Fiverr Community Forum

Sellers are gaming the rating system by waiting out an order to get cancelled to avoid bad review

Bad sellers are gaming Fiverr rating system by avoiding completing an order once they realize they’ve made the buyer unhappy. They know the buyer can’t leave a review on a canceled order, so some sellers selectively complete orders for good reviews as a result of this which makes the rating system flawed and ineffective. I have lost confidence in it.

Even worse is CS hardly provides real support. On Freelancer and other platforms, clients can leave reviews on disputed orders but on Fiverr, dispute = cancel = no review which is an easy way out for a seller to avoid bad reviews when they fail to step up.

CS hardly mediate or resolve disputes but sweep them under the carpet by cancelation and enable rude, spiteful sellers to continue unchecked, giving buyers bad experience when they fall prey to 100% cherry-picked positive ratings by bad sellers. The sellers know that canceling an order would deny the buyers from airing their experience to keep other buyers informed. It’s not the first time I’ve experienced this issue and when I checked the forum, I saw other related issues and knew I’m not alone.

Fiverr might claim buyers could abuse the system if they’re allowed to give review on every cancelation. Perhaps understandably for order cancelation within hours after placement but my order is 2 months overdue and they can see in the order activity containing our chats that the seller has made some progress on the order which I’m willing to accept rather than start all over again with another seller after 2 months of wasted time and efforts with the current seller.

The only response I got from CS was to “look for a Top Rated Seller or a PRO Freelancer next time”. Really?! A top-rated seller can still be a bad seller if they exploit the system by waiting out an order they can’t complete or won’t complete out of spite to avoid a negative review until it gets canceled automatically or by CS. If you report via Resolution Center, the informed bad sellers won’t respond to it so the order can get auto-canceled after a couple of days which is why I’ve been avoiding the Resolution Center.

Sellers are encouraged to be unkind to buyers because they know they can get away with it. Fiverr should hold sellers accountable all the time otherwise, they’ll continue encouraging rude, bad and incompetent sellers on their platform and uninformed buyers will keep falling prey with more to lose than the sellers. Fiverr should try mediating disputes more, even passively rather than choosing the lazy cancelation way out of a dispute every time.

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When sellers cancel an order, their Order Completion Rate decreases.
Buyer gets a refund and sellers get a penalty on their stats - which affects their level status.
That’s their penalty and I think it is fair enough.

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Yes I’m aware of that. Fair enough but not as fair enough as receiving negative review on their profile to prevent other buyers from falling prey in the future because sometimes algorithm doesn’t really help much, like in my own case, I posted a project and algorithm didn’t or wouldn’t have prevented the seller from finding it if his order completion rate had previously been impacted adversely. He found it and bid for it, so most buyers like myself habitually look at the reviews only. If he had been canceling projects before and the buyers had been allowed to write about their experiences, that would have been a big, bright red light to warn me to steer clear of him.

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Many good sellers don’t bother sending offers to buyer requests.

Have you tried using the search to find a seller who might be a good match?

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Yes, I do that sometimes but that doesn’t solve the problem here. The case here is this problem should not be allowed to persist. I’m a very technical person, a UX Designer by profession and keen on having empathy for web users, especially naive users. Fiverr should do everything to protect buyers. My God, they don’t even show seller completion rate on their profiles, only perfect reviews the sellers had cherry-picked. The algorithm and all these stats are kept to themselves.

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And their level.

A seller whose completion rate in the last 60 days is lower than 90% loses their level. If they work on big projects only, a single cancellation will mean they lose their level on the next 15th.

So they either can’t cancel all that often, or they’ll find themselves being a no level seller within 2 months, and then they will rarely see any buyer requests to bid on.

Many sellers feel that Fiverr is protecting buyers too much, and that sellers are the ones who are not properly protected.

The suggestion to choose a TRS isn’t bad at all. A TRS will get automatically demoted if they cancel too often, but won’t regain their status easily, so they’re likely to be very careful with cancellations.

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I think the penalty is fair enough. There are some buyers which just makes life hard for you and I prefer to cancel then waste my time and energy dealing with them…If they could leave a review after cancellation, it would defeat the purpose and its calling for all sorts of trouble.

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I agree with you but you’re indicating best case scenarios of a bad scenario. Should the system ignore worst case scenarios? Scenarios such as when TSRs are having a long queue of orders and a buyer is forced to consider lower level sellers? or that a buyer is completely naive and places more importance on reviews than levels because they think everybody has to start from somewhere. A demoted seller to level 2 is same as a promoted seller to level 2. How then is it for the buyer to differentiate between these two? Or if a seller has no conscience at all and not concerned about completion rate and levels. Should it be for another buyer to fall prey and pay the price?

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There are criteria to meet to be a level two seller. Meaning those who have been demoted/promoted have met the same criteria to become level two.

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Perhaps you’re right. But 2 months! 2 months of my wasted time, money and efforts!! Obviously you’re a seller to say that, but should a seller play a buyer for 2 months and eventually seek to cancel an order that’s almost complete? Soon as we were about to close the order, he knows he had performed poorly and fears negative review from me, so he is deliberately waiting for the order to get canceled by not responding to me for 5 days till now. This can only happen on Fiverr. Never on Freelancer and Fiverr is about to lose a customer for this.

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Blockquote

You don’t understand the message. I’m out of here.

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Your are right, what the seller did is a coward move, a way to beat the system. But, the system in place protects buyers much more then sellers. Whilst yours was a one off opportunity, I get buyers monthly just ordering and then wanting to cancel, just because “they changed there mind” or “they ordered by mistake”. This affects me in a very bad way, as it affects my completion rate…now if that were to change and buyers could leave reviews after cancellations, I would not only get penalised but even have a bad review which isn’t my fault.

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Of course not.

May I ask why did you allow it to happen? If the seller sent a cancellation request, you either had to accept it, or wait for 2 days and not reject it. Why not just reject the cancellation?

Also, while you have wasted 2 months (and I’m really sorry about that!), keep in mind that the seller has spent those 2 months, too, and didn’t get paid, plus their gig is much lower in search now, so it will be a lot more difficult for them to be found and hired (a gig sinks in search after a cancellation, Fiverr really doesn’t like them).

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He usually comes online but ignores my messages. He hasn’t replied me for about a week and he didn’t send a cancelation request. Perhaps he’s waiting for me to cancel it which I’m trying not to do or he’s just waiting it out till it gets auto-canceled or by CS that’s what I believe.

The project was to be done in milestones. I released full payment to him after milestone 1, gave good review but let him carry on to complete the current milestone before I ask him to upload the files on my server. He took my money, gained good review from me earlier and I’ve received nothing. The current milestone is partially complete but I told him I would accept it and release full payment, because I’m not willing to go through the stress of starting all over again with a new seller. I would rather a new seller pick up from where he stopped.

I don’t think the seller’s rating has been impacted by the late delivery because last I checked, he had 7 orders in queue. He is balling while I’m roasting waiting for my order. Too bad!

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I have never done milestones, so, I am not sure if this would apply, but, is this order on your dashboard marked LATE or VERY LATE? See, if an order is not delivered by the deadline, it is considered LATE, and then if not within 24 hours of the LATE time, it will be considered VERY LATE and the buyer does have the option to cancel AND the seller DOES get a negative review - the review will be, “Order Cancelled, Seller did not deliver on time”. You the buyer, do not get to add your own negative response, but, they would have a negative review due to not fulfilling the order in the allotted time. So, they would not only have their analytics for delivery harmed, but, they would also get a bad review.

Either way, what a mess, and sorry that you had a problem with this seller. I get where you are coming from, but, I think Fiverr has it this way (you cancel, you don’t get to also penalize with a review) so that other sellers cannot sabotage their competition by ordering, cancelling and then saying something false in a review.

GG

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Falling prey to what? Cancelation means you didn’t pay anything to the seller. You didn’t pay the service, you don’t get to leave a review. Seller has gained nothing from you (actually lost, cancel rate), so it’s not a very effective “hunting strategy”.

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Orders don’t get auto-cancelled on their own. Someone has to initiate the cancellation. As for cancellation by CS, someone has to ask them for it, either the seller, or the buyer.

Milestone orders can only be cancelled by Customer Support. After someone messages CS and asks for a cancellation.

Also, as @visualstudios pointed out, once an order is cancelled (which this one isn’t) you get your funds back.

That’s because the order isn’t cancelled. Or marked as completed late. It’s still open.

EDIT: Or is it still an open order? You said you released full payment after milestone 1 and left a review (normally a review can only be left once the order is marked as complete and closed, but I don’t know how it works for milestone orders), then you said you told him you would accept and release full payment (meaning you haven’t done it already)… Is the order still open, or is it marked as complete?

Sorry, but your title is misleading, and I’m sure it made many misunderstand the problem. The order wasn’t cancelled, and nobody is even asking for a cancellation.

When you contacted CS and asked them for help, what did you expect them to do? They can’t make a seller deliver. Nobody can. They can only cancel the order and give you your funds back.

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Feels like this room is only full of sellers who only see this problem from their own perspective. @catwriter, I’ll be back to address your questions/doubts.

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Frequent posters are usually sellers (though sellers are often buyers, too). Most buyers I’ve seen on the forum (there are very few exceptions) tend to come here only when they need to solve a problem, or want to rant. Once that’s done, they rarely post again, unless they have another problem.

I’m not sure when was the last time I saw a buyer (unless they were also a seller) respond to a thread posted by a buyer and help them solve the problem, or share how they’ve solved a similar problem.

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Which is why I would only be wasting my time looking for an unbiased solution in this room. Many responses here are biased as the problem is being viewed from a seller’s perspective only. Also, I suspect @catwriter you’re a Fiverr staff. Even More biased. One thing for sure coming out of this is Fiverr is losing me as a customer. I’d rather take my business elsewhere that has a trusted and more effective review system. Too bad it has come to this!

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