Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
 
  • Post
  • Reply
Nighthand
Nov 4, 2009

what horror the gas



Feel free to ask about current work, as some of this might change frequently enough that this is outdated. Also feel free to suggest new sites not on this list, especially if you've worked there and have firsthand experience to share.

Freelancers are not employees. Freelancers get shafted constantly. Be aware, be smart, don't let desperation drive you to do work for slave wages. Transcription for pennies per minute, writing for a fraction of a cent per word, people will try to get away with paying you far, far less than you're worth. Most of the sites below have some protection for freelancers (fixed pay rates, siding with freelancers rather than clients in disputes, etc) but that doesn't protect you from accepting work at a pay rate below what you're worth. The one saving grace of using these sites, generally, is that the client can't skip town and not pay you.

A sad fact of freelancing is that there is always someone desperate enough to accept work for third-world wages. Don't be that person. It hurts all of us in the long run, because clients learn they can get barely-passable work for a thin slice of a bean, so they won't post work or pay rates that the rest of us consider worthwhile.

If you want to hire some Goons to do some work for you, post a thread in the SA-Mart and link us if you want. All transactions should be handled in the appropriate forum.

A few things to note. The majority of these sites only work with US residents, so if youíre outside the US it may be hit or miss. This thread mostly deals with online money making, hence the title. Some things, like online tutoring and call center style work, are listed as well.

Writing

There are a number of decent sites that come up all the time, so hereís the main ones.

Textbroker Ė Textbroker is a hub for freelance writers where you can pick orders out of a public pool. When you apply, they rate you from 1-5 stars, only not really. 1 star = not hired, and 5 stars is reserved for established writers who have taken the proofreading test. 2 stars isnít worth working for, and 3 stars is low pay, low volume and hard to rise in the ranks. 4 stars is where 99% of the work is. You can be promoted to 5 by taking their strict proofreading test and being rated highly enough. Increasingly more work is becoming available at 5, so if you can hit it, it's well worth it. Note: It seems they're requiring a photocopy of a picture ID as part of their application now. They're still legit, though. Note that it might take as many as 2-3 weeks to hear back from them about your application, and then you have a probationary period where you need to write five articles and have them rated before you can write more.

Basically clients post assignments for X number of words, you claim and write them, and see if theyíre accepted or rejected. 4 star assignments pay 1.4 cents a word. As you write, you can build connections with clients and they may invite you to a team (which is the same deal only a different price and a smaller writer pool, price varies from team to team) or direct orders (which you set the price for).

Many teams are also public, and you can apply to them according to their requests. Try to only apply to teams with posted work or newly formed teams. Textbroker doesnít remove old, inactive teams, so applying to them just wastes your time.

Supposedly they are changing their rating system to give better feedback and be more responsive to changes, so being demoted isnít necessarily a death sentence. Weíll see how that works out.

Writer Access Ė An excellent site to work for, and it works just about the same way as Textbroker. There are a few differences that make WA better than TB. First off, if you're tenacious, you can change your rating more easily than on TB, largely through active communication with clients. If you're accepted in at 3 stars, you can pull yourself up to 4 after a couple of articles. It works the same way as TB with the open pool you can claim assignments from, with one major difference: you can only claim one from a given client at first. Once they accept it, you can freely write for that client, but until they do, you're stuck waiting. Once you've gotten initial articles in for a range of common clients (and applied to plenty of casting calls and gotten on some love lists) you'll have a stream of possible assignments to choose from.

Note that the platform is increasingly pushing to have clients post casting calls and not dump orders to the open pool. This makes it hard to get work if youíre not an established writer. On the flip side, new writers are given an hour (ish, unconfirmed) where they see new casting calls before older writers, letting them get applications in first. Itís a mess. If you can get work, WA pay is fantastic for content mills. If you canít, itís an exercise in frustration.

The application process is a little long (take your time writing blurbs and fill out as much as you can) and you should be in within a month. Definitely make sure you know the AP stylebook and take your time with the writer's test, since even though you can reach 4 stars with a little work, it takes a while to find that work.

Constant Content Ė CC is a marketplace. You write whatever you like and post it, at a price you set. Then you wait and see if someone wants to buy it. It has a fairly reasonable average price per word, but itís not good for guaranteed work. You might sell an article in an hour, or it might take six months. Definitely add it to your roster if you're a writer, because you can write multiple versions of one article (say for Textbroker) and post the second version here to sell.

Zerys - Another site similar to TB and WA. Sign up, get rated, claim assignments, write them, submit them, make money. Your star rating is even easier to swing than TB or WA, and you need to have a high rating to see worthwhile assignments. The application process is a bit long and tedious, since you need to manually add industries you're willing to write about with their clunky series of drop down menus. A good site to diversify a little work, but not necessarily good for a primary income source. On the plus side, it only takes a few days to hear back from them about your application, the fastest of the writing sites by far. Suggested categories include Home & Garden, Business & Finance, and Cities & Locales for reasonably constant work.

Words of Worth - Another TB-alike. They have better rates than TB, though not as good as WA. No idea yet on volume, but it only takes a week or two to hear a response from their application process, so give it a try. Note that this site is based in the UK, and thus they hire... in Canada, the US and Australia. Presumably they hire in the UK as well, but that option is currently unavailable.

Writerís Domain Ė This site used to be mindless, almost guideless SEO content mill posting for a rate that was fairly high for the quality demanded. They recently went through a reorganization, and their quality standards went up quite a bit. Some writers are reporting extremely long waits on article approvals, while others have no trouble. Go ahead and apply Ė the approval time is incredibly long. A couple of us goons have been waiting five or six months without hearing back, yes. The app doesnít take long, so apply and forget it until you get in.

Verblio Ė Another spec site, in a sense. You register for the platform and then youíre free to write. Companies post topics they want articles about, and you write something for that topic and submit it. Thereís no claimed articles or guaranteed acceptance, however. If a client doesnít want the article, they donít have to buy it. If they do buy it, itís generally $8 for 500 words, which is slightly higher than 4-star Textbroker level. You also earn points as you sell articles, which earn you rewards as you rack them up Ė including shares of the company if you rack up enough. Formerly named Blogmutt, they rebranded at some point.

Cetaphobia posted:

I thought I'd chime in that indie publishing on Amazon is a legitimate way to make money online as well. I am posting this here because a year ago, I'd have looked over self publishing with derision and focused on this thread.

Here's some things for you to read about it:

(OP Edit: All threads require archives and the discussion was pushed from SA to Goonreads.)
Ask Me About Being an Erotica Author!: PYF genital synonyms
Self-Published Erotica and You - Goonerotica is the best 'rotica
Self-Published Erotica and You, Part II - I guess what I'm trying to say is bukkake
And while romance and erotica will sell faster, it is not just limited to those genres:

Self-Publishing Goons (Amazon, B&N, Smashwords, etc)
Broke $1000 in one day for the first time yesterday from self-published books. $1001.50.
November sales numbers: ~ $28,790.00 (net profit, includes Amazon and B&N but excludes Smashwords).
Self Publishing Success Stories

So if you can write marginally well, you may want to look into this. Maybe the OP could add this information to the first post?
If you know of other writing sites, post them in the thread, with some basic info and compensation details. If theyíre decent they can be added to the op.

Penny Work

KGB, ChaCha, Mahalo, Swagbucks, Xomba, Clickworker, and so forth. These are all sites that you can get paid for doing simple tasks, like clicking links, doing quick surveys, and whatever else is posted. Very rarely something more lucrative will come up, but youíre not going to be making a living off these.

Surveys
Opinion Outpost, Ipsos ISay and Survey Savvy are the three Iíve personally used and cashed out money through. Thereís tons of others out there. For the most part itís $1-2 per survey, so youíre not going to make a living here either, but you can do one or two in your spare time and cash out $30 every month or so. If youíre a minority or in an odd demographic youíll probably get through more surveys more often and pull in more cash.

Search Engine Evaluation
This is the other major source of income for people in the thread. There are three main sites we know of that do this. Basically youíre contracting for a search engine to help improve their search results. More details than that are under NDA.
Leapforce Ė Look for Search Engine Evaluator
Lionbridge Ė Look for Internet Assessors Program
Butler Hill Ė Look for Search Relevance or Web Search Evaluation

Note: It looks like Appen is buying Leapforce, and consequently this may not be a good option for Q1 2018 or so.

All of them are similar tedious work rating search results pages based on a huge pdf of guidelines. LF and LB pay per minute, and BH is a bit different. Theyíre good gigs, but they tend to drop people without warning. As a freelancer, itís just something we have to deal with.

Transcription

Transcription is the #1 most talked about method of making money in this thread, and most of the regulars here do it in some form. A couple of them even work for the houses involved and can hook up goon transcribers once you have six months of experience under your belt.

Kazmeyer is our resident transcription expert, so Iíll let him speak in his own words.

kazmeyer posted:

Here's just a quick and dirty version. It was actually much longer than this, as I included some anecdotes, but when I looked at the size of the post, jeez.

So you want to be a transcriptionist...

First of all, let me tell you, you're making an excellent choice. Transcription is a fun, easy job that you can do from home on pretty much your own schedule, and you get exposed to all kinds of interesting subjects. It's also difficult and frustrating and mind-numbingly dull, and you'll have to sit through interviews with people you want to punch in the face. So let's get to it.

How much does transcription pay?

Generally, starting rates for transcribers are in the $.60-$.70 per minute range. Now, I know you just did some math and got excited, but calm down. That's per minute of tape, and when you're first starting out, you're going to be lucky to be able to do 15 minutes of tape in an hour of work. So starting out, you're going to be earning somewhere around 10 bucks per hour of actual work. Rates go up, however, especially if you get into media work. Rush work pays extremely well (files that need to be turned around in less than 24 hours), and specialty jobs -- like focus groups that pay by the page, or as-broadcast work, more on that later -- can pay a ridiculous per-minute rate when you average it out.

What do I need to get started?

Before you start transcribing, you're going to need a couple of things. First, you need a really good set of headphones. The audio quality of the files you recieve will vary, so a good set of closed cans to block out ambient noise is a godsend. You'll also need transcription software. The industry standard is Express Scribe, which is nice because it's free and most transcription houses will give you some instructions on how to get it set up and use it. It's definitely not the only one out there, however; I use a more full-featured program called Inqscribe, but it costs. Finally, you're going to need a pedal.

Really? A pedal?

Yes, really. You can work without one (most software will allow you to configure hotkeys to control the playback) but getting a ~$50 USB transcription pedal will vastly increase your speed. The reason is that it takes all the tape control functions away from your hands, which means you can just leave them on the keyboard the entire time instead of having to move off home row and hit a function key to jump back two seconds. This investment will pay for itself in a very short period of time.

All right, so I'm good to go?

Well, not exactly. Transcription seems like easy work on the surface, but not everyone can do it. One client told me that 90% of the transcribers he takes on wash out because the work drives them nuts. Before you apply anywhere, you should test yourself to see whether or not you can handle the work. Grab an audio file, preferably a stand-up or spoken word performance. Henry Rollins works AMAZINGLY well for this, because he personifies just about every bad speaking habit you'll find. Just make sure it's something recorded live with a single speaker. Queue it up, open up a text file, and transcribe what the guy says. Include all stutters, ums, uhs. If he laughs, put [LAUGHS]. If he coughs, put [COUGHS]. Be as accurate as possible. Every thirty seconds or so, double-space and start a new paragraph. Take breaks when you need to (you will need to) but keep transcribing until you've gotten about 30 minutes done. When you hit the 30 minute mark, you will have experienced what a typical transcription job is like. If you think you can do a couple of those a day for the forseeable future, go ahead and apply.

What's with the different types of transcription?

When you look for transcription jobs, you'll usually see them listed in one of four broad categories. First, and most common, is medical transcription, that being transcribing recorded notes from doctors and medical professionals. This is a technical trade, and most reputable houses require you to complete a training course before they'll take you on. The training can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars. Legal transcription is similar, but transcribing instructions for legal documents, and usually requires some experience in the field. General, Business, or Academic transcription is sort of a generic catch-all; this includes a wide variety of different clients and transcription styles, such as focus groups or business meetings, and is probably easiest to get into. And then there's my darling, media transcription.

Media? You mean like TV?

I mean exactly TV. Media transcription centers around the production of reality television shows and documentaries, although you can find yourself working on just about anything related to the field. Editing video apparently costs production companies something on the order of the soul of an orphan child per hour. Producing a timecoded transcript of raw video lets them cut an episode together on paper instead, saving time and money. Media work pays the best, not only in base per-minute rates, but in rush rates -- because a show has to be done by a deadline, and if they suddenly need to reshoot something, they're willing to pay an insane amount of money to get it done tout-suite. (Once, I had to do a transcript on a Friday for them to cut on Saturday for an episode of a show that was airing nationwide Tuesday. It paid astonishingly well and is probably my personal hourly income record.)

Media transcription also includes as-broadcast work, where you produce detailed transcripts of finished productions that can pay substantial amounts of money based on the complexity. (The most detailed ABS scripts include time codes of every shot in the episode, off-camera and on-camera dialogue, and can pay upwards of $100 for a 22-minute episode. You'll earn every dollar, though, they're a frigging nightmare to do.)

I'm in. Where do I apply?

There are a number of different transcription companies on the internet. Unfortunately, it can be kind of difficult finding work when you're just starting out -- not everyone wants to hire newbies, just because so many of them wash out. Go to a Craigslist aggregator, something that lets you search listings across the country, and scan for "transcription OR transcriber" starting somewhere in a Los Angeles zipcode (since most media companies are based there). You'll end up having to wade through a ton of medical listings, but you'll eventually find some general transcription jobs. Not everybody is always hiring, but most of them post ads on Craigslist when they are. Make a habit of checking it every few days.

Any leads?

Well, yes. There's a company called Focus Forward that is apparently almost always hiring. Their pay isn't the best -- works out to about $.66 per minute of tape for their standard jobs, and they have a bunch of weird specialty transcription types with different pay rates -- but they're pretty well-known in the business. If you apply there, pay VERY close attention to their style guide, and make sure you follow all the rules with their sample transcript.

Another outfit that hires regularly is Daily Transcripts. I can't say enough good things about these guys. Their base rate isn't that fantastic, about $.70 a minute for most stuff, but they're extremely good folks to work with, pay quickly, and have lots of opportunities for rush and otherwise more lucrative work. Plus, working for them is media transcription for your resume, which is key for getting into the really good jobs later on. Once you've got two years of media transcription on your CV, it's really easy to find work in this business.

Anything to watch out for?

Yes. First and foremost, any gig you sign up for should at a bare minimum make you fill out a W-9, sign an independent contractor agreement, and probably an NDA on top of that. If you don't fill out this paperwork at the beginning, it's almost guaranteed that at some point you're going to invoice them for a really heavy month of work and you're never going to hear from them again. Also, if a client suggests that a fair rate for transcription is anything south of .50 a minute, walk away. Especially if they want things done in a ridiculously tight turnaround. If you're doing a transcript in under 24 hours, you should be getting paid well for it.

Regarding the NDA: largely, it's not that big of a deal. Most of the work you're going to be doing is fairly dull stuff, nothing too secret about it. No one's going to throw a fit if you tell your friends, "Hey, I worked on some promo shoots for Alcatraz and did an episode of Toddlers and Tiaras", or even, "Hey, I got to do an episode of the second season of Game of Thrones and it was AWESOME". Revealing specific details or ESPECIALLY sharing video files, however, will get your rear end kicked. It's also there to protect any information that may come out in the files but isn't for public consumption, like if a certain well-known television star were to blurt out inbetween takes the story of that time he killed some guy in Canada. Which didn't happen, I'm just using a hypothetical story to illustrate a point. Really. Don't ask.

Also, pay very close attention to their orientation packets. If you end up working for multiple clients, you'll learn that not every one of them uses the same format, and they also may have completely different definitions of the word "verbatim". For instance, if one of my clients requests a verbatim transcript, that means no "um"s and "uh"s, but use slang where appropriate (gonna instead of going to, etc.). Another one wants every syllable the speaker utters, but convert slang into proper English and no "in'" endings. Focus Forward doesn't like the word "okay". Et cetera.

Watch your deadlines. Especially in the beginning, start slow. Most transcription outfits check your work after it comes in, so a tape that's due noon PST tomorrow is probably not due to the client right then -- but you'll make everyone's job a lot easier if you get it in on time. If you have a problem, let your handler know ASAP. The quickest way to stop being a transcriber is to start blowing deadlines left and right. By the same token, never be afraid to turn down a job if you think you're too slammed. They all understand you're probably working for multiple clients simultaneously, and telling a client, "I can't take this job because it will jeopardize someone else's deadline" is a good way to let them know you'd give their work the same consideration.

Isn't voice recognition going to kill the business?

Not for a while. Voice recognition software is getting better every year, and for industries where you have a lot of content from a single speaker who's willing to train the software, then yes, it may eventually replace transcribers. This is why I'd hesitate before taking on an expensive medical transcription course, personally -- although I think it'll be a cold day in hell before most doctors would waste the time training Dragon Naturally Speaking, that's the field most vulnerable to advances in technology.

Media transcription, on the other hand, features multiple voices, outdoor recordings, action sequences, stage directions, b-roll, timecoding -- all things that automation can't really deal with. For giggles one time I hooked up Dragon Naturally Speaking to my audio output and fed it an episode of Burn Notice. It was like Racter had a stroke. (Old school reference, anyone? Anyone? gently caress, I'm old.) In any case, media transcription isn't going anywhere anytime soon, so feel free to jump on board.
Daily Transcripts is this website: https://www.dailytranscription.com/ Daily Transcripts reviews applications when they think they need new freelancers. This means your application may take anywhere from a few days to several weeks to be reviewed, depending on the incoming volume of work.
Another site, Way With Words, is here. Note: They hire Canadians! http://www.transcriptioncanada.com/
Avoid GMR Transcription, they require a shitton of work, money upfront and all kinds of red flag bullshit.
Once you've been doing transcription for 6+ months and haven't burned out, you can contact thread regular Jedi Knight Luigi (JKL), he helps get goons in his transcription house, a step up from DT.

Most Goons seem to start with Daily Transcripts and tend to ask the same sort of questions. The big one is how long does it take to get back to you after the test. The answer: anywhere from a week to a couple months, depending on numerous factors. You can send them a message to ask about your test status if it takes too long. They will tell you if you fail, so no word is limbo, not rejection.

Slightly Used Cake posted:

Canadian transcribers, Transcription Divas has now rebranded to Transcipt Heroes. I've been on with them for about three weeks now, they've successfully paid me in a very timely manner, are awesome and seemingly have a nice chunk of work, most legal and research interviews, clean verbatim. I'd have a look if you're experienced. They're unfortunately not taking Americans. Pay is ranging so far from $1.16-1.46 CAD for clean verbatim. Their idea of tough audio so far seems to be an actual literal cake walk.

And if you're on LinkedIn link up with CaptionMax and then through there to a guy named Ashster who owns Syncwords. Ashster seems to reach out to people when he needs more bodies. Super awesome to work for, invoicing is every two weeks and he pays as soon as he sees it via PayPal. American and Canadian spelling so being Canadian seems to be an asset. not sure that they're actively recruiting right now, but then again he gave me a poke during everyone else's slow season and has since been hammering me with work.

I didn't want to recommend these guys until I knew they were good to work with and that they paid on time. So far I have had nothing but positive experiences with both companies.

Other Work
ELance/ODesk/Upwork Ė Upwork is writing, but itís also translation, programming, and other various freelance contracts. Basically itís a site where you build and post a profile, and clients browse for people to work for them. Buyer Beware! Some of the work people will solicit you for is shady affiliate marketing scams and penny work. On the other hand, thereís some good stuff in there, if you build a full profile and put the effort into it. Worth checking out.
LiveOps - LiveOps is phone work, so it's not strictly online money making, but it IS legitimate work from home. There's a small fee upfront for a background check, something like $55 or so. Check Derek79's posts for extra information. Essentially, you take sales or support calls for various businesses, like being the person who is called when someone wants to buy Oxyclean or a Slapchop.
Mechanical Turk - Work crowdsourcing for Amazon. A lot of stuff on there is penny work, but if you're tenacious you can find some good jobs. See PurpleButterfly's post for more detail.

Fiverr Ė Fiverr started off as a site where you trade X service for $5. Usually the service is worth far more than $5, but since youíre competing with a bunch of outsourced Malaysians or whatever, itís hard to get a foothold. However, with the addition of Gig Extras, you can end up with a base job worth far more than the basic $5. Hereís a good post about it by Rupert Buttermilk:

Rupert Buttermilk posted:

Hey guys, I just have to pop in to say that if any of you have any sort of skill or talent that you think people would pay money for, even transcribing, I'd highly recommend Fiverr. I know that it seems 'well, poo poo, it's only $5', and that's true... at first. But once you actually start getting gigs and at least build yourself up to level 1 (I think it required a 90% overall rating, and 10 orders completed), you can then get into using 'Gig packages'.

Gig packages are, first and foremost, ways to set your base price higher than $5 (which ends up being $4 USD, after Fiverr takes their 20%. In Canada, it comes out to still around $5 because of the exchange ) For my specific case, I started out in December without knowing anything about the site or how I should be pricing things. I'm a sound designer and composer, and I was writing 30-seconds of music for $5, and it sucked. I then changed that to $5/15 seconds of music, but it was still kind of rough, because that is an extremely low price.

Obviously, doing work like that on this site STILL means you're probably busting your rear end way more than if you were on a real-life contract, but here's where you can tip the scales in your favour... use gig extras. Gig extras combined with gig packages has literally turned an order that would be $5-15 into a baseline $40 and I'll explain how.

Gig extras are little things that you can have the buyer request for additional costs. So, $5 for 15 seconds of music. I state upfront that it's going to be a 320kbps mp3 file. Now, the buyer has the option to also get a high-quality, uncompressed .wav file for $10. Know how much work is required to create that version? One click. So, right there, that's tripled the price. I also add in the option to get all of the audio tracks I used as separate audio files. That's still no real extra work, I charge an extra $10 for that, and people have bought it. There's the option to add extra revisions (I include 2 by default), as well as an option to speed the timeframe up. My usual timeframe for gigs was (pre-'gig packages') something like 6 days, but if they want it in 2, then they can pay extra for it. Granted, I usually bust a gig out in a couple of hours, but they don't know that. Usually, the difference between a gig due in 6 days vs one due in 2 is merely scheduling.

As for gig packages, as I mentioned, you can set your base price at whatever you want. Packages offer 3 levels of your gig, which is like 'Standard', 'Premium', and 'Pro'. To put it shortly, 'Good', 'Better', 'Best'. Since setting up my gig with gig packages, I no longer offer $5 for 15/seconds. My base price is $10. Doesn't seem like a huge jump, but in the long run, it'll add up. Another benefit to gig packages is that it makes it that much easier for a customer to just quickly buy your service without having to screw around with extras, as you can include some extras in your tiers automatically, and buyers STILL have the option to add other extras in there.

Here are two screenshots of my order page (my username not included, as I'm not trying to sell to you guys. If you ARE interested, PM me. Goon discount, free extras).

Oh, I should also mention that the reason I put the word 'podcast' in my gig packages is because 99% of people who order from me are looking for podcast music. I had no idea there was such a huge demand for that, and I've updated my keywords to play to that strength, help with my profile's SEO stuff.





I know I've rambled on and on, and I'm sorry if this seems to be all over the place, but I think I've finally come through to that feeling of 'oh poo poo, I could ACTUALLY make quite a bit of money here', vs how I used to feel, which was 'Fiverr is only good for getting some spare change, here and there'. If you're willing to pretty much nickel-and-dime the poo poo out of buyers with some things but still offer quality work, they WILL still buy, and you'll profit.

I've heard that the voice over and video testimonials section of Fiverr is some of the most profitable work you can get on there, and they DO have a transcribing section as well. I pretty much stick to music, since that's what I know best.

Edit: PRO TIP: When starting out, ask a friend (or three) to sign up and submit a gig request for your stuff. Hell, pay them the $5 in advance so they're not out anything, because at that point, getting traffic to your profile is the most important thing, so completed, 5-star gigs are an excellent way to get noticed. I had two friends do this for me and it really helped. Just a note, though... It's best if your friend pretends they've stumbled across your profile, and that they carry on the full request within Fiverr so it doesn't look fishy. I've heard of people getting suspended when it seemed like they were extending their gigs outside of the site. Just have your friend message you on there with the request and details and you should be fine; don't have them put through an order with just the words "What we talked about, you know what to do."
Affiliate Marketing Ė This one is a huge topic that deserves (and might have) a thread of itís own. It isnít talked about much in this thread usually. The Warrior Forum and other similar sites offer a ton of information to get started.

Tutoring Tutor.com allows you to do some online tutoring on various subjects. Here's a great post about it:

Udelar posted:

OP asked for more information about Tutor.com, so here we go.

Until a few months ago I worked at Tutor.com. I left when I was offered a full-time teaching position elsewhere. I can confirm that they're entirely legit.

Requirements:
1) You must live in the US or Canada, but must not live in New York State.
2) You must be at least 18.
3) You must be attending college or have a Bachelor's degree (not necessarily in the subject you are teaching)
4) You have to pass a test in one of the subject areas they need. When I worked for them, their highest-need areas were Calculus, Statistics, Physics, and (especially) Chemistry.

(They also were in need of bilingual tutors for students whose first language is Spanish or Vietnamese, but they don't teach languages; these tutors would help students with their ordinary coursework but provide that help in the student's language. I only speak English so I don't know much about that part of their offerings.)

Application Process: You apply on their website and take tests to prove that you know enough to teach a subject. They get a writing sample from you to prove that you know how to communicate in text. Passing more tests makes them more interested; they sat on my application for months when I only had the Algebra Test passed, but as soon as I made it clear that I could do Trigonometry and Calculus they emailed me the next day. More subjects = More Students = More Hours.

If you get selected they'll have you send in some paperwork, link you to some basic training materials, and eventually schedule you for an interview/mock session with a Mentor. The mentor will pretend to be a student with a typical problem from one of the subject areas you passed a test in. After the mock session the mentor will provide some feedback and helpful suggestions. For me, the entire process from passing the Trigonometry test to starting work took about a week.

What it's like: You run a program on your side that matches you up with students requesting help in your subject area. You are paid an hourly rate. You can work in either of two different ways: you can schedule hours, for which you will be given priority as students connect, and you will be paid a (lower) waiting rate when not connected to students, or you can "float", which gives you lower priority as a tutor but since you're unscheduled if something comes up you can just go. Both scheduled and floating tutors get paid the same rate when they are connected to students. When I left, scheduled hours were exceedingly hard to come by. Even top-level tutors like myself would typically only be able to grab 10 or so scheduled hours per week. There is a hard cap of 30 hours per week. In practice this cap is difficult to hit; when schools were in session, as one of their most prolific tutors I typically only had about 20-25 hours per week.

After every session, students are asked to leave feedback on how they felt the session went; this student feedback score is the most important number for you. Consistently high feedback with many sessions gives you promotions and bonuses. Consistently low feedback gets you fired.

There's not really any way to communicate with your fellow tutors except your mentoring team, so you kind of feel isolated. I think it would have been great to have "tutor's lounge" forums or something along those lines. It probably would have kept me more focused on my job if I'd had something to do besides browse SA while I was waiting on kids to connect.

All in all, it was a pretty decent job, and it got me to develop the skills that are now earning me a professional salary.

I tutored all of the maths, so my work had probably 60% high schoolers, 30% college students, and 10% middle schoolers. Algebra I/II were my most frequented subject areas, but it was pretty balanced overall between Calculus, Statistics, Trigonometry, Geometry, and Algebra I and 2.

I honestly don't recall the waiting pay rate, as I almost always had students during scheduled hours. Active pay rate started at $9/hr when I was a probationary tutor. Your probationary period is over once you've got enough sessions turned in, and then your pay becomes either $10/hr if you tutor only low-need subjects, or $12/hr if you tutor at least one high-need subject (Note: if you've passed a test in a high need area, you get the higher active rate even when you're tutoring one of the other subjects). Regular active pay topped out at $14/hr for Tutor IIIs in high need areas. When I left there were incentive bonuses in Statistics and Chemistry of $.50 per session (most sessions are about 20 minutes long). There were also special programs for highly skilled and rated tutors that I participated in that had higher incentive bonuses.

The bonus structure is a percentage of your base pay and rewards you for 1) Having high student satisfaction ratings and 2) Completing a high average number of sessions per hour. I believe bonuses ran from 4% up to 20%, and like everything else at Tutor.com was automatic and based on your performance metrics only.

Other Goons Occasionally a fellow Goon with some work available will post in the thread. Keep an eye out. Another place for this is in SAís Freelance thread. Note: Any actual goon-to-goon work should be done in a thread in SA-mart.

About Taxes

For the majority of these sites, youíre a 1099 contractor. This means that none of your income is withheld for taxes. That means youíll need to set aside a portion of your income to pay taxes. The amount varies depending on how much you make. Personally I set aside 20%, but thatís because it also partially serves as my emergency fund. You might also have to file taxes quarterly. Itís a big turn-off for freelance work but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. You only have to pay taxes after youíve earned a certain amount. Iíve heard $400, $600, and other numbers tossed around. The general idea is that if youíre earning a decent income, youíre paying taxes. If youíre making $10 a month off of surveys, you donít even register on the governmentís radar.

For more specific tax advice, either go to the Tax Questions thread right here in BFC, or visit a tax professional.

Threads of Interest
Legitimate Online Moneymaking Round 2 (The old thread) forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3284002
US Income Tax Questions forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3394641
Blogs for Bucks forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3447030

Nighthand fucked around with this message at 16:37 on Jul 30, 2019

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Liberatore
Nov 16, 2010

Would you like
to know more?


When (that's no) moon hits this guy like a big Twi'lek guy: Liberatore!


I don't know if it was mentioned in the previous thread, but there's also oDesk. I haven't used the website in a while, but the gist of it is that you make an account, set up your profile and apply for jobs posted.

They have some pretty handy documentation/guides to help you make a good profile. There's even tests you can take and be rated by - when I first created an account there, I took one for English<->Portuguese translation and was rated #1 out of 300 or so people who took it. They track and publicly show things like ongoing jobs, jobs completed, amount paid per job/total and so on, so figuring out what to apply for is easy.

When you first create an account, the amount of applications you can place will be greatly limited until you make your account "oDesk ready", which doesn't take long.

The pay varies greatly. You set your hourly rate, but some jobs posted will have their own rate or fixed price. Some people get paid $10 per hour, some $100. Once all is said and done, oDesk takes a 10% cut off your pay. Main problem is that you're competing with other people for jobs. A good profile will go a long way, but once you start getting jobs, feedback is what will keep the ball rolling.

To get an idea of what you might be getting into, here are some recently posted jobs:


Keep in mind you will also find some really underpaid jobs (write articles at $0.01/word, some hourly rates going as low as $4, etc.) and depending on your area of expertise, lots of long term stuff. Just keep applying with rates that feel right for what you can offer and it won't take long before you find some work.

Also, the oDesk software lets clients take screenshots of your desktop to ensure you're actually working when clocking time.

Liberatore fucked around with this message at 07:56 on Apr 4, 2012

rocinante
Jun 16, 2007


Many of the content writing sites fell apart after Panda, so it does seem like a new thread is a good idea. I still see some of the content writers I know on Gather and Yahoo Voices, I think Gather is rev share only and Yahoo Voices might pay a small amount upfront if you're a featured writer. There seem to be a few new sites around and it looks like a lot of them are using the Textbroker model, so pay varies widely.

It seems like a lot of traditional media sites are willing to pay content sites for outsourced articles in bulk, because they cost much less than traditional journalism. I wonder if we could set a group up where several of us could write articles for one of the bigger media companies directly. It seems like there are several writers around here with strong portfolios and credentials. I think Scripted used a similar model where they marketed their forum posters to their clients.

Arnold of Soissons
Mar 4, 2011

by XyloJW


Thanks for the updated OP.

DanManIt
Sep 4, 2008


Great OP

Gargladdy
Sep 21, 2005
Outletsnake!

It was definitely time for a refresh. Thanks for taking the time to do this. It came out great.

Doghouse
Oct 22, 2004

I was playing Harvest Moon 64 with this kid who lived on my street and my cows were not doing well and I got so raged up and frustrated that my eyes welled up with tears and my friend was like are you crying dude. Are you crying because of the cows. I didn't understand the feeding mechanic.

This is a great new OP, thanks.

A few things:

- For Lionbridge, Toggl and Lionbridge Task Control are two useful resources for keeping track of your work time.

- In my experience, if you write solid pieces for Constant Content, they sell consistently, for a good amount, and within a reasonable amount of time.

Zapf Dingbat
Jan 9, 2001




Cool OP. This was a much needed refresh after the changes that recently occured in the industry.

Jesus, I'm having a rough time getting fast enough with this transcription. I just spent 7 hours total on a 54-minute file that had pretty horrible audio. A tape recorder set on a desk in a busy and noisy office. The rate was slightly higher, but to me, Daily Transcipts doesn't seem to scale the rates very accurately. I've had super easy files that paid much more than this.

I have a foot pedal and a good set of headphones, but I don't think I'll ever get to be as fast as I should be. An hour a day seems to be all I can handle. Can anyone chime in as to how long I should be spending on it, based on the difficulty of the file? Last week, I calculated that I'm making only slightly more than minimum wage.

kazmeyer
Jul 26, 2001

'Cause we're the good guys.



Unfortunately, that's the one thing I don't like about Daily Transcripts. In my career I've shifted away from general and business transcription simply because the time it takes to do a video shoot with two people versus a business lunch with eight people recorded on a shitbox Radio Shack memo taker in a busy restaurant is substantial, and their "hard audio" rate doesn't sufficiently take that into account.

Once you've gotten some experience and multiple clients, you can do what I do; I turn down any file which involves an unmoderated discussion involving more than three speakers, especially verbatim, especially if it's audio only, unless they're willing to pay by the page. Per minute rates never seem to adequately account for the complexity involved, whereas a per-page rate is a lot more fair (and what the rest of my clients use most of the time). Unfortunately, until you get enough experience and clients to be picky, you're going to have to take the occasional crappy tape along with the rest. Generally, there are enough video shoots to even things out, but if you get a run of really bad work you can always mention it to them and see if they can help you out.

Most of the time, the standard is 15 minutes of tape in an hour of work. Starting out, that's probably what you'll do on good audio, with bad audio taking more depending on the quality. You will speed up, though, and you'll get access to better jobs as you get more experience. As-broadcast work can be much, much faster once you get the hang of it, and pay rates tend to start in the $30-45 range for a 22-30 minute episode. Even there, however, your mileage may vary; a dialogue list-style ABS for NBC/Universal is a hell of a lot quicker to put together than a script-style ABS for HBO, and technical transcripts and shot-list ABS can be a freaking nightmare -- but worth it if the pay rate is commensurate and the show is well put together. (I just did a technical transcript for Inside the Actor's Studio and I want to buy that director a beer. If Spock directed a show, it would be Inside the Actor's Studio. Beautiful coverage.)

Derek79
Dec 17, 2005


One thing that I have rarely seen posted are at home phone jobs. In addition to Leapforce and various writing gigs, I have been with a company called LiveOps since May of 2007. I take calls for a variety of programs, most notably direct response infomercials, which is what most people start in. Taking these calls, you are paid .25 per minute that you are on the phone plus commission when certain things are sold. If there is an infomercial on television, odds are we probably take calls for it.

Once you start, you are able to add additional lines if you do a good job on your original line. Since May of 2007, I have been added to lines that take calls for Pizza Hut, Abbott Laboratories, Allstate First Notice of Loss, AAA Roadside Assistance and Lifelock Identity Protection. They also have specialty lines for those who have experience in the outbound industry as well as licensed insurance agents.

If anyone has questions, I would be glad to answer them. You can apply at https://www.liveops.com. There is a fee for the background check but that is the only cost associated with working there. I believe it is $50 or $55. It was actually $20 when I started so that may be outdated. They pay twice a month on the 1st and 16th. When I work it full time, I can bring in $3,000 to $4,000 a month (on about a 50 to 55 hour work week). It helps if you are available evenings, overnights and weekends, which are the prime times for direct response.

Zapf Dingbat
Jan 9, 2001




kazmeyer posted:

Helpful stuff.

Wow, that's kind of a relief. I was really bummed out by that job yesterday. What's crazy about the rates are that they're not the worst I've seen. There are companies out there that pay 40 cents per minute for conference calls. I just don't see why anyone would go that low... Selling quilts on Etsy ought to be more productive than that.

So after that mess yesterday, I've got a finished show where I have to list the shots on the left side and transcribe on the right. I'm probably going to play through it once for the shots, then again for the audio. We'll see how this goes.

Arnold of Soissons
Mar 4, 2011

by XyloJW


Derek79 posted:

One thing that I have rarely seen posted are at home phone jobs. In addition to Leapforce and various writing gigs, I have been with a company called LiveOps since May of 2007.



Thanks for the info!

Do you personally use a ground line traditional phone, or a google voice / skype set up? Does LiveOps care either way?

kazmeyer
Jul 26, 2001

'Cause we're the good guys.



Zapf Dingbat posted:

Wow, that's kind of a relief. I was really bummed out by that job yesterday. What's crazy about the rates are that they're not the worst I've seen. There are companies out there that pay 40 cents per minute for conference calls. I just don't see why anyone would go that low... Selling quilts on Etsy ought to be more productive than that.

So after that mess yesterday, I've got a finished show where I have to list the shots on the left side and transcribe on the right. I'm probably going to play through it once for the shots, then again for the audio. We'll see how this goes.

Yeah, until you get the hang of technical transcripts, that's probably your best bet. I've got the additional issue of transcribing into Inqscribe, which exports in plain text, which means for the multi-column format I have to type a tab-delimited transcript, import that into Excel to get the cells set up, then paste the result into the Word template for final formatting. Between that and the arcane shorthand I use to note shots during the transcription process (so I don't have to go back through a second time), my raw technical transcripts look like bloody Sanskrit.

Did you at least get a script or closed-captioning file? I hate doing as-broadcasts without those. I love HBO because they usually provide the script, and you can see the differences in the final episode. Like with Game of Thrones, most of it's almost verbatim, just recut into a different order, while a show like Eastbound and Down is borderline improv. Danny McBride in particular tends to run pretty far afield from what's down on the page.

Derek79
Dec 17, 2005


Arnold of Soissons posted:

Thanks for the info!

Do you personally use a ground line traditional phone, or a google voice / skype set up? Does LiveOps care either way?

Technically, their rules state to use an analog landline phone. I started out using that before moving to cable telephone and now am using Vonage. Skype would not work due to lag and the fact that they can tell you are using a Skype number. MagicJack also does not work as it disconnects callers randomly. When people that I know apply, I tell them to see if they can bundle their phone and internet to save money. I would be using cable telephone now if they offered it where I live. Once I move to the Kansas City area, that is likely what I will be using again.

Kubricize
Apr 29, 2010


Derek79 posted:

One thing that I have rarely seen posted are at home phone jobs. In addition to Leapforce and various writing gigs, I have been with a company called LiveOps since May of 2007.

This is interesting, I've seen adds for things around that sound like this on Craigslist and Kijiji, only you have to pay for training and a monthly fee as well to keep in the system or some crap. Do you know if they hire outside of the United States, or is it something else that us Canadian/UK goons have to pass on?

Zapf Dingbat
Jan 9, 2001




kazmeyer posted:

Yeah, until you get the hang of technical transcripts, that's probably your best bet. I've got the additional issue of transcribing into Inqscribe, which exports in plain text, which means for the multi-column format I have to type a tab-delimited transcript, import that into Excel to get the cells set up, then paste the result into the Word template for final formatting. Between that and the arcane shorthand I use to note shots during the transcription process (so I don't have to go back through a second time), my raw technical transcripts look like bloody Sanskrit.

Did you at least get a script or closed-captioning file? I hate doing as-broadcasts without those. I love HBO because they usually provide the script, and you can see the differences in the final episode. Like with Game of Thrones, most of it's almost verbatim, just recut into a different order, while a show like Eastbound and Down is borderline improv. Danny McBride in particular tends to run pretty far afield from what's down on the page.

Nope, I didn't get any sort of text or script. Just a sample of a previous episode.

Man that really kicked my rear end today. Had loads of trouble with the formatting. I guess I don't know Word as much as I thought I did. Guess I'll try your method next time, because what I did just didn't work.

Derek79
Dec 17, 2005


Kubricize posted:

This is interesting, I've seen adds for things around that sound like this on Craigslist and Kijiji, only you have to pay for training and a monthly fee as well to keep in the system or some crap. Do you know if they hire outside of the United States, or is it something else that us Canadian/UK goons have to pass on?

Unfortunately, LiveOps only hires from the United States. I know ContractXchange hires Canadians but, as you said, they require you to pay for training. They are a legit company but I am not big on putting up a good chunk of money for training without knowing whether or not I will like the work. I know there are some Canadian phone jobs out there. I will gather a list and post them here tomorrow. I don't think I know of any for the UK, but I will check on that as well.

Tastic
Jun 3, 2005



Derek79 posted:

There is a fee for the background check but that is the only cost associated with working there. I believe it is $50 or $55. It was actually $20 when I started so that may be outdated.

Any idea what they would not hire you for?

Derek79
Dec 17, 2005


Tastic posted:

Any idea what they would not hire you for?

From what I understand, they will not hire you if you have a felony on your record, a pending warrant for your arrest or any misdemeanors having to do with theft, fraud or other financial crimes. They also would turn you down if you have more than $10,000 currently in collections, have filed bankruptcy within the last 12 months or more than one bankruptcy. These are all case by case as well as I have seen some people hired that make me want to scratch my head.

ETA: Here is the list of official reasons you may not be hired:

Q: What will cause me to fail the background check?
A: Applicants must pass both parts of the background and credit checks. Applicants with the following elements on their check will not be accepted:

Past Due: More than $10,000 in total currently past due and/or in collections over three or more accounts

Judgments and Bankruptcy: 2 or more open or active civil judgments/ tax liens (open/ active liens), a bankruptcy within a year of this application or more than 1 bankruptcy

Felony Records: Any records with dispositions of guilty, convicted, no contest / nolo contendere, adjudication withheld / deferred adjudication / probation before judgment (if currently under probation), pending, or outstanding warrant, or that have been negotiated down to a misdemeanor

Misdemeanor Records: If you have 3 or more vehicular records with DUI, Reckless Driving or Hit/Run or 5 or more total misdemeanors, you will not pass. If you have any records involving theft, fraud, dishonesty, breach of trust, arson or violent crimes with dispositions of guilty, convicted, no contest / nolo contendere, adjudication withheld / deferred adjudication / probation before judgment (if currently under probation), pending, or outstanding warrant, you will not pass.

Derek79 fucked around with this message at 04:47 on Apr 7, 2012

kazmeyer
Jul 26, 2001

'Cause we're the good guys.



Zapf Dingbat posted:

Nope, I didn't get any sort of text or script. Just a sample of a previous episode.

Man that really kicked my rear end today. Had loads of trouble with the formatting. I guess I don't know Word as much as I thought I did. Guess I'll try your method next time, because what I did just didn't work.

Was it the format with three columns, no lines around the individual cells? If so, there's something royally hosed up about that template. I've actually told them to leave me out of any work in that style, just because I can't figure out how to get it to format properly outside of copying and pasting directly into each individual cell (which would take hours). Normally I just paste into the template, adjust font and size, and maybe tweak text alignment within the cells, but I spent hours trying to get that to work and it just wasn't happening.

ohnobugs
Feb 22, 2003




kazmeyer posted:

Was it the format with three columns, no lines around the individual cells? If so, there's something royally hosed up about that template. I've actually told them to leave me out of any work in that style, just because I can't figure out how to get it to format properly outside of copying and pasting directly into each individual cell (which would take hours). Normally I just paste into the template, adjust font and size, and maybe tweak text alignment within the cells, but I spent hours trying to get that to work and it just wasn't happening.

Wow, I got one of those once as well, I thought it was just me. I haven't seen any projects with that template since then.

unixbeard
Dec 28, 2004



I was looking to hire a writer, I have a bunch of instructional material on subjects like finance or computer science and was wondering if I could get them summarised. Most of the content isn't that challenging there is just a lot of jargon. Is it feasible for a writer to make summaries or would they really need domain expertise? Even if they did the bulk of the writing up I could always go through and proof/fix it up myself.

Assuming it is possible, where would be the best place to find a writer, and about how much would I be looking at for a summary of a 50 page chapter?

nunsexmonkrock
Apr 13, 2008




Nighthand posted:


Transcription


I didn't know there were jobs for this. It seems like something I could do. I use to transcribe phone sex preambles as downtime work for my last job. It was definitely tedious but I might be able to manage.

Nighthand
Nov 4, 2009

what horror the gas



unixbeard posted:

I was looking to hire a writer, I have a bunch of instructional material on subjects like finance or computer science and was wondering if I could get them summarised. Most of the content isn't that challenging there is just a lot of jargon. Is it feasible for a writer to make summaries or would they really need domain expertise? Even if they did the bulk of the writing up I could always go through and proof/fix it up myself.

Assuming it is possible, where would be the best place to find a writer, and about how much would I be looking at for a summary of a 50 page chapter?

I do summaries and re-writes of articles on topics I'm unfamiliar with all the time for Textbroker. They pay by the word of the produced article, not of the source material, so that's probably what you would look for payment-wise. Figure out how long you'd like the summaries to be, or how much you'd be willing to pay total, and go from there.

For reference, a 4-star article on Textbroker earns a writer 1.4 cents a word. They charge an added fee of like 30% or something like that, so the client pays 1.7 cents or so a word. Without the middleman you're more free to negotiate with the writer or writers you choose.

I'm sure several of the writers in this thread would be willing to give it a shot, myself included. I don't have PMs, but if you want to send me a message at my username at gmail, you can.

pastorrich
Jun 7, 2008

Keep on truckin' like a novacane hurricane


I found a list of canadian work at home jobs. You can take calls for U-Haul, do phone surveys for alvanis, do gaming customer service (amongst other things) at alpine access. I sent applications all over that list last night, I'm still waiting on an e-mail. Pretty helpful if you want to work from home:

http://workathomemoms.about.com/od/callcenterdataentry/tp/Work-At-Home-Jobs-Canada.htm

There's also a more extensive page on work from home sites from the US and from what I've seen it looks pretty legit so check it out.

Kubricize
Apr 29, 2010


pastorrich posted:

I found a list of canadian work at home jobs. You can take calls for U-Haul, do phone surveys for alvanis, do gaming customer service (amongst other things) at alpine access. I sent applications all over that list last night, I'm still waiting on an e-mail. Pretty helpful if you want to work from home:

http://workathomemoms.about.com/od/callcenterdataentry/tp/Work-At-Home-Jobs-Canada.htm

There's also a more extensive page on work from home sites from the US and from what I've seen it looks pretty legit so check it out.

This is a pretty good list, in the middle of applying for anything I fit the requirements for. Thanks for the list and post updates of your luck finding anything!

Zapf Dingbat
Jan 9, 2001




kazmeyer posted:

Was it the format with three columns, no lines around the individual cells? If so, there's something royally hosed up about that template. I've actually told them to leave me out of any work in that style, just because I can't figure out how to get it to format properly outside of copying and pasting directly into each individual cell (which would take hours). Normally I just paste into the template, adjust font and size, and maybe tweak text alignment within the cells, but I spent hours trying to get that to work and it just wasn't happening.

God yes, it was that format. That was awful. It turns out I had only 3 cells across the whole document when I was done, so they sent it back and I had to spend hours copying and pasting the whole thing into another document. Worst crap I've had to do so far.

pastorrich
Jun 7, 2008

Keep on truckin' like a novacane hurricane


Kubricize posted:

This is a pretty good list, in the middle of applying for anything I fit the requirements for. Thanks for the list and post updates of your luck finding anything!

I also applied on Kijiji ads for work at home positions and two businesses told me I was selected. First one is JMN Virtual Services and the second one is Arise.com. Arise's website looks a lot more legit so if I were to pick one I'd go with them. You basically take calls for Rogers communications as a customer service agent or tech support (it isn't clear which one it is, perhaps it's both).

The downside is that you have 5 weeks and a half of unpaid training to do so that's a pretty big number. When I say unpaid I mean you get 100 dollars for completing the 5 weeks training and then you're good to go to start taking calls. I'm still undecided as to what I'm going to do. I might start the training to give time for U-Haul to contact me and then drop it or keep at it if I don't hear from any of my preferred employers. I'll update if I find something with paid training and good working conditions.

Edit: I just read Arise's FAQ and you need to be incorporated which costs 200$ or work for a contractor for arise, pay 100$ for the training (which they say is now free for a limited time) and get various other things to build a home office. So if you're prepared to do that it looks like you will get work. JMN looks like it has less requirements but the website is a bit shady.

pastorrich fucked around with this message at 19:47 on Apr 10, 2012

The Golden Man
Aug 4, 2007



I have some videos on YouTube that are getting some views, and now different people like Fullscreen and Machinima want me to go on their "networks". I've googled around for "diaries" of people who did this and can't find too much... does anyone know about these people?

Jedi Knight Luigi
Jul 13, 2009



Has anybody done copy editing work for Demand Studios? What sort of credentials do they require for the position? I know it says "at least 2 years" in the field, but is the site over-saturated with professionals or can entry-level people get in too?

Economy Clown Car
May 5, 2009

by Pipski


On a side note, I can see why transcription has such a high wash out/quit rate.

I got halfway through the daily transcription test before little.... confusions started to build, IE: telling me to format headers and footers with .5" then their sample document has 0.04" footers requiring a vague font that needs office 2007 installed amongst other things. And then finally having to transcribe the least professional video clip I've ever seen of two people being interviewed whilst they mumble and the wind blows across the unshielded mic and or dollar store tape recorder

But I have no real idea, maybe I'm just really bad at this, either way I wanted to warn you if you had your heart set on a daily transcripts transcription job that the test will be one of your least fun experiences you'll ever have and you will -have- to focus and have a good ear for things.

Economy Clown Car fucked around with this message at 03:17 on Apr 18, 2012

kazmeyer
Jul 26, 2001

'Cause we're the good guys.



Actually, that's a professional shoot; the audio quality is more due to the fact that it's a RealMedia file and heavily compressed. They do it for a reason, though; only someone who's never transcribed would consider that file all that bad. I could tell you horror stories. Radio Shack microcassette recorders plunked down in the middle of a 14-person table at Spago during lunch. Clients trying to save money by cranking the sensitivity down so far on their voice-activated recorder it only picks up the middle syllable of words. It gets so much worse than that file. Pray you never have to spend much time doing academic or business transcription.

Luckily, however, media work is usually much, much better. If you can get through the Daily Transcription test, that's probably the worst file you'll see for some time. They dropped RealMedia a long time ago, and encode everything in Quicktime now; the files are a dream compared to that sample.

(The format on the document file may be a casualty of changing standards; in any case, if you just paste into the file provided you should be fine. They're not going to ding you over margin confusion, they want to see you can follow rules like the spacing/time coding format/et cetera.)

Tastic
Jun 3, 2005



Has anyone done the content creation sites and done something like just setup a SSH tunnel into a buddies house so the IP comes from a US IP?

Liberatore
Nov 16, 2010

Would you like
to know more?


When (that's no) moon hits this guy like a big Twi'lek guy: Liberatore!


Tastic posted:

Has anyone done the content creation sites and done something like just setup a SSH tunnel into a buddies house so the IP comes from a US IP?

They probably require a Form W-9 filled in your name before they pay you. And if they don't pay you with Paypal or something, you'd run into more trouble in that regard. Unless you are an US citizen living outside the US, then yeah that could work.

If you don't mind Textbroker's pay, there's http://www.textbroker.co.uk/ - the pay is a bit higher (Ä1.2 cents/word at 4 stars) and you just need a Paypal account to receive payment.

Zapf Dingbat
Jan 9, 2001




Okay, I've got a technical problem this time. I have a Quicktime audio file that has a drop-frame timecode embedded in the file. My transcription software (Express Scribe) doesn't seem to be able to display this embedded TC, and I can't control quicktime player with a foot pedal. kazmeyer, do I just need to suck it up and buy another piece of software? Or is there a workaround?

edit: Plus, these files play extremely slowly in express scribe, and I have no idea why. I can't adjust the speed at all. This is maddening.

kazmeyer
Jul 26, 2001

'Cause we're the good guys.



Zapf Dingbat posted:

Okay, I've got a technical problem this time. I have a Quicktime audio file that has a drop-frame timecode embedded in the file. My transcription software (Express Scribe) doesn't seem to be able to display this embedded TC, and I can't control quicktime player with a foot pedal. kazmeyer, do I just need to suck it up and buy another piece of software? Or is there a workaround?

edit: Plus, these files play extremely slowly in express scribe, and I have no idea why. I can't adjust the speed at all. This is maddening.

Does Express Scribe allow you to offset timecodes? What you might be able to do is start the TCs at whatever the first time code is and go from there.

I use InqScribe, and one of the main reasons I switched was it seemed to handle time codes much better than ES for me. I think they have a free trial, you might try downloading that to see if it works better for you.

kazmeyer
Jul 26, 2001

'Cause we're the good guys.



Holy loving God. I'm always interested in hearing about new gigs, and a friend of mine is applying to do SpeechInk transcription through Amazon's Mechanical Turk. She asked me for advice about the instructions, and sent me the guidelines. They want <sp></sp> around every speaker name, <st></st> around any onscreen text, <p></p> around every entry, and time codes every five seconds (even in the middle of a sentence.)

I think if a client asked me to transcribe like that I would actually hit them.

kazmeyer fucked around with this message at 22:21 on Apr 19, 2012

ohnobugs
Feb 22, 2003




Zapf Dingbat posted:

Okay, I've got a technical problem this time. I have a Quicktime audio file that has a drop-frame timecode embedded in the file. My transcription software (Express Scribe) doesn't seem to be able to display this embedded TC, and I can't control quicktime player with a foot pedal. kazmeyer, do I just need to suck it up and buy another piece of software? Or is there a workaround?

edit: Plus, these files play extremely slowly in express scribe, and I have no idea why. I can't adjust the speed at all. This is maddening.

You can change the start time with Express Scribe, just right click on your file in the Express Scribe window and click on Dictation Information. Enter the start time in the time offset box, but watch your time codes. If they stop tape or skip ahead five minutes you're going to have to change the time offset again.

vvv yeah, you're right. I missed that bit. Reading comprehension

ohnobugs fucked around with this message at 22:33 on Apr 19, 2012

kazmeyer
Jul 26, 2001

'Cause we're the good guys.



AuntBuck posted:

You can change the start time with Express Scribe, just right click on your file in the Express Scribe window and click on Dictation Information. Enter the start time in the time offset box, but watch your time codes. If they stop tape or skip ahead five minutes you're going to have to change the time offset again.

In my experience, the clients that use burned-in time codes usually don't dick around with cuts -- at least I've never seen a burned-in TC file where the time code jumped around. (I have seen just about every other goddamn stupid thing a client can do with a time code, though, including periodically pausing it during the interview to indicate "off camera" time and then forgetting to turn the loving thing back on. "Hey, all these time codes are the same." "Yes, that three pages of conversation all took place in the same second. Apparently your sound guy is Doctor Who.")

Also: You might want to look into audio/video conversion software. Jodix makes a bunch of purpose-built converters, or there's always something like Handbrake. DT has this unbelievably irritating habit of sending me 500+meg Quicktime files that can be a bear to work with, and crunching them down to smaller mp4s can make a world of difference in the headache department. If one file format isn't playing right, conversion might fix the problem.

kazmeyer fucked around with this message at 22:35 on Apr 19, 2012

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Zapf Dingbat
Jan 9, 2001




Okay, so yesterday, my contact at DT gave me some software that helped me out.

I mean, it worked, but the software itself is podunk. It took me over an hour to get it to work correctly. And when I say podunk, I mean that it would go apeshit whenever I pressed the Shift key.

I might try Inqscribe later.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • Post
  • Reply