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"I work at home on the Internet as a web publisher." They then usually ask what I mean by "web publisher". Followed by "Who pays you to do that?". And, finally, they come up with a creative way to ask "How much money do you make doing that?".
On one particular night of being asked what "I do" over and over, I decided to just say that I owned a computer related business. But, this just made things worse. "Oh computers! My brother works for a software company and makes good money there. So, what exactly does your company do in regards to computers?" Then, I was just back to square one, but with more explaining to do.
What do other Adsense full-timers, possibly with employees, say when asked this question? I'm just curious, thanks in advance for any comments.
friends from committing click fraud in an effort to "help out"
1999 at a seminar. The student just making the web site for his company showed me a terrible homepage.
He started to click 20 times on reload.
I asked him why. He told me, it's the homepage from a friend, he tells always proud about the counter on this homepage.
Imagine the same situation 6 years later with a friend and a terrible bad AdSense homepage.....
While I was doing OK I definately hated telling people I sold stuff on eBay for a living. Like other's have said, people equate you with their 12 year old niece who has done that. Webmaster has that same kind of feel. You may be doing well and extremely smart but you don't want to be thought of as doing something someone in jr high can do.
Next I told them I did web publishing, this lead to requests to build a site for them.
Now I tell them that I am a travel writer or sometimes I tell them I play the piano at the local brothel. Both get the desired results.
Other times I tell them I'm on "webmaster welfare" which gets some priceless looks.
Heck, only people on 'welfare' can afford a Mercedes, right?
He started to click 20 times on reload.
Back in the days of the dotcom boom I was working for a startup-company which had a couple of medium-traffic websites (for the time), and had just discovered CPM-based banner advertising as a nice source of revenue.
At the time I shared the same open-plan office as the young lady whose business card had "marketing" as her job description. Nice girl, but dim, but she was the boss's girlfriend, so her qualifications (or lack thereof) were clearly not an issue.
One evening I noticed her sitting there, doing nothing but clicking. Clicking. Clicking. It was driving me slightly crazy. I went over and asked her in a friendly manner what she was doing. Her answer: "the banner company say we need more clicks".
Needless to say, the company was one of the first to go under.
answers range from
"Lebenskuenstler" (hard to translate, maybe life artist)
"Sailor" (I own a sailboat in the Caribbean and am about to buy another one)
"does Internet stuff"
"tries to set up businesses that will provide residual income"
which comes really close, but none of which you can tell a prospective mate without sounding obnoxious.
try to post that on match.com ...
when nobody to explain it for me is around, I stick to the publisher/advertising line.
Accounts Manager. ( leave out adsense etc... ), sounds boring enough for people to leave you be.
Shock Value: Gay Porn Star.
Short Order Cook...
anything to confuse someone about how much money I could potentially make. I really hate people who ask that before they know you five minutes anyway.
I love the dirty looks when I say: I have a trust fund, so... nothing.
I generally say, "i'm a web designer" or "I make websites". (because, along with AS, I do build sites).
Sometimes I just tell them, "internet advertising".
My family knows what I do. Acquaintances... I don't talk about it. Although I would like to believe that G is smart enough to ignore click attacks.
Let's see if I can come up with a couple good responses...
I rent cyberspace
I convert virtual reality into monetary reality.
I'm in dot-commerce
I own part of the Internet (or maybe, "I invented part of the Internet").
I create a beach for web surfers
I create intellectual property for myself. (then say, "Excuse me, I need to get back to work", close eyes tightly, and make faces).
When I explain my online income I think it's pretty easy, I just say I own several really popular websites and a lot of companies want to advertise on them, some of the advertising is automated by Google, based on the topic and the premium advertising I do directly with individual companies.
The point of confusion usually comes in when people say 'hey cool, how hard is it to make a website?' What else can I say other than 'dead easy, the trick to it though is getting crap loads of people to visit the site.' That's when all the questions come and they get confused.
I find what people usually can't believe is that much of the learning comes from people freely sharing info on how to do it. They just can't believe that if you don't know how to something you can just go to a forum and ask experts and they will explain it for free. That's something people just can't fathom.
What is this entire discussion all about? Why are so afraid of telling people the truth?
Some people are obviously paranoid, but in other cases they may simply not be able to articulate what they do. (It's easy to say "I'm a Web publisher" if you make your living from editorial content, or "I have an online store" if you have an e-commerce site, but trying to explain MFA sites or PPC arbitrage is a little trickier.)
Sometimes I say, "I don't work" and they are like, "So you're a bum? How come? You don't eat?" then I say, "I'm independently wealthy that I don't need to work" or "I'm a scion of a wealthy clan. How about you?" Usually, that ends the conversation.
I should make an affiliate page for amazon or something and have an automated counter at the top that says how much money I have made. I could make it randomly go up one to ten dollars every half hour. So everytime they look at the page they will see me making money. They'll never know the difference. It'll say i'm making just enough to afford to live but not so much that they start asking me for money.
Twist, don't forget to set your counter so that ten dollars only accumulates 8 hours a day, five days a week. :) You know, like a real job.
Just your luck they'd check one evening then check the next morning 'WHAT? That bozo's making money in his sleep! I'm so gonna hit him up for a loan'. The whole 24/7 thing is a bit overwhelming.