LIRNEasia is a regional ICT policy and regulation think tank active across the Asia Pacific

Online work platforms are biased towards the buyer, complain online freelancers

765880_4dfb_3“This system is biased towards the buyer. If I didn’t deliver a good product, the buyer can cancel. If the buyer cancels, I should approve the cancellation. If we provide a good product and if he cancels it, we can contact Fiverr directly. If you are a level I seller (entry level), they don’t get back to you quickly. But if you are a level II seller (intermediate level), Fiverr will get back to you soon. And if your standards are good, they will insist the buyer to give you your money.” This is what Malith, a 25-year old level II seller told us at a focus group discussion among online freelancers.

This is not the case with all freelancers. The freelancers who are just starting to work in these platforms say that they return money to buyers when the buyers rate them low in online work platforms. “One customer didn’t like the work I did and he gave me a low rating. This affected my overall rating. So I refunded his money. We should bear these types of losses for some time until we reach up to a certain level in platforms” said Nuwan, an 18-year-old freelancer. “We should re do the work over and over again, until the customer is satisfied.” He further added.

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