Monthly Archives: July 2014

How the TaskRabbit Redesign Screws Freelancers | The Freelancer

In an article written for Contently’s Freelancer section, Charlie Kasov critiques a freelancer service called TaskRabbit. According to Kasov, the site has radically redesigned itself in a number of ways that are detrimental to the freelancers who use it to find jobs:

In the old app, people posting jobs described what they needed done and either set a price—”Quick Assign” tasks in TaskRabbit jargon—or opened the task up to bidding. In the new app, however, TaskRabbit has done away with bidding completely, replacing it with a requirement that users set hourly rates for each type of gig they’re willing to do. Now, I have to wait for Task Posters to choose me.

Having experienced my share of “improved” online services, I sympathize. I’ve never used TaskRabbit myself, but I have used services or written for companies that managed to make things harder, or impossible, for one set of clients (and yes, the freelancers who use TaskRabbit are clients) in order to cater to a different set. Or it could simply be that somebody higher up had a bright idea and thought it would make things better — and it didn’t.

While Kasov’s obviously angry about the changes, he describes them clearly and well, in a way that could help others using the service. And this is apparently making waves elsewhere; Salon has also run a piece called “TaskRabbit workers receive a useful lesson in capitalist exploitation.” The article adds that TaskRabbit workers are so angry, they may be organizing. Hmmmm.

(P.S., a word to Charlie: Whatever your poetry professor said about sexual mores between 1967 and 1973, don’t believe it — there were still STDs and accidental pregnancies off in them old-timey days…)

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What the End of Yahoo’s Contributor Network Means for Freelancers | The Freelancer, by Contently

Yahoo, which bought up the content farm Associated Content in 2005 and created its own Yahoo Voices, is finally turning the farm into condos. According to The Freelancer, Yahoo is not only dropping its low-paying content, but shutting it completely down as well, so contributors should copy and re-post their contributions (or make screenshots, at the very least) to prove their articles existed.

From The Freelancer:

Yahoo will give final performance payments in August, but Contributors should act quickly to make sure they have evidence of their writing online. Freedom With Writing suggests a number of alternative websites to self-publish articles, including HubPages, which similarly offers traffic-based payments to writers.

So Yahoo Voices contributors — take heed.

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Welcome to a small freelancing resource

Greetings! As you can tell from the last blog entry before this, this was a site about freelancing that I let lapse a year ago. However, although the blog entries are out of date, I have (as of today) checked and updated the listings in Books and Publications, Markets, and Organizations, so if you want to check them to see if any of the links can be helpful, please do.

In addition, I’ll be adding more resources after the workshop on finding work as a freelancer that I’ll be leading at Readercon on Saturday, July 12th at 11 a.m. (although I probably won’t update it until I get back).

Thanks to Esther Schindler, Sharon Fisher and Pam Baker from the Internet Press Guide for offering suggestions on new places to find jobs.

And of course, if you have any suggestions for resources to include, let me know via comments.

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