Upwork (formerly oDesk) Logo

Upwork (formerly oDesk)

Is This Your Business?
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135 User Reviews

6.3

Overall Score

LAST UPDATED: March 1st, 2020

Upwork, formally known as oDesk, was started in 2003 by Odysseas Tsatalos and Stratis Karamanlakis. Stratis and Odysseas created a digital platform that would allow them to work together remotely (Stratis lived in Greece at the time). Through the last decade over 4.5 million freelancers have joined Upwork, formerly known as oDesk, and over 1.5 million jobs have been posted. Upwork is the largest online freelance platform and is consistently ranked #1 by annual freelancer earnings. In most recent news, Upwork and Elance reached a deal in December of 2013 to merge the two companies which will consist of 8 million freelancers and 2 million businesses.

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The Good

  • Payroll tools
  • Records
  • Guarantee
  • Employment benefits
Upwork offers freelancers and businesses stress free payroll tools. With Upwork Payroll:
  • Reduce the risk of worker misclassification by working through Upwork's staffing agency
  • Pay only for hours worked and gain full visibility into how freelancer's time is spent
  • Provide your freelancers with access to health and retirement benefits
Upwork payroll takes a lot of the guessing out of freelance payment and taxing. With Upwork staffing agency as the employer of record, you:
  • Reduce or eliminate the risk of fines, penalties and interest accrual due to misclassification of contract workers
  • Reduce the risk of legal disputes and negative publicity from worker misclassification
Upwork also offers a guarantee to employers that they will only pay for work that was actually worked. Upwork provides a work diary that tracks hours worked and even gives employers visibility to work-in-progress. Conversely, Upwork promises freelancers that an hour worked is an hour paid. Upwork work diary also provides insurance to freelancers of guaranteed payment for hours worked. In addition to the extensive list of Upwork benefits, freelancers now have access to affordable health insurance and other employment benefits. Plans start at $105/month and can include benefits like 401(k), dental coverage, and W-2 tax filing. Based on our comparison of freelance platforms, TBC would recommend using Upwork for the following reasons:
  • Low usage fee
  • Tons of jobs posted (3 million)
  • Tons of freelancers (9 million)
  • Money-back guarantee
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The Bad

  • Lowball job offers
While Upwork offers payments guarantees for both employers and freelancers, it does not have mechanisms in place to hedge lowball job offers. In addition, the foreign competition pushes job values way below market value. For example there are freelancers -mostly in foreign countries- who will offer web coding work for $1 to $2 an hour.
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The Bottom Line

Upwork is the world's largest online workplace with a thriving community of clients and freelancers. 80% of Upwork clients say that online work makes them more competitive and helps grow revenues, and a majority say they'll spend twice as much hiring online in the coming year. Upwork boasted over 900,000 clients, 4.5M freelancers, and over 35M hours worked in 2012. If you are looking for a freelance platform to post or find jobs, we strongly recommend signing up with Upwork.

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Star Rating

1.3

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135 Reviews

Review Breakdown

5 grade

4%

4 grade

3%

3 grade

1%

2 grade

2%

1 grade

90%

Sentiment Criteria

Value

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Quality

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Service

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Trustworthiness

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Kishan Thobhani

From my personal experience upwork as a platform is keeping up with share of its responsibility. It has a very streamlined process towards freelance workflow. Lots of potential work. I got abit skeptical whilst reading other reviews. Mostly i felt one or other had something to do with human factors. Maybe upwork as a tech company is trying to experiment with processes that ends with less human interaction. Beside there are several parameters & factors for things to go wrong so to counter that upwork is fairly keeping up if we are aligned to processes.

6 years ago

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Benyoucef Benmeziane

I've read a lot of the reviews below, and as much as I agree on the technical front of upwork, especially with the constant crashing, and the messages system. I must disagree with the billing system. I am a graphic designer on upwork (odesk at the time) since 2012, and since then, I have built a small reputation first through low paying jobs, but none under than $10. But after gathering some good feedback, I increased my hourly rate, and decided to not do any fixed price jobs for less than $30, that went until I started billing a $100 average per project, paying my bills with it and all. The problem I think, is that most of the people who commented below are translators, which is probably the toughest market on upwork (prices and clients), so just try and diversify your talents. And one more thing, have you noticed how no programmers or designer are here, that's because they're working right now !!

5 years ago

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carolyn Columbus, OH

i have been trying to get into the copy editor/proofreader field for years. I stumbled upon UpWork entirely by accident. Within one week, I landed one job. Within a month, I've had four clients-- two of whom have hired me for long-term work. I am thrilled to be working at home, on my schedule and limited supervision. My goal is to get enough work to keep me busy and happily working away. I am so grateful for having found a way to break into this field. Thanks, UpWork!

6 years ago

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Muhammad Ahmad

Hi, I just want to say all the peoples who are reading this that UPWORK is just like a fake site and very very untruestable site and unprofessional site and doing fake job posting just for run this site so we all want that elance come back and take back his selfish decision about sale the elance site .We all lost our great business and now the situation is this that we have not getting the any bussiness even not doing earn $1 from UPWORK it is just ... waste of time .... Just do back the UPWORK bye write more and more your comments about upwork performance and leave this . Thank you.

5 years ago

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Kathie Bowman Lakeside, CA

It is very easy to post any job, as Upwork helps you step by step until you finally publish the offer. Normally you can find a good fit for your project and budget with no problem. They even now have a person that helps you find the freelancer that best suits the job

2 years ago

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Review Source

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Lesa Burgess Pleasant Grove, UT

Upwork was my main resource for outsourcing when I was running my own business from home. There were several things that I just knew I couldn't do or even if I could do them, I knew that someone else could do them so much faster. Things like graphic design and simple document outline, all the way to website design. There are so many freelancers on Upwork, you can always find someone who works well with you and will do a great job. The site is extremely easy and simple to use.

3 years ago

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Oke L

It is widely known that fraudulent freelancers post their services on Upwork. Such has been reported in multiple web articles, multiple yelp reviews, and multiple complaints on the better business bureau website among other platforms. Unlike Facebook, a site that is attempting to remove fake accounts, harmful content, and misinformation, Upwork not only refuses to reprimand and eliminate fraudulent businesses on their platform, they create an environment that supports such frauds. They do so by, among other steps, 1) creating an unreasonably finite window of opportunity to dispute a claim, 2) removing themselves from involvement in any dispute between a freelancer and a customer, 3) instructing their customer service team to facilitate toxic interactions with customers that complain, and 4) involving themselves in transactional payments by customers' banks in order to prevent customers' banks form reversing charges for fraudulent business. One could only imagine why a company such as Upwork would want fraudulent businesses to flourish on their platform. An observation of Upwork's payment scheme eliminates any further imagination. The greater the amount of fraudulent business on their platform that remains unaccounted for, the greater the revenue for Upwork. Importantly, it is the fact that the fraudulent business is unaccounted for that permit's greater revenue for Upwork. Typically, when vendor is fraudulent, a customer has the recourse to halt and reverse payments from his or her bank, and report that vendor to authorities that ultimately reprimand and prevent further fraudulent behavior by the vendor. As widely reported on these yelp posts and on reviews of Upwork's service elsewhere, Upwork's customer service is itself a fraud in that their goal is not resolve issues for customers rather their goal is to forcefully impose their stringent terms of service in order prevent any disturbance to their continued revenue stream, regardless of the outcome for the customer. Further, Upwork prevents any intervention from one's bank even when the reversal of payments is appropriate. Further, Upwork allows fraudulent businesses that have been on their platform for a number of months to expunge reviews critical of the vendors' service. As a result, fraudulent businesses flourishes, unsuspecting new customers continue to pay fraudulent companies, and Upwork gains the associated fees. Similar to the experience on Upwork of the many of the reviewers here and elsewhere, I was the victim of a fraud on Upwork and, needless to say, the Upwork customer service team was not only unhelpful, but attempted, forcefully, to end and undermine my complaint in order to facilitate continued service from their fraudulent vendor. Fortunately, the fraudulent vendor is currently in a lawsuit and has been unable to scam further unsuspecting customers, however, unfortunately, I have spent the last 5 months disputing the fraudulent transactions with my bank, only because Upwork has been fighting hard to prevent keep the vendors' fraudulent business afloat. As noted elsewhere in these reviews, it is unsurprising that Upwork's stock price has declined sharply from $20.99 after their IPO in October 2018 and $22.72 in February 2019 to $14.66 today, despite the fact that the S&P 500 peaked to its highest position since the beginning of the index, yesterday. I imaging the company is going to continue to fail because a business model based on fraud and a lack of customer service may be successful in the short run but cannot be successful in the long run.

1 year ago

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Abe

UpWork is a Corporate Bully! As many of the reviewers on the site have noted, UpWork treats both employers and employees with arrogance and disdain. It happened to me: They accuse me of something which was wrong on their part and without warning, discussion, or recourse they canceled a job offer. I asked UpWork for proof of their claim. Nothing was forthcoming even after four emails to customer support. UpWork has 'taken my money' to promote my ad and has not provided any explanation as to why they canceled my legitimate job offer. I call such behavior "theft!" I tried to cancel my account. I clicked the link that said "Cancel Account" which led to a response that I needed to contact customer support to "cancel." Even to the bitter end UpWork is uncooperative and disingenuous. I suggest you avoid this company completely. There are competitors and it is in your best interests to give them a try. Certainly, they cannot be worse than UpWork.

2 years ago

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Lara Yayla

I have been working in Upwork for about a year now. I lost lots of money and time cause the extremely low freelancer wages were not suitable for me. Slavery was what was demanded. How can I compete with a citizen of another country where the minimum wage is 10 times less!!! Even though I tried my best to try to find "my customers", it did not work. I lost lots of time and therefore other opportunities and money!!! And in the end they suspended my account saying that my proposals were not turning into jobs. Guess why?? I tried to explain my point, included all my certifications, diplomas and all documents that they had demanded and they even did not bother to give an answer back. Instead they suspended my account completely saying that they will no longer answer any of emails. It really does not worth it! Try other means of doing your job. You are not that pathetic!!

4 years ago

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High Plains Driftwood Broken Bow, NE

I'm a freelancer. First time on Upwork, expecting the best experience, and had the worst. The client who hired me, suddenly stopped communicating altogether, after almost the entire project was complete, then froze the money in escrow, claiming I did not communicate with him nor do the work. I document everything, shared it with customer service via Dispute, and they acknowledged what he did. However... the job was small, $200, so apparently clients have final say about who gets what from escrow, and he refused to pay anything. Customer service said all they could do is recommend we go to arbitration, which costs over $800, not exactly cost effective for $200 in lost wages. The client knows this. Customer service knows this. No appealing to CS resulted in any change, even though they have the evidence that the client is fraudulent. In the end, Upwork only cares about getting the money out of escrow so they can take their cut, and they have no problem cheating the freelancer in the process. Needless to say, this is the first and last time I work on Upwork, and this will be the first of online reviews and a case with the BBB and Trust Guard, in hopes other freelancers avoid Upwork.

4 years ago

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Chang Lee

The project "e-commerce website" order was made 3/29. The freelancer has not delivered the first milestone "Beta site delivery". Claimed the refund but nothing is happening. As of 4/22, UpWork confirmed by email. You requested a refund for your unused deposit of $250.00. If the freelancer "NANCY K" does not respond to your request within 7 days, the remaining balance in escrow will be automatically refunded to your payment method. Checking with the support team, the deposit had already been released to the freelancer 4/5. Now I claim to Paypal to get my full refund from Upwork. DO NOT TRUST WHAT THEY CONFIRM YOU!!!!

4 years ago

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Viv Coudersport, PA

I recently posted a job on Upwork for a book reviewer to review my new book. The review would be posted to my own website. Upwork suspended my account, stating they don't allow paid reviews, and if I had another *violation,* they would permanently suspend my account. I exchanged several emails with them, stating I've seen many job postings for book reviews and product reviews on their site (and there several currently posted), and I asked if they would be suspending all those people, too. Instead of responding, they just wrote back they have policy they don't allow any paid reviews. I looked at their policy, and there was nothing in it about not allowing paid reviews. The only item that discussed reviews said they do not allow reviews for pornography or violent material. I again wrote them and asked them to point tot he exact paragraph that said "no reviews of any kind." Instead, they sent a paragraph that basically said they could change the rules at any time. In other words, they can suspend a person's account for any made up reason with no accountability. I've read through many of the reviews of Upwork on this Best Company site, and many people stated their accounts were suspended for no good reason, even in the middle of contracts. This is not good. I will be taking my business elsewhere.

4 years ago

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Jeff Stone

Has to be the worst, most incompetent, scamming company in the history of scamming companies. The Freelancer I hired was obviously working on other things while supposedly working on my site and yet Upwork would still not refund any of my money. Even though there are clear screenshots of him working on things other than my site, and it took him 6 hours, over a 1 week period to do 30 minutes worth of work, in such a shoddy manner that it had to be redone, they still refused to refund me anything. On top of that they accused me of trying to pay the person offline, without any evidence whatsoever. The other freelancer I was working with at the same time was a bit better, but I have to say, if you ever hire someone to work on your site, never pay them by the hour. Always insist on a flat fee with a guarantee of what will be done and insist on a set refund if it isn't and pay as they go with strict milestones. Such a ripoff!

4 years ago

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Silviu Borz

Hi, I received an email, while in the middle of a possible project, that my account had been Permanently Suspended, without notice without any good cause... the reason: the number of projects that I applied for without being awarded (full disclosure.. that was only my first 2-3 months when I started, because I wanted ANY job, just to build some history and feedback) After the first 2-3 months, I applied once every one or two weeks, and they just closed my account after 2 years, I`m not even sorry since their platform didn`t provide much for me, but their customer service is close to none.

4 years ago

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bonnie dell doguiles

I used to love oDesk/Upwork; I earned a lot from this website. However, this past year, I became an inactive freelancer and then just this month i jumpstarted my online job hunting once again; with so many freelancers having similar skill set as me, I am finding it hard to land a job - and UpWork just suspended my account just because "I've sent too many proposals and cannot find a match". I appealed for them to reactivate my account even sending them docs and certificates but they kept my account suspended, even telling me they might no longer reply to my emails anymore. Bad thing. Not recommending this online site to people who are trying hard to look for a good online job.

4 years ago

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K F Corinth, NY

I signed up with a freelancer account on Upwork about three weeks ago. I made my profile all spiffy, did the “video conference” to verify my account (which was awkward as I was talking to an Indian woman who sounded like she was working in her home – I heard a baby crying in the background), and sent out proposals. I received three job offers. The first two were apparently part of a large spam/identity theft organization. I was asked to share my personal information (birth date, address, etc) over email to these people to “begin work”. Thank god I Googled the companies because I found out they were spam/identity theft/information selling companies. Go figure. The third, and possibly worst, client who corresponded with me was for a quick proofreading project. He wanted me to proofread and edit his 100-word piece. He initially came to me and asked me to lower my price by half, which meant I would walk away from the project with $8. (Upwork charges a ridiculous “fee”….$2 on this project in particular). I agreed because, hey, this was my first freelance “gig” and he also said the project wouldn't take more than about 15 minutes. So, hey, why not? Well, little did I know that this guy would have me back and forth for two hours with this freakin' (sorry for the language) proofreading project. He was rude throughout the whole process, asking me if I knew what I was doing (despite the fact that he hired a “beginner” proofreader/editor…I am not a professional by any means). He was copy/pasting links to articles where he thought I had misused words. He even questioned whether I should capitalize a country's name if it was used as an “adjective”. Two hours later, the darn thing was done and he didn't pay me for about a week after that. I rated him a 2-star, which I thought was pretty generous considering our work experience. This is kind of when things turned ugly. He blew up on me over the Upwork messaging system because I rated him poorly. He demanded I re-rate him and give him a higher rating. He started telling me, “you better hope karma isn't real.” and “with your attitude, it's no wonder you do work for $8 on a weekend!” and “I hated your work anyway”. He then ended our conversation with, “Karma is real, I'll let you think about that”. All because I left a real, unedited review of our work experience together. Well, after that, he sent me a review response making fun of my abilities, saying that just because you speak English doesn't mean you're a writer, etc, etc. The guy was really going off on me. To say that I felt horrible, demoralized and cheated (I made $4 an hour working for this guy…) would be a total understatement. I didn't know what else to do but block him and send a message to Upwork. Despite the fact that I literally titled my message to them, “I am being harassed by one of your clients”, it took them days before they got back to me. When they did get back to me, they simply said that my case would have to go to upper management to be handled. This past weekend after days of not hearing a response from “upper management”, I kept rereading the guy's review and taking into account that the only other two job offers I received were from spam/identity theft companies, and I decided to close my account. Wouldn't you know that about three hours after closing my account, Upwork emails me and basically says, “We're sorry for this experience. Rest assured that we'll look into it and if he's found to be violating any of our terms, we will take appropriate action. As we part ways, good luck in your future endeavors.” I find it ironic that they were ignoring the issue until I was the one who closed my account. It goes to show that Upwork values their clients, not their freelancers. They were willing to lose me as a freelancer but not the client, who is ultimately the one bringing in money. It's a sad and pathetic way to run a business. That was my one and only experience working on their site and I'll admit, it was so horrible that I would never recommend Upwork to anyone. The clients are able to run the site and do what they please, including harassing freelancers. I'm sure there are clients using Upwork who are fine, but when you deal with one who's literally harassing you and prolonging a project to the point where you're working for slave wages, they don't provide the customer support that we, as freelancers, so desperately need! EDIT/ I received an email just awhile ago that said my "support ticket" with Upwork was closed. Which I'm taking as meaning they are no longer handling the complaint. Probably because I closed my account and they didn't see a reason to lose a client. Figures.

4 years ago

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Daniel Araújo

I work, or used to, at Upwork as a freelancer for about 1-2 years and never had any problems as the staff is very helpful and the plarform a lot resourceful. Unfortunately, yesterday I received a e-mail telling my account - without breaking any of the company policy - was being suspended indefinetely, reason being I was not getting as many successful job proposals as I should (as if I didn't want it?). And that was it, with nothing but a "We carefully reviewed you situation.." e-mail and without any previous warning about how my account could be suspended if my job rates didn't go up, I was permanently banned from the platform with no anwsers. I really used to look up to Upwork but this kind of policy is nothing but disrespectful.

4 years ago

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Rio Afero

Hi Veiko, completely agree. They now have an additional whereby, any preset max hours allowed for the freelancers to work will be automatically billed. Regardless if the freelancer works or not. For example, I intended to hire a freelancer for 40 hours a week. He only worked 3 hours that week and billed me for the 3 hours. Upwork charges me the 3 hours, which I was completely fine with and then at the end of that work week, Upwork bills me another 37 hours! Subsequently the following week when there was no work done, Upwork bill me 40 hours of work. In total Upwork billed me 77 hours of work which the Freelancer never initiated as it is clear from the contract screen the hours only that has been billed by freelancer was 3 hours. I paused the contract and raised a dispute with Upwork. They took me to a help page which I needed to raise my dispute. Then Upwork Customer service request I raised it with the freelancer and request that they refund the money of which I responded with "It has nothing to do with the Freelancer" It is clear from the contract summary page, the Freelancer has only charged me 3 hours and that the rest has been by Upwork themselves. After raising the dispute and it appearing on the "Help" page under my login. Upwork then moves my help request to a "Case" status which is another external page (which by the way is NOT accessible through my Account page" so everytime I wanted to view the "Case" I have to find the email they sent and click on that link. After all of that, Upwork Customer Service have advised that they will now need to review the case (even after me giving all evidence and print outs of their error with screenshots to their system). It has been 3 weeks, I am USD $987 poorer with no resolution at hand and waiting for Upwork to respond to my request for refund. Plus a lost of about 10 hours of my life trying to get all information that they have requested and then having to validate those information which in the first place they could get those information themselves if they bothered to look into their own system! I have been a customer of Upwork (previously oDesk) for over 3 years now and have spent over USD $40,000, so am aware of what their previous process was with regards to payment. It would be clear to me the new merger of oDesk and elance is purely to rip and scam customers of funds. Don't even get me started on their escrow BS. An extremely pissed off client.

4 years ago

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smith jones Rockaway, NJ

After setting up and charging for the contract work, they suddenly froze the account and demanded government issued color copy id with birth date, address, color picture AND the full credit card information, even the charge was approved and the contact already well underway. The poor freelancer was stuck after having done half the work. Every so called customer rep, as they would not identify themselves, would give the same stock answer, "Irregular activities" but would not say what it was, when it was or anything else. When they were asked to closed the account, "Someone will get back to you". This is how you know this is a Scam. STAY FAR AWAY FROM THIS COMPANY - google upwork reviews or complaints and you will see the continuous stream of the same issues.

4 years ago

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Jose Molina Miami, FL

This company is completely irresponsible, I will not recommend anyone use the services they provide, especially for professional freelancers that are on this website, because the company is very unprofessional. The customer service doesn't know how to respond to clients and they are very rude. I opened my account and we are a very serious company. We paid and 3 days after I received an email saying that my account was suspended. I called to know the reasons for doing that and nobody knew. I am still waiting for a real reason and they don't even know. I am very dissatisfied and I won't come back to this website anymore. Please don't get into this website they don't know how to treat clients and they don't respect.

4 years ago

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JB

Worked on Elance and oDesk for years, no problems. Every since they merged to become Upwork, it has become a despicable site. There are constantly problems with the site going down, the Team App not working, etc. Customer Service doesn't help, but simply regurgitates generic responses that have nothing to do with your concern. The quality of jobs available has significantly dropped. The fees have significantly increased. How can they seriously justify charging freelancers 20% of project earnings??? And now they're also charging the clients who are hiring. It's disgusting. Stay away from this site! I'm doing everything I can now to distance myself from them and work with clients privately.

4 years ago

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V

Been with them for years, putting aside the problems with scammers who bid for the jobs and its not them doing it or bidding for the job, getting the job and then trying to up charge. Their customer service are a bunch of retarded monkeys and there really is no other words to use to describe them. Posted a job for specific language speakers only, because work must be in that language only, Job removed and i am issued with a warning for discrimination, You can not possibly be that stupid to flag it and call it discrimination. After 100 emails, an apology. Got feedback around 95%, get emails telling me to improve my feedback, retarded monkeys, mine is nearly 100%, yours is almost 0% and you telling me to improve? Then get emails about hateful speech, ask them what and where was hateful? response we have evidence but will not disclose it? Then, on the 5th email and apology for a mistake., 24 hours later, the same crap again. Ask to escalate to senior management, to no available. Seriously who runs this company, i am certain chimps have more brain than that.

4 years ago

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melette evans San Diego, CA

I am giving Upwork a rating of the worst of the worst in terms of sites to work with. I am a client who was using Upwork for the first time today to post a job for a Java Developer for a website project. I have hired professionals of this type before and know clearly what the job entails. I posted a very pleasant and professional description of the job and it clearly was well-received since I got so many replies in the first few hours of the post being active. I did state in the post that during the development phase of the project the person had to be US based due to the time zone issues and needing to be available to work with other US based staff in these time zones. Note that I did not state they had to be from the US or be US citizens, as that might be taken to provide US citizens preferential treatment. There are many foreign individuals living and working in the US and we would be more than happy to work with any that are qualified. If there had been any inappropriate language in the post I would not have received the responses that I did. I was in the midst of organizing SKYPE meetings and calls with about 10 of the responders to move the project forward when I received an email from Upwork making false accusations about my behavior. Below is the exact email that I received from them: We're writing because a job you posted contains discriminatory or hateful remarks, threats, profanity, or vulgarity. This is against our Job Post policy and has led to the temporary suspension of your account. Upwork is a community of professionals acting professionally. Respectful language is vital in maintaining workplace integrity and a business-like environment for all. Please reply to this email stating that you agree to comply with Upwork's client policies! By doing so, we can clear your account and you can continue to work on Upwork. If you do not respond, your account will remain suspended until we hear from you. Please note that a second violation of this nature will result in permanent suspension. I responded that I did nothing of the kind, therefore I will not respond that I will comply with their policy in the future to get my account unsuspended. They auto-declined to all the responders of my job posting so that I am stopped in mid-stream and cannot even respond to time slots that had been offered to me for continued conversation. I in no way discriminated against anyone. It is Upwork who has wronged me by making these false accusations that I behaved hatefully when I did no such thing. I will post my experience on every site I can and share my experience with everyone of just how egregious the behavior of Upwork is. Message to Upwork - don't bother un-suspending my account as I don't ever intend to use your site again. I will go back to my other sites that I have used successfully in the past and without issue, as I have no need to tolerate this kind of treatment form you.

5 years ago

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Yiannis Additional

I was a member of elance. And I was happy. Got some very loyal repeat customers and I was making a decent living per month. Ever since the decision to merge with odesk and become Upwork became active, it all became shambles. Every new job I get is problematic. Not to mention the 20% fee they charge the freelancers, the 6 days that they keep they money before they pay you (the infamous security period) and the problems with the clients. For example you get to see your work published and making money for someone else while they sit on the 14 day review period and pay you nothing. I am removing myself from this sack of s**t as soon as I get paid my last work.

5 years ago

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Richard Toland El Dorado, AR

This site has the worst clients ever, and what is worse...Upwork protects them, not the freelancers. I have had jobs that were done with their time tracker and had the client suddenly dispute the job. Upwork sided with the client despite the "guarantee" that you as a freelancer are supposed to be paid. Do not use this site. You wont make a living, you will be treated as slave labor, and the guarantees are complete total BS. And just so you know, I had all 5 star ratings and a 100% JSS score and top 10 to 20% tests results AND was a member of their Enterprise Bench... meaning I went as far up as a freelancer as you can go.

5 years ago

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Suzette Seveny-Leeming

I recently received an invitation to interview on a job, and the details were provided in an attached document. I should have known better. The file was infected with trojans and malware and my Paypal account was compromised as a result. My bad for opening the file. I think it's unforgivable though that Upwork has no filters to prevent infected files and viruses from being made available. I did get an email from them saying my computer may have been infected - but that was 12 hours after the security breach. I was already aware and taking steps to fix it. I have closed my account with Upwork - this is not the type of company I wish to deal with. Shameful.

5 years ago

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JC Los Angeles, CA

Unfortunately, I was scammed on this site and I hope this review will help someone else not fall prey to this site. I needed a website so I went onto Upwork and hired a freelancer. It was a 'per hour' job. the rate was cheap - $12 per hour - so I thought I might try a few hours and keep my fingers crossed it would be positive. Before I sent the person I hired any information - i.e. the name of my company, the type of company, my bio, my designs for the site, etc., she began work. $175 later she submitted a bill and her work. It was one day. It was a fake site she had designed with images she had taken from online of everything from a woman in bondage (I kid you not) to handbags and clothing (I sell jewelry) She had a fake name of a company as well as fake everything on this one page. I immediately wrote asking why she had started work with no information from me. And I contacted Upwork. Long story short - Upwork said the woman had submitted a 'work diary' that showed she had logged the hours - it did not matter that the site she made had nothing to do with me or my business or products - so, they were giving her the money. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE be careful and do not use this site. the people are not honest. They will not stand behind you. And, anyone that thinks it is okay to charge for something and not deliver is not honest. I do not recommend this company and I wish I had read the other reviews before I was scammed.

5 years ago

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Aio South Burlington, VT

I've been going back and forth with Upwork for the last few days, trying to activate my account because it had been suspended. Someone ENTIRELY DIFFERENT WHO I HAVE NEVER HEARD OF BEFORE signed up for an account on the same computer as me. I had no idea that using a public computer would put my account on lockdown. They've been asking me for personal information & to scan personal documents to prove that I am myself. I absolutely DO NOT WANT to provide any more personal information than I already have, especially since I already linked my bank account to the account for withdrawals. When I asked to have my account SHUT DOWN they refused until I provide the personal information that they were asking for. I shouldn't have to provide any information to close my account. I do not trust this company whatsoever and it's not worth all the effort considering that most of the projects that are posted underpay their freelancers by an insane amount. I wanted to sign up and apply to ONE JOB and this is what I get. Don't bother with this company.

5 years ago

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United Auto San Diego, CA

After months of going back and forth with an incompetent app designer I'd hired on Upwork to develop a very simple and basic app I finally gave up and canceled the project. I wanted to be fair so I told the developer that he could keep the $150 I had already paid him for his time though the app had put together was still incomplete and pretty much worthless to me. But the developer filed a dispute with Upwork and asked to be paid the remaining $250 of the project which was being kept in escrow. After a couple emails Upwork pretty much did nothing to settle the dispute and requested that we go to a third party arbitration which would have cost us $850! Considering that the amount in dispute was only $250 this simply did not make any sense. I will never ever use Upwork again. If you are looking for quality work and peace of mind this is not the place to look!

5 years ago

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Jeremy Richmond, VA

I used to be very active on Elance. It was a fair platform for both the freelancer and client. Upwork rips off hardworking freelancers and clients. Where Elance received a flat percentage of a freelancer's earnings, that rate was usually pretty fair. With Upwork, you will pay upwards of 20% per transaction. That means if you do a $250 job, you will only receive $200. Upwork lowers that percentage based on repeat history over a set dollar amount with the same client. That dollar amount is generally not attainable for freelance writers because the majority of freelance writing is ad-hoc and more than likely will not cross that threshold for an individual client. Plus, the waiting period to be paid is ridiculous. Lastly, it's not worth the hours of time that will be wasted trying to compete with writers who will work for $5 for a 500 word assignment. On Elance, clients paid for quality. On Upwork, quality no longer matters.

5 years ago

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Cathy Palm Coast, FL

I joined Odesk several years ago and actually got some great clients. However, since the merger with Elance and the renaming to Upwork it has gone totally downhill. I recently closed my account for several reasons: 1. Doubling the freelancer fee from 10% to 20% - ridiculous! 95%of jobs are one-off projects. I only had one client that even came close to the $10,000 threshold (and that was after working for him for 2 years) 2. The new Terms of Service (TOS) have effectively destroyed the "guarantee" of payment when using the time tracker since now they can turn around and inform you that the client removed the payment method so they are no longer obligated to pay you. 3. The quality of the clients has deteriorated. Not a surprise since they now are charging clients a 2.75% processing fee. At least half of the jobs posted are scams - client requests an online interview in Google Hangouts and then attempts to steal your personal info. 4. The CEO (Stephane Kasriel) has ruined what was once a great freelancer platform. Just another example of corporate greed run amok. I hope he enjoys the nickels and dimes (.20 on the dollar) he gets from his freelancers in third world countries.

5 years ago

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H Charlottesville, VA

It's surprisingly easy for scammers to use this site. They can use a false (or in my case, a stolen) ID and look/sound legit. After putting in hours of work with regular, friendly communication the guy I was working with, he disappeared. He has a legitimate name up there that I was able to google..I found "his" twitter account and in our interview, he basically read the guy's profile in order to sound legit if/when I looked him up. He was always available before on Upstart, on Skype and on google..just no pic ID on any of those, and left the camera off on Skype. As soon as I sent him my completed work he disappeared everywhere. The accounts are still open but he is never online. He took hours worth of work and ran. Upwork does not have a good system of protection or apparently for valid IDS. My guess is that this guy used a stolen credit card as well as his method of payment. He knows that Upwork won't even respond to me about this, never mind chasing him .Scammers, dishonest students and business upstarts know they can get away with taking free work without consequence here...and now so do I. My advice is stay away from Upstart.

5 years ago

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Luba Evans Waltham, MA

I have been duped by a freelancer and Upwork decided in his favor. I lost $1000. I hate this company. They are really the worst. They supported this scam. Some dishonest indian programmer begged me to do a per hour contract, did a shitty job on his slow internet and no attention for detail, after which he charged me $1700 to fix my registration, where there was 1 simple issue of of updating 2 API who were talking to each other. Upwork took his side. I lost 14 days in sales, cried every day because of this injustice but nobody from Upwork even talked to me on the phone about this. I never got to approve the hours but they charged me anyway. Beware. They are horrible

5 years ago

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Bassem Mohsen

I had $4,000 in my Upwork account. HARD EARNED money. When I tried to withdraw them they did not let me and they asked for documentation that I could not provide. So I contacted their useless customer support. Turn around time was about 5 days. And the customer support emails do not have any answers. Just extremely stupid and irrelevant questions to me. I answer the stupid questions then I have to wait another 5 days. Then they send more stupid questions. It went on for a month like that. Eventually they emailed me saying that they decided not to pay me and that they will simply put my money in their pockets. They said the reason is that I was staying in the US on a visa and that people in my situation are not allowed to use the Upwork platform. But my profile did say that I am in the US. Why did you allow me to work in the first place? You were happily charging my customers for months and you started to look into your policies and asked for documentation only when I asked to withdraw my funds. Clearly thieves! Luckily I was able to refund my customers (except for the Upwork fees) then my customers paid me using PayPal. Of course I lost a large amount on Upwork fees + PayPal fees. And I lost a lot of time and stressed a lot over the money they were trying to rip me off. No self-respecting provider should use a playform like Upwork!

5 years ago

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Kaitlyn Parker, CO

I have used this site for several freelance projects. I also help clients in my non-profit to start their own businesses and have recommended Upwork to them. Because of this Upwork suspended my account claiming I had multiple accounts. They will not tell me why they think this but listed several of my clients as "linked." I explained the situation and asked why they thought this. They are all separate individuals with their own accounts and verified financial accounts. However Upwork still tried to demand copies of driver licenses and bank statements to "prove" these were individuals. This is an absolute violation of privacy and completely unreasonable not to mention unnecessary. I will have to find a new site for myself and my many clients to use.

5 years ago

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Kathy Kansas City, MO

A few months ago I would have given a much higher review. However, they have decided that they no longer want small contracts with multiple clients. The commission has doubled to 20%. Unless you have an existing long-term contract with one client, there is no point in working for them. They either don't realize how many $20-100 jobs there are, or they don't care. They also don't realize that those small jobs are needed because you don't usually get a big contract right away. I don't see them being in business for much longer, as new freelancers will just go someplace else, and existing freelancers with memberships will leave as soon as there membership has expired. There are so many completing freelance websites who pay so much more. There is no incentive for new freelancers to sign up here.

5 years ago

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Shazia Bashir

Do yourself a favour by staying away from this fraud company. Elance was much much better than this crap full of thieves. For years, I had been a successful freelancer (actually one of the top-ranked freelancers) with Elance, now since they launched Upwork, you have no chance of being hired by a genuine client. Upwork itself has hired some hand-picked employees (Upwork Enterprise) and all real jobs are done by their own employees. There's NO scope for other freelancers. I wasted my hundred of hours on sending proposals but of no use. You either not get hired or if hired, you are not going to be paid.

5 years ago

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Joe Gold Las Vegas, NV

I was a freelancer on Elance for several years before I started my own company and I had hundreds of projects completed on Elance by freelancers over the last 15 years with great success. I'm sad to say that since eLance became Upwork I have become more and more frustrated with the platform and I'm looking else where to locate freelancers (that's actually how I came upon this review site!). The messaging system and user interface is terrible and just letting it run in a tab in your browser eats of system resources because its always refreshing. The structure of everything does not follow logic. Things that should be linked are not. It's super slow. Now they are going to make the project submitter pay a card processing fee. I'm done with Upwork. I loved eLance but i hate Upwork.

5 years ago

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Alexander Hartveld

I'm writing this as a someone who offered several jobs ($2k+), but I'm really considering to take my business to another platform. The pro's: The interface is quite streamlined, and so is the hiring process. So far, most offers were quite useful, but it takes some practice to read between the lines. My Tip: before posting a job, look as a freelancer to the jobs others have posted. You learn how to write an add and can take away some best practices through this. The con's: They got really greedy and are now trying to squeeze their customers and raised their fees to 20% for the first 500$/freelancer. Also, the freelancer has to pay and there are some hidden fees as well (to get access to quality freelancers, you need to pay for a membership). Loading times are way above what's acceptable. Their freelancer interface takes screenshots every 10m, to prove that the freelancer is working. However, with loading times of 3-5 seconds, actually doing so is quite tedious. I personally find ethically unjustifiable to take away 20-30% in fees from freelancers in third world-countries, that are earning only 2-5$/h. So I'm switching, and I'm taking my freelancers with me.

5 years ago

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Kathy Bell Greenville, SC

I was shuffled over to Upwork after having worked successfully on Elance for 1+ years, with 180 hours of work and 144 successfully completed jobs. The site is down a good portion of the time, there are many scam clients, freelancers, and jobs, the tools on the site don't work correctly a good portion of the time, and they allow jobs for $5 and $10 to be posted. They keep taking features away from freelancers...the latest is that freelancers can't see which other freelancers are bidding on the same job. My feeling is that as a freelancer living in the United States, they no longer care one bit whether I get work or not. Feels like they are going for quantity, not quality. It's much easier for them to post 10 jobs for $5 than 1 job for $50. They have ruined my online freelance career. :-(

5 years ago

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TrueB North Hollywood, CA

Elance was a good place to work for both clients and freelancers. UpWork, on the other hand, is absolutely terrible. Not only is it the WORST freelancing platform, but it seems like generally worst place to work online. Scams, bugs, bugs, more scams, upselling, lead generation, scam, bugs, and more bugs. Support is the worst I've seen. They promise you the world and literally don't do anything. Incompetent, completely lacking logic, and feels like it was developed as a high school project - I've done better in my first year of programming. DO NOT SIGN UP to UpWork - promote better platforms out there, and let UpWork die the slow death that it deserves.

5 years ago

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Asifa Syed

I've read a lot of reviews below about Upwork but in my opinion Upwork is a great platform for the freelancers who wants to earn money by sitting at home. But it would great if it takes people(Clients) who are real but not fraud. I was interviewed on Skype(hired.teams) by a person name "Vanse Baya" who got my contact from Upwork. He said he was from a company, "Vanse Solutions". He claimed he would give me a job if I visit USA as a Personal Assistant. What the Hell is this..?? We are using Upwork which means we are freelancers who are working from home. Also he posted the job description as "Lead Generation Specialist" but on call he says that he needs personal assistance. I suggested him to change the job description, for that he says, "Beautiful girls make me change the description, well beauties attract me to change job" He is a fraud..!!!!

5 years ago

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Alexan Kulbashian

REVIEW: Stay FAR away from upwork. it's not odesk anymore!!!! Upwork has been on a MASSIVE downhill slide since oDesk. they no longer handling their own dispute system (they are outsourcing it to some inattentive company called “modira”). Fraud charges on my paypal account are up from the new lower class of workers and when you dispute the charge with paypal, upwork tells them they are handling it.. Instead, your dispute gets lost in a slow support system called MODIRA which is outsourced as well it's BAD. 90% of of the jobs go wrong and support handles maybe 5% of the disputes! This isn't just an issue of crap work. They don't care about either the freelancer or the job poster.

5 years ago

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Julie Los Angeles, CA

I been finding freelancers on this site while it was called ODesk and it was amazing, was recommending it to everyone. Now, after their name been changed, looks like everything has changed! Freelancers became unprofessional, UpWork do not care for the quality off freelancers, all they care about it quantity! Customer service reps are just terrible, they can easily hang up the phone if they don't feel like talking to u. To get a refund is HELL!!!! they will be giving empty promises, telling stories about dispute process and all because they just want to keep their commission! So overall, before i would of given they 5 starts, not i don't even want to give one. Be aware of all their tricky policies before spending a dime!

5 years ago

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appalled Plano, TX

I was interviewed on Skype by a person who got my contact from Upwork. He said he was from a company whose logo is HIPP- Hallmark IELTS Prep Program. He claimed he would give me a job with his website. Subsequently he asked if I knew someone who "make hjim happy for a week for $500 and then sent a msg with a crude picture and it said $500. Does Upwork review job offers? Why does it not have a way to let the company(upwork) know that there are aholes out there who are doing this kind of thing. This was very insulting and has completely turned me off of the website and made me question all online jobs. I would give zero stars if I could.

5 years ago

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Rhea G

Upwork changed my life, so they deserve the highest score rating. Never had any issues and and my account remain active never been jobless for almost 4 years now.

5 years ago

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Nadir Qureshi

I was working on Elance from 2010 and since working I was able to manage $30k to $40k per year but when we received migration request to join upwork our business ruined my all old clients disappeared and never come back and existing and new customer on upwork are very bad in paying good price for the quality work. In 3 months of experience over upwork we just earn $125. I am recording my protest against merger of Elance and Odesk as Upwork. Worst decision ever I have seen in my career in corporate sector. I have seen 99% negative feedback about this merger. They should consider our feedbacks.

5 years ago

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Dr. Jay Polmar

Elance began a selfish merger with ODesk a year ago. They began making promises of a Brave New World of prosperity and riches with the new merger, which was to later, be called Upwork. The merger began in January 2015, they began a migration process in mid 2015, and for 4 months couldn't migrate agencies, like our firm, who had been on elance for 12 years. Now, 45 days after the migration, we have lost all elance clients, we did about $75-80 thousand dollars per year on elance. We have not seen one of the migrate over, the ones that go to the upwork site can't find us aand hate the site, and we're almost out of business. I write and chat we Upwork, their are gracious, condescending, and really help. Their site is untenable, nothing like the organized elance structure where everything is linked to one project page - and of course, their clients are looking for work for $3 per hour or $5 per job. This situation has not only cost us over 45 thousand dollars in losses, upwork can't help, but our friends on elance report similar situations and losses and upwork WON'T help. Elance is disappearing, Fabio who was the director of elance has gone away 7 months ago, the o'desk director who was involved in merger has gone away - both having become millionaires at the cost of the workers - who are now desperate and telling me (through my contacts with them) that they are experience severe business losses due to the migration and clients not being able to find them. We want elance back - plain and simple - Upwork O'Desk is inferior, they have destroyed a marketplace for professionals, they approve unqualified workers at less than any hourly rate or fee, and clients have told me they don't want to do business on Upwork. Upwork on their terms and conditions threatens us if clients buy directly from us with 10% penalty for all work received personally for a two year period. I want to know how many elancers are unhappy with the situation, what their lost sales percentages are - and what they are doing about it? We all need to come up with a workable solution because Upwork provides none except our starving and becoming homeless over what they have done. Thank you.

5 years ago

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Susie Stewart Mobile, AL

The site has way too many technical issues. I've been waiting 2 weeks to get tech to correct my page. Then I had a dispute with a client that wanted free work, he still hasn't paid me. If you work do not take fixed-price jobs unless they are fully funded and if you don't mind spending money for arbitration to get what you deserve. I will only accept hourly jobs from now on and from people with good feedback. There are a lot of untrustworthy people on there. I will take the client to court in his state very soon, it's not over. DO NOT LET THE CLIENT GET AWAY WITH NOT PAYING!

5 years ago

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Caroline T.

I recently needed a translation and though all the freelancers seemed to be perfectly fluent in English, especially the one I chose (and who I rated 5/5 because I know nothing about Vietnamese), the result proved to be a disaster when I had the translation checked by a friend who is completely bilingual. She told me that the letter meant something completely different (which is quite a problem, I had to send a other letter translated this time by this friend to save the situation). Today I wanted to do a test. So I looked for a job as an English-French translator: I was appalled by the price offered by the client, one offered 3 USD (no negociation allowed!) for quite a long translation! I checked another translation: the text was very technical and needed a lot of work, and the price paid was ridiculous (coming from a Western company, it is a real shame)! But I was also appalled by the fact that for these jobs, dozens of people had applied! All these people have PhD, masters, etc, they say they are lawyers, teachers, professional translators, I can't believe it is true! Of course if they work with Upwork, they may not pay the VAT (I have to pay the VAT in Europe with Upwork), they may not declare their earnings and pay no taxes or other duties, they maybe it can be worth it. But as other people stated below, it is global exploitation with people ready to accept everything to earn a few dollars and making a lot of damage, preventing the good ones who take their time to make a good job to work. Now I understand why all the brochures of the foreign products I buy are so badly translated into French! And as a French living in France, where laws apply, I wonder how these people who have studied at prestigious universities, have super jobs, pretend to speak perfect French (which I doubt when I see the average level now in my country) can accept to work for people who tell them: urgent, not more than 50 USD, 3 000 words and must be perfect! I'd be happy if somebody could explain this to me...

5 years ago

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