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Buyer sends wrong requirement but pretend they didn't

I’ve worked with this person once before, the experience was good overall. They were a bit more demanding than your average buyer and kept referring to themselves as “we” which for me is always a bad sign because it usually means there are a few people you’re dealing with so it’s harder to get a cohesive vision out of them and communication gets a bit more challenging. But other than that, it was fine.

This year, I’ve received another order from them. The vision and the requirements were similar but it’s the same event with the same branding guidelines so it made total sense.

Then I got a revision request which told me to do a brand new design with a completely different design direction while referencing files and comments they’ve “sent me before” that I don’t have.

What I think happened is someone copy/pasted last year’s brief and attached wrong or incomplete files by mistake.

I provide 1 design option per order and have a reasonably discounted extra for an additional new version available. The problem is this buyer is acting funny, keeps referencing the files and comments I haven’t received, doesn’t acknowledge me mentioning and attaching the $35 extra and more importantly, doesn’t acknowledge there were wrong requirements submitted initially.

There is a lot of “as we’ve said before” and “as per files we’ve sent”. Then I open the requirements and they are definitely there and they appear to be complete but they are not the requirements the buyer is mentioning in the revision.

Then I receive a message “We’ll only change one word from the initial brief: futuristic to retro”. I don’t know what to make of it except the buyer implying a complete change of direction is a minor edit that should count as a revision.

Are they genuinely clueless? Do they realize they’ve messed up but pretend they don’t to get another design from me for free? Is there a glitch that makes them see the requirements and the files I don’t see?

I’m confused.


They are either sketchy or ignorant. I’m really sorry. I know these kinds of buyers definitely elevate the pulse at least a bit.

Personally I would ask them to send a screenshot of what they supposedly said. Sometimes when these people are caught red handed they cut the games.

If you’ve done what you were contracted to do, I would tell them that what they are asking for is it of scope and say they can either pay a rate of your choosing to make the changes or accept the order as is --well with a minor adjustment if necessary. I would also explain why what they are seeking is unreasonable and/or how your order fulfilled your contract.

I did this not too long ago and the buyer agreed to the higher rate, which was over three times the original price. I have found I can turn quite a few of these negative experiences into opportunities.


@lenasemenkova that usually happens when one profile is managed by a staff of an organization and they tend to share information from different perspective. They don’t really even know what their fellow colleague shared with the seller.

Another possible reason is they might be in contact with multiple sellers for multiple jobs and they are just mixing it up. But blaming a seller who is doing a great job for assigned brief shouldn’t be on suffering end.

Best thing to do is if you are not at a point where you’re near to evaluation period from fiverr. Request a cancellation of order from buyer by sharing the fair reason. If they understand their mistake and correct it; making your job easy then it’s fine. Else, there is alot better work to do on fiverr. Why to waste your energies on such buyer?

Hope this helps.


Maybe the requirements were submitted by a middle man that made a mess and now is trying to hide the error.


This was immediately where my mind went to. The overall tone got a bit defensive.

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Thanks for that insight! I hadn’t thought of that. Have you dealt with a lot of these kinds of orders before?

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Every time I deal with a student organisation it’s a mess. There are 10+ people using the account and they don’t talk to each other and the general approach to the process is incredibly juvenile.

I had a good experience with this buyer and I was initially contacted by the same person as last time so they’ve tricked me. :slight_smile:


No, but I’ve seen situations like this in real life.
The boss asks for “A”, the rookie understands “B”.
When the boss receives “B” he calls the rookie saying (or yelling) “now fix this, it’s your fault”.


I wrote them a few paragraphs about how my gig worked, attached the screenshots of my terms and of the brief they’ve submitted and let them know I wouldn’t be proceeding with the other design until the extra is purchased. It can go either way from here but them not acknowledging something went wrong hurts my brain a little.


Ah, I can see that happening.

Boss should be mad at his or herself for not initiating project management!

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Good for you! Stand your ground and let us know how it goes!

@ lenasemenkova Almost same issue!!! Remember???

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Well, they’ve eventually paid for another version that I just delivered. We’ll see where it goes from here. I am admittedly a bit paranoid about the situation.

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It’s better to connect with CS if the buyer starts a dispute.