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.
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!