I've been working for Ozio Media for about two weeks. I was chosen as a niche writer at $3/100 words. On the original application, it said that freelance writers would receive 10 to 80 articles per week, however, this is not at the higher rate, but at the $1/100 words (not enough to buy me a jar of coffee per article). I noticed that this company were unprofessional from the start. it is polite to call a writer by their first name, but this company do not. Spelling mistakes. Hesitant answers. Lack of knowledge. Overall slow, but in the guidelines, they expect writers to be at their beck and call to agree to assignments. So I produced 8 press releases over the past two weeks. I had to make several changes to the first four, but the remainder were fine and are now online. I was told that the word count was 500 to 525, but not including the contact details, title, and keywords. I noticed that all of my articles were beyond the word count, and Ozio Media are not paying me for this additional content.
I have been conned, and I don't want anyone else to fall for the "sales charms" of this company who promise riches, but provide only false promises. Also, because I quit, they deducted $10.00 off my initial fee, which they were not going to pay, as I supposedly had to write another two friggin articles, which I had not received from my PM, Andie. Do these people think that money grows on trees? Please avoid Ozio Media. I am not too keen on Textbroker or Zerys Media, but at least payment is made on time every time. Here is a back and forth email with Ann @ Ozio. May I state that I received a total of $110, but it was appalling that I had to constantly request this payment. What if I hadn't receive two additional articles? The battle of payment starts all over again. More horrors from the the world of freelance writing. Companies like Ozio Media gives writers a bad name.
Me: I am just double checking whether or not I need to submit an invoice for the 8 press releases I wrote (4 last week and 4 this week), and will I get paid tomorrow? Also, it mentions on the official website about receiving an invoice, but I have received nothing as of yet. My project manager, Andie said to contact you if I had any finance queries.
Ozio: Please read the invoices tab in the portal. Everything is clearly outlined there that you do not need to submit invoices and that you will receive the payments automatically. The payments are made as soon as the clients approve the content and after you complete 10 articles as explained on the invoices tab in the portal. Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks!
Me: It did not mention 10 articles on the invoices tab, it just said after a client approves the content.
Ozio: The information about 10 articles was included then when you were sent the job guidelines when you were hired. Yes, you just have to complete two more articles and then your first payment will be
Me: Well I think it is rather strange that my project manager has only sent me 8 articles when you only pay in batches of ten, and I need that payment now, so please accept my resignation and pay me what I am owed. I realise a $10 payment will be deducted. If you could make the payment today, I would appreciate it.
Ozio: Why are you resigning because you have only received 8 articles so far? There are more projects on the way and the clients determine how many articles they wish to order and not us. Are you going to continue with us or are you just going to quit? You will receive payment for your work if that is your concern. I really hope that you can continue working with us.
Me: I just think it is strange that I was only given 8 articles by my PM, and you only pay in batches of ten. It was obviously something that I misread and did not realise at the time of signing up. Andie also mentioned that there was not much work at $3/100 words and you had more work for $1/100 words, which I am not willing to work for considering other content mills pay more per 500-words. I thought that I would be receiving 10 to 90 articles per week at the rate I signed up for $3/100 words. I really cannot afford to wait another week for payment when I completed the articles 48-hours before the deadline. I apologise that it has to come to this.
Ozio: I will send you the payment today minus the $10 fee however I would really appreciate if you continue working with us. That is really no reason to quit the job. If you need other work, you simply
find other clients to work with in addition to working with us. You shouldn't just terminate a relationship because you aren't getting steady work. Things change all of the time and as mentioned so do the work volumes because the clients may send us large projects that we may need additional assistance on.
Me: Thank you.
Ozio: I have sent you a partial payment. The remaining payment will be sent today. If you agree to stay on, I won't deduct the fee. There are more press releases that are about to be sent to Andie to be sent to you and I would appreciate if you would work on them instead of quitting. Let me know.
Me: Thank you for partial payment, but I would appreciate if you do not do that again, since I have PayPal deductions, which will further reduce my overall total with the next payment. Also the payment is not correct at $120, which would make every article at only $15, when you know I wrote more than 500-words in each press release. See below:
1. MadBags (605 words) $18.15
2. gDiscount (606 words)$18.18
3. SideRealDesigns (659words) $19.77
4. CareerPathwaysOnline (613 words) $18.39
5. SeedsNow (597words) $17.91
6. SmartMovesInc (598words) $17.94
7. PtPropeller (542words) $16.26
8. PrimeUSAScales (576words) $17.28
So in total, I would have been owed $133.88 with the $10 deduction. $3/100 equals 0.03 per word, which I how I calculated the above. I doubt a writer should provide words that are not paid for. And if you are only paying $15.00 per press release, it is not clear of your payment system. Yes, I am struggling to find work at the moment, but I also will not be taken for a fool. I am a diligent worker and respect myself. I want others to respect me, as many have taken advantage of my good nature.
And if you do only pay $15.00 per press release, then the next ones I write would stick to that word count inclusive of all content, to protect the time it takes for me research and write content. I am sure you understand why I feel this way, as writers are taken advantage of enough as it is. If this is a mistake on your part, I understand because everyone makes mistakes.
In this instance, I will assist you with the additional work, but I am now not clear on the word count, since each of the press releases I wrote were more than 500-words, as your invoice covers. And if you could make the additional $122.88 or $112.88, then I would greatly appreciate it.
Ozio: Please read the invoices page in the portal. It is explained there that the rate is based on the minimum number of words requested by the guidelines. Therefore an article of 500-530 words is $15.
I would suggest that you go back and read all of the information that you were sent when you were hired because you keep accussing us of trying to cheat you and I think that is very unfair when everything is in writing.
I will go ahead and send you the remaining balance later today and Andie will send you the new articles within 24 hours.
Me: I would appreciate my payment asap, since it takes several days to transfer into my bank account. I am still wondering why you only sent partial payment. Other writers have complained of partial payment through yourselves. Some have even not received payment for their work.
If I continue to be paid partially, I do not wish to continue. I'm sure that you would not pay yourselves in this way. I do not agree with your writing guidelines. It is wrong. I deserve more respect, and I feel that you take advantage of your writers.
According to your press release guidelines, I am to write a title, provide the contact details and other bits, but these do not count toward the word count of 500. Sorry, you have received enough "free" content in the press releases I have already submitted. You obviously know I am a good writer, which is why
you want me to remain on your team, but I am not happy to continue.
Good luck in finding another writer will accept your demands.
Ozio: I sent you a partial payment because we were still discussing whether you were going to stay on or not and you have now decided that you do not wish to continue so the fee will be deducted from the payment because you did not complete 10 articles.
You were notified of all of our terms upfront and the bottom line is that you did not thoroughly read what the terms are which is evidenced by the emails back and forth. There are always going to be people that make complaints however we have no control over that if the reason why they are complaining is because they have not followed the instructions nor read the terms. It is your responsibility as an independent contractor to make decisions that work best for you as a business person.
I have sent you the final payment now and I wish you the best of luck in your other endeavors.