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Fiverr Suspends Business in Russia


mjensen415

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From the Fiverr Blog. A message from CEO Micha Kaufman:

Our hearts break for the people of Ukraine and we join the world in grieving for the lives lost and destroyed due to the senseless and unjustifiable violence. We also mourn with our global community of freelancers and business owners, who work daily across borders, languages, and cultures to create opportunity. They know that any conflict that divides like-minded and good people into “us vs. them” represents a loss for all of humanity and is contrary to everything the Fiverr community stands for. 

That said, the devastation in Ukraine requires action and has triggered global economic sanctions aimed at ending the conflict. In light of the ongoing situation, Fiverr is suspending its business in Russia starting today. We will not allow the opening of new accounts or the use of existing accounts to buy or sell on our platform. We are, however, allowing our Russian freelancers to withdraw their current earnings to ensure we have fulfilled our obligations to them.

Going forward, Fiverr will continue to prioritize efforts to support our Ukrainian community.  Today we launched a dedicated store featuring talented Ukrainian freelancers who are ready and able to work. Fiverr will donate our fees from this store to the Ukrainian Red Cross who are providing first aid, clothes, food, medications, and clean water in the region.

We’ve also made the decision to return all fees collected in the past few weeks to our Ukrainian freelancers as a way to offer additional financial support. We will continue to look for ways to support our Ukrainian community, as well as all victims of the war.

Of course, nobody can say when the war will end, but please know that Fiverr continues to work with urgency and compassion to find ways to help our community. As we do, we welcome your ideas and participation.

Micha

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1 hour ago, xeni_ya said:

Hello, what should do ethnic ukrainians who live and are registered in Russia? What should russians do who not live in Russia but registered for Fiverr from Russia several years ago?

If you directly participate in the economy that pays for the war crimes, you get sanctioned, I'd imagine. If you don't or it can't be proven (by living and paying taxes elsewhere), you absolutely shouldn't be.

PS every Russian acquaintance I have has suddenly become "25% ethnically Ukrainian". I don't know what to make of it.

Edited by lenasemenkova
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1 hour ago, vovkaslovesnyy said:

And I also have another question. 

Do you offer relocation option for sellers like your main competitor, or we are banned for having Russian passports? 

Payoneer allows changing the country by providing new residency documents. 

Upwork offers the same for moving to another country and continuing to work.

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And this was sent to me by Fiverr support a couple of days ago...
 

Fiverr is a global community made up of skilled and talented freelancers. We have created a safe and equal community for anyone, that’s available from everywhere, where people are free to find work and be recognized for their quality of work.

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Is the procedure clear as of yet? What will happen to pre-existing orders? Subs? Funds that are pending clearance? Should we finish existing orders? Will the accounts be removed from the platform?

Would you consider keeping the option of not withdrawing the funds? Because as of now many Russian sellers may be stuck without the means to do so. PayPal quit Russian market before Fiverr did, Payoneer's website was blocked in Russia long ago, so there might be a chunck of sellers who were not ready to rely on questionable legal payment method. Plus Payoneer works in Russia only via SWIFT transfers, meaning clients of some banks can't use it and adding a new account from a different bank might take a while.

I would also like to know about relocation. I am one of those permanently leaving the country, but legal procedures for my pets will take a few more weeks. What is one to do in this situation?

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8 minutes ago, alyonagrapie said:

What is one to do in this situation?

I am still waiting for an answer about the relocation. But I have no hope because Fiverr is usually very strict about the locations. 

Everything else is clear. Account won't be deleted, but it will be limited (restricted). 

"You will be able to complete any open orders, but you will not be able to gain new orders or communicate outside of the order page." 

Funds will be available as usual (Payoneer is still working as of today). 

Edited by vovkaslovesnyy
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19 minutes ago, vovkaslovesnyy said:

Everything else is clear.

It just seems like most companies that already quit did not think through the technicalities yet (which is perfectly understandable), so details keep changing. To name one of the recent examples, KFC who announced they only stop investments, but don't quit, then a few hours later they announced they quit, then it turned out that they can't actually make that descision as a franchise, so they are now back to "no investments". Or Pepsi. Or Adobe.
So I'm just throwing a few concerns out there for Fiverr to consider.

I would also assume that the platform itself is not yet ready to function in accordance to this decision in technical regard. Atleast orders are still being placed several hours after this announcement. And there is no date mentioned, so I'd imagine the changes are supposed to be applied immediately.
I honestly don't know anymore, in any case nevermind my ramblings, the past two weeks have left me with no brain cells.

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So sad to hear about this! Sorry for Russians.. Maybe people who lost their jobs at McDonalds, Cola, Nike etc and profiles on Upw.. and here and on other marketplaces can stand together against Putin's regime.. That is the idea of all these shutdowns and closures.. I am a Russian-English translator but from Azerbaijan.. I think the isolation of Russia will lead to the situation when there is no need or very little demand for English-Russian translators.. Hope this will not last for years as it was during 20th century..

Edited by nikatranslator
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I'm almost lost for words. How can the citizens of a country be held accountable for the actions of it's leaders? I feel deep sorrow for members of each country caught up in this. Trying to act as judge and jury to harm the innocent is not the way forward.

Does this mean that people of every country now need to be concerned that if their government acts in a way that isn't approved, that they will also be demonised, by companies that want to virtue signal to the rest of the world. 

This is without doubt the worst thing I've read on this forum. I hope you're able to rethink this awful decision.

Edited by callyofficial
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We know that this is an incredibly tense situation, driving lots of emotions for many of our community members. It is terrible to see people being dragged into unnecessary violence and we hear your concerns. Some of your questions have been answered by the community, and I will try to address them here. 

1. The location to each account on Fiverr is set by the system and is based on your current geographical location. The location updates periodically.
If you are located in a different place, please contact support and they will work with our Trust & Safety team to review your account accordingly. 

2. We’re offering our Russian sellers access to the Early Payout feature and waiving the standard safety clearance period.
At this time, it seems that Payoneer is still offering services to Russia via the “Local Bank Transfer” option.

3. "You will be able to complete any open orders, but you will not be able to gain new orders or communicate outside of the order page." Funds will be available as usual (Payoneer is still working as of today). 

We hope that there will be a peaceful end to the war in Ukraine soon at which point we will look towards reinstating our business in Russia.

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Hello. 
Fiverr administration, please tell me why you restrict the residents of Russia, on whom nothing depends and who decide nothing? (If the government had listened to the majority opinion, I am sure that there would have been no war).


Fiverr administration, please tell me why you are helping the residents of Ukraine (I personally support this decision), but at the same time aggravating the situation of the residents of Russia? I understand that the first solution will help people. But how will your second solution help?
You say you want peace, but you are aggravating the war.
"Responding with violence to violence, you will only get violence."

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This is is totally disgusting what you guys are doing. This achieve nothing but harms every day citizens who have nothing to do with this. This is the dumbest thing fiverr has ever done and it effects all of us. Everyone at fiverr should be utterly ashamed of them selves for being such xenophobes who lack clear logic to understand this accomplishes nothing but creates more collateral damage. 

17 hours ago, mjensen415 said:

From the Fiverr Blog. A message from CEO Micha Kaufman:

Our hearts break for the people of Ukraine and we join the world in grieving for the lives lost and destroyed due to the senseless and unjustifiable violence. We also mourn with our global community of freelancers and business owners, who work daily across borders, languages, and cultures to create opportunity. They know that any conflict that divides like-minded and good people into “us vs. them” represents a loss for all of humanity and is contrary to everything the Fiverr community stands for. 

That said, the devastation in Ukraine requires action and has triggered global economic sanctions aimed at ending the conflict. In light of the ongoing situation, Fiverr is suspending its business in Russia starting today. We will not allow the opening of new accounts or the use of existing accounts to buy or sell on our platform. We are, however, allowing our Russian freelancers to withdraw their current earnings to ensure we have fulfilled our obligations to them.

Going forward, Fiverr will continue to prioritize efforts to support our Ukrainian community.  Today we launched a dedicated store featuring talented Ukrainian freelancers who are ready and able to work. Fiverr will donate our fees from this store to the Ukrainian Red Cross who are providing first aid, clothes, food, medications, and clean water in the region.

We’ve also made the decision to return all fees collected in the past few weeks to our Ukrainian freelancers as a way to offer additional financial support. We will continue to look for ways to support our Ukrainian community, as well as all victims of the war.

Of course, nobody can say when the war will end, but please know that Fiverr continues to work with urgency and compassion to find ways to help our community. As we do, we welcome your ideas and participation.

Micha

 

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3 hours ago, mjensen415 said:

We know that this is an incredibly tense situation, driving lots of emotions for many of our community members. It is terrible to see people being dragged into unnecessary violence and we hear your concerns. Some of your questions have been answered by the community, and I will try to address them here. 

1. The location to each account on Fiverr is set by the system and is based on your current geographical location. The location updates periodically.
If you are located in a different place, please contact support and they will work with our Trust & Safety team to review your account accordingly. 

2. We’re offering our Russian sellers access to the Early Payout feature and waiving the standard safety clearance period.
At this time, it seems that Payoneer is still offering services to Russia via the “Local Bank Transfer” option.

3. "You will be able to complete any open orders, but you will not be able to gain new orders or communicate outside of the order page." Funds will be available as usual (Payoneer is still working as of today). 

We hope that there will be a peaceful end to the war in Ukraine soon at which point we will look towards reinstating our business in Russia.

You act like this makes it better even though what you are doing is dumb and xenophobic. How does help end the war? It only makes it worse because it raises tensions when you starting hurting every day people who had nothing to do with the war. Fiverr continues to amaze me with their poor management.

 

This also effects non-russian users. I have a very good regular client who is russian and was about to make a big purchase. Now she cannot use the platform causing me to lose lot of income. How this is fair to me as an American? 

Edited by kholland65
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14 hours ago, lenasemenkova said:

If you directly participate in the economy that pays for the war crimes, you get sanctioned, I'd imagine. If you don't or it can't be proven (by living and paying taxes elsewhere), you absolutely shouldn't be.

PS every Russian acquaintance I have has suddenly become "25% ethnically Ukrainian". I don't know what to make of it.

So by paying taxes it means you support every your government does and should be held accountable? what a dumb statement. 

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9 hours ago, nikatranslator said:

So sad to hear about this! Sorry for Russians.. Maybe people who lost their jobs at McDonalds, Cola, Nike etc and profiles on Upw.. and here and on other marketplaces can stand together against Putin's regime.. That is the idea of all these shutdowns and closures.. I am a Russian-English translator but from Azerbaijan.. I think the isolation of Russia will lead to the situation when there is no need or very little demand for English-Russian translators.. Hope this will not last for years as it was during 20th century..

Yeah that's a pipe dream. People there already don't like putin, but he's corrupt and ruthless. If it were easy to overthrow him, they would have already done it. This will do nothing but harm every day people. 

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41 minutes ago, kholland65 said:

So by paying taxes it means you support every your government does and should be held accountable? what a dumb statement. 

We're way past the point of "oh I don't support this, it's fine. #lovepeaceunderstanding" I'm sorry that we are but somehow it got to this.
 

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3 minutes ago, lenasemenkova said:

We're way past the point of "oh I don't support this, it's fine. #lovepeaceunderstanding" I'm sorry that we are but somehow it got to this.
 

Ok then Americans, Chinese, French, Saudi's, Iraqi's, Japanse, germans, north koreans, africans, or anyone who comes from a country who has started a war, dropped a bomb, or committed human rights violations should be shunned from global society because that's totally in the spirit of #lovepeaceunderstanding to accuse them all of being evil people just because their governments did something questionable. It's funny how all the people who claim to be the most loving and understanding are the first ones to call for the discrimination of anyone they don't like.

 

There is no excuse for this. It's no different than deciding to ban all Saudi Arabians after 9/11 or putting Japanese people in internment camps just because of the country they came from. I'm not seeing how the discrimination of russians is any different than those situations. 

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21 minutes ago, kholland65 said:

Ok then Americans, Chinese, French, Saudi's, Iraqi's, Japanse, germans, north koreans, africans, or anyone who comes from a country who has started a war, dropped a bomb, or committed human rights violations should be shunned from global society because that's totally in the spirit of #lovepeaceunderstanding to accuse them all of being evil people just because their governments did something questionable. It's funny how all the people who claim to be the most loving and understanding are the first ones to call for the discrimination of anyone they don't like.

 

There is no excuse for this. It's no different than deciding to ban all Saudi Arabians after 9/11 or putting Japanese people in internment camps just because of the country they came from. I'm not seeing how the discrimination of russians is any different than those situations. 

Oh, the whataboutism.

Like I said, I'm sorry that it came to this. I am horrified. But if economical pressure stops something moral or political pressure cannot, why not. We're quite possibly days away from Russia announcing full mobilization. It'll be a very different world if it happens. Freelance platforms would be the least of everyone's worries. 

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So while politicians wage war, Fiverr restricts the earning potential of powerless citizens to provide for their families? Punishing a graphic artist in Moscow means nothing to Putin and is merely virtue signaling. Starving the citizens of warring countries is immoral on either side. Families need to eat. That's what Fiverr should be concerned about. 

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21 hours ago, xeni_ya said:

Hello, what should do ethnic ukrainians who live and are registered in Russia? What should russians do who not live in Russia but registered for Fiverr from Russia several years ago?

I think Fiverr will suspend those account if the buyer or seller has the citizenship of Russia, not other people.

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It's just amazing.
It looks like in vain I hoped that at least Fiverr during all this madness with the cancellation of the Russians will remain an island of common sense.

I consistently gave 20% of my income to Fiverr, followed all the rules and provided the best quality services possible. And what do I get in return - I am deprived of my only livelihood in a country that is on the verge of default.

You have no idea what average citizens who were unlucky enough to be born in Russia are going through right now. I came to Fiverr precisely to avoid working for the local regime and starving to death in the process. I might be able to leave the country, but if not, I will have no choice.

Edited by wrenaker
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