If you've ever been looking for a job (which I'm sure all of you have) you know how crazy stressful it can be. You have to do a ton of research to find jobs you are qualified for in your area (and that you like), you have to fill out tons and tons on forms (even though all of that can be answered on the resume you uploaded) and go impress everyone at your interview.
One of the very first jobs I applied to was with an agency. I am a graphic designer so the position was to design advertisements, mostly to be used on social media, for a variety of different clients this agency represented. I already completed my phone interview so they brought me into the office. I got there at 9:00am, waited in the lobby for a few minutes and decided to go on back to the offices because there was no one to check in with at a front desk (and thank goodness, I did, I don't think they would have ever come looking for me). I found the owner of this small business in a dimly lit office sitting behind her desk on a bean bag chair (at first, I'm like this is so cool, but looking back, no, it was sketchy and very unprofessional). She welcomed me in while she put her shoes on and began the interview. A few minutes later another, younger girl, came in and took her spot at the desk in the corner of the owner’s office. We were still going over questions for my interview when the owner had to pause the interview to do her makeup for a client meeting she had coming up. She then left to meet with the client and I waited. A while later she came back and we talked a bit more, I met one of the other designers and we talked as well. Then I went back to the owner’s office where I waited for her again (each of these waiting times being about 20-30 minutes). She got me set up on my laptop in the other corner of her office where they could test my design abilities (and typing speed for some reason?). I was given 3 different clients to make ads for upcoming holiday sales. Since this was just a test I was told to mock something up using stock photo samples. I made these different design samples, big ol' water marks on them from the stock photo samples, but you could tell the design was quality. This kept me busy for a while until I emailed them where they were supposed to go and then I waited some more. At this point I had been there several hours (luckily, I had the day off, from my full-time job so I could stay for an outrageous amount of my day). Finally, the owner came back and sent me on my way, letting me know they would be in touch. I was there for a total of 5 hours that day, 9:00am to 2:00pm and super hungry because I never got time to eat! (That weird interview should have given me tons of red flags, but I was super desperate to get a new job).
I got a call a few days later that I had gotten the job! (praise! so happy!) We began to discuss salary and days off, honestly, I would have taken anything to have an office job but the owner needed to come up with an offer and call me back. A week went by without hearing anything. I emailed the office thanking them for my interview and that I couldn't wait to work with them, you know, all the standard stuff. I got a call later that week telling me they actually had hired someone else. Um what? You literally told me I had the job just a few days ago and now you just hired someone else? (should have been a huge red flag, again). She said she would be looking for another designer in a few months so she would get in touch with me again then (spoiler, she never got back in contact with me).
A couple months later I was looking up the companies I did sample work for during my interview, just to see what the person they hired did, and if they were better than me. I didn't find a bunch of amazing work that was 10 times better than what I could do... quite the opposite. I found my work. The agency I was interviewing with had me come in to their office for 5 hours, do design work for them, lied to me about hiring me, and then sold the work they stole from me. On top of that, the work was not even fit to be posted, it still had watermarks all over it, and they didn't care. After this happened I was glad I didn't end up working for them. I don't want to be associated with that level of work or sleaziness.
I did sample work later for some interviews that wasn't stolen from me, so that in and of itself shouldn't be cause for alarm if you ever run across it. But remember, no matter how desperate you are to get a new job, you need to have standards. You are interviewing a company just as much as they are interviewing you to see if it's a good fit.