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What should be done with Profile Plagiarists?

aocumen
Moderator
Avery O Moderator Member Since: Nov 23, 2015
31 of 218

Hi Scott, 


I understand how it can be frustrating that the team does not share any information on what actions they take against reports like these. But please understand that it also violates a user's privacy if actions against their account are shared to other users. 

 

To confirm what Jennifer has shared, the profile in question has already been actioned on and the reason why you are still seeing his profile is because you have a direct link to it. 


~ Avery
Upwork
prestonhunter
Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
32 of 218

If this was a science fiction movie, perhaps a PKD adaptation, I would ask how you can be sure that you are actually you, and not the copy? You could be a clone or a robot copy of the real you.

 

But as this is real life, I think you know who you are.

 

Still, I'm sure there are many in the copy-and-paste crowd who use Copyscape to see if their own profiles are plagiarized or not.

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
33 of 218

@Avery O wrote:

 

To confirm what Jennifer has shared, the profile in question has already been actioned on and the reason why you are still seeing his profile is because you have a direct link to it. 


 That is not the point. The fact that the plagiarised profile has not been changed or suspended (yet) *IS* the point. "Hiding" it does not remove the violation.

 

If Scott can still see HIS copyrighted text, the matter has NOT BEEN ACTIONED on, because the stolen content is still published. It is still on Upwork's server. A tree is a tree, regardless of whether I can see it or not.

 

I would suggest issuing a DMCA take-down notice if this isn't fixed within a reasonable time (24-48 hours)

iaabraham
Community Guru
Isabelle Anne A Member Since: May 19, 2014
34 of 218

@Avery O wrote:

But please understand that it also violates a user's privacy if actions against their account are shared to other users. 


In my opinion they shouldn't have any privacy rights because of the blatant misrepresentation - technically they're not "themselves." At the very least, the person whose profile they plagiarized should be informed of what will happen to that user's account.

 

Anyway, I can't think of a single good reason why such profiles should stay up at all. If someone can, please let me know.

 

versailles
Community Guru
Rene K Member Since: Jul 10, 2014
35 of 218

@Avery O wrote:

 

(...) please understand that it also violates a user's privacy if actions against their account are shared to other users. 


How can you protect the offender's privacy and not the victim's intellectual property by not removing the plagiarized material?

 

Who cares about the privacy of someone who stole the profile from someone else?

 

Who cares if the profile is hidden from the search if they can still apply to jobs with their stolen profile?

 

What do you guys think you are doing here? What kind of business is yours since you keep plagiarized profiles on your platform?

 

I doubt many believe it when you say that you are taking action against plagiarists. You can repeat your PR answers over and over but the facts are here to prove you wrong: plagiarists are not removed from the platform at all. Period.

-----------
"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless
kochubei_valeria
Community Manager
Valeria K Community Manager Member Since: Mar 6, 2014
36 of 218

Scott, Rene, Petra and others,

 

The reported user can't send proposals to other jobs or accept invitations to interview as his account has been limited. We will not be able to share any further information about our internal processes and status of other user's accounts. We share cases like this with the team and will continue working to improve the system in order to prevent and handle abuse like this better.

~ Valeria
Upwork
colettelewis
Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
37 of 218

I suppose the "reported user" can still be a client - is that why Upwork does not completely remove these dishonest creeps?

 

People who copy other people's profiles, should not be allowed any access to the site at all. 

 

 

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
38 of 218

I'd be really curious to know some numbers on this stuff. Upwork gives people like auto clicker scammers, plagiarists and portfolio thieves second chances. I'd really like to see some numbers on how many of these people move on to do it again or scam clients. I know they won't show us, but it's kinda frustrating being on the honest side of things and having my rep get trashed from these people. It's embarrassing when you see clients complain about fake profiles in the client section. And then you have Amy's situation where the thief just changes it back after the limit is removed.

 

Kill them with fire I say. Nothing of value would be lost.

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
39 of 218

@Valeria K wrote:

Scott, Rene, Petra and others,

 

The reported user can't send proposals to other jobs or accept invitations to interview as his account has been limited. We will not be able to share any further information about our internal processes and status of other user's accounts. We share cases like this with the team and will continue working to improve the system in order to prevent and handle abuse like this better.


 Valeria, legally it does not matter one bit what the thief can or can not do with his or her account - Copyright laws say the plagiarised content must be removed from the server (NOT just "hidden", but actually, physically removed)

 

I don't think anyone really particularly cares first and foremost what happens to the perpetrator, what really matters is what happens (or doesn't) to the stolen content.

 

 

browersr
Community Guru
Scott B Member Since: Nov 20, 2015
40 of 218

First, I appreciate the moderators responding here.  We know we have great mods on this forum.  At least what you stated gave me more insight to the fact that something was done which I didn't really have before outside of vague statements.  However, and I know you guys aren't the decision makers, but someone with authority needs to understand how simple it would be to solve this issue.  You guys own this service.  You can freely edit posts made on these forums when content is written that askews policy (or common decency).  Why not apply that exact same logic to something like a profile?  UW has to understand that by appearances nothing was done and it's galling to see one's content continue to be associated with someone else's profile (which can be Googled by the way regardless of the account state).  Simple answer is to remove it from their profile just as you would remove a link or bad word if I inserted it here.  That's it.  If you want to take your disciplinary action to the "cone of silence room" that's fine.  Just removing the content shows me something was actually done and most importantly it was removing my content. Please take this simple request to the next staff meeting.  It will save much heartburn and bad feelings in a simple a common sense way.

 

Petra and others have more than capably stated why the current response or action isn't enough.  Their words are more cogent than mine so I wouldn't try to add to them.

 

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