Fiverr Community Forum

What does Trust & Safety mean to a seller?

Hello All!

I wish I was coming here to write something positive in the forums, but my early experiences with Fiverr has been a mixed bag. After doing a few starter gigs for under $50, I worked out my true value as a copywriter and started writing articles for $100+.

Since doing this, I have had two gigs. One, was a patient guy who is now looking to offer me some regular work as he builds his website…I am ecstatic about this! The second has been a complete nightmare…

I offer a proofreading & copywriting service, and always make it clear to my buyers that they will receive written work only. Additional pictures, videos etc can be provided, but they will come at an extra cost - especially if they need clearance for commercial use.

So the nightmare buyer comes along and asks for a Buzzfeed blog style 10 point listicle about making money online. We agreed a price of $110, with approximately 2500 words for the points in addition to a short intro and outro. He actually asked if I would design his website for him too, but I explained that this is outside of my skill set and he accepted that. A few days go by, and I deliver the work a day before the agreed deadline.

“Where are the pictures and videos?” he asks almost 3 days later, just before the automatic completion of the gig.

“Sorry, you didn’t request those at any point and I don’t usually provide these as a service.” I reply, “I could add some commercial use approved stock images, but they will cost money, so we will have to negotiate this as an extra. I don’t produce instruction videos or anything like that so you’ll have to prepare or source that yourself”

He marks the gig as needing a revision with a one line message “this is not what i wanted”.

I couldn’t believe it! He refuses to pay me more for the extra work (which would actually cost me money rather than just labour time), and the Customer Support just tell me to negotiate with him. After exchanging a few words with the buyer, it descended into light name calling (calling me a fraud, liar and unprofessional) before we both decided to stop communication.

I realised that when it comes to written work, there is very little you can do to protect yourself from this type of buyer. If it is a JPEG drawing, you can watermark it, but if it is written work you send them the completed job! They can take the work and get their money back!!!

I had read on here that CS has been very helpful to some sellers, but in this instance I have found them evasive and unwilling to do anything. After about 8 messages back and forth over the last few days, my CS agent mentioned that the seller is being looked into by Trust & Safety team, but I will not be receiving any payment for the job unless the buyer marks the job as complete.

Shockingly, in the very first reply to my complaint, the CS agent admitted that I had done nothing wrong:
_"I’m sorry to hear that you’ve had difficulties with your buyer. I reviewed the order, and I see that you’ve delivered work and modifications per the buyer’s request. _

However, we cannot force your buyer to accept the order if they have issues with it, so you will need to persuade the buyer to accept your work, or negotiate for an agreement with your buyer."

Has anyone else had more luck in this kind of situation?
Any advice for how to beat this kind of scam?
Has anyone seen examples of CS supporting writers in this situation?

So far, the response has basically been…what do you want us to do about it?

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I see a problem in the logic of CS.

If this is true:

This is false:

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Well as you can see you have none of he option other than cancelling the order, if you persist the buyer to accept the delivery they might accept but will leave a bad review, go to CS and take the refund, leaving you with a bad review and loss of funds.

I think the best you can do is to find some free stock images such as pxhere.com and add them in the article and complete the delivery, as soon as the delivery completes then block the buyer and report to CS.

Do not think about cancellation because the buyer already have what he/she wanted and they would be happy to get it for free. cancellation will affect your ratings badly.

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Nope. Every time this has happened to me, CS has either cancelled the order on behalf of the buyer, or the buyer has used a chargeback to get work FOC.

My advice would be to cancel. If you don’t, you could end up with a dire review which will remain on your profile, even if the buyer does find a way to get their money back.

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As far as what Trust and Safety means, the truth is that it’s a Fiverr department that does help get rid of actual trash on the site, but sellers usually don’t want to encounter T&S. Sometimes a great seller (including level 2, TRS, Pro) gets snagged for something and contact with Trust and Safety can even mean a warning over a misunderstanding. CS typically cancels an order at “best” though sometimes they stand by and let the Seller try to work it out. They don’t force buyers to do things.

As far as your exact situation with the buyer, I really wonder if it was down to a basic communication issue. This caught my eye:

As a,writer, I understand that there are journalistic meanings for intro and outro. On Fiverr, though, I typically see these terms used on video or audio gigs. I wonder if your buyer was only familiar with these and thought you’d be including media as intro/outro. I don’t use terms because I think they are confusing to my buyers. I’m not saying you did anything wrong, just offering a point to think on for future issues. Good luck!

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Everyone has their own way of dealing with this type of buyer.
My own method is that I stay polite but firm in what I say and I never cancel an order after the work has been delivered. To date, I have only had one chargeback and never had CS cancel an order on me. I think it is important to remember that anything you say to your buyer will be read by CS in the event of the buyer complaining.
Make what you say clear, consistent, polite and do not engage in pettiness. Defuse situations as much as possible.
I also never suggest that the buyer go to customer support, I know some people say this and I think it reflects badly on the seller as if they are negating their responsibility for their work.
As for CS, it is not their job to make a buyer accept a delivery, it’s yours.

Edit: Just noticed that you are very new - it should be noted that you may suffer a bad review if you follow my advice. This may affect you in some ways but you cannot be “demoted”. However, you would not be able to submit offers to buyer requests so weigh up the pros and cons.
It does seem like some buyers target new sellers for this reason.

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Intro and Outro gigs are related to video and animation category, also for a intro or outro client needs to provide a logo and tag line so it’s pretty clear what client wanted was not a logo intro.

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I’ll be clearer about what was said :slight_smile:
This is not the entire conversation, but this is the only part that media or anything other than writing was mentioned.

Then came the offer, which is pretty clear I think…

And suddenly the buyer drops the bomb on me…

Now I know the full story isn’t here in these screenshots, but from what you see, would you not say that I am owed my money?

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It is also not their job to cancel an order that is not eligible for cancellation.

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I’m sorry to say it but I wouldn’t have touched this order with a barge pole. Usually, when I work with people with a poor command of English on a sizable project, they turn into nightmare revisionistas.

A case in point, a buyer recently asked for a sales copy for their furniture company. It (apparently) was based in Malaysia and provided furniture to worldwide hospitality businesses. After delivery, the brief changed to: "You haven’t said anything about our network of factories in China. We also do not design or ship furniture. We are a B2B business which connects manufacturers with suppliers."

What you basically have here is a reseller or someone outsourcing an article which they will be getting paid a lot more for. They haven’t understood their end clients brief. Neither have they communicated their full requirements to you at the time of order. As a result, everything is now going pear-shaped.

Right now, the website where your content was indented for use will be wondering where the written content and audiovisual media they just paid $500 for is. They will be putting pressure on your buyer to deliver and they in turn, are taking their stress out on you.

Good luck!

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This my experience as well. I once had CS tell me they were doing me a favor by canceling an order and not to expect that help in the future. In that case the order had completed and the buyer was still complaining and wouldn’t stop messaging me. Somehow it was my fault the buyer wanted a ton of extra work. CS wanted me to work for free forever to make the buyer happy.

Don’t waste more time on this order. Cancel it and move on. There is no way for you to win.

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Agreed.

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THIS ^^^ -------------------------

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This means it is up to you to resolve it. They do not get involved. And the correct way to resolve this particular situation is to tell the buyer politely but firmly that you completed the order exactly as requested so the order is correct.

You are dealing with a jerk and this buyer does not deserve any more communications, concessions or explanations.

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Yeah I understand it’s up to me to resolve, I just think Fiverr is leaving us (and themselves) open to freeloaders and fraudsters. It’s a shame, because it really doesn’t have to be this way. If they see and agree that the buyer is fooling around / taking complete work for free, they should be able to guarantee me payment for the work that is 100% to the specifications requested by the buyer…who accepted the custom offer I sent them.

Lesson learned but I’m not convinced this won’t happen to me again!

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think the misunderstanding may have occurred when your Buyer said, “Also, will you design the page?”

Even though it was not in your offer, he remembers asking you, so he expects more than writing. Design means more than writing. Although not necessarily pictures.

Maybe if you had said in your conversation that you do not design pages things would have went differently. :thinking:

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Don’t be. I never agree to cancel orders on a buyers behalf. Sadly, I’ve still delivered $70+ worth of work, only to have orders cancelled by CS. - On a gig which states in the description: IMPORTANT: DO NOT ORDER PRIOR TO READING THE BELOW FAQ SECTION! - I DO NOT ISSUE REFUNDS

Also, buyers who get orders canceled are usually sellers of similar services (with fewer reviews than me) or new buyers from places where many scammers seem to come from. In short, you’re not protected in any way. This is why I do not offer high-fee services on Fiverr.

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This is really a good practice, I am planning to do the same.

We are not employees. We are running our own businesses. It’s not fiverr’s responsibility to get involved in disputes.

If fiverr clearly sees a seller did not fulfill an order as promised they will give a refund but if that is not the case they stay out of it.

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