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GoDaddy testimonials : Should I pay for GoDaddy?? When Escrow Goes Wrong

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Hey everyone.

About 5 months ago I put up a job on a freelancer site. I got quite a few bids and I selected one for quite a bit of money and a time limit of just over 2 weeks.

The programmer spent about a week designing the site (he designed, I told him what to change and that happened a few times).

Anyway a week later the programming wasnt done and his time limit had expired. I didnt complain or anything I just thought oh well itll be a few more days. Anyway a few more days turned into a few more weeks then into a few more months.

Along the way he refused to do some parts of the site that were agreed but I thought oh well doesnt matter it's only small I just want this thing done. On a few occassions during the early parts of the project he even quit but I just told him not to quit because I just wanted this thing done.

After 4 months I couldnt take it any more.. I was losing money on hosting that I already purchased, money I could be making from my site and my domain. I sent him a sort of email contract saying if he wasnt done in 3 days he had to release the money and that if he didnt reply to the email in 24 hours same thing would happen.

About 35 hours later he replied saying we have completed the project cancel the escrow payment. So I went and had a look at the site where he had the updates and they were gone. He wasnt actually finished the site and he expected me to release the money to him.

After about a week of unsuccessful negotiaitons with him I filed a complaint with the escrow site. Well it turns out the escrow site has a policy in their TOS whereby they cant interfere when theres a dispute and that they can only cancel the escrow payments when someone has stopped communicating with the other party.

The programmer had stop communicating with me so I told them that. They said send him and email with a CC to them asking him to release the money and if he doesnt they will release the funds to me. Well that what I did and he obviously saw the CC and for that reason replied to the email saying he was finished (when he really wasnt).

I didnt think that was fair and probably a week later I said hes stopped communicating with me again (I managed a very short MSN conversation which led no where with him between then). They said do they same thing with an email and a CC. Same result.

Another week or so later I still cant communicate with him so I sent them another email telling them. They replied saying they communicated with him and he said he was finished and that he sent them a link to the whole site or part of it (It was part of it since hes not finished) and that we would have to sort it out between ourselves.

Now I dunno what else to do.

Any advice would be appreciated,.

Chris..

Comments (22)

How much money is this? What company has the escrow?.

You may need to call the escrow company and bitch a fit. If that doesn't work you many need to get a lawyer to make the call.

Sorry to hear about your programming problem. Any chance you can post the job...I do some light programming myself...

Comment #1

Yeah Jesse can help you. He's mad nice at programming!.

Take his help! I always do...and it's FREE!..

Comment #2

If the transacting parties get into an argument, and it boils down to he-said she-said, then the transaction might never be concluded. Such is the weakness of online escrow.

In the real world, escrow is usually handled by licensed escrow agents. Before the transaction begins, it should be crystal clear to all parties (escrow agent included) what conditions must exist for the agent to release the items under escrow. If possible, the agent will personally accept and release both goods and payment (sort of a double escrow), unlike online escrow where only the payment is actually handled by the agent...

Comment #3

Thanks a heap Labrocca! I have PMd you the details Looks like that might be how it's gonna go down If I knew the dangers of online escrow I would have never have done it.

Thanks a heap to everyone!.

Chris..

Comment #4

You should have specified time frames for completion of all work in your payment and job description...

Comment #5

When people bid on the site they leave a time which I assumed was the limit but apparently it's just a guess..

Comment #6

One thing for the future, just in case this comes up again, instead of CCing, use the BCC function (Blind Carbon Copy). That way the other guy won't know they are getting it.

Put HIM in the BCC field, and them in the CC. Hope that helps. I hope you can get this sorted. Be sure to let us know how it turns out...

Comment #7

Was thinking about that but I figured they probably wouldnt like that.

I think the escrow service has come to the stage where they have worked out hes not ignoring me (He is but not when he sees a CC to them) and theyve basically dumped the case.

Hope it all works out as well and Ill make sure to keep you posted.

Thanks,.

Chris..

Comment #8

Well great news!.

Got my cash back (minus around $20 in fees and 8 months of my life) and now I can post up info about the freelancer website and the programmer so that others know not to use them.

The freelancer site is www.getafreelancer.com and the programmer's username is phpmaestro. His website www.phpmaestro.com. STAY AWAY FROM THESE SITES. I would not recommend them to even people I hate.

Thanks.

Chris..

Comment #9

Sounds like my experience with Peter Crowning of lanceboard..

Comment #10

I've heard alright stuff about them but I'd imagine theyd have similar policies, and of course some bad seeds of freelancers..

Comment #11

Ya can never be too safe with doing business w/ strangers online. Just a day back, I posted 'sold' for a domain that the owner boasted got lots of traffic. Not only did the traffic dry out rapidly, the decline started several days BEFORE I offered to buy it. I almost lost $200 from that.

With freelancers, I've hired several for promotion 2, 3 or so different freelancers and NONE of them brought even 1 user to my site. The best way to do things is on your own. But if you can't do that, freelancers are the way to go. There are bad ones, yes... do your homework before committing to one..

Comment #12

I've heard nothing but bad things about freelance developers... I guess it stands to reason that if they aren't actively employed, there may be some kind of reason for that. But I also have friends who are actively employed and do some freelance programming on the side, mostly through business contacts and not through websites... I guess it's a crap shoot...

Comment #13

For every good freelance story, there are 5 bad ones. I couldn't name you all of the horror stories I've heard about them, even one who, after meeting the Webmaster, bit into his neck and sucked him dry (okay, not really just Halloween humor). I've done freelance writing and I always gave what I promised. But when it comes to developers, it's not as easy to look at their work and say it's good when ya can't really tell what they've done ie the coding is German to you. As I said, the best way to get something done is by doing it yourself. There is no replacing that...

Comment #14

I've always been careful when it comes to these sort of things. If yuo can, yuo should always try to do things in person. This way you can check up on how things are improving, or not as the case may be...

Comment #15

Heya all,.

Dealing with freelancer all the time myself, it's hard to explain.....but you definetely have to watch out for some bad guys...Mainly the good freelancer sites like scriptlance.com or rentacoder.com have a rating system what gives you a bit of an overview...also their way to handle the escrow is fair, they even have a negotiatior, mediator, you have a lot of chances to complain......just follow the basic rules e.g not communicate over messenger and so on.......

Just my 2 cents :-).

Regards.

Frank..

Comment #16

Well the freelancer I hired had pretty good feedback, although I now suspect some of it's fake (same grammar/ spelling mistakes etc).

Was it both of those sites that have the negotiator & mediatior or just rentacoder.com; I never knew scriptlance.com had one and I've never heard of rentacoder.com.

And for these basic rules, I've never heard of these (I did most of the communicating on messenger). Guess I should've done more research about freelancer sites instead of just on him before I started..

Comment #17

I would post his name public at the forum where the work started.

He'd come for his defence, prove him he's wrong...

Comment #18

Scriptlance has a feedback system, similar to eBay's. But remember even eBay's feedback can be fake. You'll have to know what you're looking at...

Comment #19

Unfortunately theres no forum where I hired him from. Also, if I go around bad mouthing him too much (although he deserves it) he might go around doing the same for my website (which considering it is a rewards site shouldn't be too hard)..

Comment #20

I've had similar experiences with bad programmers. But I found that going through Rentacoder, sticking to an agreed timeframe and always communicating via their site reduces the frustration when things don't work out.

Would recommend you have a look at Rentacoder next time...

Comment #21

Thanks for the advice, but I think I've been scared away from freelancer sites for a good long while..

Comment #22


This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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