I got all angry about Google’s Matt Cutts waxing poetic about Amazon Mechanical Turk as a form of sweatshop labor for linkbait. I shouldn’t be surprised that they’re not just interested in getting the written word on the cheap… they actual want professional artists to work for free! (Because Google really has to worry about their budget these days – they only reported a profit of nearly $1.5 billion in the first quarter of this year.)
According to Matt Cutts of Google, Internet marketers should avoid the unethical practice of buying links by paying a few pennies to the folks who complete tasks via Amazon Mechanical Turk and scoring free links from their efforts. Let me rephrase that: Google says it’s wrong to pay for other people to link to your website, but it’s totally cool to score hundreds or thousands of links – not by paying a professional copywriter to create an awesome resource for you – but by spending about 20 bucks for a handful of people to perform cheap labor for you with Amazon Mechanical Turk. Don’t believe me? Watch this video.
I’ve been thinking. All this writing is very time consuming. I’m good at it – pretty awesome, actually – and it pays well, but I don’t have time for much of anything else. I tried to think about different ways to lessen my workload while still paying the bills, and it came to me that a lot of SEOs would pay big bucks to know exactly what I did as a quality rater for Google.
Before my introduction to the world of Internet Marketing, I had never even heard of a no-follow link. I’ve been blogging for a few years, so it’s not like I’m a complete Web noob. But as a blogger who just wanted a place to write about her son and her obsession with LOST, I didn’t even know the Google Webmaster Guidelines existed.
I’m not unique in this.