Time for a little venting of those things that make the head thump. This time, it's one item that warrants the bulk of the discussion. Jenn Mattern of All Freelance Writing (a phenomenal site you should be haunting regularly) uncovered a pretty heinous little practice going on at a site that will remain nameless (only because we don't want to drive any more traffic their way, right?). Jenn names them, and she gives her impressions here.
This place for WRITERs, this BAY of opportunity, has a contest running. They promise $1,000 to some lucky writer who enters the contest. You simply fill out the registration form, write an article on the topic of your choice, and press the Submit URL button. The front page instructions then say "Once your article is published on the blog, send us the link to your post."
And there's the rub: YOU have to find a blog on which to house your post.
Here also is the rest of the "contest rules." They make you register just to get to this point (I wonder if they have another Regina Ursula Scammy- ruscammy - listed?).
The list of "rules" goes on - there are three phases to this contest, each one requiring you to jump through a few more hoops to qualify.The general gist of it is the more you post, the more points you earn. And they've listed places for you to post --without telling the blog owners. They're listed by point value: basic, premium, and elite. And yes, the bloggers are expected to include links back to this place.
First, let's point out the obvious: no one is winning that money. Or at least it's no one who isn't known by (or is) the contest organizer.
Second, now they have your name and email address (you had to register to get to this point). Prepare to be bombarded by crap!
Third, the idea that writers should compete to get an invisible, barely attainable prize and include links to this stupid site is exploitative at best. That writers would even consider it shows 1) desperation and 2) a lazy attitude. You're only motivation is money, and not exactly a solid promise of anything real. They give you a list of blog owners to pester the hell out of, and you'll just go right on and do what they say. If you do, stick to a day job, for you're clearly locked in employer/employee mentality.
Fourth, the site itself seeks writers (and pays them very poorly) to write essays for students. So basically, you get to help some slacker cheat his or her way to a degree. Why not write those same papers for your own degree?
Fifth, the exclamation points. I have very few absolutes I live by, but this is a biggie: NEVER (yes, I'm using that word) trust someone who insists on exclamation overload. Exclamations are a lame way of covering up a crap offer.
I could go on. In fact, I just may. But I want your thoughts first -- If you like, go to the website, and use my login: freedom17 AT hotmail DOT com and use the password ruscammy2. Read through it if you can stomach it.
What smells are you noticing?