Friday, November 14, 2008

FreelanceHomeWriters.com: Just another Freelance Work Exchange?

I've written a lot of posts over the years about Freelance Work Exchange and GoFreelance.com, both of which are membership sites where you pay to access ads for freelance writing gigs. In general, most professional writers agree that this is a scam to make you pay for job leads — something you should never pay for because you can easily find them for free, on sites like Deb Ng's Freelance Writing Jobs.

(Not to mention there are many reports of members finding it difficult or downright impossible to cancel their membership, which seems like a really dishonest ploy to get at least one full month's charge out of people who try the $2.95 trial and then want to cancel before the full memberhsip kicks in.)

This morning a friend and colleague sent me a link for a site she found advertised on Craigslist. Although the name is different, FreelanceHomeWriters.com (I'm not linking to them because I don't want them to benefit from my link!) sounds exactly like Freelance Work Exchange and GoFreelance.com. They have the exact same premise (you pay a membership fee for access to job leads), a very similar hard sell ("The jobs come to you!"), and even the same 7-day trial membership for $2.95.

What do you want to bet that people who sign up for Freelance Home Writers' trial membership will have the same difficulties canceling as FWE and GoFreelance members have reported? Even if that doesn't happen, though, it angers me to see how FreelanceHomeWriters.com belittles real writers.

For instance, one of the headings on the sales page proclaims,

These Companies Don't Care Who You Are, Where You Live, Or Your Level Of Education
The writing tasks you'll be doing will be so easy an 8-year-old child could do them...

Secondly, the site clearly is going to provide primarily low-paying writing work, judging by their idea of how to calculate your earning potential as a writer:

FreelanceHomeWriter.com advocates low-paying writing work

I don't know which makes me angrier, deriding our work as something even an 8-year-old could do, or suggesting that $10 an article is good pay!

Judging by everything I've pointed out here, it seems to me that Freelance Home Writers is yet another ploy to take advantage of newbie writers who don't yet understand the way the industry works.

I think all of my regular readers probably agree with me hands-down that paying a membership fee for job listings is totally unnecessary ‐ not to mention that the sites are quite possibly a scam. However, my past blog posts about Freelance Work Exchange and GoFreelance have also been quite successful at capturing new visitors via search engine traffic, and warning off the folks savvy enough to research a service before signing up. I hope this post will do the same for Freelance Home Writers!


Michele Cameron Drew said...

Hi Katherine,

I was just "presented" with this rubbish as well. It's too bad we as serioius writers have to weed through this kind of crap to find a decent place to write and maybe be paid a little for our efforts.

I know of a couple of sites that are actually pretty decent. The pay is minute, but if you actually can promote and build up a following to draw the numbers to your site, they can be pretty lucrative.

One such site is triond.com. Triond pays a small portion of the ad revenues for posts.

I have been posting my poetry there for a couple of months and have got to the point where I'm hitting about $3.00/month for my traffic. Keep in mind that I started from scratch with no website, no blog and 0 traffic flow.

I know a few writers who started out the way that I did and are now making a decent little income on Triond.

Another site which pays a little more is today.com. An old family friend just turned me on to them and I signed up yesterday. He made $135.00 last month blogging there. They pay $1 for the first 100 word or more post/day, plus $2.00 for every thousand page hits that your blog receives. Plus, after one month they have the option to assess your performance and adjust your pay to a higher level, if they choose to do so. They also offer referral bonuses. If you refer someone, they stick around awhile and blog at least 10 posts, you get the bonus.

I write every day, so I figured I will give it a try. What have I got to lose, but a few words that I was probably going to waste somewhere else anyway, right?

I wish you all hope, health, and happiness in your search.

Michele Cameron Drew

Katharine Swan said...


I'm glad this approach is working for you, but I don't advocate working for so little money. A dollar per blog post is a ridiculous price -- and $3.00 a month is downright insulting.

There is no reason why a beginning writer with some decent writing skills can't make at least $15 an hour right out of the gates. If you really are serious about writing, I hope you will eventually hold your work to be worth more than $3.00 a month!


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