The last time you all heard from me, I was looking for work. I was focusing mainly on the internet, but was starting to look at outside work as well. Guess what? No luck in either direction. Gee, go figure.
Jobs that were open for outside of the home do not fit my skills, education level or disability limitations. Jobs on the internet are either non-legitimate, do not fit my skills, education level or disability limitations. On top of all that, those online that I could accept require a PayPal account. No big deal, right? NOT!! My bank account does not allow linkage with PayPal. And, those internet jobs don’t pay in other formats.
What does all of this mean? I am screwed!!! I have looked into doing surveys, focus groups and other “make work”, only to run into the above mentioned issues. In addition, the majority of surveys & focus groups that I have “pre-qualified” & “qualified” for end up shutting me down because my answers within the survey itself did not fit the demographics they were looking for. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I thought that they were looking for OPINIONS! I am a very opinionated person. Just because I don’t work for a certain company, have thousands of dollars as income or read certain magazines does not invalidate my opinion about their services or products. I am an intelligent person capable of making up my mind about a multitude of services, products, political issues, social issues, etc. You would think that survey companies would set up their agent databases to rank each person into specific demographics and then send surveys that are specific to that demographic only.
In my opinion, companies that are looking for opinions should accept all demographics and then order the results in a manner that shows which demographic is more interested or least interested in their service or product. This way, they would get the most statistic bang for their buck.
As for all of these survey companies that only offer drawing entries, reward points, or other non-cash payouts, I only have one thing to say – fooey on you. Minimum wage in this country is now $7.25 per hour. Why should I spend 39 minutes of my time filling out a survey for companies that don’t want to pay me what my time is worth according to the United States government. Same goes for the companies that do pay cash, but you only get $.01 to $.10 per survey. WTF!!! When did slavery become legal in this country again???
Speakin of slavery, have any of you looked into Mturk or other micro-tasking websites? I mean really! Why are American citizens allowing this kind of slave wage employment to continue? Added to this insult are websites like Odesk. Why should I have to bid for work, let alone bid against people from other countries that bid so low no one from a higher income country can ever win the bid?
So, how do we end this downward spiral of pay? There are a few ways that I can see.
A. Companies like Odesk, Mturk, etc. should start dividing their websites by country. If your company is in Australia, then you can only accept bids from Australian citizens. Ditto for other countries. End this excessive rush for outsourcing. I understand that compaines have a bottom line, and kudos for those that think they are helping underpriviledged countries get a better income level for their people, but outsourcing has one particular pitfall that I feel is being ignored, overlooked or misunderstood. What happens to the people in their own countries that are unemployed because of all the outsourcing? If the people that you are aiming your services and products at don’t have an income, then THEY CAN’T PURCHASE YOUR PRODUCT OR SERVICE!!!!!!!!!! It doesn’t take a genious like Steven Hawkins to figure this out. And yet, there is a massive movement within the business AND political environment to promote outsourcing.
B. Survey companies in general should only be allowed to pay cash that is compensitory with the minimum wage of the country that the agent lives in. This means, that if I (an American) take a survey that lasts 10 minutes, then I should be paid $1.20 for my time and effort. If the survey lasts 39 minutes, then I should get $4.71. If it only lasts 1 minute, then I should get $0.12. If you divide your country’s minumum wage by 60, then you will get your per minute amount. You can then multiply that by however many minutes each survey takes to get what you should have been paid for that particular survey. They get paid multi-millions of dollars every year to provide this service to every company out there that utilizes them. Why shouldn’t we get our fair share for taking the time out of our lives to provide them with the information that they need?
C. All companies, whether via internet or physical presence, should have to have alternate forms of payout. Not all countries allow PayPal or other types of Internet Payment Accounts. I should have the option of accepting direct deposit, prepaid credit or gift cards or check by mail no matter what company I accept work from. This includes payouts via third party companies like Mturk or survey sites. I should also be able to get this type of payout FREE. Why should I pay part of my hard earned income just because your company is too money hungry to accept my payment preference. It’s not like they can’t deduct the cost of supplies from their taxes or something. Sheesh, get a clue.
These are just some of the changes that I feel should be made in today’s employment practices. I know that there are multitudes of other changes that could or should be made, but can’t bring them to mind right at this moment.
Please feel free to add your insights and comments to the list. Hell, maybe if I get enough suggestions, I might just send a petiton to the government requiring those changes. Of course, even if I do, the government would take so long debating the issue that we would all be dead and dust before anything got done. Don’t laugh, this is most likely true.
I hope that you have enjoyed, understood and sympathized with this blog. Let me know how things are going for you.