A thought occurred to me the other night while I was lying in bed waiting for sleep to whisk me away to dreamland. I used to write for a couple content mills. Used to. For the last few years, though, I haven’t even given them a glance, having moved on to other writing projects.
To recap a bit on what exactly is a content mill:
Content mills are agencies that herd in thousands of articles written by people who are paid a small wage. Usually a third party, content mills act as a middle-man (or woman) between writer and client. Mills make money from client, writer makes money from mill, client goes away happy.
That is the bare-bone description. I provide a bit more details about what a content mill is in an article I wrote titled What is a Content Mill?
When I wrote the article a couple years ago I included links to a few mills known around the web. I decided the first step to finding out if mills are still around would be to verify the links from the article to see if they still worked. It’s the easiest way to tell if the content mills listed are still in operation.
I checked the link on each one of the seven I listed, and offer my findings below. To be honest, I was a bit surprised at what I discovered.
I was fortunate (or unfortunate, however you look at it) to be approved to write for a mill called Demand Studios. I found it to be a nice learning experience for the beginner writer trying to make it online.
When I clicked on the link http://talent.studiod.com/writer/ I was taken to a message stating We couldn’t find the page you are looking for.
So I did some further research by using the keywords, demand studios. What the search engine gave me was quite interesting.
It seems that Demand Studios is still in operation, but under a new name: Demand Media-studioD, and under a new web address: http://talent.studiod.com/.
The concept is the same. An interested writer would click on the “I am a Creator” tab and be taken to an application. I recall filling out one similar to this back in 2010. The application will be reviewed and you will be notified whether or not you are approved.
At the time I was writing for Demand Studios the pay ranged from $3-15 per article. I don’t know what they pay now.
When I first started writing for DS there seemed to be an unlimited amount of titles to choose from. I had no problem finding a few articles to write. Then there came a time when there were no article titles to choose from. That’s when the fun ended, and so did the money (what little I earned).
Although the name and web address have changed, Demand Media is still around. If you happen to give them a try, or have worked with them before, I would love to hear about your experience and/or opinion!
I was approved to write for Textbroker, but never wrote a word for them. I found their author platform to be a bit confusing. As for the pay, it was minimal.
The link is still working (https://www.textbroker.com/authors) and the good news is they are still around. The bad news is the pay is still minimal.
Like DS, Textbroker has a pool of their own clients who submit writing assignments for writers or teams to choose from. From what I understand, and remember, when you are approved you are given a level number ranging from 2-5. Your pay is based on what level you are on: 2 pays the least (at barely a penny per word), and 5 pays the most (5 cents per word but you must take an extremely tough proofreading test to qualify for that level).
It seems they have done a revamp on their website. The information is clear and nicely presented. They boast to being “the leading article and content writing service.”
Simply click on the “I Write Content” tab to be taken to an application. Fill it out and wait for an answer. Easy as that.
Again, comments are greatly appreciated by anyone with experience or knowledge about Textbroker.
I am unfamiliar with this company. The link is still working but it doesn’t take you to the right spot. After doing a bit more clicking I finally found the proper link to use if one was so inclined to apply as a writer: http://www.dashboard.ecopywriters.com/register/copywriter.
As I understand it, the site offers writing assignments, and like Textbroker, their writers start out at a certain level (in this case 1-7) and work their way up the “level ladder.” Pay ranges from about 1.8 cents per word up to 15 cents per word, but good luck getting to the 15 cent level.
Have experience with eCopywriters? Let us know!
Apparently they are no longer around. When I tried the link it takes me to a page that cannot be displayed.
I spent some time searching for the site. I found a lot of blog posts about Break Studios and every time I clicked the link http://breakstudios.break.com I came up empty.
I found nothing to indicate they had gone under. I found no articles or forums that told of their demise.
It is a mystery.
If you have any knowledge of the whereabouts of Break Studios, please share.
The link http://www.writeraccess.com/about/#/writeraccess-basics does work. When you click on it you are greeted with a very nice page that explains who and what Writer Access is, but the important link for writers is this one: https://www.writeraccess.com/apply/. This is the link needed if you want to apply to write for Writer Access.
What impressed me most about this site are the different services a writer can apply for. There are four:
1. Writing projects
2. Editing services
4. Content strategy
Simply click on the service you want to work in and complete the application. Seems easy enough.
I am not sure what the pay is. If anyone knows, please fill us all in!
When I clicked on the link I was taken nowhere. Seems the link to the writer application is no more.
wiseGEEK still exists and looks to be an interesting and informative place that claims to provide “clear answers for common questions.”
There are several categories to choose and learn something from, but there are no writing jobs available to the freelancer looking to make some money.
Want to check out their answers to common questions? Use this link: http://www.wisegeek.com.
Ever written for them? Share your story!
The Good News …
Well, there you have it. Out of seven sites I linked to there are only four that are still in operation. The good news is that there are PLENTY of content mills on the Internet. Research those that interest you. Check out the reviews. Do not base your decision on what one site says. What works for one writer may not do so well with another.
If you are interested in reading about why I decided to stop writing for content mills you can read about it here.
Photos provided by Jodi Hughey. Copyright 2016