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RANT I'm not making a SECOND BURGER for free!

DennisDuty

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The Scene.

You're at local diner.

It's a small place. The cook and his wife run it by themselves. You've eaten there twice before and you came in today for a burger.

You order and hand over your $10.

After a while, the cook/owner approaches. "I accidentally dropped your burger on the floor" he says.

"Alright..." you say. "That's fine, don't worry about it. Just let me know when you're done with the replacement."

"Nonono" he says. "I don't think you understand. I made the burger already. If you want me to make me another it will be another $10."

"That's crazy." You tell him.

He leaves and heads into the back room. He comes back with an iPad. "I have security cam footage." He says. "You can see me making the burger. There are timestamps too. Proof I made it. You can even deduce how much time I spent making it. Doesn't that look delicious?"

"I'm not paying for a second burger!" you say.

"I put a lot of effort into this," he says. "If you want another, you have to pay me again. I'm not making a SECOND burger for free."

The context.

I saw this posted in a copywriting facebook group. Emphasis is mine.

Just looking for some reassurance... I work with one client writing regular blog posts - before I was doing them in word but then they started using Ghost editor. Basically they write a brief in there and then I edit it. It has the autosave feature, and there is literally no save button anywhere on the screen - in fact no buttons at all! Anyway I told them it was done after spending 4 hours on it, then they came back and said it's not there. When I look at the editor it says the last time it was updated was like 10 days ago by them, and there is no evidence that I did any work!!!!! I gave them details from my Chrome history about the times that I was logged on to the editor and asked them to check with Ghost, now they are asking me to write it again. Am I right to ask for extra compensation? When I last looked at it, all my edits were there and there was nothing to warn that it didn't save. I was connected to the internet the whole time as I was sending and receiving other messages in the time. I don't want to have to do another 4 hours of work for free
:(
The answer to their question, of course, is NO. You are NOT right to ask for extra compensation. They hired you for a job and you didn't do it yet. You get paid once.

As a freelancer, you're running a business. You're expected, as the expert, to learn how to BACK UP YOUR OWN WORK.

Missed deadlines MIGHT be excused due to this circumstance. But there is absolutely no world in which you're entitled to extra money for messing up.
 

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MoneyPhantom

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That freelancer also thinks very short-termed. IF they even should in the end pay him to do it one more time - I'm quite positive that he'll never get any job again after that.

The loss potential is far bigger than just writing that thing down again (remember, it's already in his head - it won't take him another 4 hours, maybe one more or so).
 

ljb7

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That freelancer also thinks very short-termed. IF they even should in the end pay him to do it one more time - I'm quite positive that he'll never get any job again after that.

The loss potential is far bigger than just writing that thing down again (remember, it's already in his head - it won't take him another 4 hours, maybe one more or so).
It's amazing how this freelancer got any work at all with that mentality.
 

ZF Lee

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For some reasons, I just kept wondering about contract breaches and limitation clauses.

I opened a little thread on it to ponder on the matter.

Let's Talk Legal....Exemption Clauses?


As far as my own nation's law is concerned...
If there is a legal disclaimer or provision that says you have to pay for that second burger if shit happens, then yup, follow that.

Unfortunately, I don't think many small biz or freelancers take note or enforce legal stuff, and everything is just implied.

For instance, the customer (you)implies that you have to cook a new burger for free. And to what extent? How far does it go?

:inpain::inpain:
 

MashaN

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The Scene.

You're at local diner.

It's a small place. The cook and his wife run it by themselves. You've eaten there twice before and you came in today for a burger.

You order and hand over your $10.

After a while, the cook/owner approaches. "I accidentally dropped your burger on the floor" he says.

"Alright..." you say. "That's fine, don't worry about it. Just let me know when you're done with the replacement."

"Nonono" he says. "I don't think you understand. I made the burger already. If you want me to make me another it will be another $10."

"That's crazy." You tell him.

He leaves and heads into the back room. He comes back with an iPad. "I have security cam footage." He says. "You can see me making the burger. There are timestamps too. Proof I made it. You can even deduce how much time I spent making it. Doesn't that look delicious?"

"I'm not paying for a second burger!" you say.

"I put a lot of effort into this," he says. "If you want another, you have to pay me again. I'm not making a SECOND burger for free."

The context.

I saw this posted in a copywriting facebook group. Emphasis is mine.



The answer to their question, of course, is NO. You are NOT right to ask for extra compensation. They hired you for a job and you didn't do it yet. You get paid once.

As a freelancer, you're running a business. You're expected, as the expert, to learn how to BACK UP YOUR OWN WORK.

Missed deadlines MIGHT be excused due to this circumstance. But there is absolutely no world in which you're entitled to extra money for messing up.

Good reminder about taking responsibility, especially in such an obvious situation.
 

NaPal

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Thanks for the quick burger laugh :) You lost me when you told the security camera footage, that'd be crazy.
 

ChrisV

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All in all I agree, but let me play Devils advocate for a moment

Okay but what if the customer dropped the burger himself?

That’s where you get into messy territory because it seems as though this client is using some shitty technology that could have aided in it not being saved. But then you could argue that he should have backed it up.

When I was freelancing for a site they wanted us to use Google Docs for just this reason.

So the question here is ‘who dropped the burger’? Who’s fault was it that the work was lost. The client for using a system with no Save feature, or the client for not backing up his work. Because you canvargue that the client’s system wasn’t working as advertised.

But again, just playing Devil’s advocate here. In reality, it doesn’t matter who dropped the burger because a good business will give you another even if you were the one to drop it. The founder of Sears famously saw a man drop a watch from the Sears catalog and it broke. He called it in got the man another even though it clearly an accident.

That being said, if the copywriter was refusing to redo the work it would be one thing. But I think he gets that he has to redo it and is just venting some frustration.
 

ljb7

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All in all I agree, but let me play Devils advocate for a moment

Okay but what if the customer dropped the burger himself?

That’s where you get into messy territory because it seems as though this client is using some sh*tty technology that aided in it not being saved.

So the question here is ‘who dropped the burger’? Who’s fault was it that the work was lost. The client for using a system with no Save feature, or the client for not backing up his work. Because you canvargue that the client’s system wasn’t working as advertised.

But again, just playing Devil’s advocate here. In reality, it doesn’t matter who dropped the burger because a good business will give you another even if you were the one to drop it. The founder of Sears famously saw a man drop a watch from the Sears catalog and it broke. He called it in got the man another even though it clearly an accident.
You still replace the burger. They're a customer who made an honest mistake, they've come in beforehand, they'll come in again... Unless you leave a bad taste in their mouth (or no taste at all).

It's not really who's fault it is in the moment. There's more at stake, and if you're only focusing on who's fault it is you aren't thinking about the bigger picture. And I'm still just talking about a burger here.

For a freelancer its even more clearcut. You get paid when you deliver. You could play on the fact with who really is at fault (though I believe in most circumstances the individual is at fault because we control the outcome) but again, its a very shortsighted way of thinking.

*Yes, I understand you're just playing devils advocate.
 

Vigilante

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The Scene.

You're at local diner.

It's a small place. The cook and his wife run it by themselves. You've eaten there twice before and you came in today for a burger.

You order and hand over your $10.

After a while, the cook/owner approaches. "I accidentally dropped your burger on the floor" he says.

"Alright..." you say. "That's fine, don't worry about it. Just let me know when you're done with the replacement."

"Nonono" he says. "I don't think you understand. I made the burger already. If you want me to make me another it will be another $10."

"That's crazy." You tell him.

He leaves and heads into the back room. He comes back with an iPad. "I have security cam footage." He says. "You can see me making the burger. There are timestamps too. Proof I made it. You can even deduce how much time I spent making it. Doesn't that look delicious?"

"I'm not paying for a second burger!" you say.

"I put a lot of effort into this," he says. "If you want another, you have to pay me again. I'm not making a SECOND burger for free."

The context.

I saw this posted in a copywriting facebook group. Emphasis is mine.



The answer to their question, of course, is NO. You are NOT right to ask for extra compensation. They hired you for a job and you didn't do it yet. You get paid once.

As a freelancer, you're running a business. You're expected, as the expert, to learn how to BACK UP YOUR OWN WORK.

Missed deadlines MIGHT be excused due to this circumstance. But there is absolutely no world in which you're entitled to extra money for messing up.
Ridiculous.

1. Make a backup
2. Easy to make a second burger after you screwed up the first one
3. Even if it is 100% time drain, that's what you get
4. If I were the client, after he delivers the new burger, I'd never go to his restaurant again
 

ChrisV

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You still replace the burger. They're a customer who made an honest mistake, they've come in beforehand, they'll come in again... Unless you leave a bad taste in their mouth (or no taste at all).
I agree:

In reality, it doesn’t matter who dropped the burger because a good business will give you another even if you were the one to drop it. The founder of Sears famously saw a man drop a watch from the Sears catalog and it broke. He called it in got the man another even though it clearly an accident.
Just I find that it’s often I just find it best to entertain both arguments before coming to a conclusion.
 

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ljb7

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I agree:



Just I find that it’s often I just find it best to entertain both arguments before coming to a conclusion.
Yup. And I saw that bit you wrote too. Just reinforcing the fact. Always a good idea to look at both sides, most of the time you can learn something!
 

LittleWolfie

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Wow thanks for this amazing post.
Or to pay someone to do it for you.

This could be a great fast-lane niche for me to add value to people like the person position in the facebook group. Freelancers, are pretty easy to idetify and find compared to most groups since there are platforms dedicated to putting them all in one place!(Upwork, etc).
A lot of the current backup systems are obviously failing the freelancer market like the person in the Facebook group, OP mentioned.

If they were able to quickly bring up a text file, they could quickly and easy copy the saved text into the editor. The client has no interest in what software the freelancer uses, if I provide software that solves the freelancer 's problem and let's them satisfy the client demand, everyone wins!
It's a great and challenging sysops problem, to get your teeth stuck into as well. Sounds awesome.

As a freelancer, you're running a business. You're expected, as the expert, to learn how to BACK UP YOUR OWN WORK.

.
All in all I agree, but let me play Devils advocate for a moment

Okay but what if the customer dropped the burger himself?
That's where insurance comes in, which is how the local burger van handles it (the insurance cost is then added into the price for the customer)

That’s where you get into messy territory because it seems as though this client is using some sh*tty technology that could have aided in it not being saved. But then you could argue that he should have backed it up.

When I was freelancing for a site they wanted us to use Google Docs for just this reason.
Maybe the US, works another way however freelancers and other self employed provide and choose their own tools, employees use what their bosses tell them. If the client specifies the tool, that's getting to the point where the tax office might think this is disguised employment(one issue I have with upwork, capture tools only support some OSes, I should be able to use whatever I like as long as it does this job (otherwise am I really self-employed?) For instance, I'd rather write in libre office and then save as a word file at the end, rather than use word. A boss can force me to change, but a client should not be able to do so.

So the question here is ‘who dropped the burger’? Who’s fault was it that the work was lost. The client for using a system with no Save feature, or the client for not backing up his work. Because you can argue that the client’s system wasn’t working as advertised.
If the client specified that they use that system (rather than the end deliverable was in that system(which allows the freelancer to write in another editor then copy and paste) I'd say the client is certainly at fault, otherwise it is the freelancer) It's not clear to me which is the case here (and of course the freelancer is free to say prior to the contract he will only use the software he is familiar, with as he is unfamiliar with the reliability of the client's editor.

[/QUOTE]
That being said, if the copywriter was refusing to redo the work it would be one thing. But I think he gets that he has to redo it and is just venting some frustration.[/QUOTE]

I can totally see why he is venting frustration, it sounds to me like they might be paying him as a freelancer and treating him as an employee.
 

GoGetter24

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If he was an employee, he does get paid for that 2nd burger.

It all depends on the contract. If the freelancer's contract is being paid per hour, and he screwed up 4 hours, he's still entitled to be paid for them. The client might then decide he's useless and not buy any more hours, but he is entitled to them (although if he's wise he'd probably just swallow that cost as a life lesson).

If the contract says it's for a specific result, he only gets paid for the burger. So he'd charge way more than his expected time, to cover the risk he might drop it or the customer will complain it's not what they.

Let's be clear too: this stuff is as much the fault of the client/employer as the worker. Many clients are penny pinching parasites. You'll quote them an hourly rate to work on something when they ask, and then they'll want to know how long, so you just quote them a fixed rate (double your expected time X hourly rate), then they want a breakdown of how long, to attempt to negotiate it down. At which point you tell them to F*ck off.

They want the benefit of not having to hire someone as an employee, and they want to give no margin for error to the worker, and want to pay the absolute minimum for it. They want rock bottom rates, and for the worker to bear all the risk, for one off jobs. Screw that. That's way worse than having a job.
 

LittleWolfie

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If he was an employee, he does get paid for that 2nd burger.

It all depends on the contract. If the freelancer's contract is being paid per hour, and he screwed up 4 hours, he's still entitled to be paid for them. The client might then decide he's useless and not buy any more hours, but he is entitled to them

They want the benefit of not having to hire someone as an employee, and they want to give no margin for error to the worker, and want to pay the absolute minimum for it. They want rock bottom rates, and for the worker to bear all the risk, for one off jobs. Screw that. That's way worse than having a job.
Contract and local law, here if the freelance contract means being treated like an employee, then you are an employee regardless of if your called a freelancer or not. You are unable to contract your rights away practise not terminology matters.

This is what has got uber in hot water(I'm suprised upwork clients have not faced this yet)

It also makes a difference if the contract was for a deliverable or for 4 hours
 

amp0193

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This was one of the big reasons I chose to go with my main supplier 18 months ago.

The sample shipped. The crate busted open and half the product got lost in shipping. They immediately replaced it, and did so happily and willingly at a high cost to them.

Fast forward 18 months... they goofed big-time, and I received a 40' container full of unusable, unfix-able product. They agreed to re-do it all, and send it to me DDP.

I'm still pissed that they messed up the container, because it wasted time and money. But good on them for making it right.
 

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