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A Common Freelance Writing Scam

If you use forums such as Digital Point to find freelance writing work, make sure that you watch out for scams. This is not to say that every buyer is a scammer, but there are quite a few that are. While I have written about this in the past, I never supplied any samples of “scam emails/private messages.” Well, this time things are different.

Check out this private message that I received at Digital Point last week:

We need over 300 Articles for our website,

But as a sample, we would like to have 1 article supplied to us for its validation, before work is given for whole 300 articles bunch.

We require an American Native, to write it and not an Englishman, as it will be targeted to Americans.

The topic of Sample article to be supplied is -

” Experian credit report ”

It should pass copy space, and have 800 – 1000 words.

If the article is passed by us, you will get order of whole 300 articles together. So we want an American Native to do this work for us.

You can read reference article to know what kind of work we are looking for :

Reference article -

Work to be completed in less then 24 hours for this just 1 article, and rest full 300 bunch can take upto 1 month or less by you.

Reply me fast with your msn and sample article on topic above, so we can deal over.

Upon receiving this, I knew immediately that it was a scam. Not only did it read like a scam, but I noticed that the sender also forwarded the same message to four other writers. This is a common ploy in which the scammer asks for one free sample in exchange for bulk work in the future. Of course, they simply take the samples from each writer who falls prey, and then use those on their website or blog. In the end, they get solid content without paying a dime.

In order to keep things going, I sent a quick reply and waited. Sure enough, the scammer sent another private message. This time it said:


As mentioned, sample article will be checked so that we can provide you 300 article work.
We can maximum pay $ 1900 for the work, 60 % advance , rest after work.

But for that your sample has to be approved by us, which should be -

The topic of Sample article to be supplied is -

” Experian credit report ”

It should pass copy space, and have 800 – 1000 words in american tone.

So send me sample article fast, as i am already counting on few people and will send advance to one who is fast.

Sample article is not included in 300 articles job, it is JUST SAMPLE work from you for us.

Thank You

As you can see, there are quite a few dishonest people lurking around these forums. And unfortunately, they are not just on forums. These scammers will also send you emails, and many times get the nerve to call on the phone.

To avoid being duped, make sure that you are very careful about any job you accept. And of course, never complete any work unless you get paid first! 

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8 Comments »Freelance WritingFebruary 11th, 2008

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