When Customer Support Appears To Ignore TOS


#1

This isn’t so much a rant, but I am mystified. I received an order today. I went to look at it, and all it said was “Hello, This is for a call to dialogue on a custom order. Please call me at [redacted US phone number]”.

Now, the TOS is really quite clear on this, and I’m sure all of us know those annoying messages in the writing boxes that flash up when you use words like email, payment etc. The TOS for this specific thing reads “To protect our users’ privacy, user identities are kept anonymous. Requesting or providing Email addresses, Skype/IM usernames, telephone numbers or any other personal contact details to communicate outside of Fiverr in order to circumvent or abuse the Fiverr messaging system or Fiverr platform is not permitted.”

Pretty clear. I also had a message saying the same thing that had been sent just prior to the order. So I reported the message and decided to contact CS to report the above, like a goody two-shoes.

I got Sheana, who is normally pretty good, but she must be having a bad day or something. I have sent screenshots, reminded her of TOS (this was after my initial message explaining that the Trust and Safety team might want to review this and that the phonecall consultation was not something related to the gig.

Anyway, I’m not going to write to CS anymore tonight as their approach is essentially that I should go ahead with the call and let them know if I get a bad review. Fair enough. Pointless to string it out. That, I’ll leave to specialists like unhappydeeds…

I’m just going to explain the TOS to the buyer and give him alternatives, and offer a mutual cancellation. Again. However, I am wondering what other people (buyers and sellers) make of this. I know there’s always leeway, but I found this rather inconsistent. I can understand prefering to talk about your project, but really… buying a gig to force me to call that is literally breaking the TOS? Now I have to potentially request a cancellation that leads to a meltdown and CS is pushing me to break their TOS?

And yes, it was a $5 order. It’s always a $5 buyer.


#2

I also don’t know where they are in the US. The whole thing is just weird and odd.


#3

The ********* bit is “c-all me”.

So, you see why I find this a bizarre response.


#4

I guess you just got permission to do something you didn’t want to do… lol.
That’s a first :slight_smile:


#5

I guess so–and I am quite used to being made to do things I don’t want to (only masochists work on Fiverr!)–but they are so draconian about outside personal information that I’m just mystified that they want me to steam ahead. We’ve all had new buyers write about what they want and add "if you need more info contact me here or write/call me at [whatever]. I generally ignore those and educate the seller, but this is a whole other level.

Bah.

EDIT: the ******** again, is those evil TOS-violating words censored out automatically, while CS is blithely telling me to go ahead. Confused.com!


#6

You’re a top rated seller. That comes with privileges.
Maybe one day you just might get permission to receive or make that million dollar call…

If I were you, I’d send my number to everyone who asked… Just in case. hehe. :smiley: :stuck_out_tongue:


#7

But there’s the thing. If I get that $1m call and they want to take it off Fiverr, what’s to stop either of us lying and taking it off? We both save $$$ in commissions and fees and Fiverr gets diddly squat. And when it’s a million bucks and it’s off platform and we can both lie through our teeth and say that it fell through, what can be done?

I would also imagine that as I have been told by Fiverr to go ahead that they wouldn’t have a leg to stand on. I don’t view this as a privilege at all. There are a lot of complaints about CS’ various inconsistencies and foibles, and as a TRS, I personally tired of this idea that we’re somehow getting extra benefits etc. Of course we are, in that we have stuff like quicker withdrawals, can charge more money for extras etc., but this to me is confusing, inconsistent and in many ways justifies many of those complaints.

I’ll just have to write to him and hope he’s not that super-rich buyer. But then again, $5 buyer with his behavior so far, I am confident that he just wants to blether on about his amazing new product that will change the world as I lose the will to live.


#8

I understand your confusion, but honestly, I don’t mind the ‘flexibility’ (as I prefer to call it) one bit.


#9

I would just refund the buyer and be done with it. No way would I call anyone.
You were told wrong in my opinion.


#10

That was what I thought! I was really surprised at the response I got which was when I started with TOS quoting and screenshots.

Anyway, I’ll deal with it tomorrow. I’ve had enough of work for one day!


#11

Only $5 and the buyer wants you to call him/her and he/she is in the USA? That buyer gotta be kidding you. I think it will cost you more than $5 to make that phone call.


#12

TOS also says: “Any necessary exchange of personal information required to continue a service may be exchanged within the order page.” Your buyer did send the phone number on the order page and not in the message, right? Maybe that’s why CS told you to proceed.


#13

@emmaki I came here looking for mention of happyfeet and was not disappointed.

There is also no way I would be having a consultation with anyone for 5$, if this is allowed. Start by adding a zero to the end of that.


#14

By the way @idostuff4u , read Bugs and look for a post about worst thing. It’s been scrubbed but you might recognize the OP who broke the forum rules. If the post is gone, it means it’s been moved to the Ranting Pot. It may not be best for you to reply, but that’s your decision.


#15

This makes no sense. I think this needs follow up. I’ll see what I can do.


#16

Well, quite. It’s not even a respectful request–it’s a forced one with no information, such as what the project might be, budget and even, “oh, by the way, I live in Outer Mongolia”. I’m only saying he’s in the US because the number looks American and his profile says he is American (but who knows…). This client is making me grumpy just thinking about it!


#17

He sent an order with the message I c&p’d in my OP, thensent the same message to my inbox. Both with my number. I did not see that part of TOS, but I deem it irrelevant because of the world “continue”. This exchange of information has not started yet. I am essentially being “forced” to call the buyer to discuss a project that may or may not happen.

I’m a writer, I write. I like written briefs, preferably clear and straight to the point (shocking, I know). I don’t want to fire up Skype and listen to him drone on. Besides, my internet isn’t really good enough for a phone call, which leaves the phone line my only option. $3.96 or whatever it is will get me up to around the pleasantries stage. So, no. Not going to happen.

deep sigh

I am cancelling the order no matter what so it’s a complete non-issue. I’m just… completely baffled by all this.


#18

I only have a prepaid smartphone at the moment. It’s not happening!


#19

I was just guessing why CS responded they way they did.

I wouldn’t want to talk to someone on the phone or chat with them via Skype either. Write down what you need (and be concise if possible), and if I can, I’ll do it. That’s it. No lengthy phone conversations or just as lengthy Skype chit-chats.


#20

When thinking about the whole draconian outside info thing, I really wish Fiverr would get with the times. Sure, the buyer and seller could both save money going outside, but instead of restricting that, Fiverr should compete with it.

For example, I got a message on [unnamed other freelancing platform] and decided it would be best to offer my services outside to make some more money. Did the project, good communication, but when I send the invoice, diddly squat. A few “give me more time” messages over 6 months, but nada. Client won’t even glance at the invoice. He didn’t get the product of course (I’m hosting the site I built) but it’s still a bummer.

This is where I wish I had done business through [unnamed other freelancing platform] because my funds would would have been secured. This is why I’m willing to pay a frankly exorbitant fee is for that protection. I think Fiverr should really work this into their system and start giving sellers better tools instead of restricting their every move.

On an unrelated note, I was forced to remove a link to my site where I host a waiver for all my computer work (aka you can’t touch this form) when I updated my gig with an FAQ. It does technically lead them out of fiverr, but only asks for their fiverr username and directs them back to Fiverr. Curious, and a little bit frustrating.