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feedback and free work

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Active Member
Natasa J Member Since: Aug 31, 2016
1 of 23

Hi, I am relatively new to the community and I have some good experiences. However, there is one practice that I find disturbing:  it seems possible for a client to practically blackmail a freelancer, asking for free work for a good review. Sometimes they bluntly say that even when presenting the task, especially to newcoomers. I met a client who constantly tries to manipulate me into the free work. Apparently she likes what I do but doesn't want to pay for it, not to me, not to Upwork.

When I say “free”, it means that she defines weekly work needed as “one hour” and keeps asking for different things that obviously cannot be included in the given framework.  She also keeps changing number and content of requests and deadlines, but still didn't let me get out of the contract easily. (I am not  yet commited to the career of freelancing, but I am very commited to the tasks and jobs I take here, so I went out of my way to do the best I could for her, although I wanted out. She "blackmails" me with the feedback, in very obvious although not clearly verbalised manner. It really makes me reconsider Upwork. It also puzzles me why Upwork lets this happen by setting the feedback policy where clients have so obvious upperhand. In this way a tremendous number of work goes unrecorded and Upwork is ultimately losing money with not having better protection of its freelancers. 

 

Community Guru
Katrina B Member Since: Jan 9, 2011
2 of 23

It actually doesn't work that way.  It is against ToS for a client to ask for free work, but it is impossible to do free work for a good review because at least a $1 has to be paid on a project before a review can even be left.  So free work for a good review is impossible. 

"Fairness is giving all people the treatment they earn and deserve. It doesn't mean treating everyone alike-Coach John Wooden"
Active Member
Natasa J Member Since: Aug 31, 2016
3 of 23

Hi Katrina, I see some unfair treatment in your post, but if it makes you feel good, fine with me.

I didn't say I was not paid, I said that initial request were changed immediately after the signing of the contract and additional documents were asked. 

Community Guru
Katrina B Member Since: Jan 9, 2011
BEST ANSWER
4 of 23

@Natasa J wrote:

Hi Katrina, I see some unfair treatment in your post, but if it makes you feel good, fine with me.

I didn't say I was not paid, I said that initial request was being changed immediately after the signing of the contract and additional documents were asked. 


 What are you talking about. I wasn't being rude to you. I was pointing out it was against ToS for a client to propose that to you. 

"Fairness is giving all people the treatment they earn and deserve. It doesn't mean treating everyone alike-Coach John Wooden"
Active Member
Natasa J Member Since: Aug 31, 2016
5 of 23

Sorry, Katrina, I am irritated by his girl right now, so I was inclined to read the famous quote as your answer to me in this particular situation. Sorry once more.

Community Guru
Katrina B Member Since: Jan 9, 2011
6 of 23

No worries. I just didn't want you to think I was being nasty with you.  

"Fairness is giving all people the treatment they earn and deserve. It doesn't mean treating everyone alike-Coach John Wooden"
Active Member
Natasa J Member Since: Aug 31, 2016
7 of 23

Thank you, may I please explain my point: we agreed for an amount of work provided for a certain price (and it can really always be at least a little more, because I don’t restrict myself in providing quality because of time or money constrains, but it should be done in a reasonable manner and by my choice).

 

If the client keeps asking for much more work than in the contract, never mind that she paid the agreed price, she still asks for free work. Don’t you think?  Everything (far) above agreed amount of work is free work in my opinion.

 

 

Community Guru
Katrina B Member Since: Jan 9, 2011
8 of 23

What you're dealing with here is a scope creep and no, it's not okay.

 

What you may try to do is politely ask the client.

 

Dear Client,

 

I have really enjoyed working on your projects with you.  The latest set of work you have requested is beyond the scope of the first contract.  I will be happy to work with you on the latest set of deliverables, as soon as you start a new contract or add milestones to the existing one. 

"Fairness is giving all people the treatment they earn and deserve. It doesn't mean treating everyone alike-Coach John Wooden"
Active Member
Natasa J Member Since: Aug 31, 2016
9 of 23

Thank you, Katrina. This is a good suggestion.

Community Guru
John K Member Since: Feb 17, 2015
10 of 23

Natasa, after you do as Katrina suggested, if the client threatens to give you poor feedback, you should report the threat to support because that's disallowed. Of course, the client could also give you poor feedback without making any threat, so I hope for your sake that does not happen.

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"No good deed goes unpunished." -- Clare Boothe Luce