Jump to content

Writers — We Need to Start Demanding Better Copyright Protection


Recommended Posts

I’m seriously thinking of starting a pressure or focus group. In my mind, this would be one which starts putting pressure on all freelance platforms to start better protecting writers from copyright infringement.

To understand why I am a little furious at present here’s what happened today. (Though not on Fiverr.)

Recently, I became a member of two new freelancing platforms. On one of these, clients post available projects and writers start work and deliver. (There is no bidding or direct order process.) On the other, I can write articles on any subject I want, then upload these to a catalog. Clients in need of content browse this catalog. If they see an article they like, they buy it.

Fast forward to today. This morning, I completed an article on the first platform and submitted it to the client. A few hours later, I was then notified that my submission had been rejected.

Naturally, this was annoying. However, since the article still belongs to be (as it has not been paid for), I decided to upload it to my catalog on the second platform I use. - After all, It is still my content and I might as well try and monetize it.

You can probably guess what happened next. Yes, I was notified that my article had failed to pass their editorial review. - Specifically, because it looks like I have plagiarized an article by copying and pasting it from elsewhere online.

In short, the client from the first website who rejected my work has nevertheless published it on their site. This now puts me in a situation where my work has been stolen, and one where I may now lose my account on the second freelancing platform for trying to submit plagiarized content.

Naturally, I am not going to let this matter go. However, it has also made me realize that writers really get a short straw on all freelancing platforms. We get asked for samples. These then often get stolen. Buyers can also request work, but reject it and use content anyway.

Often, it is also the case that clients use freelance platform promises of not paying for orders until they are 100% satisfied, as a way to get out of paying for work.

Obviously, this situation didn’t happen on Fiverr. However, this situation has happened to me on Fiverr in the past. My overall point, though, is that in 2019, this shouldn’t be happening at all.

One solution would be for freelance platforms to deliver work to clients in a format which it is impossible to use without paying. The easiest way to do this would be to present finished work in a non-downloadable PDF preview or web page. (One where copy and pasting functions are disabled.)

My solution wouldn’t prevent chargeback fraud. However, it would prevent bad actors from making off with work without paying initially.

To go one step further, I believe that platforms like Fiverr could benefit from helping writers hold third parties to account for copyright infringement.

Let’s say that a client on Fiverr doesn’t pay me for work, but later I find a website hosting content I’ve produced. When this is the case, I’d like to see a system where I can gather evidence and present this to Fiverr, along with the contact information of the website in question.

Someone at Fiverr could quickly check if an order had been canceled, and if the content being used online matches what a seller delivered. All Fiverr would then have to do is send an email to an offending website saying something like:


We recently noticed that content you are using at (insert url here) was sourced from one of our freelancers. Sadly, this cointent was not paid for. You might not be at fault. We know that a lot of big content marketing companies outsource projects to our freelancers. However, we would like to request that you remove this content.

Kind Regards,


Helping sellers in this way could generate a significant ROI for Fiverr. I say this as from my own experience, people who scam sellers out of work are usually reellers who present themselves to their end clients as fancy pants web marketing companies.

The above being the case, Fiverr notifying websites and businesses that content they are using was sourced from Fiverr, could result in those businesses choosing to buy directly on Fiverr to cut out the middleman.

As I say, my most recent experience being scammed hasn’t happened here on Fiverr. In fact, it has been a while since I have had a problem buyer here. However, it would be interesting to know what other writers think about my ideas. 🙂

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...