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browersr
Member

What should be done with Profile Plagiarists?

For the second time within a week or so, my profile was copied by another freelancer.  The first one I reported had the info removed within 24 hours.  I just reported this second one and I have every confidence that UW will take quick action.

 

What is not clear though is whether it will be just action.  Is simply making the person remove the copied text enough?  Should these people really be allowed to just continue on with nothing more?  I would think at the very least the account should be suspended for a month.  Repeat offenders should be kicked off the platform. 

 

Assuming UW acts quickly like the first time and i will say that I really appreciate them taking these complaints seriously.  However, are the current consequences enough?

 

217 REPLIES 217

Mary, could you please PM their links to me? Thank you. I don't know what's wrong with people!!

Hi Mary, 


Could you please share the other profiles you saw? I checked and found the other profile has already been addressed.


~ Avery
Upwork
aocumen
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Isabelle, 

Thanks for bringing this to our attention. I'll have the team take a look so that they can take the necessary actions against the user's account.


~ Avery
Upwork

Hi Avery, the guy's profile is still available in search: https://www.upwork.com/freelancers/~016f93dec122ede2c7

There is another TR freelancer who's copied a little bit, but I can't complain much because he's customized it quite a bit: https://www.upwork.com/freelancers/~018ba58cfc75fd2fc7
g_vasilevski
Retired Team Member
Retired Team Member

Hi Isabelle, 

I added this 2 links to the escalation from Avery. Thank you for reporting.

~ Goran
Upwork

Well, given the earlier news about process to prevent this issue, I was initially pleased to not see my profile copied. I got a bit complacent and so did not check for a while. Thought about it today and checked only to find 3 people have copied my profile and 2 have numerous clients. Of course I have submitted these frauds to customer service. Unfortunately this overall problem still has not been solved. 

aocumen
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Scott, 


I'm sorry that this issue continues to be an inconvenience for you. The teams working on this issue continue to review and address profiles that are found to be plagiarising content and overviews from other Upwork users. We also rely on reports from the community, and we thank you for continuously reporting these instances to the team. 

I will escalate your reports so that they can immediately be addressed by the Marketplace Quality Team.


~ Avery
Upwork


@Avery O wrote:

Hi Scott, 


I'm sorry that this issue continues to be an inconvenience for you. The teams working on this issue continue to review and address profiles that are found to be plagiarising content and overviews from other Upwork users. We also rely on reports from the community, and we thank you for continuously reporting these instances to the team. 

I will escalate your reports so that they can immediately be addressed by the Marketplace Quality Team.



Thank you, Avery. I would also be great if there was an option to report them directly from the profile. There are reporting options but none that fit this category. As a result I have to go into the CS menu and submit from there. Not the end of the world, but it would be a nice option. Of course it would be great to just solve it to begin with...

aocumen
Community Manager
Community Manager

Hi Scott, 


I checked this with the team and they advised that you can tick-off either Duplicate Profile, or Bogus Resume when reporting users who copy profile overviews. 

 

Screen Shot 2017-08-05 at 2.13.54 PM.png


~ Avery
Upwork


@Avery O wrote:

Hi Scott, 


I checked this with the team and they advised that you can tick-off either Duplicate Profile, or Bogus Resume when reporting users who copy profile overviews. 

 

Screen Shot 2017-08-05 at 2.13.54 PM.png


 

Thanks, Avery. I saw those but wasn't sure they spoke to my issue. Can I assume that they will understand that it's a copy of mine if I tick those and submit? I am not sure there is a way to comment and I don't know how these complaints are received. 


@Avery O wrote:

 

....The teams working on this issue continue to review and address profiles that are found to be plagiarising content and overviews from other Upwork users. We also rely on reports from the community, and we thank you for continuously reporting these instances to the team. 


I seem to recall text matching as being one of the most basic computational functions, dating back to working via command-line interface. Things have gotten so complicated.

I'm either the only Upwork freelancer never to have had her profile stolen or the only one who doesn't know how to find out whether it was.

I try not to jinx myself. There was the idiot "how do I speak whit client" moron spamming the forum like a year ago. He stole mine. They kept giving him a chance too. I think if I look and find someone, I might have to cut their fingers off and put a horse head in their bed. Freakin scumbags.


@Jennifer M wrote:

I try not to jinx myself. There was the idiot "how do I speak whit client" moron spamming the forum like a year ago. He stole mine. They kept giving him a chance too. I think if I look and find someone, I might have to cut their fingers off and put a horse head in their bed. Freakin scumbags.


LOL, this is exactly how I feel when I come across a profile that's copied my own. Even worse is when you see they're actively earning with that profile!!

 

However, Upwork's not the only site that responds poorly to these situations - Guru is just as bad when dealing with plagiarism reports. (Maybe even a tiny bit worse.)


@Isabelle Anne A wrote:

[. . .]

LOL, this is exactly how I feel when I come across a profile that's copied my own. Even worse is when you see they're actively earning with that profile!!

 

However, Upwork's not the only site that responds poorly to these situations - Guru is just as bad when dealing with plagiarism reports. (Maybe even a tiny bit worse.)


 Upwork really can't mind that much about image. What an indictment to be compared with Guru and to be in the same bracket when it comes to not taking much action for one of the worst offences - identity theft.

 

 

 And I have just discovered two cheaters who have copied parts of my profile word for word. One of them has simply exchanged French to English translation forArabic to English translation - so let's see if anything is done about these two. I bet nothing much is done about it and I bet their profiles stay visible while the profiles of genuine freelancers get "privatized" for the new infraction of not being at the Upwork grindstone continually without a break.

 

One of the oddest things about profiles is that Upwork apparently does not zap a bogus profile; the profile has to be changed by the cheater at Upwork's request . . . and if the cheater ignores the request?


@Tiffany S wrote:

I'm either the only Upwork freelancer never to have had her profile stolen or the only one who doesn't know how to find out whether it was.


Just take a chunk of your profile and paste it into Google. I just tried on af few of your sections and didn't come across anything. Looks like you're good for now! 

In an action movie, profile plagiarists would be killed by assassin robots from the future because they are mistaken for the real freelancers, who are destined to become the parents of the robots' greatest enemy.

 

That would be very satisfying.

Just discovered another, who has partially copied my profile on Freelancer, but not on Upwork.

 

Preston, I agree, only I would like to see something much more immediate and effective - and painful.

 

Anyway I see that I must rework my profile. It was time anyway. But if I do that, the plagiarists will remain, so until Upwork has dealt with them,  I will have to leave mine up.

Make sure to check your LinkedIn profile as well.  They are fantastic about dealing with the problem.

 

The darn fool used my profile on both U and LI. CS was beyond worthless until I sent them relevent screenshots of LI and their immediate response plus threatened to file a take down notice on U.

I've never had my stolen, either, but there really aren't many paralegals on here.  Thank goodness.  I would go all postal if somebody copied my profile...


@Tiffany S wrote:

I'm either the only Upwork freelancer never to have had her profile stolen or the only one who doesn't know how to find out whether it was.


Tiffany, parts of your profile have been lifted. I'll PM you the links. One person  (new) was quite present on the forum just a few weeks ago.

 

Something more effective should be done about this plagiarism.


@Nichola L wrote:

@Tiffany S wrote:

I'm either the only Upwork freelancer never to have had her profile stolen or the only one who doesn't know how to find out whether it was.


Tiffany, parts of your profile have been lifted. I'll PM you the links. One person  (new) was quite present on the forum just a few weeks ago.

 

Something more effective should be done about this plagiarism.



NOW I AM ABSOLUTELY FURIOUS!

 

I reported the two people who have stolen part of my overview, and this was the reply that I have just received. (When the mods zap this, I will pm anyone who is interested.)

 

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

My profile has been up for considerably longer than either of the two people I reported and I am being called into question. This is absolutely unacceptable. How dare Upwork imply that I am lying!!!

 

 

ETA: And why is it that this sort of **Edited for Community Guidelines** response can be expected over the weekend when not a mod is in sight not even the ones who are supposed to be on weekend duty. 


@Nichola L wrote:

NOW I AM ABSOLUTELY FURIOUS!

 

I reported the two people who have stolen part of my overview, and this was the reply that I received. (When the mods zap this, I will pm anyone who is interested.)

 

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

My profile has been up for considerably longer than either of the two people I reported and I am being called into question. This is absolutely unacceptable. How dare Upwork imply that I am lying!!!


I don't blame you ... I would be beyond furious.

 

Post the fraudster's links so we can see them before they're taken down. If a bunch of us flag the profiles, maybe something will happen.  pms would work ...

 

I've received answers like that to tickets in the past, and I've responded to let them know that it is not my job to investigate these profiles or complaints.

 

ETA: Wendy's advice to keep the ticket open is a good one. Do not let them close it.

Of the two people I reported, one person's overview is completely cut and pasted from me, other freelancers, and the internet.

 

The other one has simply lifted my overview and changed the language pair from French >English to Arabic > English.

 

I am not going to leave this thread until somebody  has sorted this mess out and has apologized to me for accusing me of lying.  I also speak for the other freelancers whose profiles are constantly being stolen or partially copied and absolutely no definite action is taken.

Nichola, keep the ticket open and very active.  Right now DEMAND to speak with a supervisor and go from there.  

 

I'm going to see if I can find the name of the wonderful CS woman who helped me. I'll email it to you.

 

Raise HE// -

 

And to all the moderators > this is a perfect example of why contacting CS does NOT work. And CS won't work any better when peoples profiles are locked,

That response is so totally unacceptable that I can't even form a response.  Good grief!  Hopefully, a mod will appear and somebody will get slapped and somebody else will be permanently banned.  This issue is clearly out of control!!

DMCA notices against each of the profiles...


Nichola L wrote:


NOW I AM ABSOLUTELY FURIOUS!

 

I reported the two people who have stolen part of my overview, and this was the reply that I have just received. (When the mods zap this, I will pm anyone who is interested.)

 

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

My profile has been up for considerably longer than either of the two people I reported and I am being called into question. This is absolutely unacceptable. How dare Upwork imply that I am lying!!!

 

 

ETA: And why is it that this sort of moronic response can be expected over the weekend when not a mod is in sight not even the ones who are supposed to be on weekend duty. 


 lol good grief. If Upwork keeps this up, their entire profile of freelancers will be spun versions of one central profile. Like a borg of freelancers ripping of customers. Profile verification is futile.

I shall take Kim and Wendy's advice - many thanks both of you.

 

I have just been told to provide screenshots . . . so I had better leave the forum now, before I get banned . . .

The mere mention of DMCA notices seems to awaken (or send shudders of fear through) someone in the corporate U structure.  It worked wonders for me as mentioned in another thread.

> I have just been told to provide screenshots . . . 

 

They'll be telling you to change to another browser and delete your cookies soon...


@Nichola L wrote:

"Thank you for contacting Upwork.

I understand that you're reporting two freelancers for copying your overview. Based on our records, their accounts were created since the year 2016. Please provide proof or evidence that your profile is original and the reported freelancers need to be reprimanded for policy violation."


Just as bad as the one I received from Guru:

 

"Basis the details shared by you we cannot consider it as an act of plagiarism. As mentioned in my previous email, freelancers with a similar profile can have a similar looking profile. Would request you to provide us with more evidence so that we can assist you."
 
@LOL @ incompetence. 
 

 

 

Nichola,

 

Apologies for misunderstanding. It appears a mistake occurred when checking registration dates on your account and accounts your reported. The accounts will be reviewed once again and appropriate actions will be taken.

 

Thank you for reporting.

~ Valeria
Upwork


@Nichola L wrote:

@Tiffany S wrote:

I'm either the only Upwork freelancer never to have had her profile stolen or the only one who doesn't know how to find out whether it was.


Tiffany, parts of your profile have been lifted. I'll PM you the links. One person  (new) was quite present on the forum just a few weeks ago.

 

Something more effective should be done about this plagiarism.


 Thank you, Nichola, 

 

It's pretty disturbing when people asking others to pay for their writing services don't feel qualified to write an effective profile on their own behalf--and that prospective clients will reasonably assume the profile is an example of the writer's work.

 

The second link you provided has actually duplicated the format and phrasing of my whole profile, though he has at least replaced my skills and experience with his own. 

@ Nichola -- 

 

"Infuriating" doesn't even begin to touch what you must be experiencing in your interaction with C.S.:

 

(Quoting: )

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

My profile has been up for considerably longer than either of the two people I reported and I am being called into question. This is absolutely unacceptable. How dare Upwork imply that I am lying!!!

***************

 

Not only is the C.S. response absolutely unacceptable, condescending, and bizarre -- but it seems to show that whoever put it together cannot do simple math involving time! (Here's a 7th-grade-level word problem: "If Nichola created her profile in 2005 [a guess] and Freelancer Scummy Fake-Plagiarist Scummerson created HER profile in 2016, how many years older is Nichola's profile than Scummy Scummerson's profile?")

Nichola, please keep us posted on when and how this is rectified.

I reported 2 profiles yesterday: one was a 100% copy of mine including title (a profile that had been taken down previously but allowed back again...) while the other provider had lifted 2 paragraphs from my overview, which make up more than 1/3 of their profile. 

 

CS told me that they don't take any action unless at least 70% of the fraudulent profile are similar to or identical with mine. Since when?

In theory, somebody can steal 69% of my profile and UW is OK with that?!?

 

 

ETA: I was absolutely certain that the 2nd provider had copied the rest of their profile from somebody else. And boom - just found their other source (another UW provider).

All the info you need to issue a DMCA takedown notice ... USE IT.

http://www.dmca.com/FAQ/What-is-a-DMCA-Takedown

 

 


@Wendy C wrote:

All the info you need to issue a DMCA takedown notice ... USE IT.

http://www.dmca.com/FAQ/What-is-a-DMCA-Takedown 

 


 This one looks like the paid one. Is that right?