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South of the Border

How to Go Down With the Ship

How to Go Down With the Ship

This email appeared in the mailbag from one of our amigos/amigas south of the border, so I thought I’d pass it along.

Also feel free to rant over in the forums if it helps you feel any better.

I have been working for Demand Studios for about 8 months now. I reside in Mexico and came across the site while looking for translation Jobs online.

Of course, the site doesn’t feature as many options for people liveing outside of the states but I figures I’d give it a try. I got hired and started working on a pay rate of 2.50 USD per article.

I do this to have an extra income as I already work full time at a company. I love translating and they used to have quite a variety of articles so it worked for me.

However, a couple weeks ago they sent an email saying they’d start focusing on improving quality and what not and they’d get rid of some of the people working for them. “Fortunately” I got another email saying, because of my rankings and the quality of my work, I had been chosen to stay.
However, not it seems like there are less and less articles. I had a really hard time completing the minimun amount of 40 articles last week and this week I’ve only been able to do five.

I know this company has devoloped a bad reputation but I was wondering if I could get some advise from other people working for them as to what to do or whawt to expect.

Just yesterday, I got another email saying that we had been chosen among the best but recently, our work seemed to be decreasing in quality and amount and that they would son have to start considering hiring more translators or even changing some. This upset me, I don’t like being threatened, especially when my work keeps beeing the same.

Thank you!

2 comments to South of the Border

  • Vicky

    You must work for Demand Media International. It’s the bit of Demand that spins the crappy U.S. content into different languages to infect the Internets in Brazil, Germany and England and a few other unlucky places.

    Working for International is even worse than slaving for the “mother ship” in the U.S. You get all the usual shit plus they insist you hit certain quotas each week or risk loosing permissions and lots of other passive-aggressive behavior and threats just like the e-mail messages you cite.

    You asked what you can expect? Well if Ehow U.K. is anything to go by, the outlook for you and your fellow workers ain’t great. You will get a message saying that production is stopping temporarily “while we take stock” and you will never see another assignment in your queue. This is what happened to the UK site in around June 2013. Nothing since then altho the site limps on (Google PageRank now down to 5, lower than many mommy blogs and traffic falling thru the floor) with sub-buzz feed type features written by staffers.

    Don’t give up your main job!

  • Pamela

    What to expect? They’re going out of business and don’t want to admit that to their writers, plain and simple. There is almost no work available for the past 2+ weeks, in some section for the past 4+ months. Their weekly Ask the Editor forum gets shorter and shorter because the same question keeps getting asked: when will there be work again? Today, only one person asked a question in that thread, and it fell along those lines, the editor side-stepped the question (as always) and then closed the thread. Their website is a glitch-infested mess these days, half of the time they fail to make payments to their writers in a timely manner, their two head puppets abruptly left last week … Need I elaborate any further? Those letters you’re getting, like the ones that other writers have been getting, are jerking you around. Some of us stick around just to watch the train wreck unfold while we earn income on other sites, we aren’t as stupid as DM wants to believe. Others, well, they are indeed so clueless that it truly is mind boggling. It’s no surprise that those few have to resort to selling their eggs, sperm and plasma to pay a phone bill.

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