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Clients from Hell

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I had this client. He said he wanted an E-commerce website building (E-cigarettes and Vapes)....

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I had this client. He said he wanted an E-commerce website building (E-cigarettes and Vapes). Completely custom. I was starting out, and accepted to build the website for a tiny amount. I agreed, and tried to agree a design.

Client: I want this black background, with blue text. That will look cool.

Me: That will be difficult to see.

Client: Well… let’s see how it looks.

Set the colours

Client: Can we make that blue stand out. Make it bold.

Me: Sure.

I update the colors.

Client: Hmm. Can we make it brighter?

Eventually it’s white text on black

Me: May I suggest we go with black text on white?

Client: Ok … Oh that looks better. Why didn’t you suggest that before?

Me: (losing will to live). That’s fine. Now, for the header…

Client: Well, I want it to be this bubble font. Let’s make it turquoise. And I want a smoke-filled background.

I made the design, hoping he’d realise how bad the design it was (looking at the page was giving me a headache).

Client: I like that. It’s different from the others.

Me: (internally) Yeah, because it’s terrible in every way.

We went back and forth on design elements, and eventually is was readable. Then we get onto functionality. Shopping cart, Payment gateway, and a growing list of features.

Client: I want it simple - nothing too advanced.

I made a simple E-commerce website that was simple enough.

Client: What is this? It’s too basic. I want more features.

Me: Ok. What features?

Client: I don’t know. Make it better, like all the other ones. I want

  1. .

Me: Ok. Though, I will have to charge extra

Client: Why? Amazon didn’t pay for those features!

Me: They most certainly paid tens of thousands of dollars for a team of professionals to produce those features.

Client: Says you!

I build several features. He’s yelling about the project taking too long. He has already threatened to hire a massive company to build this for him. He claims what I produced is rubbish, and that I am taking too long (in total I have spent 4 months working when I can).

Me: Well, if you are unhappy, I can undo the changes made, and we can part ways. Though, a company will charge thousands of dollars to build a bespoke E-commerce site, and could take up to a couple of months to build the product to your requirements.

Client: But at least it will actually be decent.

Me: Ok, I understand. I will remove my website from your server; and we will part ways.

Client: But that’s my website. You cannot take it.

Me: Well, since you will not pay, this is my Intellectual Property. We signed no contract to state otherwise. I have setup the server, sorted out the security (with SSL). I am building your website for a pittance, frankly. If you intend to hire another party, I retain all rights.

The client started getting abusive, calling me a robbing (a word rhyming with blunt).

Me: I’m sorry you feel robbed, but I have not been paid; and you will not work with me.

More cursing from the client.

Me: I think it is better that we part ways.

I took down the website.

Client: What’s going on? Why isn’t the website up?

Me: Well, you did not want to pay me for my services, and it will be better that we go back to before I accepted the project

Client: I don’t care. Either put the website up, or I will kick in your front door and [continuing list of abuse].

I’d have been scared, except that this client had a list of health issues, and wouldn’t have been able to do anything.

Source: Clients from Hell

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