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mixiekins
Member

What's being done about all of these "Adult Coloring Book" posts?

There's been quite a lot of these "Adult Coloring Book" jobs being posted lately, and the frequency is increasing daily. They all seem to be quite dubious with regards to the TOS, their legitimacy as paid work (all seem very scammy), let alone being basely repugnant in sheer nature. What is being done to block these? I've had to flag two in the past 24 hours from which I've received invites!

 

Humoring the Devil's Advocate perspective, I may have simply drawn attention to myself, so I'd like to inquire with all of you, my colleagues, to see how frequent these are for you in comparison. Before doing any potentionally accidental harm to the jop posters' reputations by flagging such posts, at first I did inquire with the job posters to determine if perhaps a language barrier was leading to incorrect word choice on their part. It also served useful in weedling out specifics to pass along to Upwork's Support while they investigated this in a ticket I opened. On that note, I can safely say that after being met with much profanity and immaturity on the part of the job posters, that these jobs are most definitely illegitimate. In fact, many of which are copy-pasted from one another, which leads me to believe that most (if not all) are being coordinated by a central group (perhaps some illicit publisher).

 

Our individual personal beliefs aside, there factually are many geographic regions around the globe which outlaw graphic material of this nature. Additionally, it can be detrimental to some whom have personal beliefs or mental trauma which require abstinance from thinking of such topics (and therefore can be harmful to read about-- my apologies to such individuals here, there is a necessity to bring this topic up here so that we may find a solution). Furthermore, many users here may stand to reason that these jobs are in the same vein as human trafficing for visual artists (but of course, not anywhere near as severe/hamful, simply in the same topic family of nastiness-- I do not mean to trivialize the horrendousness of actual human trafficing). Who's to say if these posts are simply a "gateway drug" to more servere illicit work off-site? These posts may be bait to luer young/naiive freelancers.

 

Sure, everyone here is (I hope!) of legal working age, and therefore (if in a region that permits it) free to have affiliation with graphic material of this sort. However, it seems quite reprehensible to have such jobs here in this marketplace. So:

 

  1. Upwork Support: What is being done to block these posts and band the posters? Why isn't there an automatic filter in place to flag posts that mention key words/phrases like these? Are you blocking the IPs of users who are in violation of the TOS? If not, when do you plan to put such measures into place?
  2. Fellow Freelancers: What are your observations on the frequency and nature of such posts you've come across?
15 REPLIES 15
david_gregory
Member

I haven't seen any of these adult coloring book posts but I'm not sure it's a problem.

 

Do they actually post pictures or do they just post a job saying "create an adult coloring book". If there are no images or graphic detail, then I don't see a problem. A freelancer doesn't need to apply. While some people may have issues with this job posting, many other freelancers will see nothing wrong.

 

It's not Upwork's job to police the morals of society.

 

If you don't like them, just move on.

 

I have seen jobs for editing that involved dealing with fairly erotic material. Again, this is no problem. If you want to avoid these kinds of jobs, you could always include a statement regarding that in your profile. Other freelancers might quite enjoy doing that type of work.

tlsanders
Member

I just did a search for adult coloring book postings and saw no indication that there was anything inappropriate about any of those that I saw.

 

I'm not surprised there are a lot of jobs in this arena, since adult coloring books are currently outselling novels in the United States. Generally, they're nature scenes or geometric patterns, that sort of thing--the only thing adult about them is that they're more intricate than children's coloring books.

 

That said, if the postings you're looking at are for "adult" materials, I'm not aware of an Upwork rule against that sort of content. Have you seen one, or do you simply think that Upwork should make and enforce such a rule because some people might not approve of that sort of thing?

Indeed, the ones I'm referring to are not the "Zen Intricate Pattern" ones, as would come to mind for many coming across these job posts. I'm in fact referring to the misleading posts expressly seeking depictions of intimate graphic intercourse. The listings have cited this bluntly, even linking to existing materials as examples. They are without a doubt not to be confused with paisley patterns.

 

This isn't craigslist, so if they're not to be banned, can we at least get a filter to opt-out of these? (Even craigslist itself has a section designated for that, so it can easily be avoided.)

 

Furthermore, these job posters don't seem to even bother reading freelancers' profiles when they spam invites, so I doubt that those whom seek to avoid these jobs will see much success in citing their preferrences against this.

In fact, it is against Upwork's ToS.

 

"Jobs may not transmit any content related to or containing any adult or sexually explicit material."

 

But the rules and regs are are in light grey, as is the rule about academic cheating.


@Nichola L wrote:

In fact, it is against Upwork's ToS.

 

"Jobs may not transmit any content related to or containing any adult or sexually explicit material."

 

But the rules and regs are are in light grey, as is the rule about academic cheating.


 That rule would knock out a number of the books I've edited. While sexually explicit material was not the main theme of the books, sex scenes have been written into some of the books I've edited.

David I agree. Most fiction does have explicit sex scenes, but there is a difference between that and outright pornography, which some of these jobs are.

Oh, found it-- the book that was cited as an example of what the client wanted in one of the more recent posts I was invited to was

  • ISBN-10: 1612432409
  • ISBN-13: 978-1612432403

So, for absolute clarity, that's what I'm referring to.

 

I'd say that the ones I've been seeing were a #010101 gray on that scale, lol.

 

In any event, I still would like to hear back from officials on if they plan to implement a "contains adult content" filter option for ease of avoidance. OSHA doesn't apply to freelancers here in the US, but it's still not professional to have blatant sexual situations as part of average working settings. Even when I worked in the webhosting industry we all had the option to opt out of support for adult website customers. I of course didn't, and I have no problem with it personally, I'm wondering about the whole situation.

 

Besides, I'd think that given the quote from their TOS, the "adult entertainment" industry is not what Upwork wants any affiliation with, nor such connotations with their public image.

 

 

Also, now that I think about it, I wonder if the influx of intimate adult coloring book requests may be due to a misunderstanding of the nature in this recent fad of the paisley kind of adult coloring books. Perhaps people overheard that "adult coloring books" are in right now, and misunderstood the context.

I think there are worse things to be found on the internet than rude colouring books! Nor do I feel that any normal person would be traumatised through proximity to job postings which might make them think inappropriate thoughts. Incidently, check the applicants for jobs on actual pornographic websites here - they're ALL from religious countries!

It's not really Upwork's job to act as the morality police. Providing the descriptions aren't explicit, and the jobs aren't illegal, surely these people should have the same rights as anyone else? Anyway, where would it all end, should all erotic* books be banned? How about violent computer games? Personally, I find many of the religious jobs offensive, but simply ignore them, just as I do any erotic* editing jobs.

 

Edit. These are guides to lovemaking for adults, and I would expect their primary audience is women. This is not pornography!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*unerotic

*unerotic

Yeah, all seems above board to me. I think if something is being sold on Amazon then it's probably on the right side of being pornographic. An adult filter would be advisable for such things... what's ok for one could be very un-ok for others.

 

It's not like it's the seedy underbelly of criminal society though, an adult colouring book. 

"Welcome, humans. I'm ready for you!"
- Box, Logan's Run (1976)

Good points. They probably shouldn't be banned outright, but at least have an optional filter since the TOS doesn't seem to be that strictly enforced in this regard. It just set off some red flags for me since I've been getting so many of them, and the clients were all surprisingly crass and behaved very unusually. It all smelled quite fishy, but seems to just be a fluke in my case since it doesn't seem to be too common for everyone else.

 

Anyway, I wanted to bring it up in case it's been bothering anyone. One webhosting company I worked for here in Chicago was initially fine with hosting adult sites, but when they got bought out and relocated to Utah there was a company-wide ban on those sites and notice sent out to inform site owners to move. Nearly all of the support reps weren't able to provide support for sites of that nature as part of their shared beliefs/morals, and there were just a couple of us relocated from Chicago to Utah for bringing over legacy knowledge. We ended up handling all of those customers in the transitional period, and I heard that after we left the companythey there was an ultimatum sent to the stragglers that hadn't moved to different hosting companies.

 

It was pretty eye-opening to see that kind of reaction, and to hear those co-workers' input on the topic. I never imagined that a hosting company of all things would get so bent out of shape about adult websites. (Especially when workers would often sing that one Avenue Q song in jest of those sites Smiley Wink ). So, I guess it just got me wondering about others' sensitivities, if it's kosher, etc. when I received another job invite this evening. Sorry if it came off as too critical in my first post.


@Ramon B wrote:

It's not really Upwork's job to act as the morality police. Providing the descriptions aren't explicit, and the jobs aren't illegal, surely these people should have the same rights as anyone else? Anyway, where would it all end, should all erotic* books be banned? How about violent computer games? Personally, I find many of the religious jobs offensive, but simply ignore them, just as I do any erotic* editing jobs.

 

Edit. These are guides to lovemaking for adults, and I would expect their primary audience is women. This is not pornography!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*unerotic

*unerotic


 I agree that  women are probably the target audience for that particular 'colouring' book , albeit distasteful, badly illustrated, and caucasian oriented. But why do you assume that if women are a primary audience that the subject matter by definition should be anodyne?

Why wouldn't English language books be 'caucasion-orientated'. As far as I was aware, most people in Europe, North America and Australasia are white! One would also expect the Karma Sutra to have an Indian bias. I have no idea if these books are anodyne or not; however, I do not need to ask the sellers on Amazon to know the target audience is female. I also do not need to ask the sellers on Amazon to find out that most Steven Seagal fans are male, is this also a sexist generalisation?

vladag
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Breanne,

 

Adult and sexually explicit material is prohibited on Upwork, and we review each case separately. You'll need to send an example of these job posts in to our Customer Support team, so our Policy team could review, make a determination and take appropriate action. I can't advise on a policy question based on general information and similar content which you shared in the public forum, so please do contact our team if there's anything in particular you want us to review.

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