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Is this a scam?

valeriewittman
Active Member
Michaela W Member Since: Sep 26, 2021
1 of 14

Hi there,

I am being asked to purchase a product and then review it and then after I do this I will be reimbursed. I have already accepted the proposal since these were not the original terms and now I am worried this might be a scam. What can I do so that this doesn't affect my ratings on Upwork? I would like to cancel the proposal, if possible, but I don't want it to reflect poorly on my profile. 

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 14

Michaela W wrote:

I am being asked to purchase a product and then review it and then after I do this I will be reimbursed.. 


It is a violation of Amazon's terms of service and a violation of Upwork's terms of Service. It is also deeply unethical.

 

Tell the client you will not be able to do this because it isn't allowed. (The client knows this. They deliberately never mentioned it in the job post,)


It's not a scam as such, the client probably does plan to pay you back (if they don't, there is nothing you can do thouh) but it is a violation and you should wal away from this.

valeriewittman
Active Member
Michaela W Member Since: Sep 26, 2021
3 of 14

Thank you for your response! So what do I do since I currently have an open contract with this person? I don't want to ruin my reputation on Upwork by having unfished work or negative reviews. 

prestonhunter
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
4 of 14

re: "So what do I do since I currently have an open contract with this person? I don't want to ruin my reputation on Upwork by having unfished work or negative reviews."

 

Send a short message to the client:

 

"Jeremy:
I want to help you achieve your goals. After some additional research, I have learned that Amazon.com's current ToS specifically prohibits paid (or reimbursed) reviews such as this. Upwork is currently officially supporting Amazon.com and Upwork's ToS prohibits paid reviews of Amazon products. I don't want there to be any trouble for either of us. I have closed this contract. Please don't hesitate to let me know if there is anything I can do to be of assistance."

 

Then close the contract.

Then go to the job posting if it is still online and click on the "Three Dots" icon and use the "Flag as inappropriate" option.

valeriewittman
Active Member
Michaela W Member Since: Sep 26, 2021
5 of 14

Thank you for all the thoughtful responses! I have taken your advice. A separate issue that also occurred today was when I tried to submit a proposal for a job, it said "Forbidden. You do not have sufficient permissions to access this page." Any idea why this might have happened? I have attached an image. forbiddenaccess.jpg

luiggi_rosado
Moderator
Luiggi R Moderator Member Since: Jul 3, 2020
6 of 14

Hi Michaela,

 

Is this happening with a specific job or all of them? You can always try clearing your browser cache and cookies and see if that helps. Don't hesitate to let us know if the problem persists.

~ Luiggi
Upwork
valeriewittman
Active Member
Michaela W Member Since: Sep 26, 2021
7 of 14

I just had a question to add. If I ended a contract due to ethical issues, does this affect my Job Success Score? I truly hope we aren't penalized for doing the right thing! But I don't know how to check this for myself!

prestonhunter
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
8 of 14

re: "I just had a question to add. If I ended a contract due to ethical issues, does this affect my Job Success Score? I truly hope we aren't penalized for doing the right thing! But I don't know how to check this for myself!"

 

JSS is calculated by algorithms written in source code, running on a server. The algorithms don't understand "ethical issues."

valeriewittman
Active Member
Michaela W Member Since: Sep 26, 2021
9 of 14

So those who have good ethics will be penalized? That's disappointing! I hope someone will hire me again this! If not, I suppose my time on Upwork was short-lived! Is there nothing admin can do to reverse this? Also, could you please tell me how to do two things: 1: I couldn't find the option to flag the person as inappropriate because the original post is no longer there. 2: How do you check your own JSS? 

prestonhunter
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
10 of 14

re: "How do you check your own JSS?"

 

Go here:

Upwork -> Find Work -> My Stats

 

Screen Shot 2021-09-29 at 10.18.46 AM.png

 

re: "So those who have good ethics will be penalized? That's disappointing!"

 

Nobody has said that.

 

I'm just pointing out that when you interact with Upwork, you are clicking buttons that trigger things within computer source code.

 

Upwork has millions of users, and the success of Upwork's business model depends on its users utilizing the web application user interface WITHOUT needing any assistance from Upwork employees.

 

It's the same thing with anything else.

That's why Netflix can spend millions of dollars producing a slick-looking TV series. Because they are going to film and produce the series once, and then tons of customers are going to stream it WITHOUT needing to interact with employees. But Netflix can't send performers to your home. If you go to see a live show on Broadway, you'll pay $300 for a ticket. But you can watch streaming shows on Netflix 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, for $15 per month. It's just math.

 

If necessary, there are "safety valves" on Upwork.

But by default, Upwork doesn't WANT an administrator to do anything.

 

And Upwork definitely doesn't want to get involved in ethical disputes.


That's why if you quit a job because you found out that it involved flying to Alaska and clubbing baby seals to death and using their carcases to create a special type of poison that will destroy the rainforests, that is no different than if you quit a job because it involves coming up with a cure for cancer, and you are secretly pro-cancer. Upwork doesn't want to hear about any of that, get involved with any of that, and Upwork's automated algorithms can't change how they work based on a job being ethical or unethical.

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