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cjesther
Community Member

Privacy Violation During Video Call Interview

Hi fellow freelancer,

I just joined Upwork three days ago and today I had a video call interview with a potential client, near the end she took a screenshot of me without asking for permission.

I saw the screenshot showed on her screen (she shared me her screen before) and was quite taken a back. I think she realized that I noticed and both of us went awkwardly silent for a few seconds.

Is taking screenshot of freelancer without their permission okay on Upwork?

For me what she did was violating my privacy and inappropriate. Where can I report this? I really don't feel okay with this.
10 REPLIES 10
petra_r
Community Member


CJ E wrote:

I saw the screenshot showed on her screen (she shared me her screen before) and was quite taken a back. I think she realized that I noticed and both of us went awkwardly silent for a few seconds.

Is taking screenshot of freelancer without their permission okay on Upwork?

For me what she did was violating my privacy and inappropriate. Where can I report this? I really don't feel okay with this.

I can not see which term of service it would violate and whilst I can (sort of) understand why you thought it was inappropriate, I don't think there was any malicious intent. What harm could the screenshot possibly do? Maybe she takes them to be able to tie face to applicant, or took the screenshot by accident (mine takes one when I click the print key.)

 

I certainly don't think it needs reporting. Unless something violates the terms of service, there is no point reporting it.

 

Did you bring it up with the client?

 

prestonhunter
Community Member

re: "Is taking screenshot of freelancer without their permission okay on Upwork?"

No.

 

re: "For me what she did was violating my privacy and inappropriate."

For me, it isn't.

 

re: "Where can I report this?"

You can not report this. It is not a violation of Upwork ToS.

 

Keep in mind that BY DEFAULT, Upwork intends for freelancers to work using their desktop app which takes screenshots of the desktop AND captures an image of the face of the freelancer about every ten minutes.

 

Although there are contract models and settings that can be used to get around this, that is the DEFAULT stance that Upwork's entire system is built around:

 

Regularly-generated confirmed screenshots of the work freelancers are doing along with a photo of their face.

 

So I would strongly advise against trying to report this client's action to anybody at Upwork. I think you would be wasting your time.

 

If you don't want people to take your picture, IT IS STILL POSSIBLE to use Upwork.


In the future, you could tell people, before you conduct face-to-face interviews, that you don't want them to take your picture.

 

Personally, I routinely conduct discussions with clients.

Sometimes they ask if they can record the discussions.

 

Of course I always say yes.

 

I guess they're just being polite. But I always think to myself: "Of course you can record our conversation, using video, audio or anything else. You're paying for my time. You own every aspect of the conversation."


Preston H wrote:

 

Keep in mind that BY DEFAULT, Upwork intends for freelancers to work using their desktop app which takes screenshots of the desktop AND captures an image of the face of the freelancer about every ten minutes.

 

Although there are contract models and settings that can be used to get around this, that is the DEFAULT stance that Upwork's entire system is built around:

 


Nonsense. The webcam option is an entirely optional additional extra. It is not in any way "default" and rarely used.

It certainly isn't used "by default" and there is no need to "get around it" - the webcam option is "by default" turned off.

 

Quite apart from that, the OP does not have a contract with said client, let alone an hourly one, so that whole statement is about as wrong and irrelevant as it could be.

 

 

Petra:

Thanks for your note.

I stand corrected.

 

I thought that the webcam option was turned on by default and that it was something I had decided to turn off.


Preston H wrote:

 

I thought that the webcam option was turned on by default and that it was something I had decided to turn off.


It doesn't matter either way because the OP does not have any kind of contract with the client.

browersr
Community Member

While I think it's odd and perhaps inappropriate, remember your image is posted for all to see on this site. She can just as easily grab that which would have been a better way to avoid this awkward situation. End result would be the same but at least you would be none the wiser. 

tlsanders
Community Member

I'm puzzled as to why you didn't just say, "May I ask what you're using my photo for?"

I'll be the first to admit:

 

It WAS weird for the prospective client to take a screenshot of the freelancer's face.

 

But people do a lot of weird things.

 

If that happened, and if I added that to the list of things clients have done that have annoyed me, that would be pretty far down on the list.

 

But obviously I'm not particularly sensitive to having my face on Upwork's website, or on the Internet.

 

I don't have any objection to people who DO want any particular level of privacy. I just hope they understand that "maintaining anonymity" is NOT one of Upwork's goals.


Tiffany S wrote:

I'm puzzled as to why you didn't just say, "May I ask what you're using my photo for?"


I know, right?


Tiffany S wrote:

I'm puzzled as to why you didn't just say, "May I ask what you're using my photo for?"


cuz it's way better to say nothing and ask random strangers to come up with total supposition from "identity theft" to "who cares?"

 

eta: I'll throw my guess into the pot and say this is someone selling upwork accounts. you ever see those people who are brand new and somehow know about video verification and want to verify right now? yeah....

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