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Freelance Work From Home – Avoid Bark.com!

As usual there may be Referral links if they are available but in no way sway thinking when it comes to writing the articles, blog posts or recommendations

There are were affiliate links available for Bark but knowing how the money is generated I haven’t nor intend ever using them. All links to bark are standard urls.

Freelance Work From Home - Please Avoid Bark.com!

I’ve always tried to keep the website Positive, sharing links that benefit in some way like competitions, free downloads whilst giving my own honest opinions regardless of if it’s the top affiliate link or not.
I’ve certainly never wished it to be a forum to bitch about other websites and companies. I prefer ignorance for those that I don’t like. But these guys have really hit a nerve.

A bit of background, every now and then I end up replying to random emails, normaly from something like this where I have signed up and completely forgot about it.
Now, you may be pleasantly surprised as to just were or what a cheeky reply email will get you! I’ve bagged some great stuff over the years just from replying to random emails inc premium accounts, upgrades, free stuff

 

Freelance work from home involves sending and receiving a lot of emails.
Doing a usual email check, there was an email in my inbox from bark.com offering me 25% off. Intrigued, as I couldn’t remember signing up,  I thought I’d check out who they were and what they were about?
A quick check on their site and my reply to the email was simple.
Something along the lines of “you want 60 quid just for me to answer a classified ad?”
But as I was replying I realised bark.com were using credits as opposed to charging a fee. Coincidentally something I had just recently been reading about with PlayStation. Which got me into my investigation mode.

Companies use credits for the one simple reason.
Rather than customers fighting back a fee for services unfit for purpose or for whatever the reason may be. Credits eliminate this by becoming a product.
So regardless of whatever issue may arise between the purchaser and company, the law is simple: Did the credits work as they were supposed to? (basically, could you use them regardless of outcome. did they perform their job? just by using them you have fulfilled their purpose, therefore they work)
Of course the answer is yes.
The credits worked as they were intended, thus never a refund is ever issued.
As soon as credits are bought the need for refund is eliminated unless they are unused, but even then you’d have a hard time arguing to get your money back. Bark have even tried putting in their terms, a clause for credit card chargebacks (I doubt it is very legally binding, but I am no expert in law )

Bark.com gave another huge red flag in my eyes, when I searched for reviews.
A full page of 5 Gold stars!
Way too many good reviews to even have a sniff of all being real.

This is my genuine email reply

Thanks 

 
I had no idea who you guys were? I tend to sign up to a lot of things and I couldn’t remember signing up, so I just had a quick check on your website to refresh myself.

 

Oh my! 
I’m going to have to be honest with you,
I’m not at a point in my life, certainly not in my DJ career or freelancing, where I would want to pay someone 8 quid a pop, just to offer my services, to somebody who may be just window shopping, or pricing up because it’s free for them.
They may hire somebody else, fair enough, but not even an automated response to let me know?

How long would a normal person wait until they thought Hmmm, maybe they’re not going to choose me? How long would you wait for Emma, for your 8 quid?
I’m laughing you’re genuinely asking for £60 upfront? For what exactly? 
For services I don’t know if they are genuine or not? Which if the latter, fake accounts, then your terms absolve you of any culpability.
 
I can’t think of many services if any that charge upfront without the customer walking away with an actual product? 
 
Plus Oh wow, some shocking reviews to say the least!

Yeah, the front page of Google looks nice and pretty with its gold stars when searching for reviews of bark. But…. None of the overkill review sites are written by or for the freelancing community are they? They’re by the people that didn’t have to pay. It’s not surprising to see these sort of reviews for the work that the freelancers did for them. (Oh and they also had a product for their money.)
I found a few reviews on the second page of Google that answered my questions, the real ones by people writing from my angle, the freelancer. Not good are they?
 
Only DJ Danny has come at me with a bigger bag of bullshit with his four grand DJ course / weekend in Ibiza. But again there would at least be Ibiza.
 
Another massive red flag Is buying credits. Credits are used by online companies trying to avoid giving a refund for services Because by using credits, credits become a product, it puts them under different regulations ( PlayStation amongst others use this trick) and I’m guessing there will be a tax loop in there somewhere too? by using credits as opposed to paying fees.
 
But the biggest blag though is in your terms for the “hired guarantee” It’s just more credits? It’s not an actual refund. Again another trick copied somewhat from online gambling giving away their free bets and free spins. 
 
The way I read it, basically if I don’t find work using my credits, You’ll give me some more credits not to find work. But if I still haven’t found work with the free credits (well £60 to me, free for you) its tough luck! 
But…. you get to keep my money? 
Where’s the magical guarantee?

Finally extra screwed over nicely to end with, thanks to a full priced auto top up system. least not forgetting the inability to delete one’s account. Even if no purchase has been made!!! 

Shocking on so many levels. Scam on all of them
 
Thanks again for the kind 25% off, but I will have to decline giving you 75% of the full ridiculously priced whatever bullshit it is bark is flogging?
 
What a sad way to make a living….


Kind regards.

For the record I don’t doubt Bark.com  have real freelancers joining or that  there are genuine people requiring work, searching on the website.
As far as I can tell everything is above board.
My issue arises with the snakey, slimey way that they go about it.
A website full of tricks and traps to  make you part with your money, assuring you with twisting words whilst making sure they themselves are completely blameless, shielded by their terms.

They advertise to potential clients, that they search thousands of freelancers, yet from the freelancer side they have to pay (in the region of 8 quid) just to put their name down for a job. Nothing back if you don’t get awarded the job, not even an automated reply to advise you that you have been unsuccessful.

Of course, there’s no mention  to potential clients that the freelancers have to pay to respond because of course, most people have morals and wouldn’t go ahead knowing that the people they were potentially hiring had to pay just respond.
In the 5star reviews that I mentioned earlier, clients happily bragg about window shopping or pricing up for future jobs completely oblivious the people vying for them are being charged for the pleasure.

The utter bullshit of their “get hired guarantee” is mere fancy wording for ‘ we will give you some credits again’

Even websites that are my personal eternal enemies give you your money back when they’re shit.

Of course there are plenty of other websites out there for freelancers that don’t charge upfront, they do try and verify their clients on both sides and for the most part have reasonable reassurances. I’m far from saying they are faultless, personally, I’ve had issues with them all but the issues have been solved, without hiding behind terms or shirking away from responsibility. Actual cash refunds have been given and of course money has been earned

Upwork would certainly be my pick of the bunch simply because I’ve earned more with them and had less issues. That’s not to say it’s true for everyone though, only from my experience. I have read of some crazy problems with Upwork for people so it’s not all peaches and cream.

People per hour have never really hit my radar for work nor for any problematic issues, so I can’t really give an opinion. I’ve read and heard good and bad. UK based if I’m not mistaken.

Fiverr, again like people per hour, don’t really fit the sort of freelance work I am looking for. Again, I’ve heard good and bad and feel it’s more of a personal preference on a person by person basis.

Freelancer is where I have had my biggest issue freelancing and I know I am not happy with the outcome I’m willing to accept some blame on my part. Freelancer it’s another website like the others fore mentioned, where personal preference take presidence.

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