Fiverr Community Forum

What's the most ridiculous way a buyer has tried to trick you?

I’m a voice-over artist and here are my most common ones:

  • Deleting spaces between sentences to make the word on their script count lower (I charge per word)
  • Telling me that they need me to do a custom demo “for the client”… (beause they don’t want their client to know that they’re outsourcing the voice-over for cheap on Fiverr!)
  • Telling me that if I give them a discount now they will be back for more work at full price later!

The cheek of it!


In my first year here, someone did a chargeback and had his account banned, then made a new account, told me who he was under his previous account, never mentioned the chargeback, was very friendly and tried to place another order with his new account.


:joy: why?? why are some buyers like this??


Not too smart…


We work in the VO field as well, so we’re pretty familiar with these.

NEVER had this one before… What a random thing to try… do they just do it for the odd word here and there?

Yes, we get this a lot. We don’t mind people outsourcing work to us, but as a rule we decline all requests for custom demos through Fiverr. If the end job is going to be more than about $150 we’ll do it, otherwise the business model of Fiverr just doesn’t work for custom demos.

We get this every now and then as well. We generally don’t discount through Fiverr, but when we hear this, we dig our heels in even harder. If we’re good enough, pay our rates, now and in the future!

We don’t see many ‘tricks’. My biggest annoyance is when someone sends a clearly copy/paste request for a quote, which is all information they could get from looking at the pricing on our gig. The quote will be a cost of $100, and the response back will be something back like “oh wow, our budget is $5”.

But hey, all part of the fun and games of Fiverr! :slightly_smiling_face:


Actually, scratch that! There are two ‘deceptions’, for want of a better word, that we see quite often!

  1. Buyers under-counting their words. The order will be for 200 words, and a 203 word script is attached. If the buyer had contacted us first for a quote, we probably would have rounded it down to 200. But making the decision for us? We’re going to be sending a custom offer for the missing words!
  2. Commercial Usage - I know there are entire other threads arguing about the merits of commercial use, and I don’t want to re-open that debate here… But we charge for it, like other VOs. We now include it in our base rate, because prior to that, we had a drop-down on our requirements where buyers would declare whether their work was for Commercial Usage or not. The amount of times an order would come through where the buyer would declare it was for ‘Personal Use’, and the opening line of the script would be “The All-New Magic Mop will revolutionise your life with it’s…” :joy:

Gotta love that one. Could have saved both our time by just reading the gig description!

The clients that have done this usually have done it just enough times to make the word count barely under the limit for the base price. I charge for the first 150 words, their script was 160, so they deleted the spaces between sentences 11 times. It is so obvious :joy:

Same here. I realize that at least half of my work is for someone outsourcing the gig, and that’s ok. What I’m not ok with is actively participating in the buyer lying to their client about where the work comes from. It’s really obvious when they’re doing this because I usually ask them to share my gigs with their client so that they can hear my demo, and they respond with “my client does not have a computer”… :neutral_face::neutral_face::neutral_face::neutral_face::neutral_face::neutral_face::neutral_face:


LMAO actually dying over here. I had to do the exact same thing with my gigs. Commercial use is now included in my base price. You’re paying for it whether you like it or not!

same here. It really grinds my gears and honestly just feels dishonest, like you’re hoping I won’t notice. I will definitely be charging you for those extra 3 words!

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Literally as I was writing our reply to you, a request came in for a $30 order, but the buyer wanted us to provide a custom sample, and wanted it within the hour, for free.

I just don’t understand this mentality. I can only assume it’s because on other freelance VO sites, you audition for work - but the rates there are at least 5 times more than you can get away charging here, so auditioning is OK. Would people do this in other niches? Do you contact a logo designer and say “I’m interested, but I want you to draw me some logos for free first, and then I’ll make my decision”…


The ways people try to get writing FOC are pretty ridiculous. Quite a few times, I’ve had people send me articles which read like they have been written by a child. They ask me to re-write these but insist that any words which already exist in their existing article can’t count toward the final word count.

i.e. Let’s say they send me something like:

Monster Energy is a really good way to get energy and tastes so nice you will love having it more than coffee in the morning.

(I tried to make that sound childish on purpose.)

The buyer will insist that I can’t consider words like monster, is, good, energy, tastes, etc, part of my final word count, as they have provided these words.

It’s basically a way of ordering a 300-word article but making sure you get a 500-word article.

My favorite people, though, are those who message to say they need x amount of words about x by x date. They don’t follow up replies or place orders. Instead, they appear on the date they requested work by to ask how things are going. Then when you remind them that they do not have an active order, they threaten all kinds of nasty things.

A new scam recently has seen a few buyers order the likes of a 500-word article, only then to say that they only need 3 lines of text. Either this or they need the entire article to be no more than one paragraph.

These revision requests are absurd and impossible to satisfy. Needless to say though, after canceling, I usually find the buyer using the full text I delivered on their website anyway…


I love this, and feel for you all at the same time! You should tell them that, since they’re removing words you can charge for, you will instead be replacing those words with your own, chargeable words. ‘Monster’ becomes ‘Scary Blob Thing’, ‘Good’ becomes ‘Sick/Banging/Peng’ or whatever the kids are saying these days, ‘Energy Drink’ becomes ‘Magic Go-Fast Juice’ etc.

Fortunately, I don’t think we’ve ever had this. But at least the threats would be mainly empty ones right? I mean, with no order placed, what can they do?

It definitely sounds like you get a rough ride in comparison though.


I’m still mad about this one although it wasn’t quite about the money.

I got contacted a few years back by a top buyer, a very nice young lady who wanted to order a few Christmas cards from me (which is fine, I get a lot of seasonal work).

But before ordering anything she wanted to show me the source files she got from another designer to make sure “I can work with them”. Which was also fine, I figured there was text or logos there she wanted me to use or something.

I opened the files, the quality was kinda meh but technically they were fine. I confirmed the files were fully vector, properly saved, with all the layers embedded and so on. Then she went: “You are 100% sure these files are vector and I got sent the correct ones by the X seller? I will place a big order shortly, just please confirm it”.

Which made me think she wasn’t sure that the technical quality of the delivery was satisfactory, found someone with more positive reviews than the seller the bought from, used them (me), my time and my hands to get the confirmation, lied about the potential project and was on her way. I obviously never heard from her again.

I should’ve probably called her out on that, maybe it’d make me feel better. Such a sneaky and petty thing to do.


Urgh, yeah, that one’s particularly horrible. I wonder if reporting her would have achieved anything?


I mean, you can’t really prove it, can you? It was an ordinary inquiry until she mentioned the “BIG ORDER” and that she needed me to run the quality control for the delivery she got from someone else.

I have buyers calling me names every once and a while and CS is fine with it. This situation would be too abstract to even be considered a violation.


That’s awful… I don’t think we’ve ever been called names. We’ve had potential buyers get pretty angry when we haven’t given into their outrageous demands before, but never name calling.

We did get this one guy back in our first month on Fiverr, so about 2.5 years ago now… He wanted a VO for his web advertisement. Our female VO gig shows Becky’s vocal style… she has a very soft voice, good for corporate stuff, PERFECT for kids stuff.

This guy ordered (without communication), a VO for his tattoo business. He wanted the VO to over the top of Cradle of Filth (or some other ultra-death metal music). We knew we weren’t a suitable match. But we were brand new and didn’t want to take the cancellation hit, so we gave him a read. He declined the work, demanding that we do it in a grungey, dark, American female voice (we offer none of that, other than ‘female’). We were brand new and didn’t want a 1 star so early in our career, so we asked to cancel. He accepted, but in his reason for accepting the cancellation, wrote “The seller admits her range is limited”. :joy:

For whatever reason, that one’s always stung!

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Wow, that’s really cheeky. What a waste of your time >:(

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And maybe you would have received a warning for that. You never know.

I’m not a logo designer, but I imagine that it happens to them a lot. It happens to writers all the time. It’s especially ridiculous when they tell you that they need someone for a long-term project (but apparently can’t afford to pay for custom samples in order to choose the best candidate).

The range of someone’s voice is limited? I’m shocked! :astonished:

And to stay on topic:

  • Calling me ‘bro’ or something similar when asking for special favors

  • Promising a lot of work in the future if I give them a discount and deliver super-fast (at no additional cost, of course)

  • Telling me that they’ll give me a tip if I do them a favor (faster delivery, more work than paid for…)

  • When asking for a revision, asking to write them a new script with the same information, so that they have two scripts to compare (at no additional cost, of course)


omg, that makes me so angry for you. what a passive aggressive dig hahaha


I personally love this one because it’s so transparent. “I will DEFINITELY pay for this service… just not right now.”


Do you report these buyers or just not bother? I know for certain that I’ve had buyers use my voice-mail greetings after cancelling, but because they’re usually living in a different country I can’t call them up and listen to their voice mail to check. So, so cheeky.

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