Feedback from the Welcome Mat

Last week I set-up a Welcome Mat HIT group on Mechanical Turk, to announce the Paylancers blog and gather feedback from workers. I received some interesting comments about both the site and Mturk in general.

"Very interesting. . . mainly because I didn't even know that this stuff (i.e., Mechanical Turk, "crowdsourcing") even existed before today."
"I didn't realize that Mturk was still not drawing big companies. It's a shame that companies don't realize how much research they are missing out on."

Wages are an evergreen issue...
"I do HITs mostly outta boredom and for a few extra bucks a week, but at this point the only people making "big bucks," i.e. more than beer money, are those able to place high in the contest answering the research questions. As such, those HITs have become ridiculous and the goal seems now to see how many you can snag, not how many great answers you can really give."
"I find it amazing that anyone can find things to comment on... that don't involve how we, the workers, get screwed money-wise. ;) I think there have only been maybe one or two days where I've hit minimum wage on here."
"The blog is nice, and I like the link to the message board. I think, though, that the author of the blog ought to take complaints about low pay rates for HITs more seriously than he does."

I think I've been taking it seriously, but perhaps because I'm a requester I don't take it personally enough. Payout is Mturk's biggest credibility issue with workers. And for outside observers too, who look at Mturk as some bizarre social experiment that will never catch on commercially.

Another reader was curious...
"...why you like blogspot, instead of your own hosted instance of Wordpress or another solution?"
Simple - I wanted to hit the ground running and focus on writing. I have friends that have installed Wordpress, and it takes them a while to get comfortable with the settings and template design. I'd rather invest those first 50 hours learning, using, and writing about Mturk - and setting-up Blogger is as easy as rolling out of bed.

Overall, the feedback was very encouraging: a lot of workers were not aware of the Turking sites that have sprung-up, and were happy to see that people were discussing the issues they've come across.

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