Posted by: midwestgirl2eastcoastaddress | November 14, 2009

Cash for Tasks — Crowdsourcing Part II

Need extra cash with the Holidays coming up?  Perhaps you are out of work and need something to keep you afloat until you can find another job?  Well, a recent class discussion led me to an online, work from home job market that many may not be aware of.  Interested?  Keep on reading…

In an earlier post I discussed crowdsourcing, the concept of outsourcing tasks traditionally performed by an employee to a group (crowd) of people or community in an open forum.  Many of the examples in my earlier post were contests that makers of consumer products would organize to get marketing ideas – free marketing ideas – from their fans/consumers and then select a winning idea.  Take the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl contest, for example.

Well, there are come examples of crowdsourcing that actually pay you cold, hard cash for work.  And better yet, you can do it from home and in your spare time.

The first example of this type of crowdsourcing is Amazon Mechanical Turk.  How does it work?  You go to the website, review the list of HITs or Human Intelligence Tasks, do the work, and earn money.   Some types of HITs you might find are to rewrite sentences, search for a certain type of photo on the internet, or write brief review of sports products. Below is an example of one that you might find.


At first glance, the work may not look that appealing based on the amount you will get paid for each task – $0.15, $0.06, or even a $0.01 per task.   So, you probably want to choose your HITs wisely.   But also remember that there are hundreds and even thousands of HITs available in that one HIT description.   If you are the type that can navigate quickly on the computer/internet, those small cents can add up to big dollars fast.

Here’s another blogger’s take on Mechanical Turk.

So here’s my disclaimer: This is not the type of work that you want to try to make a living off of.  This should merely just be supplemental income to the job that you already have.  Some tasks require certain qualifications as listed on the Qualifications tab. For more information, watch this video.

Another example for the creative designers out there is 99 Designs.  This site is filled with thousands of design contests.  You, the artist, review the specifications on the contest, submit your design, and wait to see if you win the contest.  Before you sign up, you are able to see how many designs will be chosen and the monetary reward given to the winner.  Just looking at the contests today, I see rewards ranging from $100-$2500.  This can be quick cash for the person with a creative mind that can produce designs in short time.

While I am not a designer and my east coast lifestyle does not allow for extra time on my hands, I did find this market very fascinating.  I’m sure  Mechanical Turk and 99  Designs are just a couple examples of this type of crowdsourced work.   Let me know if you try this out and how it goes…


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