I received an email from People Per Hour this morning, for those of you who aren’t aware of People Per Hour, they are a freelance site where you can get paid to write, I have had many clients on there over the few years that I have been writing full-time and up until now, everything was good with them.
Then, this email arrived, an email about an exciting opportunity to write for People Per Hour’s blog. I thought that it might be fun so I sent them my proposal, something I have done many times on their website. Then I received a reply, an automatic reply that didn’t answer any of my questions at all.
This email told me all about this “very exciting opportunity” how it was unpaid and there was very fierce competition for the role as they would promote your profile on their site, for free! And, I assume, how privileged I should feel about receiving this email out of the blue, I assume this because I stopped reading after it was clear it was an automatic email and that it was unpaid.
In 2013, I spent all year doing unpaid work, hoping and praying that I would get to the position I am in now. That work did give me some experience in writing but it also made me understand that people who want free work want it to benefit them, never you! Promoting your profile on their blog will mean they attach it to the thing you have written, you won’t get a special little section just for you or anything like. Plus, who reads People Per Hour’s blog anyway? Companies who don’t have the time to waste and need to pay someone to do their work right away, or freelancers passing the time while they take a break from looking for work?
People Per Hour is supposed to be for freelancers to connect with people and companies that are willing to pay for quality work, not for the site itself to take advantage of the people that are using it.
They are hoping that by freelancers doing free work for them, it will promote their site. Well, consider this article my free work for you, I truly hope it promotes you and that freelances can see you for what you are. Just remember People Per Hour, you are not the only freelance site around and by trying to get the people who use your site to do free work for you, you won’t be a freelance site for very long.
If you want freelancers to use your site more often (as you stated in your email) may I suggest advertising to companies, rather than trying to take advantage of the people that are making you your money!
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