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8.10.2010

Trying Helium Again

So, I decided to try Helium again as another place to write articles. I am not sure why exactly I am doing this, probably because I have money in there from when I used to make money on there and can not cash it out, until it hits $10. That and I noticed articles on Helium are actually showing up in search engine searches, which before they never did or very infrequently.

In the past I actually made good money on there before they changed all the rules and added so many new rules that have to be done to make any money on there. So, I am back over there again, under Aaron Michelle. I am already severely annoyed and irritated by the site though. If you have never been to Helium or looked into their rules to make money on their site, it is a pain.

First, you are not just writing articles and spreading them to drive traffic to the articles. You have to rate articles on the site by other authors. Though this is really nifty, if I am doing the rating on other people's articles and vice verse, real traffic is not being created. Readers should be doing the rating, not other authors. If you do not do at least 10 ratings a month, you make no money. So no matter how many hits your article receives, no matter how many articles you have posted you get nothing unless you keep at least a 1 star article rating. Again, this is neat and all, but honestly, I have to make money and write all day to do it. Like many freelance writers, how much I make is directly correlated to how much I work. Plus, I want real readers to look at my articles and click the ads, not have other writers just rate them to fill their monthly quota for the month.

Secondly, there are about a dozen other badges and other nonsense on the site now that writer's can obtain. Writing stars, badges, qualifications and the list goes on. Again, I like that sites do things like this, but at the same time it is so much clutter and things to try and remember and keep track of. I want to write. I like to write. I do it for a living. Keeping track if I have been honored or not is not a priority to me. I know if I am doing good by how much money I make.

Third, you can lose stars and badges too. So, lets say you've had a hectic month and did not write and rate as much, you lose your stars. Really? It seems slightly immature and like punishment, as if all the hard work means nothing because you had a slow month. The calculation for receiving writing stars is based on the number of articles posted, the rating the articles have received and the number of articles in competitive titles. The calculation is confusing and a pain as well. So, again you wrote a lot, but maybe many are not in competitive titles you do not receive as many writing stars.

Plus, there are badges for people who have applied to be an authority in a topic or a steward of a topic. But lets not also forget that there are badges to get work in the marketplace too. The marketplace is where work is posted to be completed. Numerous people can pick up the same job and submit it and if it's chosen over other articles, that person gets paid. But, again some work has certain badges, that if you don't have that badge you can't complete the work.

I realize I am complaining, but I also like things to be simple and uncluttered and not messy. Helium is the most cluttered, over done writing site out there. There are so many limitations and rules, that it is impossible to make money. But, I want my money out of there that I have already made. So, will try to do the bare minimum to make money and keep life uncluttered from them. I think Helium actually believes that as writers we all must just sit around reading and have nothing else to do. The amount of fuss on the site, if actual spent doing it, just to get badges and stars, would absorb so much of the day that no real work would be accomplished. I also have been skeptical about Helium too because of other articles I did read that explained that Helium gives very little back to their writers, versus what they take in and the amount of work done by writers to get that money. So, we will see. Does anyone have a better experience with Helium? Am I missing something or misunderstanding something? I am curious to find out what others think.

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