Are There Alternatives to Amazon Mechanical Turk?

Listing of places like Mechanical Turk

Alternatives to MTurk

That’s a search phrase someone used to find my old blog when I first started. I know I’ve looked for them as well, in an attempt to find MTurk alternatives to make money online.

Nowadays I only pop over to MTurk a few times a week to do any research studies that look interesting, so I’m definitely no expert. I guess my best answer to it would be, “Yes, but”. There are similar opportunities online, but in my opinion nothing pays as well as MTurk.

However, there are many other sites out there where people are earning, and many have the added bonus of offering affiliate or referral income. As you know, Mechanical Turk doesn’t offer a referral system, but there are other crowdsourcing sites that do.

I’ll write down what I’ve found so far.

Crowdflower Sites

Formerly known on MTurk as “Dolores Labs”, CrowdFlower was a Requester many new Turkers turned to in order to build up their approval rating and number of approved HITs. There are a lot of mixed reviews out there regarding them, most justified, some not.

The positives about CrowdFlower are that unless you’re an outright scam artist or barely literate, they won’t reject you. Rather, they’ll just quality screen  you out of certain jobs.

There have been a number of reforms over the past two years at CrowdFlower to address many of the complaints about them, but there are still some drawbacks you should be aware of.

They don’t set the pay for the Tasks they post. These are set by the clients they recruit. Because of this, the pay for their jobs varies widely too. More often than not, their clients set the pay at a rate that is beyond an insult, wanting an inordinate amount of work done for mere pennies. There are clients that do pay at an amount that equals the standard $0.10 per minute average that many people set as the minimum they’ll work for, but these often are grabbed very quickly.

Another excruciating frustrating complaint about them is the large number of incorrect quality control questions, also known as “Gold Standard Questions.” Once again, many times these are written by their clients and pushed out to production without anyone taking a second look at them. This is incredibly frustrating to be working on a job, provide work that you know is 100% accurate, and then get quality screened out because of someone’s error.

They no longer posts HITs on MTurk, but have them pushed out to a number of affiliates. I originally had this list sorted by the year I joined the site, but now I’ll have it sorted by where the program falls on my ranking results.

Fusion Cash – (US/Canada only) Look under  Daily Offers –> Daily Tasks. Out of all the original Crowdflower affiliates, this one seems to be the most successful. Every day on the FusionCash forums, I see members posting pretty impressive earnings doing HITs here. If you’re not already a member, this should be your first stop.

UniqueRewards – An older PTC site that has many other GPT opportunities; they added Crowdflower in Summer 2013

Swagbucks – Swagbucks Tasks require you to research specific topics on the internet and answer questions, while earning Swag Bucks along the way.  When you visit Swagbucks Tasks you’ll see the list of available tasks, each with a brief description, a corresponding Swag Buck payout PER PAGE completed, and how many of that specific task are still available to be completed. Fill your piggy bank on a specific task and the Bucks are automatically transferred to your account! Start being rewarded for Swagbucks Tasks today!

Access Tasks under “Answer” in the top navigation bar. Accepted countries are US, Canada, UK, Australia, Ireland and India only at this time. I’ll update this page if this changes.

ClixSense -Look under Tasks. This is new for 2012, and has the added bonus of paying downline commission on referral’s tasks. All countries EXCEPT the following: Iran, Iraq, China, Cuba, N. Korea, Vietnam, Niger and Afghanistan.

Send Earnings – Look under Cash Tasks. All countries accepted.

Inbox Dollars – Look under Tasks. All countries accepted.

GiftHulk – And another new one for 2012. Pay for the tasks is slightly higher here, so this may be a good one to check out. Click Earn –> Tasks to view what is available. Accepted countries are Australia, US, UK, Canada, New Zealand, France, Germany and Ireland at this time.

GiftHunterClub – A CrowdFlower site with a pretty good selection of tasks available. I joined this site at the end of December 2012, and am pretty impressed with their payout and number of tasks listed.

Heedyou – (formerly Clicks-FX) A smaller PTC site, that added Crowdflower tasks in February, 2013. For a smaller site, it has a fair amount of jobs as well.

GrabPoints (Formerly ZoomBucks) – A multi-offer portal site similar to Swagbucks. I’m not entirely sure when they added Crowdflower, but I noticed the addition after they ran a March, 2014 site upgrade. A quick glance at their Offers portal showed a fair number of Tasks available. All countries accepted.  Look under Earn –> Tasks.

TreasureTrooper – Another multi-offer GPT portal site that has been around for a while. They offer Crowdflower Tasks under Earn –> Cash Tasks

RewardShopping (Formerly SuperPoints) – Home of the ‘Super Lucky Button’, this site also is a Crowdflower affiliate. Look under Get More Points –> Super Rewards –> Tasks as well as Personaly –> Tasks.

Earnably– New multi-offer portal site. Look under Offers –> WannaAds, Offers –> Personaly and Offers –> SuperRewards

instaGC – Another multi-offer portal site, with very low ($1.00!) cashout threshold. Look under Earn –> Crowdflower

 

Non-Crowdflower Sites:

There are a few other sites I’ve found online that fall outside of the Crowdflower affiliate model:

Prolific Academic – An incredible site with interesting, high quality academic research studies. Highly recommended!

Spare5 – Not a ton of work here, but when they do have it, it’s fun and interesting.

MicroWorkers – I do have an account here, and have done about four article writing tasks so far as a test. I did get approved and paid for all of them. There are occasional good opportunities here, and they offer a referral program.

MinuteWorkers – Same as above. I have done one writing job there and was paid. However there are a lot of promotional type jobs you need to search through. Like MicroWorkers, they have a referral program that helps you earn a little extra as well.

Short Task – Occasional good writing things, but I’m not impressed with how honest the requesters there are with paying. I did four as a test in January – two were approved right away, and I still have two sitting there pending.

TextBroker – I really like this site and should visit it more. This is a good site if you like article writing. They have a nice arbitration process if your work gets rejected, which luckily I’ve never had to use. I’d recommend this one.

I know there are others out there, but these are the ones I’ve tried myself.

For me, I’m sticking with MTurk as my first choice for any type of short jobs. It’s hands down my favorite site.

Whoever googled that search term, I hope this helps!

Originally posted: February 2010
Last update: 07-10-16

Fusion Cash – Pays every month like clockwork

07/04/16 – Site errors resolved! If you had trouble logging in this holiday weekend, try logging out and then back in.

Name: FusionCash

Date joined: 12/02/2010

Program type: Surveys, Paid Clicks, Paid Email, Paid Videos Paid Registrations, Paid Search, Crowdsourcing, Cash Back Shopping, Mystery Shopping, Data Entry

Referral program? Yes, one of the most generous out there. Pays $1.00 for each verified referral, $2.00 when the referral completes their first offer, and $5.00 each and every time your referral cashes out! Amazing!

URL: http://fca.sh/192o9

Free Money at FusionCash!

 

Amount earned:  $2,863.04 Paid

 International? US/Canada only

Paid? Yes! Pays every month when I have time to log in, about every other month if I don’t have time to visit other than the Daily PTC. Because this is an honest, trusted and legit site, I’m not updating my payment shots any longer. Older payments are below… an archive of even older payments is stored here.

 

FusionCash Review: Recommended? Definitely. Everyone has only good things to say about this program. This is my top earner in all the referral-type programs I belong to. I get a lot of searches to this blog by people looking for “Fusion Cash Scam” — but this is no scam at all! Fusion Cash is definitely legit. Many different ways to earn, no matter what type of work you want to do.

Originally posted: 12-03-2010
Last updated:
07-04-16

Amazon Mechanical Turk, aka MTurk

Program Name: Amazon Mechanical Turk

Site URL:
https://www.mturk.com

Referral program? No

Date joined: 11/25/2010

Amount earned: $3,459.05

Analysis: Definitely recommended! This one has obviously paid the most, and is one program that will pay you if you’re just looking for straight money without referrals.

Here are some tips and advice I can pass on, to hopefully make it easier for you to earn without any unnecessary rejections or problems.

Sign up for an account at a Turker forum to get a good idea of who to work for, and who to avoid. Some helpful forums devoted to MTurk are MTurk Forum, CloudMeBaby, TurkerNation, MTurk Grind and mTurkWiki.

Install the TurkOpticon browser extension  and check Requester reviews before doing any of their work. Don’t work for someone who pays too low, has arbitrary rejections, or is an out and out scam requester. Once you get comfortable with the site, be sure to start leaving reviews of your own so you can help new Turkers too.

Once you’ve got an idea of which Requesters you like the most, sign up for an account at TurkAlert at http://www.turkalert.com/ to get emails as soon as your favorites post HITS.

I tend to primarily do transcription, with an occasional research survey here and there. I only log into MTurk for less than hour per day, so my earnings are very low. There are many people making much more money than I do there, because they devote the time to it.

I do transcription offline for a local college, so that’s what keeps me the busiest during the day. However, I like to log in once daily and get a few HITs in just to keep my account active. During the holiday breaks when school is out and there’s no work to do offline, having MTurk to fall back on is a real lifesaver.

US members can get paid by direct deposit to a checking account or prepaid debit card, or by Amazon Gift Card codes. The minimum payment is $10.00 by direct deposit, or $1.00 to a gift card.

Personally, I choose the gift card option. We use it to buy pet supplies and household goods in bulk that offer free super saver shipping, so that we reduce our monthly grocery bill.

International? This I’m not so sure of any longer. They used to routinely accept members from all countries, but I started hearing in late 2012 that they were only approving new US accounts. If you’re outside of the US, definitely try to apply, but be aware that they may not approve your application. I have heard rumors of certain countries not being accepted, and recently was contacted by someone from Australia who was declined.

ClixSense – Paid countless times!

Originally posted: January 15, 2011

Name: ClixSense

Program type: Paid clicks, Surveys, Crowdsourcing, Paid Registrations, Paid Video

Date joined: 12/11/10

Referral program? Yes

URL: http://www.clixsense.com/?3349517

Amount paid:

Cash Paid: $696.61 Paid

Advertising and update dollars redeemed: $45.18

ClixSense Payment Proof:

I get paid by ClixSense so often now, I’m not updating this image any longer. Pretty much it pays every week!

Recommended? Yes! This is a great site! This one pays very little, but you can use your earnings to purchase ads on the site. I’ve used this for both traffic and for PayPal payments, as well as transferring my balance over to a premium membership

International Members? Allows registrations from all countries except China, Vietnam and Bangladesh

Originally posted: January, 2011
Last updated:
04-13-16

Unique Rewards – Paid Many Times!

Originally posted: 01/15/11

Name: Unique Rewards

Type of program: Surveys, Paid Clicks, Paid Emails, Paid Registrations, Paid Videos, Crowdsourcing

Date joined: 12/18/2010

Referral program? Yes

URL: http://www.uniquerewards.com/cgi-bin/main.cgi?cmd=newref&refid=164093

Amount earned: $652.97 Paid

Paid? Yes! This site pays regularly and consistently. PayPal payments arrived in less than one week after requesting.

Minimum payment: $20.00

International members? Restricted to U.S.A, United Kingdom and Canada only.

Unique Rewards Payment Proof:  As I usually get paid at least once per month from this program, I’m not updating my payment proofs any longer. Some older payments are below. This is a trusted, legit site.

Recommended? Yes! At first I didn’t use this one as much as I should have, which obviously slowed down the amount of money I earned. Now that I’m in the swing of things with this site, I’m getting paid on a regular basis.

Originally posted: 01/15/11


Last update:
03-29-16

Swagbucks – Paid many, many times!


Name: Swagbucks

Program type: Paid Search, Surveys, Paid Registrations, Paid Videos, Paid Emails, Crowdsourcing, Paid Clicks, Paid Referrals, Cash Back Shopping, Contests, Paid Apps, MTurk Alternative

Date joined: 12/13/2010

Referral program? Yes

URL: http://www.swagbucks.com/

Amount made: $475.00 Paid

Paid? Yes! Multiple times.  Payment takes about a week to arrive via PayPal. You can redeem for merchandise, gift cards or PayPal in their Swag Store. Minimum redemption for a $5.00 Amazon.com card is 450 SB, 2500 SB for a $25.00 PayPal payment. There are many other redemption offers in the Swag Store as well, but these are the two most popular.

International: Swagbucks is open in the US, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia and India.

Swagbucks Payment Proof:

This page was getting a little long with all of my prior payment screenshots. Below are  payments from 2013, but I’m not updating these screen shots any longer. This is a trusted, elite site. Older payment screenshots are here and here, for anyone who wants more proof.

 

Originally posted: 01/2011
Last updated: 03-28-16

 

GiftHulk – 21st Payment Received

Name: Gift Hulk

Type of program: Contests, Sweepstakes, Paid Clicks, Surveys, Paid Search, Paid Referrals, Paid Registrations, Paid Videos, Crowdsourcing

 Date joined: 05/02/12

Referral program? Yes! You earn 20% from all the Hulk Coins that your referrals earn using the Offer Walls,  EZ Coins, Tasks and Surveys. You also earn 20% from all of your referral wins at GiftHulk Search  and Treasure Box.

URL: http://www.gifthulk.com/invite/TD73940

Paid? Yes! Total redeemed to date: $110.00

Minimum redemption is 5000 coins for a $5.00 Amazon Gift Card or PayPal withdrawal. They also have a wide variety of other merchandiser gift cards and offers at reasonable and reachable levels. Payments usually take one to three days to arrive.

GiftHulk Payment Proof:

 

International members? USA, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, France, Germany, and Ireland only.

 

Initial Impression and Review:  GiftHulk was another program I found by them following me on Twitter. This program is very similar to SwagBucks.

You earn in a number of different ways. They have the familiar Offer Walls and EZ Coins with paid videos, surveys and registrations, Daily Surveys, Crowdsourcing Tasks, “Fountain of Youth” codes, online games where the tournament leaders get points, a toolbar with additional point offers, paid searches, point sweepstakes and contests, and finally the ‘guess the card’ game, which awards various points.

Recommended? Yes – GiftHulk is definitely legit and not a scam site.

Originally posted: 06-01-12
Last update:
02-29-16