I've been in this industry for many years and it's always been a struggle for people to land a work at home job. It's either most of them are scams or folks don't have the skills that are actual demand. For instance freelance writing always in demand because all websites need content. I see ads recruiting writers to work on all kinds of projects, from writing a review of a favorite game to making a product description for a camera. With these “opportunities” popping up all over the place, it's hard to know what's real and what's not. So let's take a look at TextBroker.com, an online freelance writing platform, and see if it's a scam or legit.
What is TextBroker?
Simply put, TextBroker.com is an online content exchange platform. It was founded in Germany in 2008, and it currently has headquarters in New York City and Las Vegas. TextBroker basically has two areas of focus. One area is for clients who want to purchase articles or content. The other side is meant for writers who want to make money writing the content for these clients. Writing for clients can be a pain in the but, so you may want to consider easier ways to earn like Fusion Cash & Swagbucks.com.
How Do You Join TextBroker?
It is free to join, with an application process. Click here to take a look at the signup process. For starters, they require you to submit an article of your choice based on a few topics they issue. This is REALLY important to nail, since you only get one shot at determining your initial “quality rating.” Theoretically, you could get anywhere from a 1 to a 5. However, a 1 cannot get ANY work, and it is extremely rare to get a 5, and it's even more rare for a client to be willing to pay for a writer with a quality of 5.
It takes a LONG time (up to 2 weeks) to get your article evaluated, so be prepared to wait. Then, once you're assigned a rating, you can start writing. You can see what articles are available for your quality rating, and each article gets assessed by the author AND TextBroker staff. This is a double-rating system that ensures you get treated fairly. Every 5 ratings, your quality is re-assessed, making it easy to advance in the ranks and earn more and more money if you're serious.
If you get to the 4-star level (fairly easy to do if you've written for any length of time) you can expect to be earning a little less than 2 cents a word, which adds up very quickly.
How does TextBroker pay and when?
Like a lot of freelance writing sites, TextBroker is only willing to pay through PayPal. You NEED to have sent them a W9 form that they very explicitly require before payment. If you're not actually a US citizen and/or you're uncomfortable giving them this information, do not proceed. They have no minimum threshold for this; for them to send you ONE PENNY, you'll need to be on-board with this process.
To get paid once you've submitted all that documentation, you'll need to have earned at least $10 in your account. They send out payments at the beginning of every business week, so it's fairly often.
Since TextBroker is such a commonly used platform, there are tons of complaints, some of which are more valid than others. Here are some I have personally observed and others online have concurred with:
US Residents Only
Unfortunately or fortunately depending on your point of view, TextBroker is open to US RESIDENTS ONLY. Don't even try to fool TextBroker by using a proxy or VPN, since they require a fully validated US government-issued identification as well as a confirmed W9 tax form to be sent to the United States' IRS. I feel bad for my competent international brothers and sisters but I don't make the rules.
HORRIBLE user interface:
Be prepared to have a stress ball around at all times when using TextBroker. I'm not sure if the interface was made in the late 1990s or just by someone who didn't have it all together, but it is very difficult to use. It's filled with complex little tables and buttons, and it very frequently will throw frustrating “internal errors” that cause my research team to have to log in and out all the time. This can get very old very fast from using the platform. Just know you'll have to be patient, since there isn't any way around it.
Why Are You ALL Up My Personal Business?
Textbroker.com requires a lot more personal info than most sites to work as a writer for their company. If you're an private person, be prepared to be paranoid about the company's use of your information. They require much more information than any other freelancing company I've researched and their application process is oddly lengthy for an open-market freelance writing platform. It can take almost a month in total to get fully verified and ready to go. All this digging into your information might give you pause. But my research team could not find any reports of them actually misusing your info, and they have been around for a long time.
A bad client can make or break you!
Your rating is your livelihood on TextBroker. It's determined technically by the last five evaluations of your content. Don't like a rating? Too bad! TextBroker will supplement the rating with their own evaluation, but there's nothing you can do to solve a client's unfair rating other than choose to not write for them again. You can try to avoid this by writing only for clients with a good track record.
The clients do not rate you. They can provide an evaluation and rating, but it is only one part of the rating system. Until June of 20016, client evaluations had no bearing on your rating. The new system, however, is supposed to take that into account.
The rating system is different as of June 1 2016. Now, one article is reviewed by an editor and that one article determines your “star” rating. Just a few misplaced commas can drop you a level. The editor is the only one to determine your rating, not the clients.
Clients can reject an article after giving you one chance to revise it. Textbroker will review the article and if they feel the rejection was unwarranted, will overturn it and the writer gets paid. If they decide it was warranted, and they can decide that based on something other than why the client didn't like it, the rejection is upheld and you are not paid.
So is TextBroker Legitimate?
TextBroker does provide payments when they say they will, and they're very upfront about earnings. The only somewhat misleading thing is that it takes a lot of work to get approved to write for them, and this time and effort is not factored into the overall money you will make. It's a huge amount of work, but you do get paid as promised, and there are advancement opportunities, providing you are willing to look at your own writing critically. If you're not a native speaker or you don't have a particular inclination towards writing, this might not be for you.
I personally have a love hate relationship with content sites like TextBroker. My blogger business side just feels that in the long run it just makes more financial sense to start your own blog and get rid of the middleman who's taking a cut of your money. If you feel the same way, then you should seriously consider My Top Free Work At Home Recommendation which teaches you how to make a living by blogging. The advantages are you don't have to deal with demanding clients that can limit your income growth.
Now with that all said, I'm not knocking anyone that wants to give TextBroker a shot. Clearly you can make some money with it and I'm big proponent of multiple streams of income. So with that in mind I would encourage you to look into my popular Work At Home Courses, Fusion Cash & Swagbucks.comas well. When you couple all these opportunities together they may add up to some real money and help you mitigate the risk of losing all your income that may be tied to one company.
I'd love to hear your thoughts about my TextBroker Review. So please leave a comment below on your way out. Thanks for reading.
Eddy with a y