Online outsourcing | Service marketplace | Find a freelancer

So, is Odesk a scam?

When looking for "oDesk scam" in Google, many people seem to complain about oDesk because they got some job poorly done or feel that they wasted their time.

oDesk is only a tool to find service providers. Most of the problems you will get on oDesk come from the service providers themselves, not from the tool.

Victim of its own rules

It is true however that it is in the tool's responsibility to influence how a community grows and encourage better quality. Like in any tool, each feature has an impact on how the community will behave.

StackOverflow as an example of good design is the perfect example of how smart rules and features helped build a smart community.

They introduced the concept of badges and score to award their users and grant them more access gradually.

They also enabled the website to self-moderate itself by having clear rules, empowering their trusted users.

They have found the right balance between restrictions and freedom.

Bad early design can impact what your community becomes

Before working on TaskArmy, I used to develop games on Facebook.

I found early that the words I was using in every pages on my games influenced who would use my games and how they would interact with it.

In one of my games for example, by using a fun tone the community grew younger.

But the features I would include would also influence the community.

By including a live chat on the front page (something that no one had done before in Facebook) the community started to grow stronger bonds between the players. People were making true friends inside my games.

But features or rules can destroy a community too.

The way I designed the game made it possible for people to cheat. They would create ghost accounts in Facebook to get more points or create automated bots.

Gradually, the players started complaining about the cheaters or became cheaters themselves and soon enough everyone was accusing each other of cheating.

Although I was aware of the issue and the trend, I had no easy way to fix the problem because the issue was so deep in the fundamental rules of the game.

I believe Odesk faces issues of the same nature. They would have to dramatically change the way the platform works to be able to increase the quality of your experience on the website. They are victim of their own rules.

On oDesk, the freelancers bid against each other in a war to the bottom. This drives the perceived costs down for the buyers but it also dramatically drives the quality of the work down as well because the freelancers don't have the time to pay attention to the details, the budget not allowing it.

Anyone can join oDesk as a service provider and this low barrier of entry leads to many low quality applicants. A recent discussion on Hacker News attests that this topic is really becoming problematic right now.

How TaskArmy solves this

This is why at TaskArmy, all the service providers are pre-filtered before they can appear on the website. This alone removes a lot of risks and noise for the buyers. We do the hard work of picking the good ones from the bad ones.

Also, it is the freelancer who defines the price of his services. Like in the supermarket, you simply choose the service you want and see what price it has. We never encourage freelancers to lower their prices and emphasize the value of a service over the price of a service.

To conclude, Odesk is not a scam but I believe it opens their platform to abuse.

TaskArmy intends to minimize your risks when you outsource. Give us a try!

Written over 4 years ago
So, is Odesk a scam?
I am the founder of Do not hesitate to contact me if you have any suggestions or questions regarding You can check out the "About us" page on this website to know more about me and about the reason why Click here to learn more about Aymeric G. and his/her services.


  • Angela R.
    over 4 years ago

    Very true. Been with oDesk for a year now and it is quite an investment of time to search and search and search for fair paying jobs and at the same time write lots and lots of unique cover letters hoping employers will read them through the spammed ones. I hope TaskArmy soars!

  • Aymeric G.
    over 4 years ago

    Thanks Angela! I checked out your profile and you seem to have great feedback from clients.

    No doubt you will get sales on taskarmy. All the best!

  • Kamaljeet K.
    about 2 years ago

    Hello There To all the freelancers I want to request you please be away from Odesk. They will never you support you no matter what you do. Recently one of my client filed a wrong dispute against and I lost it some how. My account was suspended. I was told my account is temporarily suspended and it will be resumed once I finish my contracts. Once I did that my account was permanently suspended. I had 2500+ hours and still full 5 star rating. They told me I logged 100 hours, that counts avg 13 hours and they believe a person cant work 13 hours a day. Just on the basis of excessive hours my account was suspended. I was totally ripped of by odesk. After this my 3-4 clients were very angry they together wrote to odesk to resume my account and to my surprise odesk told them my account is not suspended and it can be resumed whereas I was told it is permanently suspended. After this I contact Odesk support to confront them and there executives misbehaved with me and even abused me. Please read this whole chat transcript to know how ODESK SUPPORT BEHAVES.

    1:43 PM Jacquleyn Hello, Kamaljeet Kaur. Can I help you with anything today?
    1:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Hello. I have this ticket right here -
    1:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I dont think this agent is taking fair decisions I want to request some one else to handle this ticket or please make a new ticket for me
    4:45 PM Jacquleyn I apologize for the inconvenience that this has caused you.
    4:45 PM Jacquleyn Kindly give me moment to check that for you so I could better assist you on this.
    1:46 PM Kamaljeet Kaur No problem.
    4:48 PM Jacquleyn Thank you for patiently waiting Kamaljeet.
    4:48 PM Jacquleyn Upon checking carefullly on the ticket, this has been handled by our Dispute team.
    4:49 PM Jacquleyn And they made the final decisions to every Dispute escalated to them.
    1:50 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Okay but I think there must be a way where I can just say something if I feel it's unfair.
    1:50 PM Kamaljeet Kaur They told me my account is suspended
    1:50 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Then my 2-3 clients messaged them
    1:51 PM Kamaljeet Kaur because they do not want me to leave odesk
    1:51 PM Kamaljeet Kaur they were told my account can be resumes
    1:51 PM Kamaljeet Kaur but here I am being told my account can not be resumed
    4:52 PM Jacquleyn I understand that you are frustrated with their decision.
    1:52 PM Kamaljeet Kaur If it goes like this I wont have any option to work outside of odesk with my clients. I know this is against rules but point is I need a fair decision
    1:53 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I was told at starting of this dispute that nmy account is "temporarily" suspended
    1:53 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and it will be resumed after my active contracts are completed
    4:53 PM Jacquleyn Yes, that was during investigation.
    1:54 PM Kamaljeet Kaur See I just want that some one else to handle this ticket. That's all. I know I cant go against dispute resolution team's decision or what ever it is but I just want person handling to be changed
    1:54 PM Kamaljeet Kaur my client who filed dispute against me told me that he knew some people in odesk. I have even sent screen shots of that
    1:55 PM Kamaljeet Kaur At least I have right to keep my side in front of another representative.
    1:56 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Please just make a new ticket for me or change the person there
    4:57 PM Jacquleyn I can see that you are requested to respond to the ticket once all your contract are done.
    4:57 PM Jacquleyn You may respond and state your side to that ticket.
    1:58 PM Kamaljeet Kaur but I think that person handling that is pissed from me on personal level
    4:58 PM Jacquleyn No I don't think so.
    2:00 PM Kamaljeet Kaur See all I am asking is do I have a right for a fair investigation? If I do not feel that is being done do I have a right to request some one else to handle to communicate with me?
    5:01 PM Jacquleyn Yes, I have seen that the Dispute team has done with the investigation.
    2:01 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I am not asking to change dispute resolution team I am asking I need some else "representative" to handle it.
    2:02 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Please just respond me on this "If I do not feel that is being done do I have a right to request some one else to handle to communicate with me?" After this I am going to take this out. I just want to know do I have that right according to the policies or not?
    5:03 PM Jacquleyn Yes, you have all the right and it was given to you during the investigation.
    5:04 PM Jacquleyn Our team has also done their part of the investigation.
    2:04 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Do I have right to ask some other representative to talk to me?
    5:05 PM Jacquleyn Yes, but they will still refer you to the decision made by the dispute team.
    2:05 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Thats what I am saying I have that right
    2:06 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I need some else to handle it. I am pretty sure I will be able to proove my point
    5:07 PM Jacquleyn Even if you will talk to all of us here, same thing will happen. All of us will refer to that ticket and will only reiterate the dispute team's decision.
    5:07 PM Jacquleyn Your account has been flagged by our system.
    2:07 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Okay you said that
    2:08 PM Kamaljeet Kaur now tell me for what reason my clients are being told my account isn't flagged
    2:08 PM Kamaljeet Kaur are you trying to hold them with odesk?
    2:08 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I got 3 client backing me off
    2:09 PM Kamaljeet Kaur so I dont care even if you kick me out of here
    2:09 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Now next time any client messages you please do not even dare to tell them that
    2:09 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I dont have any thing against you personally
    2:09 PM Kamaljeet Kaur but this is harming my relations ship with my clients
    5:10 PM Jacquleyn Yes, we don't discuss account information due to privacy concern.
    5:10 PM Jacquleyn Your client does not know anything about your status.
    2:11 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Do you want me to send you a transcript?
    5:11 PM Jacquleyn Dispute Team is instructing you to finish all projects so your funds will be forwarded to any preferred method.
    2:11 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Will you suspend your own representtive for telling him that my account can be resumed? And I am being reviewd?
    2:12 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Is not that against privacy?
    2:12 PM Kamaljeet Kaur As you yourself said info cant be shared how can you even tell my cient that?
    5:12 PM Jacquleyn Can you take a snap shot of it please?
    2:12 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Why did not you say we cant share any info
    2:12 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Yes I do have screenshot
    2:13 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I think you will be knowledgable enough to check my client's tickets too?
    2:13 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I have only one contract active right now
    2:13 PM Kamaljeet Kaur he sent you request yesterday
    2:13 PM Kamaljeet Kaur after this decision to "flag my account" was taken
    2:14 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Dear Lewis Parrott,

    Thank you for contacting oDesk Support Team.

    I assure you I understand your concerns regarding this freelancers suspension and I will be happy to address any questions you might have.

    I would like to kindly inform you that the user was notified about what he needs to do in order to have his account resumed. His account is now under review and appropriate department will decide about the actions to be taken by considering every information he provided.

    Also, please be informed that your request will be forwarded to them for consideration.

    Should you have additional questions or concerns please do not hesitate to reply to this ticket, we are always happy to help.

    Best regards,

    Mariana Vanca
    2:14 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Copy of email
    2:15 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Why wan't he told my privacy info cant be shared?
    2:15 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Answer this please?
    2:16 PM Kamaljeet Kaur And I know I got it now. I am not going to stop here. Either person who replied that was wrong
    2:16 PM Kamaljeet Kaur or you are wrong
    5:18 PM Jacquleyn Account suspension is not that private. Everyone deserve to know that specially if they are in contract with you. The private part there is the reason why you are suspended.
    5:19 PM Jacquleyn Some reason for suspension is because their account is being hacked or there are lots of reason but no one will know the real reason except the direct person who is having the suspension.
    2:19 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I am totally frustated right now. I first asked please do not share wrong info if my account is suspended tell my account about it then you say it is private I show you proof now you say it is not that private
    2:19 PM Kamaljeet Kaur What is "that private"
    2:20 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I am first time hearing this
    2:20 PM Kamaljeet Kaur It is private or not private
    2:20 PM Kamaljeet Kaur now my client did not for any reason
    2:20 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I am not talking about reason
    2:20 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I am saying you told him my account is not suspended
    2:20 PM Kamaljeet Kaur but it is suspended
    2:21 PM Kamaljeet Kaur where did you read me writing about reason behind suspension
    5:21 PM Jacquleyn Maybe that time of conversation is still during the investigation.
    2:21 PM Kamaljeet Kaur did I say tell him reason?
    2:21 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Do you think I am crazy?
    2:21 PM Kamaljeet Kaur What do you mean by "May be"
    5:21 PM Jacquleyn I understand where you came from.
    2:22 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Can't you check time decision was taken and this was answered
    5:22 PM Jacquleyn You are frustrated because you feel you are not given enough justice in your suspension.
    2:22 PM Kamaljeet Kaur "I understand where you came from"
    2:22 PM Kamaljeet Kaur This is abusive
    2:23 PM Kamaljeet Kaur My primary concern was that my client are not being given right info
    5:23 PM Jacquleyn What I mean for that is you are coming from a bad day, or bad feeling.
    2:23 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Either you are wrong or that person is wron
    2:23 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I can understand what it meant
    2:24 PM Kamaljeet Kaur See now you said may it was answered before
    2:24 PM Kamaljeet Kaur if you know how to do it please check at what time this was answered
    2:24 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and at what time decision was taken
    2:24 PM Kamaljeet Kaur if you cant you got not choice exepct to believe what I am saying
    5:25 PM Jacquleyn I was not able to check the conversation with your client and the agent since you are only giving me the transcript.
    2:25 PM Kamaljeet Kaur This decision was taken 30-40 hours ago
    2:25 PM Kamaljeet Kaur my client got reply 10 hours agon
    2:25 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Okay then check it now
    2:25 PM Kamaljeet Kaur whats the problem
    2:25 PM Kamaljeet Kaur check it
    2:25 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I can wait
    2:26 PM Kamaljeet Kaur See I was going to end this knowing that you guys are wrong
    2:26 PM Kamaljeet Kaur you your self pushed it by saying whole privacy thing
    2:26 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Can you please make sure that my clients are given right info from next time?
    2:26 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Either put a flag mark on my profile please
    2:27 PM Kamaljeet Kaur At least give them a way.
    5:27 PM Jacquleyn Let me clarify you about the info that was given to your client.
    2:27 PM Kamaljeet Kaur They are telling me that I am lying them about account suspension
    2:27 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and you are relating this to my frustation on dispute
    5:27 PM Jacquleyn May I ask what have you said to your client regarding your suspension?
    2:28 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Am I supposed to tell that?
    5:28 PM Jacquleyn No, I was saying that did you ever mentioned about your suspension?
    2:29 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I told him I cant work on odesk now
    5:29 PM Jacquleyn And for what reason?
    5:30 PM Jacquleyn Were you instructed to finish all your contract, right?
    5:30 PM Jacquleyn So if you mentioned that you cannot work anymore, thus giving your client a question mark on their head of WHY?
    5:31 PM Jacquleyn So they ask oDesk why.
    2:31 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Hold on.
    2:32 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Listen now. First of all you are trying to divert this. It's clear. Now listen. I told him my account is suspended. I had a dispute and I lost it. During dispute as I was instructed I ended my contracts but because your representative did not tell me that I cant make new conteact
    2:32 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I made a new contract with my client
    2:33 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Now if my account is permanently suspended
    2:33 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I have right to leave working on odesk any time
    2:34 PM Kamaljeet Kaur So I have that right to tell my I am not working on odesk
    2:34 PM Kamaljeet Kaur cuz it is blocking my funds unless my contracts are finished
    2:34 PM Kamaljeet Kaur that is my right
    2:34 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I did not give him a question on his head
    2:34 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I explained him
    2:34 PM Kamaljeet Kaur he told me that he thinks I should not leave odesk
    2:35 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and the wrote to you
    5:35 PM Jacquleyn Did you tell your client that you are t finish all your contract?
    2:35 PM Kamaljeet Kaur he did not ask reason
    2:35 PM Kamaljeet Kaur all he asked you was please do not block this guy's account
    2:36 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and your people tell him his account can be resumed
    2:36 PM Kamaljeet Kaur does it make any sense?
    5:36 PM Jacquleyn We did not tell your client that your account will be resumed.
    2:36 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Now you are asking me irrelevant questions that has nothing to do with this
    2:36 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Did I say will be resumed
    2:36 PM Kamaljeet Kaur ?
    2:37 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I wrote "can be resumed"
    2:37 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Read it please
    5:37 PM Jacquleyn I mean can be resumed..
    5:37 PM Jacquleyn Sorry about that.
    5:37 PM Jacquleyn There is a relation to that statement.
    2:37 PM Kamaljeet Kaur They said he is told what he need to do to get his account resumed
    2:37 PM Kamaljeet Kaur can you understand what that means?
    5:38 PM Jacquleyn Yes, I do.
    2:38 PM Kamaljeet Kaur See Mam.
    5:38 PM Jacquleyn May I ask if you did all the things that was told you to do?
    2:38 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I have a lot of respect toward every one.
    2:39 PM Kamaljeet Kaur You are again diverting whole thing
    2:39 PM Kamaljeet Kaur now you guys are wrong
    2:39 PM Kamaljeet Kaur are after being proven
    2:39 PM Kamaljeet Kaur you are trying make irrelevant arguments
    2:39 PM Kamaljeet Kaur that dont even have anything to do my concerns
    2:40 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and I am not even supposed to tell you that
    2:40 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Its me who got troubles
    2:40 PM Kamaljeet Kaur "May I ask if you did all the things that was told you to do?"
    2:40 PM Kamaljeet Kaur What is relation ship of this question with my concern
    2:41 PM Kamaljeet Kaur How can it help me resolve the main concerns about wrong things being said to my client
    2:41 PM Kamaljeet Kaur ?
    5:41 PM Jacquleyn First things first, you said to your client that you cannot work anymore.
    2:41 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Did your representative's response depend on this?
    5:42 PM Jacquleyn When oDesk told you to finish all your contract so you can get your funds.
    5:42 PM Jacquleyn Even if we have suspended you, we never stopped you from working to finish all your contract.
    2:42 PM Kamaljeet Kaur yes it said but if you ever read your own policies
    2:42 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I have right to walk off from odesk anytime
    2:43 PM Kamaljeet Kaur even at intial stage of odesk
    2:43 PM Kamaljeet Kaur anytimer
    2:43 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I have that right
    2:43 PM Kamaljeet Kaur to stop working anytime
    2:43 PM Kamaljeet Kaur so I stopped
    2:43 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I told him I wont work on odesk
    2:43 PM Kamaljeet Kaur because my account is suspended
    2:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I cant work on odesk means
    2:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I cannot work on odesk because I dont want to
    2:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur do you understand that
    2:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Can you understand that?
    2:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur /
    2:44 PM Kamaljeet Kaur efwiefe
    2:45 PM Kamaljeet Kaur They told me to finish my contract and thats what I am doing
    2:45 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and your representative are not letting me do that
    2:45 PM Kamaljeet Kaur by telling my client that my account is not suspended
    2:46 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I will take this transcript for sure
    2:46 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I think what odesk does needs to shown
    2:46 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Now can you answer please?
    5:47 PM Jacquleyn I understand you have the right to end the contract anytime, not stop working, we mean end contract.
    5:48 PM Jacquleyn I understand that you don't want to work on oDesk because you don't want to.
    2:48 PM Kamaljeet Kaur see please. You guys lost on this and I am not here to play some game with you
    2:48 PM Kamaljeet Kaur but my main concern is please at least give right info to my client
    2:48 PM Kamaljeet Kaur please
    2:49 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Can I beg Odesk to do that?
    5:49 PM Jacquleyn Yes, we will.
    5:50 PM Jacquleyn Is there anything else I can help you with?
    2:50 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Now can I know what you guys will tell me client? You cannot tell them because of privacy reasons? Or that my account is suspended
    5:51 PM Jacquleyn We will tell your clients that you will be finishing the contract.
    2:52 PM Kamaljeet Kaur And if this does not happen I will need to see you again Jacquleyn
    5:52 PM Jacquleyn Sure, I will take not on this.
    2:52 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Again I am disturbed with this environment
    2:52 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Not with you personaly
    5:52 PM Jacquleyn I will have it flag in your account so everyone will know what to do.
    5:53 PM Jacquleyn Everyone in oDesk, this flag will only be seen internally.
    2:53 PM Kamaljeet Kaur you mean any one visiting my profile?
    5:54 PM Jacquleyn No, I mean internally. Which means only oDesk agents can see my flag.
    2:54 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Oh Okay
    2:54 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Thats fine
    2:55 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Okay So I am going to quit this now. Though I know you wont take any action against your representative even knowing that they are wrong which makes you too against rules.
    2:55 PM Kamaljeet Kaur THank you
    2:55 PM Kamaljeet Kaur I will take script
    2:55 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and put it in other ticket
    2:55 PM Kamaljeet Kaur and other places I own that right
    2:56 PM Kamaljeet Kaur as world needs to know what odesk is
    2:56 PM Kamaljeet Kaur Thank you
    5:56 PM Jacquleyn You're welcome.

  • uniqueamerica
    about 4 years ago

    I do not trust anything on oDesk. They will not support you in case of a money dispute.I just spent over $1000 and I have a bag of trash. Their dispute resolution is worthless and I can understand why. It will cut into their bottom line. When their contractors obtain 10 cents more elsewhere they disappear and will leave you exposed to money gone and the need to start all over again. They train their contractors how to fill the time sheet so if an innocent employer disputes the charge their contractor will “win” the dispute. For your own sake, stay away from them.

  • kelsiegriggs
    about 4 years ago

    I am a writer. I have 2 disabled children that require me to stay at home. Therefore I am only able to work from home. I have obtained all of my jobs from odesk. It is frustrating being a single mom trying to provide when you are lucky to make a dollar an hour. I feel this is due to the platform and not having a set price for things. I work hard to provide my employers with quality ORIGINAL work just to see ad after ad for spinners. This has been the biggest downfall. I feel odesk should have stepped in and we as service providers should organize to improve wages instead of defiling them. It is a mess and I dream for a day when someone is willing to hire quality for a livable price. I will check out your site however I don't have qualifications to look good on paper so due to your strict entry rules most likely I will not be accepted but I dream big so of course I will give it my best shot. :-) it would be worth any effort to be able to give my children what they need. Thank you for this article. I did not realize employers were not happy with the site. Obviously no future in odesk.

  • digital57
    almost 4 years ago

    A new user here. I have ongoing requirement for some writing corrections/proof reading. How do I go about this?

  • seonomics
    almost 4 years ago

    Mods..what's up with allowing the spam comment to stay? Get rid of it.

  • Anne P.
    over 3 years ago

    I realised taskarmy works almost the same as; they have human filters who makes sure the job postings are legitimate before they look for someone to fill in the position. Way much better than odesk's platform.

  • Guill
    over 3 years ago

    Odesk is an extortionist, as when I came into a problem with my account, they threaten me that my money will be held if I will not give them $100 per contract becoz my clients has much hours and this is very much highly unacceptable; I don't care if they will hold my money as long as I will not fool my client becoz they want me to fool my client by using the entire hours so it will be credited to me and to as odesk fee so I decided not to do it then they closed my account.

    This office in odesk based in Redewood city, California must be jailed especially the officers and directors for the fraud they are doing online globally and especially intimidating me and I beleive they also do it to other contractors just becoz of $$$$

    Gray Suart Chief and CEO of chooses to create a Marketplace team so safeguard odesk community but the reality is the Marketplace WAS FORMA AND CREATE PARTLY TO DISCIPLINE & PARTLY to steal money's people worldwide and this modus operandi will make the contractor feel that she/he is indeed earning but later on, the gal of marketplace is to steal contractors' money online and on the other hand, it will also make clients feels that contractors will work hard but the inside truth is Marketplace is trained to teach contractors be good at first instance and once the clients' heart has won by the contractor, odesk will instruct the contractor to use the hours thus stealing clients time/hours that will be billed on him/her then a partitioned between and contractors will transpired. This has not made know to new contractors but to veterans like myself so I decided to quit odesk because I don't like to be like them stealing money from people and clients particularly. This expose is a wake up call that you should get away from as Mr. Gary Stuart has series of warrant of arrest in the USA for this online fraud. Beware! or you will be an accessories of this crime:)

    I want Everyone to beware about the "Illegal & modus operandi" of globally. Many of my friends are clients and many are contractors and I myself are those like them but this company based in Redwood City, California USA has been abusing the world with their scam and many across the globe were victimized. I don't know why our Law enforcement are not doing any steps to nail this company as these are stealers of money and putting behind contractors to victimized clients who wish to outsourced their jobs and also hiring supposed or fake clients to fool their contractors. Mr. Stuart is the CEO of this and is responsible to all this atrocities he is escalating around the globe. Their Very big crime is Economic Plunder and estafa and I am calling all people from the ends of the earth to "Beware against and don't be a victim.

  • gtcressy
    over 3 years ago

    BEWARE Of Using ODesk


    I want to warn you from using ODesk. This is what has happened to me by ODesk. And, it seems to be an ongoing thing in our industry.

    In my case I posted a job on ODesk and hired a website designer in India. One thing about thos job posting that I felt was strange was that I got a lot of replys but, none from the Philippines or the United States or even South America. No, they were all from India, Pakistan, or other countries within that area. Anyhow, this man did a really bad job and I never did get a finished product from him. But, while he was doing no work he kept charging me for hours that I knew he was not working on the job. I called ODesk and they refused to assist me in any way.

    I finally got one of the bosses in this man's company in India and he agreed to what I was saying and we split the cost. But, ODesk refuses to accept this agreement by the company. They say that I still owe this money and they have suspended me.

    I have on many occassions asked where they are located and they refuse to answer me (I suspect they are in India.) I have also stated that I intend to sue them and asked for the name and contact information for their attorney and they refuse to give me that information also.

    They have told me that they will continue charging the credit card on file and that I have no rights to stop them from doing this. Remember that this job is closed, I am suspended and the company in India that this man works for cancelled any further payment claims. They have settled this case and consider it paid in full. However, ODesk says that the India company has no right to make any agreements. I have told ODesk to "Cease and Desist" on charging this credit card and they have basically told me that they can charge as much as they want onto the card and that I have no rights to stop them.

    I want the Warriors Forum to issue a warning about this company and I will supply them with any information that they need.

  • Alam K.
    over 3 years ago

    I have also created a profile on oDesk and not happy with the way oDesk works. I agree with most of the problem pointed out on this forum about odesk.

  • newdress
    over 1 year ago

    To make the choice of the wedding dress is really arduous. But we are the companies that specialize in fashionable wedding dress. We create the amazing collections of wedding dresses in different fabrics, styles and prices of all types each season. Tulle, lace, taffeta, silk fabric is crucial in search of the perfect wedding dress, but it is only the beginning. There is a time when it was difficult to find a variety of models from a brand to another, today you can find everything in . For example, you'll find mermaid dresses, romantic dresses with full skirts, dresses slipped and refined for those who love the minimal look and so on. There will really be spoiled for choice.

    In addition to the proposals of the specialized famous designers, we also focus on other aspects of the information to keep up with the latest trends.If you are about to make a choice on a dress, I believe you will find one for your most beautiful wedding day.weeding shop

  • Alice M.
    over 3 years ago

    As a veteran contractor and Employer of Odesk who brought in $25,000.00 USD in only a span of nearing one year (11 Months) I would say that I am the best person who can truly testify what is really in the inside or everything how odesk operates their so called good policy;

    As a contractor, I am clever how to arrange something with clients that's why I always got big projects and mind you, many of those clients I had are still my clients until today but one thing I truly hate about Odesk policy is that they always asserts that it will be the clients' responsibilities over their contractors when it comes to work and that sounds very true, "Bravo"! but if your client gets robbed, will you still apply this principle? well, sad to say, Odesk does and that is very absurd knowing the nature of the offense like looting hours from clients must be protected at all cost in any ethical business organization;

    On the other hand, there are many clients who are abusing the contractors by paying only 0.50 cents/ hour thus taking advantage because these contractors are citizens of one of world's poorest nation's like India, Africa, Bangladesh etc. If you go to, you will find out that their minimum rate is $3/hour but odesk has a policy to make people slaves;

    I never give cents to my contractors and everytime I saw many who are being paid with cents really breaks my heart because I know where I came from and that was when I started as a contractor but I feel blessed because started at rate of $7/hour.

    I finally Conclude that Odesk is the very one who is responsible to all these people getting victimized both Contractors and Clients. If odesk only knows how to use humanistic reasons in forming their policy, there could be peace and much honesty in the marketplace. Odesk is the head and the tail of all of these problems because they probably only thinks of the money and these things does not make them less than the looters and abusers.

    Fritzgerald, F.

  • Redza A.
    over 3 years ago

    It is a scam. Find review here from a real client

  • BeatScribe
    about 3 years ago

    Odesk is NOT a scam. As usual, the people who weren't careful and got ripped off are the ones posting, the rest of us are working. I pay my rent every month on Odesk jobs. I have also hired workers to do art and other things for me. There are a lot of scammers on Odesk looking to run away with the upfront payment, but if you hire someone with zero feedback, you have to know you're taking that risk. If you set up jobs for those with 50+ Odesk hours or 5 star feedback only, you can filter out all the shady characters. Like anything online, you have to be careful, make people prove what they can do and don't give too much upfront money to someone you don't know. The same goes for the contractor side, if people want to hear a small sample before giving me the job, I watermark it so its unusable for them besides listening to the sample. I don't give anything usable away for free. No one can run off with your work this way.

  • DaMack
    about 3 years ago

    oDesk is DISGUSTING. Whether you seek an 'experienced' oDesker or not (50+, 5-star) you are still open to being ripped off. If you are a clien t who posted the job you are in trouble from the start because oDesk would rather protect the contractor as that is who they earn from.

    I was fleeced by $14,000 by a thief -a Russian developer based in Cyprus. I have NO deliverables and NO source code. oDesk didn't give a damn and basically said its my fault. The guy WAS a seasoned developer but due to his arrogance, assumed he knew what he was doing thus didn't read the requirements and effectively painted himself into a corner that he couldn't get out of without starting from scratch.

    I will NEVER use oDesk again or recommend its usage. Feel free to inbox me [email protected] if you want the developer's name.


  • vcc21
    about 3 years ago

    I wanted to add that I also got a horrible experience on oDesk. In particular I want to mention a developer and a firm. The developers name is DianWei Kim on oDesk but his real name is DianWei Ri. The agency is YongHeng. For some reason he asked me to hire his friend Han YongFeng instead as they worked for the same agency but he would be doing the work. They charged me for work but did not complete it and they refuse to send me the files. I paid over $4,400 to them and they will not release the files to me. Have complained to oDesk and they are looking into it.

    Worst of all? He had the balls to ask me to please give him a 5 star review. I asked him for a refund and he refused. His excuse was that he needs the review to find another job. I wrote this in his review but I know they can modify or not post the review. So from a client perspective, no one would know that they did a bad job!

    So do not go near them! I have uploaded put their links on oDesk here!

    YongHeng -
    DianWei -
    Han YongFeng -

    and their associates

    Li Robin -
    Tianguo Liu -
    Ye Guang -
    Arnold S. -
    Hwang Jin -
    Li Dianwei -
    Sue Zhe -
    Yuan Luo -

    all the pictures are fake, because I have seen different ones being posted up. YongHeng is a fraud, do not go near them!

  • AlexJones
    over 1 year ago

    Great Info

  • Dolar B.
    about 1 year ago

    Indeed, the price is very directly proportional to the quality, I see a huge difference between fiverr and oDesk.

    They are very different between the quality of work and time.
    Some people in fiverr lowering the price of products on the market.

    This trend makes the company experienced a slight downturn oDesk looking for clients, but when the number of workers a little, then the balance will occur, and many people will be looking for quality service, and the buyer can afford to buy expensive products, because of the limitations of employees.

    I'm working on
    I sell high quality traffic and very good for a company that is well established and growing.

    Our clients are people who sell hosting.
    They are happy with our service.

    The market is always changing change, but it is the user who controls the market for now.

    When user action is negative, then other users will be affected.

    When they cheat, they will eliminate the potential for success

  • kainaw
    9 months ago

    I found this page searching for "oDesk Scam". My experience is the same as everyone else's. I signed up for oDesk. I got a job. I did the job. The other person paid me for the job through oDesk. Then, both of our accounts were immediately suspended for irregularities. I cannot receive the money. The other guy cannot get it back. oDesk just kept the cash for themselves. How is this not a crime? It isn't just one little mistake. It is repeated, over and over. I wish I had seen this page before signing up with oDesk.

  • nothappy
    almost 3 years ago

    We used dozens of contractors on ODesk over a period of several months. The vast majority were scammers. We wasted several thousand dollars before we woke up to the fact that contractors add large number of hours to your account whilst doing absolutely nothing. I would encourage anyone who is reading this to only work on a fixed price contract basis with any freelancer. We also fell victim to several contractors who blatantly lied about their skill level and the work that they did. Our site was hacked by one contractor claiming to be an SEO expert and we lost all our traffic and rankings. It has not only cost us time, but an enormous amount of money trying to recover. As many other contributors have learnt, ODesk has no interest in assisting when you have been scammed. Why would they? They make 10% on all the money you spend. Please do not let anyone you know use ODesk. It was a very costly exercise for us and it has left a very bitter taste. If you think about it, why would an 'expert' be charging $10 per hour or less anyway? There are no short cuts to success!

  • cj_smith
    almost 3 years ago

    While I have to agree that oDesk is merely a vehicle to match employers with freelance workers, it is inherently a fraud. Nearly all of the clients are looking for cheap or free labor.

    Of course, if you live in a third world country you can work for $.50 or $1.00 an hour. If, however, you reside in the USA; have advanced degrees; and are looking for opportunities due to the recent economic downturn you can forget it.

    One job posting actually requested three PowerPoint presentations for a fixed price of $20.00!

    Job postings for article writers are another joke:
    Willing to pay $1.00 for 500 words, but you must submit three articles as a "test" of your skills.

    There are only 3 reasons clients post job opportunities:

    1. To get people to visit their website (since there is always a link in the job posting) and thereby generate business. (Black Hat SEO)

    2. To get some schmuck to work for free on a "trial" basis with the promise of paid work only to find that there is no more work.

    3. To hire freelancers under a bogus "admin assistant" title when the job is really a telephone sales position.

    Also, more than two thirds of the job postings are "fixed price". This means that after possibly getting 10% of the agreed price up front with a promise of the balance upon acceptance of the finished product, the client does not pay.

    oDesk does not guarantee payment on "fixed-price" work, only for hourly work. Most of the hourly work ranges from $1.00-$6.00 an hour.

    Beware: If you plan to join oDesk, do not expect to get responses in a timely manner. Most clients do not even respond to your proposals. Almost half never even hire anyone for the job - a sign that it was not really a job, but a marketing tool to drive potential customers to a website. Stay away from fixed price opportunities unless you can get 50% up front. Never work for free! If a client is not willing to pay you for your time, they are not worth your time and effort.

    Good Luck!

  • Ivan A.
    almost 3 years ago

    Do not join Imagine consultation team at oDESK!!!!

    I am writing about the inconvenience I had with Imagine Consultation.

    When I joined oDesk, more than a year ago, I immediately got a invintation from the owner of Imagine Consultation agency Alethea Smylie. She offered me to join her team on oDesk.

    She promised me that she will find the best jobs from oDesk, and I need her in return to pay a percentage of each of the work I done. Since I was new and inexperienced at oDesk, I accepted her proposal.
    But nobody told me that I had to pay her a percentage for jobs that I've found without her help and recommendations.
    Also, if you agree to get into it, you lose control and privacy of your profile, all private messages that you send and negotiations about any jobs Aletha can see.
    Also, many employers are looking for independent contractors and if you are in a team (Imagine Consultation or other) you will not be able to apply for a job.
    These are very important things that nobody told me before I get into Imagine C.

    I really got a list of suggested jobs from time to time, but no one was in my skills.
    After more than a year, I have not concluded any jobs by Imagine Consultation and I asked the Administrator Alethea Smylie, to exclude me from the team.
    At first I did not get a response, but after a few times I got it.
    This is a conversation I've had with the administrator Aletha:


    I would like to leave Imagine consultation because I have not concluded any job by you.

    Is that okay?


    Alethea Smylie
    Feb 18

    You are in the middle of the interview process so you cannot leave at this time. After you have finished the jobs, if you still want to then you can leave at that time.


    Feb 18
    I sent you a request even before four days.

    I have no interview invitations, on what exactly you mean?

    Alethea Smylie
    Feb 20
    You are currently interviewing for this job:

    Feb 20
    Yes, I did test for this client but after that, he did not report me, so I guess that the test was not successful.

    Also, I started negotiations with this client a day after I sent you the request to leave, but you did not reply me immediately, than only after my second request and four days later. That way you can take your time endlessly.

    Please accept my request immediately, otherwise I will be forced to take other methods.

    Expecting a quick response!

    Alethea Smylie
    10:03 pm
    Trying to threaten me to responding to you quicker was ridiculous.

    Anyways, for me to be able to remove you from the agency you have to close all contracts and any open job applications/archived applications per oDesk's rules.

    Also, discontinue using the improved cover letter & profile overview (remove any language you received from the handbooks). Send me your new cover letter (copy & paste it in the body of your message) without our language and tell me when you have update your profile overview that does not have out language and I will remove you from the agency.


    After that I asked for help from Odesk administrators and only a month later I was allowed to leave Imagine Consultation. But after that has continued harassment by Alethea Smylie....

    I advise everyone to think carefully before agreeing to enter a team, especially Imagine Consultation.

  • Alice A.
    over 2 years ago

    Thats so terrible, I wont prefer odesk in future. is far better than ALL the freelancing sites.

  • Alethea
    over 2 years ago


    I am the person that Ivan is talking about on this page. I have just become aware of this defamation campaign by one of my former contractors, Ivan Aleksic. Before I talk about the actual specifics to refute his statements, I will provide a little background of my team. I have a team on oDesk that I pick after a 2-part interview process that asks numerous questions including what they do and how long they have been working in their field of expertise. I state everything that is included with being selected on the team during the interview process. It includes receiving a job report twice a week with the best jobs in their field of expertise, improving their chances of getting interviews by improving their profile & cover letter. The cover letter is sent out with every job application (I give each contractor a proprietary profile & cover letter handbook as well as a job application handbook with the best practices I’ve created to help them get more interviews for jobs), being associated with a United States team, helping with any issues they may have with an employer & more.

    For those benefits, I take a small portion of their earnings only when they are hired for a job. This was all stated in the interview process before Ivan was selected for the team. So Ivan knew that even if he found a job without using our job report that he would still pay a portion of his earnings to the team because he still benefits from getting the job with his improved profile & cover letter, he still received the twice a week job report to interview for more jobs and he could still correspond with other team members, etc.

    All of the oDesk policies are clearly stated in oDesk about being a contractor within their system and being on a team so his issue with "losing control and privacy" is an oDesk policy that could not be changed by me.

    I have many tips and advice that I have given my contractors and I stated in the job handbook to state in every job application that they are affiliated with the company but that they will complete the job all by themselves so that the employer will know only the hired contractor he or she hired would complete their job.

    Ivan received a job report with all of the best available jobs not time to time, twice every week. I even specifically added categories and listed jobs under them for Ivan Aleksic because he was the only photographer on the team. He also worked with Photoshop as did some of my other contractors and there was always a lot of jobs listed on each job report.

    After a year, Ivan never was hired for any jobs. He never followed my advice on the amount of jobs to apply to every week so that he would increase his chances of getting interviews. As with any of my contractors on my team, I had no reason to stop him from leaving the team. I always state that anyone could leave the team at any time. However, as stated in the job handbook, all contractors need to remove the language from the cover letter & profile that I gave you to improve those items when you were on my team because it is proprietary language. He agreed to this stipulation but refused to remove it from his profile once he wanted to leave the team.

    More importantly and the reason it took a while to remove him from the team, oDesk didn't allow contractors to be removed from the team that had open or archived applications or open jobs. I always replied back to Ivan Aleksic in a timely fashion and his first ever message to me about leaving the team was in the first email he listed above. You can see the dates of my responses that it was always within 2 days. The last message I stated that per oDesk rules the steps that have to be completed for oDesk to even allow me to remove him from the team. I tried repeatedly to remove him from the team and every time it said "User has active candidacies in agency" so it was not my fault that it took a while for him to be removed from the team. If he just followed oDesk's rules he would have been removed from the team immediately.

    I never harassed Ivan or any of my contractors at any time. This is just another cruel lie and I am horrified by the distortion of the facts by Ivan. I always work hard and take great pride in providing my contractors with the guidance, application & interview skills, extensive job reports and more to provide them with the best team services on oDesk.

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