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It's been difficult to score a first project

Active Member
Vanessa S Member Since: Nov 30, 2014
1 of 11

I have been looking around here and noticed we can't refer clients to build a blacklist, but I really wanted to be able to warn other newsbies like myself.  But for now I'm just going to vent Smiley Happy

 

I've been interviewed by clients but they were all shady. The one I accepted to work for is clearly acquiring samples from various ingenuous newbies like myself and I fell for it. I did a 10 minute transcription while the client was supposedly making up the contract. The contract never came (but I foolishly sent him the work) and he even asked if I could transcribe more. The nerve!

 

There were other cases where the conditions changed and so on.

 

It's been really hard to get a first gig here. 

 

So that's it. Thank you for reading my sort of rant.

Community Guru
Lyam B Member Since: Nov 3, 2014
2 of 11

Yeah, watch out for clients like those. I've seen clients requesting a 5 minute sample off all applicants and ended up completing the audio file for free. 

 

Try and stick to clients who have good rating and paid a lot. Be wary of those posting their first description. 

 

I think there should be a blacklist, but most of these unethical "employers" create a new account so a blacklist would be useless in those cases.

 

Good luck!

Active Member
Vanessa S Member Since: Nov 30, 2014
3 of 11

Thank you. Yes, you're right. There would be no point in having a blacklist. Unfortunately this client for whom I worked has a pretty good rating :/

Active Member
Emma G Member Since: Nov 25, 2014
4 of 11

Hi Vanessa,

 

Thanks for sharing your experience, Its valuable information for newbies. I hope that Odesks is not just full of scammers, and that we both find genuine clients soon

 

I too am a new Odesker, and have just completed my first job ($200 fixed budget for a stupid amount of work)

 

I think a client black list of some sort could work. The really dodgy ones propably won't be to worried eighter way, but it could act a s guide and a deterrent to the few chancers, who are even considering nonpayment, which seems to be too easy an option for the fixed budget client regardless of the quality of the work

 

My first client is already using my translation on his website, but still hasn't released the fee and has had the cheek to ask me to do the proofreading and the final onscreen review on top of the 9000 words from English to Danish

 

I my second client invited me for an interview over skype and Whatsapp, sent me the work and requested that i finished it before she hired me via Odesk, something to do with her not having her bosses paypall login, but she guaranted me that she would pay me after I deliver the job. This one I walked away from as I could see she had 3 other interviewees for the same job

 

Maybe you can consider yourself lucky that no contract came out of the shady clients, at least they didn't get the chance to waste too much of  your time?

Community Guru
Lyam B Member Since: Nov 3, 2014
5 of 11

Emma, I'm no expert when it comes to the law but oDesk is a transaction where one person provides a payment and the other provides work. If you haven't been paid, then your work hasn't been bought which means it's copyright, no?

 

If your client is being truly difficulty, threaten to report his website and maybe provide screenshots to oDesk.

 

Again, this is just opinion. 

 

Good luck!

Active Member
Vanessa S Member Since: Nov 30, 2014
6 of 11

Hello,

 

Maybe it was all for the better, I don't know.

 

In your case, I hope you do get paid because that's really dodgy. I think in the future we need to maybe require the payment before sending the work? I really don't know. 

 

Yesterday I walked away from a project too. This client kept changing conditions and then he wanted a free sample. Besides he didn't even have a verified payment method. 

 

Well, I wish us both the best of luck Smiley Happy

Community Guru
Marcia M Member Since: Apr 3, 2013
7 of 11

Well, the problem with a blacklist is that you could threaten to put a client or freelancer on the blacklist unless they gave you free work, gave you 5 stars, etc.

Community Guru
Lyam B Member Since: Nov 3, 2014
8 of 11

The only way fixed prices could be safe is with a middleman. Someone who holds the funds and checks the work, but that has way too many complications so that'd never work.

 

I do think oDesk should start investigating more, it seems it's always about the clients since they are the funders. Once a milestone/contract has been funded, the client shouldn't be able to not pay until an investigation has taken place to determine if the client is right not to pay or not. 

Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
9 of 11
I appreciate Lyam's comments but I disagree about the need for a middleman. I believe that oDesk contractors need to educate themselves about how fixed rate projects work and use them wisely and in a way that works best for them. Remember that you can ask upfront pay. If you have a track record you can insist on this or move on to other clients. Even if you do not use upfront pay, you can break things down into smaller milestones or separate projects. I do this while explaining to clients that this works better for both of us and costs them the same. This way I do not get into any fixed rate projects that are too big for me to bail on if the client gets weird and insists on out of scope work.

I get it that not all of this will work for newbies, but these are things that work for me. My clients value and need what I do for them. They know that when I submit a fixed rate project as finished, that means it is finished. I tell them that they may choose to pay or not pay, it is totally is up to them. I do not let so much work pile up that I'm not willing to walk away from it.
Community Guru
Gillian Michele N Member Since: Mar 15, 2012
10 of 11

 

Hi Vanessa,

 

Did you flag the post?

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