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“The Fiverr Review Scam”

“The Fiverr Review Scam”

As in all business or non-business, there are scam businesses. I was a seller on the platform until 2016. I made most of my money creating and selling music.

Since I was working freelance on Fiverr for a fiver per gig, you probably understand I was desperate to survive. However I changed my my music products to online advertising instead. I had realized a long time ago, that the main cause for me being poor, was not the lack of quality in my work, but competition where sellers of anykind are shot with a silencer across internet. There were no way to crack the surface, unless your name was “Fiverr” or Amazon or Ebay with hotshot money feeders in the back (investment angels).

Well I didn´t have those in any case, I had to fall in line, pay hard earned money to the Fiverr Network owners (even a percentage of five bucks, are hurting when you are poor) and become a crazy begger for just one chance of selling a gig.

I remember a movie with Liza Minnelli, where she began to strip all her clothes, when her dancing and singing talent was rejected. As a struggling artist or worker, that is what we do in the end, some even climb the highest buidnings without a safety harnest and fall to their death, in the despair on Youtube for attention that brings food on the table.

As a buyer in Fiverr, you are pretty well guarded for, not totally, because in the online reviews I have read, too many people has bought gigs where the seller suddenly stopped to exist and the money paid was swallowed by the Fiverr company. No explanation, and then deletion of the buyers account too.

I have read pages with reviews where excluded sellers have tried to contact buyers in vain, to justify themselves and finish the work they promised for free. The money thing is less important to us, if we get bad reviews on internet.

Here is the deal with that! Scammed buyers are less likely to believe, that any seller has the good intention of doing this, so they just cry out loud and see their money fly away. In Better Business Burea reviews, one buyer lost fifteen hundred dollars to Fiverr. This is the extreme, and of course I tend to think “how he knew the seller didn´t get paid”?

We are probably wired the same way, all of us, -I had a bad turn, but you probably caused your bad turn on yourself!

Since the amount of bad reviews about Fiverr is by far the largest in the world, about a company, there are really no reason for me to doubt the bought and lost $1500 gig, and that amount of money would pay my rent 3 times over! That is an insain amount of money to lose.

Again, we do not know what is happening behind the Fiverr curtain, perhaps the seller was Fiverr-support and deleted his or her own seller profile and kept the money, we do not know, we do not know… Because Fiverr is not a transparent company in anyway!

As a seller however, my problems tended to grow with good reviews and higher quality jobs. Lurking around the Fiverr premise, there were all kinds of competition strategies. To almost every sellers account, there were a fraud buyers account. Working as “keep your selfishness high and your empathy low”, they bought competitioners gigs and downrated them, or stuck the sellers in an endless loop of reworking the finished material.

These buying/sellers started out with a bad attitude (which real buyers normally do not have) and then kept on complaining for days and days, and even if they got refunded, they quickly gave a bad review.

The more good reviews (as excellent seller) I got, the more bad customers tended to seek me up. Financing my daily life with this job, was not an option. A year in to the Fiverr platform, I was removed from the listings.

Year 2 and 3, the only ones that kept buying my gigs, was old customers. I had become a cheap blessing to them. No matter how much work I put in to the platform, I couldn´t break through the listings and was kept outside in the cold.

At this point, I had become Liza Minnelli, stripping in front of judges to get a shot on the money. I created logo-gigs, content-gigs, voice over-gigs and anything that I could possibly imagine would sell. But, where I stood in hierarchy to the listings, the wind blew polar bears my way!

This desperacy building is in no any way, unique to Fiverr, that is how all platforms of this kind works, even YouTube. To get a chance earn money, we need to get undressed, and sing “Hallelujah” on top of Mount Everest. That is what makes the platform owners rich and keeps us beaten down to the ground.

Of course, not every seller are unhappy on Fiverr. There are plenty of success stories out there too. Foremost the ones we are supposed to read about. But there are more people in there, just building up the platform for the few lucky ones, and not to forget, the Fiverr Company!

One of the biggest problems of online reviews, are that we rely on fake ones. To mention one review instance, let take Trustpilot. Listing after listing praise Fiverr, and on a closer look, many of the “super fantastic, ultra dramatic” five star reviews, are reviews from buyers on Fiverr, -no surprise huh?

Even though, Amazon has sued Fiverr at least 2 times for fake reviews, they keep these review sellers active. It is not that hard to understand really. If Fiverr bought Trustpilot reviews, they can not block them right, or put them out of business? Imagine if the reviewers suddenly came clean? It would only take 1 to break the Fiverr spell!

As I was changing my gigs, I realized that my problem was that no matter what I did, I did not end up in the platform search results. It wasn´t possible to make it through on Fiverr, on Google, YouTube or any other app.

So I launched an PR and pressrelease service with thousands of email addresses on CSV to reporters, journalists, tv stations and radio stations, and here it was, when my account was closed and my remaining funds involuntary gifted to Fiverr.

You might think (we all do that), that it was because of the competition to Fiverr per se, or that my gigs was not real or that my gigs was of bad quality? No, first thing is, this type of job (marketing) is very common on Fiverr, but the visable offers are of low quality. For me as a professional, I knew that the buyers could get a contract worth $400 with me, so I went for it!

I offered thousands of email addresses, Google Indexing, Press Release submission to Cision and services all over the world, fee – $15! To me it was not a big deal, since I have orchestrated thousands of websites in networks since 2004, and new about everyone that was anyone in the Press Release market. I wanted to earn money and I wanted to help everyone struggling (as me) to get heard!

That´s when it hit, suddenly I was locked out from my account with no explanation, the defunded me (stole the money I had transferred to Fiverr, to buy gigs myself) and sent rude remarks on my every effort to understand what was going on.

But who cares right? The ones on Fiverr are mostely poor struggling second hand artists or wannabe´s with no future, being stupid enough believing this could be their big break.

You don´t care perhaps, but I do! If it wasn´t because of random acts of kindness, I wouldn´t even exist today. We are not born poor, we are forced in to poverty by intentional exclusion from society, just like in the listings on Fiverr.

However, don´t take my word for it. Check out Fiverr on Trustpilot

While Trustpilot overflow with positive reviews – from buyers (which indeed qualify the seller), the sellers are not as happy and Trustpilot seem to be fake, if we compare to:

“If necessary, Fiverr may conduct a manual review of your service, typically when we get complaints about the experience working with you. If we find that the actual experience users are having with you is not appropriately reflected on your metrics, we may take action to help you improve on those areas. This is why your gigs have been pushed back in search.”

Screenshot 2020 09 18 Fiverr is rated Great with 4 1 5 on Trustpilot

So while we all is wondering why high quality gigs are placed in permafrost outside search results in Fiverr (and still is as you see above in the review from September 11, 7 days ago), and begin to scratch our heads when understanding that “all positive feedback” about Fiverr, are from invitations only, and only on Trustpilot!

People on Site Jabber is not as friendly! One can almost suspect Trustpilot being not so trustworthy. Let´s see what they think about it:

So Trustpilot actually found fake reviews, from one night to another (hurray), but this was in April, 2016? -just few months after the Amazon sue, where 1100 Fiverr profiles were deleted.

The connections indicated that a large group of freelancers could have been working together to acquire ‘Gigs®’ (as they’re called on Fiverr). It’s also likely that the same person or group was behind multiple profiles. This kind of activity is a clear violation of Fiverr’s Terms of Service and Trustpilot contacted Fiverr with detailed information outlining the discovery“.

So, actually… Amazon sued 1100 workers on Fiverr, just a few months earlier. Do you feel yuo are on the same golf course as me now? Are we kind of an inch from an eagle?

We do not know if Trustpilot knew about the illegal conduct and accepted it, we do not know what could be gained from such behaviour. This is what they did to solve the matter:

After receiving Trustpilot’s request, Fiverr responded quickly. It removed the original 66 profiles, and identified an additional 17 profiles that were deleted on the basis of Trustpilot’s findings. All in all, 83 Fiverr profiles were investigated.”

-No, really? You blocked the whole 17 profiles? I can agree, I didn´t know there even was as many as 1100 contactors on Fiverr. Suddenly Amazon booted the lot of them and I never even saw a difference! I mean, ok 17, right?

So, after this fake review hunt (reviews I bought myself for Goodreads in 2015), we should think it would have made a difference. But actually no, it never did.

Screenshot 2020 09 18 seafarrisser I will write a positive review Trustpilot for 5 on fiverr com 1

Since this in itself is not a review, I will not recommend you to do anything. If you are working there and keep getting those gigs, congratulation, do not stop. But, I think it is fair to all of us struggling unemployed artists and contractors to say: heads up, the market is rigged!

I have yet not seen any proof of otherwise “good sportsman’s behavior” on internet, I have only witnessed lying, deception, frauds, mixturing with statistics, mixturing with searchengine results and bad spirit.

Christine Djerf /Vermland, Sweden

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