I’ve been doing ‘hits’ (human intelligent tasks) as they are called on Mechanical Turk for about a year and a half. The concept is based on the idea that many tasks can be performed better and more efficiently by a human being than a computer.
My experience with using the site overall has been a positive one. I’ve gained some valuable experience and had fun doing it. I was a little skeptical at first but decided to give it a try and I am very glad that I did.
There are a variety of tasks that you can do. You can pick from surveys, writing, evaluating sites, verifying information, and writing reviews to name a few. There never seems to be a shortage of work on the site. I am really amazed by the variety of tasks that are offered.
Some of the tasks are very low paying, but the money can really add up over time. The thing I found the most valuable about using the site was that it is a great way to gain some transcription experience. You can transcribe, grade, or edit Podcast which are put out by a company called CastingWords.
Most of the transcribing tasks are about 4-7 minutes long. Although there are some that are longer. There is no need to purchase any equipment to do the transcribing. You can download a free software program called Express Scribe which will help you start and stop the audio. You don’t have to use the program but it makes transcribing so much easier.
Once you are finished your work is sent off to be graded by other transcribers. The higher or better your grade is the more you will get paid for the job. Most transcription hits offer a bonus for a high score. Sometimes they even run contests for transcribers where you can earn cash for the transcribing the most tasks
As long as you follow their guidelines you shouldn’t have any problem maintaining a quality score. You can also grade other’s work and edit finished work if you choose. A quaity score is also attached to each of these tasks.
For payment you just need to set up an Amazon Payment Account. You have the option of having your payment sent to your bank account or you can request an Amazon gift certificate. I’ve been paid several times and never had a problem receiving payment. It is usually sent a few days after it is requested. If your interested in signing up you can visit www.mturk.com.
There is something for everyone on Mechanical Turk. It is a great way to earn some extra cash and can be a lot of fun too.