I checked in at the Pay Per Post site again today, and was surprised to see they have opportunities for the PGA ($35 for a video) and NASCAR. That’s a considerable step up from spring break locations and housewares resellers. The opportunities seem to be holding steady in the $5 range (for the really easy, 10 minutes of work ones). There’s a maximum of three paid posts per day, so if you’re pretty consistent, it looks like you’ll probably max out around $5,000 per year – just enough to remodel your kitchen. There still aren’t any requirements on your blog’s popularity, but they can always change the terms of service.
And that’s what I’ve been expecting them to do, but now I don’t think so any more. Why would someone pay $5 for a post on a blog that nobody reads? Well for one thing, it’s a guaranteed inbound link. Depending on what you offer as payment, you can get yourself a couple hundred inbound links for less than $1,000. If that pushes you up in the Google ranks, that’s actually not a bad deal. And it’s not on a linkfarm, so people may also find you through Technorati or Google searches that turn up one of the posts.
This seems like it would be especially attractive to people offshore, but the requirement for a tax-id number puts the kibosh on that, and makes it difficult for someone domestically to hire off-shore bloggers to do the work for them on any kind of scale.
However… there’s no rule that says that Pay Per Post has to be the only game in town. What’s to prevent someone from starting an offshore company to compete with Pay Per Post not by paying independent bloggers, but by hiring a few people to create and maintain thousands of blogs that intermittently produce “real” content and paid posts for the advertisers? I can’t think of any reason why this isn’t the logical next step. And if that happens, the blogosphere is going to be awash in much more junk than it already is.
Lets assume our offshore poster -we’ll call him Sanjay- must produce as much non-junk content as paid content, and needs each post to be different to fool any upcoming search-engine filtering attempts. Maybe he can do 4 paid posts an hour, at $3 each. He can pull in $12 an hour for our hypothetical company, or $96 to $144 dollars per day (this is, after all, off-shore), at least $500 per week. We pay him a very generous $75 per week (offshore, remember?), including benefits. We hire 100 Sanjays to do this, and we’re up a cool $2.2 million per year before facility, equipment, bandwidth, management and marketing expenses. And also before we start tapping other advertisers through Adsense.
Meanwhile, we’ve generated over a million bogus blog posts. We probably drive down the price to where it’s just not an attractive opportunity for domestic bloggers, and Google and Technorati, Blogstpot and Typepad get concerned enough that they try to start filtering for this stuff. Our company changes it’s method to defeat the filters and increase blogger productivity, and a long battle starts.
And that, my friends, is the future of your Internet, as seen by me.