My team and I were hired by a small-time political campaign to produce and write scripts for promotional videos. The only direction the client gave was, “Just make something and then I’ll tell you what I like and don’t like about it and we’ll go from there."
After three different versions and no payment, we emailed to say we could no longer continue on this project without direction and the down-payment.
Client: I gave you direction! On the very first email, I said I wanted you to talk about certain issues.
Me: Yes, but even after we asked for clarification about those issues, you never responded. We sent numerous emails and made numerous calls.
Client: You should have been able to figure it out.
Me: Without the guarantee of payment, none of us have any real time to devote to this project.
Client: I thought I would just pay you for the finished product.
Me: At this rate, there never will be a finished product. As per our original conversation, you must pay us at specific milestones, two of which have already passed.
The client never responded to our team email again, but did contact me on my personal freelancing website to ask if I would like to do some work for him. When I informed him that he already had plenty of my work for free, he apologized and said he would send payment ASAP.
He never did, but he did email again two weeks later to ask if I would be willing to write a script for a new video. I asked him if he wasn’t sure how PayPal works or if he really couldn’t figure out that I was the same person he scammed out of three scripts earlier that same month.