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6 10 2010
sean

Hi Lisa,

I would like to tell you that the time and effort you’ve spent writing this post was worth it. I really like the points you’ve mentioned and i think this will help a lot of people.

This is my first time in you blog and I am liking it already.

All the best

6 10 2010
lisaamartin

Thank you very much Sean! Glad you found it useful (sorry it was a bit long!). There will be more posts in a similar vein coming up over the next few weeks so stay tuned!

7 10 2010
Alaister

Hi Lisa,

It’s Alaister, Marketing Manager of Freelancer.com here.

Great article about account suspension and our terms and conditions. It is written very well and clearly explains how we go about suspending users who have broken our terms and conditions.

Thanks for taking the time to understand how we operate and writing a post about your findings. This will most definitely help our users in the future.

Thanks
Alaister Low
http://www.freelancer.com

7 10 2010
lisaamartin

Thank you Alaister, I’ll be adding more posts like this in future so do check up on me again and make sure my facts are accurate! :)

3 11 2010
AdyCoder

Unfortunately my account got suspended and I didn’t break any rules.

Somebody who paid me maybe did (although it was a payment for programming work, I’m not really sure it broke any rule, but let’s say that for the sake of argument), but that should be his issue, not mine.

Besides that, I was humiliated while trying to solve the issue. After uploading the id scan as requested, I got a new request, a picture as for a criminal, holding my id and a paper with a ‘security code’… I uploaded that, with no results so far. I really think that measure was intended to insult, expecting some ‘fuck you’ back, to have a ‘real reason’ to close the account.

I looked around and I found that I’m not alone in such situation. People got the account locked and their money stolen, it seems.
I didn’t have much money into the account (a little over a couple hundreds USD), but I really don’t like to be cheated like that.
Besides that, I’ve got 10 stars feedback from all I worked for there, so it’s not only the money loss… people do work there a little cheaper hoping to get a good rating to be able to get bigger projects…

Anyway, I’m soo disappointed with freelancer.com right now.

9 11 2010
AdyCoder

The good news is that the just refunded the payment and unlocked my account.
I’ll see how it goes in the future. Hopefully without such annoyances.

9 11 2010
lisaamartin

Hurray! I’m glad your situation was resolved. One of the keys to Freelancer is patience, I think!

6 10 2012
sergio passos

My account was suspended too, four days ago, i have 200$ on my account and they wont give it back. I sent several emails asking why, and no satisfatory aswer. I didnt violate any rule, had more than 30 projects hired and 5 months working with them. After 5 days without any response, i talked to a friend who is a hacker guy, he start to annoying the plataform leaving messages denoucing the scamm, In a short period of time, the online chat (wich is always offline) went online and a support guy asks him if he need something. My friend asked why they had cancel my account and wont give my money back. The support guy aswered that my deposit was fraudulent… LOL so i think my credit card its fake and i didnt know. The freelancer support its horrible, they are very ignorant and disonest. I already talked to VISA support and they told me that this website have lots of complains. you can see it here too: http://www.complaintsboard.com/bycompany/freelancercom-a208769.html. Its a great website, its a great plataform to hire and get hired, but the guys behind it, arent honest people, so by my experience this is a pure scam.

22 01 2011
NJ

Hello Sir Alaister,

I’ve been working at freelancer for a few weeks only and now my account is suspended. I admitted in my reply to freelancer that I have made a breach of their rules unintentionally..I created multiple accounts because I wanted to bid for more projects but I didn’t have money to become a gold member at that moment. I sincerely apologized about this. Please just send my balance in my 2 accounts to my Paypal account. I only have $120 in my original account and $50 in the second one.. I badly need that cash.. Please just send my money to me. It’s okay if you’ll decide to close or terminate my accounts but please send my money. I’ve worked so hard to earn those.. I’ve been waiting for 15 days for the first release of my income then suddenly my account has been suspended. I sent my ID and I’m still waiting for the response..T_T

6 10 2012
sergio passos

just dont wait for that. Make a denounce on VISA or Paypal, freelancer its a scam. trust me, my account was canceled to, without breaking any rules. they told me that my deposit was fraudulent… ive payed with my personal credit card… scam, pure scam!!!

31 05 2012
Michael B.

Alaister,

What do you do to a freelancer who has copied content from another site (documented) and demanded payment, who also received a milestone to start?

8 10 2010
Ellen Kinley

Thank you for the well thought out and detailed blog. I admit, I have hesitated to use
Freelancer as a) the payments are unseemingly low and/or b) too little detail in the project to give an educated bid/time frame.

So, I have just signed up and placed my first bid. Hope it goes well, and now have more insight into future bids.

Again, thank you!

Ellen

11 10 2010
The trouble with Freelancer.com « Lisa A. Martin

[...] Is Freelancer.com a scam? (Part 1) [...]

16 10 2010
Is Freelancer.com a scam? (Part 2) « Lisa A. Martin

[...] does deliberately withhold or steal people’s money for no reason. As you may have seen in  Part 1 of this blog series, you’ll discover that most problems originate with the users themselves [...]

6 10 2012
sergio passos

sorry but thats not true, you can check this website: http://www.complaintsboard.com/bycompany/freelancercom-a208769.html

9 11 2010
CC

Hi Lisa,

Very informative article!
I too have encountered problems with Freelancer.com, including not receiving my money and having my account suspended (trust me: with no reason).

My question is: can anyone tell me how can I close my Freelance account for good?

Thank you!

9 11 2010
lisaamartin

Hello and thanks for stopping by my blog! To cancel your Freelancer account, you must open a new support ticket explaining that you would like to terminate your account. Your account must not have a negative balance (if it does, you will need to deposit funds to bring it back to zero). If you have credit in your Freelancer account, make sure that you withdraw it before you cancel your account, and note that you cannot withdraw less than $30 at a time, so again, you may need to deposit funds in order to withdraw it again!

10 11 2010
lisaamartin

I blogged about how to close your Freelancer account :) See the post here: http://lisaamartin.wordpress.com/2010/11/10/faq-how-do-i-cancel-my-freelancer-account/

12 11 2010
John Tolhurst

I created an account, and found tweet spam flooding that account name. that is, when you search twitter on that account name, it is flooded with the comings and goings of every bid and response to jobs at freelancer. I could not live with this, I did not anticipate this outcome.

I asked customer support if the tweet spam can be avoided, I was told they cannot manage it.

I asked for my account name to be changed. Request denied.

Sigh. So I created a second account, so I could progress things and with the intent of shutting the first account down when its jobs were closed. I closed off the remaining jobs on the first account. I gave my ratings to my suppliers, I looked at the excellent feedback on that account, ‘oh well’ I said, ‘it’ll all come right in the end’. And then I turned my attention to then account.

And then I get deactivated on both accounts. Well that’s just dandy guys.

Did anybody write and say, hey, what’s up with those accounts? No. Anybody bother to review my issue history? No. Anybody out there at all? No.

So great. I guess (if http://www.quarkbase.com/getafreelancer.com is reliable)
Matt Barrie, Chief Executive Officer
Bob Massa, Company Chief Executive Officer

are patting themselves on the back for how clever they are (which they indeed are) and how much dough they can wring out of this business (I hope a satisfactory amount). BUT with people trusting those two with their dollars and time, they need to be far more responsive to user issues than they are. Just wait, just wait. Sorry, that ain’t good enough, that’s shonky. Matt, Bob, get in and make freelancer something we can all rightly be proud of, don’t back off now, step up with the level of support that matches the vision behind your site.

12 11 2010
lisaamartin

Hi John and thanks for stopping by my blog!
That’s very odd that your Freelancer user name would be tweeted about like that! But unless it was Freelancer themselves tweeting about you, I don’t think there’s a way you could stop it, I’m afraid. Did you try reporting the person/people weeting about you? I don’t know what else you could do.

As for your suspended Freelancer account, as I’m sure now aware, it’s not allowed to have more than one account, therefore what you should have done was formally close your first account before opening another one. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, as they say! Nevertheless, as yours was a genuine mistake, and a mistake made in good faith on account of the abuse of your username, I’m sure you could resolve your suspended account amicably. Try labelling an email to James, customer service manager at Freelancer. I think he’s one of the only customer service reps that is capable of responding with a human answer, not cut and pasted replies from the FAQs section of their website! Explain what has happened and I’m positive that they’ll be able to work something out. It wouldn’t be fair if they didn’t! Let me know how you get on!

25 11 2010
Sudharshi Ranashinghe

I am in problem to bidding projects. I hv tried several time but i think i do not have basic knowledge about Freelance.

Appreciate if you help on this

……………………………..Quote…………………..

IMPORTANT! Don’t post any placeholder bids or hourly rates. We will delete users who do this. If you can’t estimate the total project, ask the buyer for additional information through the message board before you post your bid.

Your bid for the total project:
$ USD*

In how many days can you deliver a completed project?
Day(s) *

Initial milestone percentage required (0-100%)? [?]
% *
…………………………
..UnQuote…………………..

Also when I submitting occurred following error. Pls clarify

……………………………..Quote…………………..

ERRORS OCCURED
Insufficient funds for highlight your bids.

…………………………..UnQuote…………………..

25 11 2010
lisaamartin

Hi, thanks for your questions! Rather than answer them here, I have written a new blog post. Please check here and hopefully you’l find the answers you’re looking for. If you have any other questions, please do ask! :)

25 11 2010
FAQ: How do I place a bid on a Freelancer.com project? « Lisa A. Martin

[...] on a Freelancer.com project? 25 11 2010 I was recently asked this question in a comment on this post, so rather than simply replying to the comment, I’ve decided to give it’s own blog [...]

30 12 2010
Don't Trust to Freelancer.com

Freelancer.com is dangerous ….. I agree with you, I was suspended also…and I can tell you more!

First I will tell that whatever you do you are monitored, they collecting data about you, starting with IP and end with worse things that you can not figure out. In addition, this system has several drawbacks pit:
1. All the information you post on this website remain archived at them, so it’s better to not transfer something through it, but if the buyer refuses to pay for your services or cloth that have been shared outside of this system then you risk not being paid!
2. All the money you’ve worked are strange checked,
3. Withdraw system are shit, until you do not pass through it you do not know how it work, be carefull….
4. Very Big high commissions, Rather, they make money on you than you on yourself…
5. In general the system is very low ! You can use your bids with no succes, if a project is canceled you loss bid for nothing, and more stupid things like this … all they do is to make profit from everything that can benefit without servicing to examine the quality that renders them, if you want to put more bids buy Gold member, if you want to make your bid noted then pay, if you want withdraw or upload money then pay a little bit more…,if you was awarded then pay, if funds was transfered from awarded project then pay again…also there a lot of something for buyers and freelancers … Work stupid! We will make money on you! …. Naive is crazy!
6. …
7. …
8. …
9. …
10. …
11. …
12…
13 … shit, shit and nothing more!

Also if you will open their first page you will see:

Reduce Costs
Pay as little as $30. The
average job is under $200!

World Class Security
Only pay once you are
100% satisfied.

LOL!!!! So no interest for freelancers people who want to work, Think!
Freelancer.com ant their team must be ignored!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Don’t use their service.

22 01 2011
lisaamartin

I don’t really understand how the points you are making here cause you to think that Freelancer is “dangerous”…
1. Yes Freelancer does collect certain information about you, but according to their privacy statement, this information is not shared or uused in any way other than for Freelancer communications and internal statistics. All websites collect information about you; Freelancer is no different. Regarding payments, as you quite rightly say, if you choose not to get paid through Freelancer, then Freelancer offers you no protection if your buyer doesn’t pay you, but that’s the risk you take at your decision. If you want to make sure you get paid, use the Freelancer system. It’s a no-brainer.

2. I’m not entirely sure what you mean by “all your money are strange checked” but I assume you’re referring to the fact that there is a delay between requesting money that you’ve been paid and when you actually get paid. I don’t see this as a problem; it just requires patience. There is a delay of several days when you request to withdraw from Paypal, and even from some bank accounts. I think it is inherently a good thing that Freelancer checks where money comes from and goes to, since there are many many scams around. if you’ve earned money legitimately, then just be patient and you will get it!

3. It’s true that the withdrawal system is not very clear until you’ve actually been through the process. Why not suggest a better way to Freelancer by opening a suggestion support ticket? You could win a prize if they like your idea! But having been through the withdrawal process many times now without problems, I don’t see anything wrong with it. It’s certainly not “dangerous”.

4. “Very big high comissions”? Actually, Freelancer has some of the lowest commission rates of any freelancing site. They’re a business – they’re entitled to make money! If you want to pay lower commissions and win enough projects to justify the subscription fee, then become a Gold member. It’s not mandatory to take exams or highlight your bids for extra fees, so if you don’t want to pay, don’t do it. I’ve not found any benefit in using these features anyway.

5. “You can use your bids with no success…” Well, yes, it’s a bidding site. There is no guarantee that you will win a project just because you have bid on it, especially if you don’t make a good bid or if you aren’t the right person for the job. My advice would be to think carefully about your bid proposals and only bid on projects that you are qualified for. It can be frustrating to get started when you have no feedback, but as with anything, if at first you don’t succeed, try try again!

4 01 2011
2010 in review « Lisa A. Martin

[...] FAQ: Is Freelancer.com a scam? (Part 1) October 2010 18 comments 5 [...]

15 02 2011
Kato

Why does Freelancer.com’s Live Support suddenly go offline when you ask them a question that they do not want to answer such as “I have met all of your requests for information in order to restore my account. When has it been 6 weeks since I have heard from you” or “Why can’t I withdraw my money?” or “Why did you charge my credit card 4 times for the same charge?” or “Why is there a credit card in my name that I have never heard of and why are all of the charges coming from the same IP address range as your emails?”

FREELANCER.COM IS A SCAM – CRIMINALS AND SCUMBAGS!!!!

15 02 2011
lisaamartin

I must admit I’ve only used Freelancer’s live support the one time, and they weren’t very helpful! The guy I was chatting to went AWOL for about 10 minutes while he investigated my problem, but he did eventually come back (and was no use whatsoever). I do think that their support system is inadequate and needs a thorough revision, but I still disagree that Freelancer staff are the source of scams. Incompetent sometimes, yes, but criminal? I don’t think so (unless there is a bad apple within the organization).
With regards how to get through to their support, sadly the only options are to use email (support@freelancer.com), online ticket (essentially the same thing), live help chat or old fashioned snail mail. I find that explaining things as simply and as clearly as you possibly can, using bullet points helps, as well as writing ***FOR THE ATTENTION OF THE CUSTOMER SERVICE MANAGER*** at the top of my emails. The lower echelons of the support team only seem to be good at cutting and pasting what’s already on the site’s FAQ page, but if you can get through to someone higher, they seem to be much more able to help in a useful way. Also try tweeting your support ticket number @Freelancer – the marketing team can be really helpful!

25 03 2011
Freelancer.com user

There is just one thing that people who are still wondering if Freelancer.com is a scam should know – YES it is. And it’s a scam of very big scale. Did you see their site in any of top 10 freelance reviews – NO and you will not see it soon, singing an account at freelancer.com is the biggest mistake in my entire Internet experience. They support a group of scammers from India, there are some honest freelancers there but just few and you would be having hard time finding them. Freelancer.com site support is a joke, they use different nicks but usually it’s one-two people involved and those seem to have problems reading e-mails in English just because they are from Nigeria. If any of you reading this had an experience with this site and had payed through PayPal please report them, explain all your troubles in a ticket to PayPal support, that is one of the ways to stop this huge scam, at least PayPal is still taking scam seriously. Please write in your blogs and sites articles about your horrible experience with freelancer.com like Lisa did. Thank you and do not let sites like freelancer.com manipulate and ignore you, remember that you have rights and no scam site is allowed to violate those

27 03 2011
lisaamartin

Things you are wrong about:
1) I haven’t had a horrible experience at Freelancer. I have had some problems, but in each case they have been resolved. The purpose of my site ISN’T to try and tell people what a terribe site Freelancer is, it’s to try and tell people how to use it properly, because using it wrongly is the #1 cause of bad experiences!
2) It’s not fair to say that Freelancer support cannot understand emails from people “just because they are from Nigeria”. It’s more likely because the users emailing in have poor English.
3) Here are some websites that cite Freelancer as one of the top 10 freelancing websites: PC and Web, ToMuse.com, Technama, FreeNuts” (actally lists it as #1 best), HireFreelancer, Technorotic, DJ Designer Lab. And I’m sure there are many more.

Please people, read my blog carefully and realise what I am really saying. Freelancer IS a good site, if you are careful and use it properly!

6 10 2012
sergio passos

sorry Lisa, but you are wrong about freelancer, they took my 200$ saying that my deposit was fraudulent. well, i use my credit card for all my online shoppings, never had problems, i also make deposits on paypal with the same card. The support its ot bad, its terrible, we have to wait 20 hours for a reply, online chat its never online. Its a complete scam, i was using freelancer about 5 months, but cancel my account and took my money??? no company can do that!!! they must chargeback anyone, its ilegal!!!

28 03 2011
Freelancer.com user

OK, I was wrong about you saying it’s a bad site, but as I said it’s a scam of very big scale. They probably solved your problems because you made a lot of noise about it… or some other reason (did they scare or bribe you, or you just work for them now :) kiddin ) I myself had registered and used hundreds of websites that require payment for some service and I can assure you there is no other that is going to want a screenshot of your passport and ID. Most people have no idea how wrong this may go, as I said this is huge violation of user’s Internet rights and policies. And it’s not only that, freelancer.com support is a real joke, using copy-paste most of the time and if you ask something important and crucial to you on a chat session they just leave it without saying anything (that is so rude, nobody does that). Even if after some months time they solve your problem by then you will be humiliated in a level that possibly nobody did before. Those are good ‘prepaid’ reviews you mentioned above :) But if you check on a worldwide open opinions you will find something like this http://www.ripoffreport.com/Search/freelancer_com.aspx .
Freelancer.com is a scam and I recommend everybody to look elsewhere for this kind of service and this will save you not only a lot of time, but money from your budget as well.

31 05 2012
Michael B.

I agree. Lisa you sound like an apologist for them, or like this whole site was created to bring people who have a legitimate gripe with the company to a first page ranked site where you can be busy providing apologist support for “poor ol freelancer”

When they do nothing to a freelancer who has scammed, and it can be proven this freelancer scammed, they become scammers too.

“people are encouraged to do business within the safe confines of the Freelancer platform. If you contact someone and award or accept a project outside of Freelancer, you’re on your own if something goes wrong.”

–Safe Confines– ??

How is it safe when freelancers can take money and provide no service, and freelancer.com does nothing about it, not even suspend them?

— you’re on your own if something goes wrong — ??

You’re on your own at freelancer.com when something goes wrong too. They keep telling you that it’s not their problem!

1 06 2012
lisaamartin

This site seems to be a victim of its own success – I never went out of my way to get top Google rankings, I think the zillions of comments Ive recived have achieved that far more than my article! I apologise for sounding like an apologist – I’m not loyal to Freelancer, I do not condone any unprofessional activity on their part or anyone else’s, and I do not think they are perfect. I DO still think that many of Freelancer’s problems are user-created rather than inherently evilly built into the system, but do bear in mind that this article was written a couple of years ago and I havent actually used Freelancer personally for a long time. It would seem, due to the sheer number of negative comments that I have been getting here, that things have changed and Freelancer are not living up to users’ expectations whether they follow the rules or not. I welcome any and all comments on Freelancer’s conduct and service as long as they are well researched, accurate and constructive.

6 10 2012
sergio passos

So Lisa, you must update your article, because most of us dont agree with what you said. Actually, freelancer.com its a real and huge scam. And its to avoid. So you must read other websites and see how many peoples are scammed trought freelancer.com. If not, will always looks that you are doing good advertising for freelancer.com and make more people being scammed.

21 04 2011
Chella

Reading through is shedding some light. I was shocked because when I tried to log, it was temporarily suspended. I already sent an email to them.

Instead of complaining, I will just cooperate. I’m really hoping that they will lift my account as I’m highly depending on their site when it comes to acquiring projects for my team of writers.

Actually, I really like freelancer because of its easy process. When I registered, I provided my real contact details (address, country, number, school attended etc). But I’m afraid I’ve posted my “pen name” there instead of my real name. I just hope it would not be taken against me. =(

Will they?

I really don’t know if I violated any rule. But if I have, I’m willing to cooperate and pay for the damages.

I really, really hope this will be resolved.

Anyway, thank you for your objective postings. =)

30 05 2011
Rupe

Thank you for posting these Freelancer reviews, they are quite useful.

I just signed up with the service (sorry, if I had found your blog a few hours earlier I would have used your referer linke :D ), and posted a job. Soon after I received a message from a Pakistani freelancer offering their services. Before responding I did some checking on their reviews. Strangely, they have 57 “10” rated reviews, which mainly consist of two other users submitting 10 or more reviews all within a week. Not only that, but they have the same number, and very similar pattern, of reviews on ELance.

Normally, I’d just steer clear of them and keep on using Freelancer, but what worries me is that Freelancer assigns them a 10 out 10 rating, even with the obvious red flags. So how am I to trust their system?

30 05 2011
lisaamartin

It’s not Freelancer that awards the 10 out of 10 rating, it’s the buyers/providers who leave this feedback, and it doesn;t look like Freelancer have yet picked up on this user. It seems that this person probably has multiple accounts and is giving themselves excellent feedback! Report them!

23 06 2011
SCAM

OK, so now it is sure… Lisa is working for them, well done Lisa, this way they’ll keep fuc…g people around thanks to reviews like this and people like you defending an obvious scam. If they want to have a secure and safe system they would have done it(like ebay or many others using PayPal and so on…) but they haven’t . Freelancer.com and its fake users provide nothing but fake feedback and reviews fooling lots of people around the world looking for a proper service. I have just one thing to say about newcomers – DO NOT USE Freelancer.com and you will save yourselves a lot of time and money. Thank you

24 06 2011
lisaamartin

I DO NOT WORK FOR FREELANCER.COM!!!!

6 10 2012
sergio passos

I think you do too, Lisa, youre always defending freelancer.com. Just put the keyword “freelancer.com scam” on google and you will see with your eyes. Stop advertising this scam as a good thing. If youre not using freelancer just dont defend them. I was suspended with no valid reason, follow all the rules and they took my money. Your article here its updated, its no more a true article. maybe was years ago, not now, Actually its a creepy article. Its the samething as saying that nazis are good guys….

17 11 2011
Benny Barmo

I will always invite people, from today on, NOT TO WORK ON FREELANCER.COM. The site is a scam, and I am talking from my personal experience, where I just got stolen my honestly and hard earned 200 USD under the sorry excuse that the account has been suspended for security motivations (on the net you can read also other even worse horror stories of people who lost 1000′ of dollars to Freelancer’s team, sent in copy of their id’s as required and never got their money back).
Benny

12 12 2011
madi23

I’ve used freelancer.com 4-5 times in the past without any problems. Last week i posted a project and then picked a winner. I deposited $242.00 to my freelancer account from paypal to create a milestone payment as the winner asked to do this. Later i logged into to my paypal account to see that there was another payment to freelancer for $259.00 which I never authorized. I tried to login to my freelancer account to see how this happened and i was told my account is suspended. I did not break any rules and don’t know what to do about the $500 that has been taken out of my paypal account. Yeah freelancer is a scam and unfortunately i did not listen when other people posted about it online.

22 12 2011
lisaamartin

Have you tried contacting Customer Support about this? They should be able to tell you what, if any, rules were broken as theat’s usually why they suspend accounts.

19 09 2012
artos888

Sorry, but disregarding if she broke any rules: freelancer.com has no right to retain her money… they can terminate her account or whatever, but keeping her money is plain and simple stealing… they are not the self entitled sheriffs of the internet. they cannot tax or ticket users for breaking any rules or whatever. They can only sale services, they cannot charge anybody for violating any rule…

@madi23
You have to ask PayPal to reimburse your money, they will do it if you ask within 45 days… PayPal is the largest main source of income of freelancer.com they will pay back to PayPal or have to close down business, simple as that…

The solution to all your deposit issues: complain to PayPal and you will get your money back… that’s why most of the issues you read about here start after the 45 days of money transfers: it is evidently a scam, they are just waiting for the PayPal protection period to end…

And yes, Lisa… I am sorry, but you really sound like you complained in a very compelling manner, made a lot of noise, their scamming business got hurt, and they decided to employ your services as a promoter…

19 09 2012
John

When they locked my money up for no apparent reason, I immediately entered a dispute with PayPal. I was then told by Freelancer that because I’d filed a dispute with PayPal that they wouldn’t deal with my case until I’d withdrawn the dispute with PayPal. Very scary stuff.
I found an email address through either this forum or another slamming Freelancer for a guy from Freelancer that was defending them on the forum – I think it was something like Emir@ – I wrote to him after chasing my tail for days with their Philippines support team and getting nowhere and within hours had it resolved – even though I never directly heard from him.

30 12 2011
morege

I have terrible experience with DesignCreative 1 at Freelancer.com:

Before you decide to work with this company, please read the review first. I need to tell you this company is an inexperienced and team located in INDIA just got an agent in USA or a faked IP address to show them in USA, so if you want to pick a freelancer in USA to work with. This will be the first trap. Don’t believe it, ask them directly or you can locate the IP of developers log on your server but it’s too late when you can find out this truth by yourself. Wrong location of developers slowed down the communication. I live in Vancouver, so this team tried to work with me between 9:00pm and 6:00am next day or blamed me no quick response. When I questioned it, they said they never said the team is in USA. It looks like I was playing with a 12 years old girl. I can tell you the only creative design is their profile.
Second trap: After I sent my design ideas to them. I received a professional answer actually just yes to everything with some powerful words and quick responses to show their good CRS skills.
They are very good actors to gain your project. By the way, have a look of how many projects they are bidding and percentages they finished.
Third trap: they will rush you to release milestone. You will be told a team is waiting for your project. You can imagine about 10 programmers get nothing to do and waiting to start your project and wish to finish your project ASAP. Is it true? Again, have a look of how many projects they are bidding and the percentages of projects they finished. That’s a lie.
Forth trap: Sorry, there’s no forth trap anymore. You released milestones already and Freelancer.com can’t retrieve them for you. You can check with Freelancer.com regarding milestone rules.
Arguments: They will argue everything with you what they have said yes. Nothing wrong if you are thinking you are dealing with a 12 years old girl. They just want more money, that’s all.
Communication: You have to repeat everything again, again and again. Sometimes I thought I forgot mention something. After I checked my Emails I found they really don’t have time to read you E-mails, they only try to find a few key words. I sent an E-mail to say please not set the store for Canadian to a French link but shows English because I don’t speak French. Now, I got a French store with Lang=French link. Because the E-mail key word is French. They read E-mails like Google.
Skills: If you are a programmer like me, or if you really spent more than 2 months to research Magento plus a little designer experiences, or if you like to find solutions on forums by yourself. Then, you have more skills than the team from India. I mean you can pick another India team but not this one. I felt this team got no background on programming, no Magento designer licenses for sure the only thing they know is to find solution from forums for you to gain a five star by solving a little tricky problems. If you need them to some something need strong programming designer background, you will 100% fail your project.
My project: promised 12 days to finish it, but by the end of 12th day only 20% finished I mean quantity if consider quality then I would like to say 5% finished including a free extension installed through Magento connect. Even though, they never save a single copy of my store to my server in 12 days after they messed up template and extensions. The only choice I have is install a clean Magento again to re do everything over again instead uninstall malfunctioned everything. Their manager said they can fix everything and finish the project in next 5 days. This is another trap. You know you must quit them to avoid more damages, then it’s your fault. It looks they are willing to make things beautiful but you quit. You don’t quit them then another few days pain to have a nasty web store you really dream your competitors have it, anyway you will be told job perfectly done as confirmed, you need to release the balance of milestone or start to argue again for more money to fix it. Anyway I quit the India based team with a USA flag and a creative designed profile.

12 03 2012
Andrei Gaspar

Dear Lisa,

You are wrong.

I have been working for them for more than a year, I had maximum rating, only positive feedback and even premium account. (not gold, premium)
I worked with new employers that had accounts suspended and money taken, but I didn’t take them seriously… who knows what they did right?

There was nothing wrong until the day they had to transfer me $1100 to my PayPal account. When that day has come, instantly the account has been suspended. But, oh dear lord what a coincidence don’t you think? In the exact same day at the exact same time.

12 03 2012
lisaamartin

Have you tried to resolve this with customer support? They might be slow to respond, and it takes some perseverance to get much sense out of them, but it seems obvious to me that you should try and find out why your account has been suspended before you accuse them of scamming you. My guess is that Freelancer are concerned with the fact that you have tried to withdraw such a large amount of money in one go, or that they are concerned about where the money came from, or where it is going to. It may even be that you have broken one of their rules without realising it. Be nice and try to work it out peacefully. Let me know how you get on.

26 03 2012
Joshua

Oh, give us a break… You know that the company likes to break its own rules. How? A lot of people break terms and conditions and get away with it (spamming, revealing contact details, copying a project posted by someone else… the list goes on).
But it is not everything… their “policy” concerning user verification etc. is an excuse for suspending accounts with money on them (coincidentaly, every time I see my account suspended, the Paypal processing time is in a few hours). If they assume I am lying when it concerns my identity (demand my document), I can assume they are pack of thieves suspending my accounts and postopning my money transfer for about a week. Fair enough? :)

24 04 2012
zipho

I’m new at this so stumbled upon your blog because i wanted to know what i’ll be putting myself into is legit, so since im new with not much experience what do you think will be an appropriate start-up money for jobs available there?

28 05 2012
Lee

freelancer.com took $83.10 from my paypal account in 2 transactions. I do not know why they took it, all I did was sign-up. I haven’t used any freelancers (one did contact me to try to solicit work outside of the site). I cannot get a refund from them (despite opening a ticket 6 weeks ago) and a live chat (which I have the transcript of) assuring me they would refund.

Please don’t get scammed like I did, stay well away.

Lee

31 05 2012
Michael B.

Freelancer.com doesn’t care if scammers operate on their site even if proven.

21 06 2012
Mandeesh Singh

I’m a freelancer based in Delhi and had a account on http://www.freelancer.com. After about 4 months, I decided to upgrade my membership to
Type : BASIC which the site clearly displays as Rs 245 per month. But to my very surprise, I was charged US$ 251.07 instead of Rs 251.07.
FAKE and CHEATING. And they have also BLOCKED my Account without any notice.
This is totally unacceptable. I have lodged a COMPLAINT on Paypal and waiting for the resolution.
Any replies by the employees ?

22 06 2012
lisaamartin

Wow, that’s an expensive membership! I hope you get this resolved soon Mandeesh. This is the first report I’ve heard of this type of error – has this happened to anyone else?

13 07 2012
John

I am inexperienced on Freelancer. I posted a project for a developer and choose one after a few days. I was then asked to deposit $240 into a Milestone account – Somehow this all went wrong and I managed to do this twice(all in the space of a few minutes) – Now here’s where it gets scary – Somehow Freelancer have an automatic login into PayPal – So I had no idea that what was going on was that I suddenly had two payments of $240.00 taken out of my PayPal credit card without my knowledge. So of course I write to Freelancer’s Customer Services and never get a reply. I’ve taken up a dispute with PayPal as well.
Anyway, today, I go into my Freelancer account to at least pay the guy that is doing the project and ‘Account Suspended’ – Unbelievable – Also I login to get hold of Help – Well you can’t – if you login it says Account suspended and so you can’t access anything. I had to register with a new email and ask about my suspension that way. I’ll probably get a double wammy for registering with a new address.
I’m really interested to hear what PalPal’s got to say about instant money dislodgement and how many other net companies can do this.

13 07 2012
lisaamartin

Oh dear, I hope you get this resolved soon! For your information, you can reach Freelancer’s support team via email at customer-support@freelancer.com.

5 08 2012
Chaim S.

You seem to miss the point. The company is already toast since a number of their customers are badly served in such cases. Not mentioning thet their support desk is outsourced to Philippines which resulted in horrible service. I am just sick and tired with them, so created a manual to get the revenge!
http://getahindu.blogspot.com/2012/08/can-freelancer.html

17 09 2012
xmrsamer

Hi all, Withdraw $5500 from freelancer.com balance to my bank account and status :Pending and already verified user and i waited 15 days for security so i’ll keep updated here what will happen becouse i’m sure they will not send it and tell any reason, millions of users reported no withdraw success and didn’t get thier funds from them..

17 09 2012
xmrsamer

They cancelled my transfer becouse they need to verifiy the employer ID
$5545 is gone they’re scammers really

i already contacted ic3.gov and reported to the website

19 10 2012
Anonymous

Thankyou Lisa for your post, it was comforting to come across one article that someone had written with the intent of actually helping rather that with the intent of spitting their anger out.

Like most other people who land up on this page my freelancer.com account was recently limited ( Needless to say just when I got a large sum of money and tried to withdraw it). I have been a dedicated user of their website for just over 5 months now and have completed about 31 projects with perfect outcome, I was lucky enough to get some decent reviews and an 5 star rating.

One fine day I log in to my account and my withdrawal requests have been cancelled, I contact support and they say my employer needs to be verified and I should ask him to do so, it was annoying, I was getting paid to do the project not to get employers verified but anyways I contacted the employer and told her what freelancer support had told me. She being a kind lady immediately contacted support and verified her phone as they asked. Hoping to see the matter resolved I got back to work. I log in next day and I see the ‘YOU ARE SCREWED’ message:

‘Your Freelancer.com account has been limited for account security reasons.
Until we can verify your identity, we need to limit functionality of your account. You can continue to work and receive payments, but you won’t be able to transfer or withdraw funds.’

I logged in to their verification center and it is then that I realized that the real issue was one of the previous potentially fraudulent $15 project ‘Photoshop a document’ that I had undertaken. It turned out Freelancer.com suspected I was involved in Frauds and all my projects were under their RADAR. So when I got a 4 digit account balance, they decided to pick their bone. Not entirely a fair timing at their part I believe but OK, there were mistakes at my end too.

I provided them my scanned ID and a photographic proof that I was actually the owner of the ID, I wanted to explain it to them that ‘Photoshop a document’ was actually a project where the employer could not read the photograph of a paper and wanted me to make it less blurry so as to make it readable and that there was nothing potentially fraudulent about it but I could very well see what the title of the project suggested and I had no means to prove my point so I decided not to waste both their and my time. I assured them that I will in future not undertake such projects which would potentially put me and them in trouble.

Within a few hours I received this delightful e-mail:

‘Your identity has been successfully verified and your account is no longer limited from being able to deposit and withdraw funds.
Thank you for helping to keep Freelancer.com safe and secure.
Sincerely,
The Freelancer.com Team’

I realize that most of the horror stories posted about freelancer.com’s monopoly and unfair use of power are incompletely told where people miss out the part where they committed a mistake and jump directly to the account suspension part.
I fully agree with one suggestion that I saw posted all over the internet though that verification should be done before a payment is made and not after so that the users get a fair chance to decide whether or not they want to use freelancer.com’s services. It is unethical and fraudulent to invite people ‘Hey! come and do anything on our website. :)’ and when they come and do ‘anything’ then teach them your T&C after you have their money.
Apart from this one major service flaw, they are a great website!

Thankyou for reading.

1 11 2012
Got Scammed

Huge huge huge huge scam company, and guess what? Their policies and practices encourage scammed freelancers. I hired one of their freelancers. There was a 2 week project deadline. This freelancer gave me a plethora of excuses ranging from sickness, to Internet going down, to storms, etc. The 2 weeks pass, he provides me with a half completed job and begs me to release a “milestone” so he can afford to keep working on it assuring me he would have it complete in 1 more week. I reluctantly release a portion of the funds to him, and he literally COPIES and PASTED a design from one the websites I gave him as a sample. HE STOLE their code and imported it into my site, and he wasn’t even crafty about it leaving references to their company name, offer, etc. When I pointed that out to him, he said he was just trying to give me what I asked for! By stealing it? WTF?

I reported him and showed the evidence of his scam to freelancer support.

They DO not care!

This was evidence that there is someone scamming people on their site. Do you think they suspended the account? Nope. Instead they initially return email with some form/cut and paste responses. After being challenged further to have some accountability, they further suggested that I try to “work it out” with the freelancer, and that there is nothing they can do.

Finally, they tell me to leave feedback.

I go to try and do that and guess what? There is no option.

They inform me that it is past the “reasonable” time limit to do so!

WTF is that?

I’ll tell you what it is. It’s one scammer (freelancer) protecting their own (freelance scammer)

And why would they do that you ask?

Because every time that scammer freelancer accepts another project, they get a % of the milestone, and that’s really only what they are after!

Freelancer.com gets paid when you deposit funds and make milestone payments. Why would they limit the amount of jobs their freelancers can get, even if the freelancer is a their and scammer? They know that most people won’t be bothered to fight it, or go the extra length to complain on a blog site like this, and even if we do, there are a lot of would-be employers getting caught in this trap daily.

In other words, they’re getting away with it.

I’m seriously considering looking into getting a class action suit initiated against them for collective damages, and hopefully to put them out of business. Thankfully I have a lawyer in the family, and coincidentally their firm specializes in online scams. If anyone has similar stories and wants to post them here, I’ll consider giving my contact information with respect to getting in touch.

I don’t think it will be easy but it will send a message!

13 09 2013
Anonymous

Their homepage says:
“Only pay freelancers once you are happy with their work”

If someone does not understand this in English they have websites in many regional languages which say the exact same thing.
If someone does not speak any language whatsoever, they have a nice diagrammatic representation of this right below.

Can it be made any clearer?

12 09 2013
Vicente Gambito

Hi!
It’s been a long time since I dropped in here.

I was reminded of this blog when I got a strange reply from a client in one of Freelancer’s competitors where I had placed a bid for a job posting. Here’s the reply I got for my application:

“Thank you for your application
go to the site below and sign-up
then verify the account by e mail
http://www.freelancer.com/affiliates/Ashan1001/
then I will tell you the job number
After I can hire you for the project
Thank you”

Are FL freelancers encouraged to raid other online job platforms? That’s what the affiliate link implies… clients are offering jobs elsewhere and try to bring contractors to FL. I wonder what kind of perks are given to clients that are able to bring contractors into FL

Is business for FL really that bad now?

12 09 2013
Anonymous

Oh This is so obvious, let me explain
This user:
http://www.freelancer.com/u/Ashan1001.html

Is trying to make money out of this:
http://www.freelancer.com/friend-invitation/inviteFriends.php

Have a good day!
(I am Anonymous (21:05:38) above)

13 09 2013
lisaamartin

I don’t think this is anything to do with Freelancer.com – As ‘Anonymous’ says, I think ‘Ashan1001′ is trying to make money out of his Freelancer affiliate link in a very unethical way. Which site was the original job ad on? He should be reported both there and on Freelancer.com.

28 11 2013
john

freelancer is a scam ! they lock my money without reasons, they talk about criminal and law but i have paypal account verified and it is my money! they lock my money and say to cancel paypal dispute but i have no garanty that i can have my money back! this is a BIG SCAMMER WEBSITES

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