measurable action to stop asking free work as a whole. Looking forward to hear it in near future. Thank you.

Hi I was wondering if you would be able to tell me which section says that they can't ask for an unpaid trial because I just had someone ask me and I would like to reference exactly where it says that for their review. Thank you!

 

Hi Lia,

You can find that info in section 1.2 of our ToS.

"Requesting, demanding, or receiving free services, including requesting Freelancers to submit work as part of the proposal process for very little or no money or posting contests in which Freelancers submit work with no or very little pay, and only the winning submission is paid the full amount."

~Nina