Fiverr Community Forum

A buyers rights to use

If a buyer accepts a mutual cancellation, after delivery, do they forfeit their rights to use? For instance a voiceover or video. I know morally it’s wrong but legally?

I would think that you would have a legitimate claim against someone who stole your work, but what would your damages be? Five bucks? no, make that four bucks? Can’t really sue someone for $4. Maybe you could go for punitive damages? Triple damages? Sue everybody!!!

I’m certainly no legal expert, but I do believe that they can’t legally use your work that they didn’t pay for. Because you created it, you have ownership of it; that ownership isn’t transferred unless you agree to sell and are paid.

It may not make sense to sue in terms of monetary gain or time lost, but if you see that someone is using your work that you weren’t paid for on the Internet, you can file a DMCA complaint with the hosting website citing copyright infringement and have the content taken down.

I know that some sellers have their own blog or site where they immediately post whatever they created after an order’s cancellation. That way, if they do find that their content is being used somewhere on the web, they can easily file a DMCA complaint, proving that the content was on their site first and is owned by them.

You can also file a dmca complaint with google if the webmaster does not remove the content. No webmaster wants to lose their search engine rankings

As others have said, they don’t have the legal right to use anything created because the full agreement hasn’t happened (ie. they didn’t pay for it). I’m one of those who has my own blog and content will go up there if the work is cancelled. I’ve only found two pieces end up online and both were resolved quickly. One with the buyer coming back and paying for the work in the end–and leaving positive feedback and apologising.

Honestly, I don’t think the buyer has any rights to use it at all.

You make a valid point aingham69. The buyer, who resold my work to a 3rd party, questioned why they couldn’t use the voiceover regardless of the cancellation. My response was that they forfeited the right when they accepted the cancellation. Cancelling the full agreement sounds so much better. They’ve offered to make it right and pay. We’ll see.

Reply to @jamescott:

Well , many buyers on Fiverr now days are disappointing.

They buy your work, you deliver perfect work and they complain.

So if he doesn’t claim his rights… he will lose worth money.

IDK if you got my idea but ye…


No right. I have had a couple of late delivery cancellations over the past couple of months. I have ALWAYS sent at least a couple of articles to somebody when I have a bit of a backlog in order to ensure that they can work with something whilst waiting. They then cancel with about 10 or so articles to use.

What happens? Well, I have sent about 15 DCMA requests in the past 2 months alone.

It’s theft but what are you going to do to stop them? I will cast a spell on them for you if you like. :bz


I see SO MANY Sellers taking the WRONG attitude on this issue… that ok… I just HAVE to add a comment to this post.

One of the “Secrets” of the top SUPREME SELLERS on Fiverr (those getting Thousands of Gigs… or TENS of Thousands of Gigs Per Year!)…

is a long-time Sales Secret:

“Just Move On”


When you are Selling, anywhere, not just on Fiverr - there will always be SCUMBAG buyers.

It’s unfortunate… but it’s part of Life. Accept it… and Move On.

In the specific case of Fiverr Sellers:

  1. Flag the Scumbag

    How: Report them to Customer Service, including a screenshot of your message exchange with them, as “proof” of your case.

    Why: CS MIGHT… delete the Scumbag’s account. BUT…

    .most likely, only after they’ve received multiple complaints.

  2. Take QUICK actions to reduce the damage.

    How: An example is Ryan above, who files DCMA requests. BUT…

    …only take those actions, that are QUICK.

  3. Let It Go

    As demonstrated by several Sellers posting above, this can “eat away at you”, sour your experience on Fiverr and thus, REDUCE YOUR INCOME.

    Don’t let the Scumbag hurt you. Just Move On.

  4. Say “Next!”.

    This is an OLD super-sales trick.

    When you encounter a Scumbag, just say to yourself “Next!”. Then move on to the Next Buyer.

    If you want to become a SUPREME SELLER (who have a SIX-FIGURE income here on Fiverr!)… you need to have THOUSANDS of gigs per year.

    That translates to DOZENS of purchases of your Gigs, PER DAY (assuming a 5-day workweek) - and with NO “slowdowns”!

    To handle that TOP SUCCESS LEVEL of volume… you need to be able to say “Next!” to the Scumbags.


    Good Luck… to the Good Sellers here!



Excellent advise Robert, Just move on (%)

Note to the Seller… 1.Stop Promising the world for $5.00 then become upset when the buyers Expects it of you. 2. Stop buying pre-made Photoshop templates not understanding how to modify them. 3. stop showing so called samples of your work on your gig listing that is not your own just to get customers and then deliver Substandard work and become upset with your feedback as buyers we work just as hard to make our five bucks as you do trying to get it from us

@coloradosista Your blanket statement directed to all sellers is uncalled for. Hundreds of sellers take great pride in their work which is worth far more than $5. If you’ve received substandard work from a seller, and it sounds as if you have, take it up with them directly. This discussion has nothing to do with your gripe.

Reply to @coloradosista:

While working hard for your five bucks your boss would have the right to ask you to redo the work a few times and because your boss has had an issue with employees before he/she would see it fit not to pay you but use your work anyway! Are you saying this would be ok?

Taking something without paying for it is theft, whether it’s a physical item or intellectual property.

I’ve been a freelance writer for a while now. If a client cancels, wants a refund or whatever, I let them know I still own the copyright to the work I did and they can under no circumstances use it. It’s in the contract they sign. And I have gone after people for stealing.

Fiverr is no different.

Reply to @ryangillam: Sadly that’s about all you can do. If you can find out who their web host is you can send them the DCMA request too. The violator risks their entire website being taken down if they don’t comply.

Reply to @mgjohn78: Don’t forget to complain to their web host as well. Most hosting companies are pretty strict about copyright issues and will take down a violator’s website.