I blog about unemployment.
As you might imagine, one of the things my readers are most interested in is making some cash.
Because I am unemployed and have been scammed with promises of great wealth, I make it one of my missions to steer people away from those sorts of things and toward legitimate opportunities.
The legitimate opportunities don't pay as much as the scam artists promise, but at least they pay and don't pick your pockets.
Survey taking seemed to me like a good opportunity for unemployed people to pick up a few dollars a day.
Market research is a multi-billion-dollar industry.
If the market researchers get paid, so should their subjects, and their subjects do get paid -- a little.
You might remember back in the olden golden days of the shopping mall when market researchers would approach you with a clipboard offering you five dollars to spend 15 minutes "answering a few questions about products.
" Usually, the 15 minutes was actually a half hour, but you're at the mall, right? It's not like you're in a hurry.
The Internet is the new mall, and those people with clipboards are still there, offering you a few bucks to participate in their research.
The problem is that it can be very difficult to find them on your own because the spammers and scammers dominate the search engine results for terms like, "get paid to take surveys," and "participate in market research.
" For the life of me, I can't understand why market research firms don't invest in some SEO.
I guess they're happy with the results they get from subjects sent their way by scam artists promising great riches (for only $149.
99 while this special limited-time offer lasts!).
Here's the good news: You don't have to spend $149.
99 to make money taking surveys.
Here's the bad news: You won't get rich taking surveys, though you can make a decent second income if you're willing to put in a fair amount of time and effort.
It's just like any part-time job that way.
Here's more good news: You can make a decent amount of money once you learn the ropes.
You'll graduate up to "mystery shopper" status eventually if you pay your dues.
Market research is a legitimate business, and you can get paid to participate.
But never listen to anyone who promises you lots of easy money.