Wednesday, May 25, 2011

feel like wasting time?

so I should've had another post out but I've been really busy and distracted lately and I stumbled across this game today:

EpicMafia


It's fun and free and really addictive... if you haven't already, check it out.

An actual post of substance coming tomorrow I hope.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Microworkers: Part 2

Alright so it's been a week since I first talked about Microworkers. And, to be honest, it MIGHT be legit. And we (I) may never know. Why? Look at this.

The story of this picture: not long after I did my initial review of Microworkers, I realized that in order to get paid you had to make at least $9. So I was like, well, I'm bored, let's do a few more. I did 12 tasks total, 10 got accepted (more on that in a bit) and I made over $9. All is well, right? Well no. Because you have to have made $9 PLUS a fee. Which, IMO, is ridiculous and I'm prettymadbro. But [I guess] that's really my mistake for not realizing it.

Additionally, if I got paid for all the tasks I completed, I would have made enough. But 2 of my tasks got denied. They were Craigslist Ads: you copy some text, paste it onto Craigs and create an ad. The text for the ads were obviously really spammy -- broken english and stuff leading to clicking on a link for some pyramid scheme scam. But I figured, whatever, I don't really care, I'm getting paid a dollar to click a couple times. But 2 of my tasks got denied for payment. Why?


 I love the question mark at the end. Like the employer doesn't know why the post was flagged & removed, or what that even means

Not sure what I was supposed to do if it got flagged. Because it was guaranteed to get flagged. I guess I could have reposted it over and over again but that's a lot more than the simple task I signed up for. *sigh*

So, is Microworkers legit/worth it? Probably, if you're picky about what tasks you do and don't mind 6% of your earnings going poof for fees.

I guess I'll go try and make that last 10 cents so I can get my money >.>

WINNERS

Okay so I just got home from vaca and before I do anything else, here are the winners of the Gift Card Giveaway

100th Follower:


Kyle Griffin

(I can't find a link to your blog in your profile so if you want comment here and I'll add it in)

Random Commenter: 







Lucky Commenter #14 is


JayPower

go check out his blog here!

How to Claim your Gift Card?

The easiest way to do this is to either comment with your email address or if you don't want your email on the internets then you can email it to me at tripperella@hotmail.com

Congrats to the winners! I have a lot of work to do first, but I'll catch up on all your blogs later tonight and hopefully have the follow-up review to Microworkers up late tonight or early tomorrow morning. 

<3 you guys :3 

Sunday, May 22, 2011

pew pew

hey guys so I am on a mini-vacation in Wisconsin celebrating the end of finals! WOOOOOO~

anyway, I'll be back on Monday to catch up on all yer blogs and announce the winners of the Amazon $5 Gift Card Giveaway~ and also maybe start a new blog on health and fitness. so yeah.

I'm still recovering from my experience mistakenly wandering into a gay porn viewing. I was at a club in the area which is, apparently, predominantly a gay club and also, apparently, shows hardcore gay porn on the TVs. So yeah that was fun.

Also on Monday, I'll be doing my follow-up to the post about Microworkers. It seems like it might be legit but the tasks are irritating me (not getting paid because the OBVIOUSLY scammy post you made me do got flagged and removed? gimme a break).

peace out my unicorns

Thursday, May 19, 2011

$5 AMAZON GIFTCARD GIVEAWAY

I'm at 97 followers!

 So I am announcing 2 $5 Amazon Giftcard Giveaways

1 $5 Amazon Giftcard will be given to my 100th follower

AND for my current followers

Comment on this post to be entered in a random drawing for 1 $5 Amazon Gift Card

Winners will be announced on Monday!

(I will be using http://www.random.org/integers/ to draw the random winner!)

EDIT: What can you buy with $5 on Amazon, you ask?

I'm glad you asked. How about a nice box of crayons?
http://www.amazon.com/Crayola-Classic-Crayons-Colors-52-3016/dp/B002CVTBO6/ref=cm_lmf_tit_4

create false Idols with the Holy Toast Bread Stamper!
http://www.amazon.com/Fred-HOLYT-Toast-Bread-Stamper/dp/B000KG8E52/ref=cm_lmf_tit_13

Duck Tape to entrap your victims and hold them captive-- I mean, ship packages
http://www.amazon.com/Henkel-1-88-Inch-22-2-Yard-Sealing-Dispenser/dp/B0006HX1HG/ref=cm_lmf_tit_16

Amazon mTurk Part 2 - Review

Ease of Use: 4/5

mTurk favors the worker. There is no rating/feedback system; when you submit a task, it is either approved and paid, or rejected and not paid. At first this may seem like a bad thing, especially if you are just starting out on mTurk. But believe me when I say this is actually a very, very good thing that absolutely works in your favor.

Why? Because the power is in the hands of the worker. On eBay, a few bad ratings can tank your sales. On oDesk, unless you have really impressive feedback, you won't get hired. However, on mTurk as long as you follow the instructions for the task, it will be approved and you'll be paid.

Additionally, there is nothing barring you from working on mTurk. You can accept any task you are qualified for, and on most tasks, the only qualification is a high approval rating. No sweat.

Payment: 1/5

Payment. You get paid for the tasks you complete on your Amazon Payments account, which you can use to shop Amazon and a bunch of other sites: https://payments.amazon.com/sdui/sdui/personal/directory

If you are in the US you can also have the balance transferred to your [verified] bank account.

This really blows because while the payment is quick, you can only use the money towards purchases on Amazon.com or their affiliates unless you live in the US. If you are not in the US: unless you purchase from Amazon a lot of the time, or you're specifically saving up for a big purchase (again, on Amazon), it's pretty much not worth it.

The only redeeming factor here is that payment is quick, usually 1-3 days from your tasks being accepted.

Risk: 5/5

The risk here is negligible. You're not investing anything or giving out your information to 3rd parties, and payment is pretty much guaranteed. 

Who would I recommend mTurk to?
If you:

-Live in the US & have a US bank account
-Already have specific things you buy or want to buy from Amazon
OR
-Are bored, have some time to kill, and don't mind doing quick mind-numbing tasks

Then mTurk is probably for you. Can you make a living working on Amazon Mechanical Turk? Maybe. If you're willing to look at it like a real job, work several hours a day without many distractions, and are in the US, you could probably pull at least $3-400 a month. Honestly, though, there are a lot of other websites and projects I would recommend if you are looking to work and support yourself exclusively online. 

mTurk is a nice supplemental income. I think in the last few months I've made about $60 and I did it for about an hour a day or less.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Quick Tips for Bloggers

Hey guys this is just a quick update with Blog tips. I'm working on the second part of the mTurk review but for now here are some tips.

1. Index your blog in search engines. This will make sure your blog shows up on searches.
Bing: http://www.bing.com/webmaster/SubmitSitePage.aspx
Google: http://www.google.com/addurl/?continue=/addurl
Yahoo: http://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com/submit

2. Interact with other bloggers. Search for blogs you're interested, leave comments, and follow them! You want to get your blog's name and url out there as much as you can. If you leave a comment on a popular blog, there's a chance others will see your comment, click on your profile, and find your blog!

3. Join forums and websites that relate to your blog's topic, or forums for promoting your website. Post a link in your signature, and be active on the forums. Make sure that your blog's address is in EVERY site you have a profile on. Here are a couple links:
http://forums.digitalpoint.com/
http://forum.bloggertricks.com/

4. Post! This is especially important in the beginning. If you don't post for a long time, people who come across your blog will assume it's inactive and won't bother following or commenting. This is huge.

5. On a related note, make sure the content of your blog is quality. Don't make one-sentence posts, or posts that are just a Youtube Video. People can find that stuff anywhere -- make the blog worthwhile for people to read!

That's it for now! What tips would you guys give to new bloggers? Let me know if I missed anything!

Amazon Mechanical Turk (mTurk) - Part 1

Welcome to Part 1 of my review/guide to Amazon Mechanical Turk, or mTurk. The is a real, legitimate way of making money online working from home.

Getting Started

What you will need:

A computer with internet (derp)
An Amazon Account

...and that's pretty much it! If you want to be paid in cash (as opposed to an Amazon payments balance, which you can use to pay for purchases on Amazon and other websites), you'll also need a US bank account to transfer the money into.

Here is the webpage: https://www.mturk.com/mturk/welcome

You'll want to sign up as a Worker. If you already have an Amazon account, just log in with that. Otherwise, create an Amazon account and then use it to sign into mTurk.

Find Work (HITs)

Okay so we have our account set up. Next thing to do is go to the HITs (which stands for Human Intelligence Task) tab and search for HITs. The easiest way to do this is just click the check box that says "for which you are qualified" and search (more on qualification tests later). You'll come up with a list of potential tasks. You can preview any task by clicking View a HIT in this group. Some tasks will only have one HIT, others will have hundreds or even thousands of HITs. Once you found a HIT you would like to complete, click "Accept HIT" on the bottom, follow instructions, and then submit it.

Which HIT should you take? A couple things to be aware of here: 1st, be suspicious of HITs that pay a high amount ($10 or more) for an easy task. If any HIT directs you to a goo.gl or tinyurl link, don't trust it, as the "employer" here creates throwaway accounts and will NOT pay you. The caveat is that there ARE some high-paying HITs, but these are usually transcription or writing articles with strict requirements.

2nd, it is important to decide what type of HITs you would like to accept. Do you want to complete many HITs that are easy and quick, but pay very little (5-15 cents per HIT)? Or do you want to complete tasks which are more difficult and take longer, but the pay rate is higher ($2-5 per hit, or more). Once you determine this, it will be easier to find tasks which appeal to you.

NEXT TIME: mTurk Part 2- which HITs to trust, how you get paid, and my personal review!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

(Nearly) Free Stuff!: Paperbackswap

So Paperbackswap ISN'T completely free but it is pretty neat and it's almost free. The basic idea is you list up all the books you own and and want to get rid of (any book, unlike the title suggests it doesn't have to be paperback), and then users can request books from you. You send the book (note: you DO pay shipping, but it's media mail so fairly cheap) and when they get the book, you get a "Credit" that you can use to get a book "FOR FREE" (minus what you paid in shipping of course).

It seems pretty neat, and they also have a feature where if you buy & print shipping off their site you get Instant Credit towards a book. The majority of people who use the site seem to be those into the cheap Harelquin romance novels, but there's all kinds of books.

They use a FIFO (first in first out) system to determine who gets a book once it's listed. Basically you put books on your wishlist, and you enter a queue for that book. When you're at the head of the line and someone posts the book, you get it! You can bypass this system by requesting a book directly from another user, and there's forums for book exchanges and stuff like that.

Check it out, let me know what you think!

EDIT: 50 followers! Wow, thanks you guys XD

Mini-rant: Extreme Couponing

In my search to find the best ways to make AND save money via the internets, I of course investigated coupons. Early on, much to my dismay, I realized that I live in a state where stores DO NOT double coupons. What is coupon doubling, you say? It's when stores have special sales (usually once a week) where they double the value of ALL your coupons! So say you had a coupon for $0.75 off X. Super Awesome Grocery Store is running a sale on X - each X is only $1.50. You go to the store on Thursday, which is Double Coupon day.

1.50 X sale price
-0.75 coupon X2
= you are getting X for free. Seriously.

This stuff works. If you're questioning it, watch the show Extreme Couponing (on TLC maybe? not sure). However, if you're like me and no stores near you double coupons, and you also don't want to spend hours a day scouring local sales ads and matching them up with coupons, well, you're out of luck. Frankly, for me, couponing is just not worth the time and effort. If you find a coupon for something you already buy, use it. But otherwise, it's not something I'd recommend.

If you do live in a state where coupon doubling happens, or you're interested in couponing in general, here's some links that may help you.

For printable coupons:
coupons.com
http://coupons.smartsource.com/
http://www.redplum.com/

For coupon matchups, local deals, and more:
http://thekrazycouponlady.com/
http://moneysavingmom.com/

Monday, May 16, 2011

Microworkers: First Impressions

Okay so thanks to one of you I've found a new website like mTurk and oDesk that allows you to complete assigned tasks and (hopefully) make money online. The website is called Microworkers.

 My first impression, as usual, was that the site looks a little dodgy. One thing that you really MUST be on the lookout for is potential scams. There are a lot of websites out there that promise payment for completing surveys or tasks and they actually require YOU to pay to complete offers. So not worth it. Remember, time is money. My golden rule when deciding on whether or not to use a site like this:

Rules of the Road #1 -- Never spend a lot of time and/or effort on a website if you aren't sure it will pay!

Likewise, be wary of offers that promise a lot of money for minimal effort! But more on that later.


So I signed up on Microworkers and picked a task called "Vitamin Product: Review." The task was to write a 50-word (positive) review of a given product. Easy enough, right? Here is a screenshot of the task page:

So, as you can see, pretty straightforward. The task pages lists the "employer"'s requirements, how much it pays, and exactly what you have to do. Typing up the review took me about 30 seconds, copy&pasting it with the required information took another 30. Pretty easy. After you submit the task, you get this screen:

And then if you follow the link to "See tasks you finished" you get this:


Of note here: the employer has to review the work before you get paid. Cool. Secondly, tasks are reviewed in 7 days. Which I suppose isn't that long of a time, but it means I personally won't be doing anymore tasks on this website for a week, until I "get paid."

And that's the other thing. They have a wonky pay system:



(The $1.00 on my account is a "sign-up" bonus. I guess it's supposed to give you incentive to keep working there.) The minimum withdrawal request is $9 + fee. They pay out to PayPal, Moneybook, and AlertPay. Which is okay, and I can sort of dig the withdrawal minimum. I'm just not sure why they would need to confirm mailing address with a PIN. Oh well.

So that's a quick run down of my first impressions of Microworkers. I won't do anything else with the site until a week has passed and the money from the first task gets put in my account. If you are going to sign up for Microworkers and you don't already have an account, please use my referral code: http://microworkers.com/?Id=60147c7f

That's that. Anybody have any experiences with Microworkers you wanna share? I'm very interested.
Okay so this is it. The Blog. And my introduction to the world, as it were. Here is what I'm blogging about:

~ Making Money at Home!
Or, alternative methods of acquiring currency while being a total recluse. From personal experience.

Basically I will look into/talk about a bunch of different methods of making money that aren't "traditional jobs" like eCommerce, freelancing, etc. Some of the stuff I'll talk about are:

sites like Amazon Turk and oDesk
making money buying and selling on eBay and Amazon
blogging
working for a service such as ChaCha or kgb

and more! misadventures, daily anecdotes and reviews of all different kinds of "work at home" models. including scams, which I have definitely fallen victim to. the only thing I will not be talking about is anything illegal (petty theft, forgery, misrepresentation, prostitution, etc.)

also probably some ramblings, musings, or other stuff that I feel like talking about.

so yay.