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Content, Writing and Copyright Forum

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Content writers all seem to follow a code
Automotive site

 11:48 pm on Jun 7, 2011 (gmt 0)

It does not seem to matter whether you pay a writer $10 or $20+ for an article, they all seem to produce content that is very similar. Its like as if they follow a guideline on how to write web content.

I have used upward of 30 writers I think over the last 5 years and in that time two have been what I would describe excellent writers who produce really compelling and engaging content. Unfortunately, one charges $10 per 100 words so had to give up on her after only a few articles (couldn't justify the cost of paying between $50 to $100 for an article of 500 to 1000 words). She is from the States and writes for fairly large sites. I am sure she makes 10s of thousands of dollars a month writing. There is no need for her to bring down her price for me as she is already highly established.

The second writer is equally as good and charges $20 irrespective of the length (be it 500 words or 1000+ words). He can do this because he is from India where cost of living is obviously lower. But he has his hands tied and can only do a max of around 20 articles a month.

I use two other writers and they are both much inferior (both American actually).

I need a second high-quality writer on board but can't seem to find one (unless you are willing to pay prices that wouldn't really make sense for a regular site owner such as myself). Like I say, they all seem to follow the same pattern of writing. There is no character in the writing. Its all descriptive rather than analytical.



 1:52 am on Jun 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

Nowadays, the original article is become less and less. People's laziness may be one of the reason.


 2:39 am on Jun 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

tangor ;-)

Good ..we are in almost total agreement ( wouldn't deign to speak for Lucy though ;-) then..especially about the difference betwixt copy writers ( I was one and insist upon the spelling as two distinct words ) and copywrit(ers) which as "creatives" we all are..

re spell checker ..it is the US version ..and the licence and colour thing bugs me far less than the write being according to it wrong as it insists it should be written as rite or wrote ..but has no problem with the word written .just with the written word..when written by me..hence my question ;-) ..

I think I'll switch it off and you'll all have to put up with the occasional franglais and typos as per usual ..otherwise the damn thing underlines very second word I write..there it did it again, right there .

Apologies for the small but then your eyes are not much older than mine, and its not polite to speculate about Lucy's other than as to the colour of them ;-)


 3:55 am on Jun 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

its not polite to speculate about Lucy's other than as to the colour of them ;)

They are of an age where, #1, every time I have occasion to use a new browser, I race to set a minimum font size, and #2, when presented with a choice between a 21" and 27" monitor I pleaded eloquently for the 21". And it wasn't the "don't order lobster on a first date" principle, either.

On a web page designed by a 20 year-old with bionic eyes? Full content zoom scales the entire content of a web page instead of just increasing (or decreasing) the text size.

I know the feeling well.

But I'm still reeling over the $10 for an article thing. Heck, I'm not sure you could get someone to mow your lawn for that. Well, maybe the flat part in the middle where you don't have to navigate around tree roots and rosebushes and mysterious bumps and hollows. (The preceding sentence was an analogy.)

If you pay someone in India $10 do they even get $10? I once deposited a $10 check from Canada and the bank took $5 for Nameless Fees.

Automotive site

 9:30 am on Jun 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

I think you guys missed my point. I was trying to say it does not matter whether you pay one writer x amount and another a much higher rate, they still seem to produce content that is barely indistinguishable (with rare exceptions). Why should I pay premium rates if the higher paid writers are not going to produce content worthy of the extra cost they charge?

I agree with tangor when he/she says there are only so many ways you can write about something. But that said, there are also many topics where, if a writer wishes, can distinguish their copy from others. But they just don't bother because most seem to follow a trend of writing web copy.

With that said, I am definitely going to stick by my point that a Dollar gets you a lot less in India than you guys think.

As for the cost of a house, one can certainly buy a two/three bedroom house in parts of London (less fashionable areas) for $300,000 to $400,000. My point regarding that is that to buy a house of similar standing in major cities in India would set you back at least $100,000, if not more (and that too in less than premium areas). You guys give the impression that a dollar would have limitless buying power over there.

Automotive site

 9:31 am on Jun 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

"But I'm still reeling over the $10 for an article thing"

Well, Demand Studio pays on average $15 per article, which is not all that more.


 9:47 am on Jun 9, 2011 (gmt 0)

I think you guys missed my point. I was trying to say it does not matter whether you pay one writer x amount and another a much higher rate, they still seem to produce content that is barely indistinguishable (with rare exceptions). Why should I pay premium rates if the higher paid writers are not going to produce content worthy of the extra cost they charge?

Thats not what your original post at the top of the page says, up there you say your writer in the states is excellent , your guy in India too , all others are not good, you don't like what they produce its all too similar, you don't want to pay the USA prices , and the guy in India is too busy.

Nobody missed your point, you just changed it after over 30 posts were made by you and us into your own thread.

re Indian prices, we are taking about the India between Pakistan and Burma, that exists today, right now, you apparently are talking about another one.

You seem to be looking for justifications for being cheap, whilst not accepting that you get what you pay for, and quality writing doesn't come cheap.

The articles that demand studio gets are crap , written by people rehashing words off another part of their screen because they are taken from someone else's website and on subjects that they themselves know nothing about..that is what demand media gets for $15.oo.

I know they have paid people who have gone to my sites, opened their browser, rehashed what they saw, got all the details wrong, missed the salient points, and acknowledged the article source as me ( in case of a lawsuit , because the origin is obvious ) ..and made damn sure to no-follow it if they even linked..which in many cases they didn't.

That is a typical article from demand, plagiarism at its worst...and all for 15 bucks a pop before income tax.


 6:44 am on Jun 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Demand Studio pays on average $15 per article

The resulting quality is at least as bad as what he was complaining about.

I have had lots of articles re-hashed on their sites, and the results are terrible.

My favourite eHow article is not a rehash of any of mine but one that came up in the SERPS. One paragraph was dedicated to explaining that concrete is a widely used building material (thanks for the useful info!).

@lucy, I do not understand why you wanted the smaller monitor.


 7:13 am on Jun 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

How to find a good content writer:

Finding a good content writer is not always easy. In fact it can be quite difficult to find a good content writer. Before you can find a good content writer you have to ask yourself what you are looking for in a good content writer and what you are willing to pay a good content writer since good content writer often charge higher fees. There are lots of content writers out there, but the good content writers are very hard to find and might not be willing to work for a low fee since writing good content is much work for good content writers. This text wasn't written by a good content writer, since the author is not a good content writer but good luck in finding a good content writer.


By the way. If you want to know the secret of the Panda update. Shh.. quiet. Here it is:

Google simply slapped all websites with articles that contain the words "not" and "easy" in the first sentence. There you have it. Easy as pie.


 11:58 am on Jun 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

@jecasc, brilliant. Laugh out loud funny.


 12:26 pm on Jun 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

:) agreed, thanks for starting my day with a laugh jecasc..

I think the reason that Lucy wanted a 21" ( native resolution = 1920 by 1080 ) monitor over a 27" ( native resolution = 2560 by 1440 ) monitor is that the "native resolution issue" would make the text on a 27" monitor really small out of the box ..and look like crap if the resolution was changed to get the text bigger, here I'm presuming that Lucy is still using "shiny fruit" machines such as here [apple.com]


 4:06 pm on Jul 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

I have been writing articles for over 5 years and I am from India. Irrespective of whether I write for an Indian client (who pays in Indian Rupees) or an International one (who pays in dollars), my aim is to follow the client's guidelines and deliver quality content.

The time, effort and creativity which go into delivering a quality article cannot be measured in terms of Rupees or dollars. Sadly, a freelance content writer today does not earn as much as most other individuals who have less creative full time jobs. Given the overhead costs of running a freelance writing business and the uncertainty of getting more work the next month, $20 per article is definitely not high. US$ 20 is only about 800 Indian Rupees - weekly grocery shopping bills go up anywhere between Rs 2500 - 3000.

There are a lot of Indian companies offering writing services at unbelievably low rates. I would not like to comment on how good or bad they are but what surprises me most is when many International clients expect the same low rates from all content providers from India while constantly complaining about low quality content delivered by them!


 5:00 pm on Jul 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

Some articles need an expert in the topic and I'm happy to invest the money into having an expert write it. I can then create a profile for that writer to reinforce the authority of the content.

Other kinds of content do not need the hand of an authority and that I send over to (American) writers who are culturally familiar with the content topic. I believe it's important for the writers to be culturally familiar with the non-expert topic they are writing about.

For non-expert writing, the way I get over the description hump is to provide a detailed outline of each point that needs to be addressed in the articles. Sometimes it means outlining each article and sometimes it means providing a general template of what I want covered. It's a little extra work but it helps me receive the content I need. I would love to find a writer who can intuit what I need, but I doubt that's going to happen no matter how much I pay.


 5:27 pm on Jul 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

leosghost, I love you dearly, but you missed the point. You sometimes do, but I won't hold that against you). Paid writers, especially for newspapers, radio, tv, film, websites, are of a general mold... but where those writers reside, or how far that bit of income they receive enhances their lives... has nothing to do with the commonality of pay-for-hire COPY writers* and their body of work or work ethic or skills.

Professional writers are educated and trained, or learn through experience the formats that papers desire. They are not of a general mold at all. Journalism has standards that need to be adhered to within sectors. So there's similiarity among groups of professional writers BECAUSE they are skilled.

As for only limited ways to write about something, no. I always wonder when people say things like that, whether they have ever studied writing, or get paid during a writing career, or whether, if they did they are hacks. No insult intended, but I am a writer.

And, no, most couldn't afford me.


 8:21 pm on Jul 8, 2011 (gmt 0)

Journalism is the worst possible example of standards in writing you could have picked. As far as I can see journalistic standards are to regurgitate press-releases uncritically, plagiarise when you can get away with it, rewrite stuff you do not understand, and do not bother to check facts.


 7:53 pm on Jul 12, 2011 (gmt 0)

There's your answer. Descriptive is easy to write and doesn't require in-depth knowledge of a topic/product.

The web is increasingly awash in this kind of stuff. The writing seems lifeless, devoid. And I don't think this fact is lost on even many average users. In other words, they can discern the authentic content from the cheap knockoff stuff.

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