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Beware of buyer scamming


mave_mohiuddin
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As a seller, we always look for work and opportunities. This is especially true for new sellers. Things don't always go as we'd like. And sometimes we sellers get desperate and there are some buyers who take this advantage. I have worked with really good buyers and person in general, and had bad experience as well. I want to share one such experience. 

 

I used to be content writer and came to fiverr on that service. I came across a buyer request with a list of like 10 topics, and I sent an offer. The person responded the next day and asked me about my experience. I told him. Then he said he needs this 10 articles and like 50 more in near future. But since my fiverr profile is new, I needed to earn his trust. And for that, he asked me to write on one of the topics. If he liked it, he'd order for the 10 and later on, for all 50. Me, desperately looking for work, agreed, and wrote the article and sent that. I never got a response from him again. 

 

The very next day, when I was going through the buyer requests, I saw the same buyer with a similar buyer request with a list of work. And when I verified the list with the previous one, sure enough, 5/6 were the same topic with a few new ones(the one I wrote on was missing). I texted him asking if he liked my article or not. But he never responded again. 

 

My thought on this is, he actually used my article. And there were a few other sellers who did the same as me. Thus the buyer got like half of his work done for free.

 

Now, I am not 100% certain that it was the case, but it appears to be so. My point is, don't work for free under any situation. 

 

It's true that the buyers will need to verify your skill. And you will need to earn their trust. Share your past works and similar services that you did for someone else. But don't work for someone you don’t know. If you work for free, not only you are getting scammed, but also you are ruining a potential job either for you or for some else.

 

Be careful and think before you do something no matter how desperate the situation is. Take a look at buyers profile. See the number and frequency of reviews as a buyer. Trust your logics and if there's not enough, trust your guts. Take care!

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Your are right. These scammers use the new seller for there purposes for totally free. Fiverr should take steps to stop these type of scamming.

Another scamming is that many sellers send offer for  jobs as a buyer. But they don’t give the job anyone. This is totally bullsh*it. It’s too much disgusted.  

Edited by zanrakim
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Always the new seller thinks about how they will gain the trust of the buyer and deliver the best. But sometimes sellers get in trouble by their buyers. They do not know what to do. Thanks for sharing your experience it will help new sellers who are not aware of it.

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As a new seller, how can we protect ourselves from them? it's hard to get an order for us. Obviously, buyers can't rely on a new seller which is true from their perspective. And we are desperate to get an order so we intend to do what any buyer asks to. in that time how can we differentiate which one is going to be a scam and which one is legit. Experience can be one solution but any other idea?

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Yes, thanks for sharing. Consider sending a .pdf of your work instead of a document file. That way the buyer can't just use it. If your prospect is trying to rip you off they would have to either convert the pdf or rewrite it. You can put a great big watermark on your work. That way the buyer won't be tempted to capture a screenshot. There are several ways to protect your intellectual property. You can make a pdf that is not copyable or printable if you have the right software.

You can check with Google for copied material by copying a complete paragraph into the search box, with quote marks around it. If your content comes up on Google as copied you can inform Fiverr that you've been ripped off by the buyer and want payment. You can also send a cease and desist notice. If that doesn't do the job notify Google that your material was copied and request the removal of the website. Copyright infringement is serious business and have laws against it in most countries.

Hope this helps

Tim

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On 8/23/2021 at 2:29 PM, timothykoen said:

Yes, thanks for sharing. Consider sending a .pdf of your work instead of a document file. That way the buyer can't just use it. If your prospect is trying to rip you off they would have to either convert the pdf or rewrite it. You can put a great big watermark on your work. That way the buyer won't be tempted to capture a screenshot. There are several ways to protect your intellectual property. You can make a pdf that is not copyable or printable if you have the right software.

You can check with Google for copied material by copying a complete paragraph into the search box, with quote marks around it. If your content comes up on Google as copied you can inform Fiverr that you've been ripped off by the buyer and want payment. You can also send a cease and desist notice. If that doesn't do the job notify Google that your material was copied and request the removal of the website. Copyright infringement is serious business and have laws against it in most countries.

Hope this helps

Tim

This is extremely informative and helpful material. Thanks a lot for taking the time to explain everything. Greatly appreciated. 

Since then, I learnt my lesson and haven’t done any "free" work for anyone. I verify the buyer's legitimacy as best as I can if I must work pre-order. But I mostly avoid that kinda shady work.

The sending pdf with with watermark is a great idea.

On 8/23/2021 at 1:06 PM, kh_kamrul said:

As a new seller, how can we protect ourselves from them? it's hard to get an order for us. Obviously, buyers can't rely on a new seller which is true from their perspective. And we are desperate to get an order so we intend to do what any buyer asks to. in that time how can we differentiate which one is going to be a scam and which one is legit. Experience can be one solution but any other idea?

Yes, experience is one of the biggest tool to defend yourself from these kind of scams. But when you don't have much experience, you can use some other ideas. 

For starter, if a buyer asks you to work, verify thier legitimacy. Check their buyer level, profile pic, and reviews from other sellers. See how often they order, and try to make out how satisfied the previous sellers were and what type of work was it. 

You can also get ideas from the texts they send. How professional are they, how desperate they are to get you to work. And also, if they are online for a while but not replying to you. Chances are they are talking to other sellers as well. It's natural they will, but how frequently it happens. 

Last but not least, try to convince them in other ways, like sharing watermarked screenshots of your previous work, convincing them to order for one, even it is for $5. You'll at least get a review at the end of it and not get completely ripped off. But the safest and best way is to not work for free in the first place.

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