Some things should go without saying.

I think that to myself every day when I say something to my four year old, like, “We don’t put peanut butter on our sister!” Or to my 12 year old, “Showers work better if you use soap.”

Steve and I think it every day in the online work-at-home niche, too. Unfortunately, you can’t leave any assumptions unstated when you mix the Internet and money.

So here are some definitions that shouldn’t have to be spelled out, but do:

Job: An arrangement in which you exchange a skill and/or a known amount of time for a known sum of money. When I clock in at McDonald’s for $7 an hour, that’s a job. When I create affiliate ads and spew them all over the ‘Net in hopes of snagging buyers (which is what you’ll do if you buy into data entry and rebate processing), that’s not a job.

Scam: Any program that uses misleading advertising in order to take your money. For example, when someone advertises a home typing job, but you’ll actually not be doing typing at home as most normal people understand the term, that’s a scam.

Rebate: A kickback to the buyer from the seller. When I buy a printer at Best Buy because of the $50 rebate, I expect to receive a check in the mail for $50. Getting others to sign up for your pay-to-click rewards program and then paying them is not a rebate. Paying the buyer out of my commission as an affiliate does not constitute a rebate.

Data Entry: A type of job where numerous data sets need to entered into a database at a rapid rate. This typically does not involve the filling in of forms on a website and it most certainly does not pay, on average, more than $12 an hour. Ergo, that data entry “job” you paid for is not a job at all. See “Scam” above.

Affiliate Marketing: This is the promotion of various products or programs in order for you, the affiliate, to make a commission on any sales. A lot of scams, like data entry or rebate processing scams, tend to disguise affiliate marketing as something it is not. It is unlikely that you’ll be making hundreds or thousands of dollars per day doing affiliate marketing. Some do, but most of them make it by selling affiliate marketing “knowledge” dressed up as a job.

I could go on, but it’s too painful to restate the obvious. See, you think “job” means the same thing to Internet hawkers as it does to you. How could you possibly know that, to them, “job” means something you do online that will take you hours and days and weeks to set up and do well, and then for which you might not ever be paid. But they know that’s not what you mean by “job,” and that’s their first step in misleading you.

Spread the word. Stay smart.

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Join the Discussion

  • texino
    texino
    Reply

    Pretty good definitions, and a useful site to boot. Please keep up the good work.

  • KATHY JEHRING
    KATHY JEHRING
    Reply

    I AM NOT HAPY THAT I FELL FOR THIS SCAM. IN FACT I ONLY FOUND OUT THAT IT IS NOW BECAUSE I WAS SEARCHING FOR THE INFORMATION I EXPECTED, TO GET STARTED. I’VE BEEN WARNED, BUT FAILED TO SEE IT. HOW DO I GET MY MONEY BACK???

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