I have to admit that I’ve been a bit skeptical about Textbroker because too often, I feel that the ratings by the editors (or whoever does them) is far too subjective. While I am well aware of my propensity to either over or under use commas, I feel that for the most part, my writing is good enough to pass most editors. For the past several months, I’ve continued to work at TB even though I am squeamish about some of the rates. However, with that said, I am fairly confident that going into 2013, that TB will work well for me for a number of reasons.
The staff can be very helpful!
I recently attempted the proofreading test and lo and behold I took the test at a time of day that I was forced to use my screen reader software. As many of you already know, I’m legally blind and some days my eyes are okay, other days not so good and some days they are just horrible. On the day that I took the proofreading test, they were pretty bad. I should probably have waited, but I did not and barreled ahead, after all, I’m a fairly good editor so what did I have to lose. (grinning). Well, I turned on my trust copy of Windows Eyes and went through the test and I flunked it. Here’s what I missed: Some of the words that are used sound the same (you know the ones, they’re called homonym’s. Their, there, they’re for example). It never crossed my mind that these would be included in the test (dah on me!). Generally, when I’m proofreading something, I turn on the “letter by letter” comparison after I’ve used the screen-reader and run comparisons but I didn’t during the test because I was concerned about time and I was also conscious of the number of questions. Needless to say, I was a bit frustrated.
I went ahead and emailed the Help desk and told them what happened and asked if there was another way for me to get upgraded to a Level 5 for writing purposes (though I’m doing just fine on 4’s but that’s another story for a bit later). I did explain about the screen reading software and the challenge of doing the “spelling” portion (and a memory problem when it’s across a number of questions!!). What they told me was they would hand-review 10 ungraded articles and see what my real writing looked like. This is a positive step in my opinion because it shows me they DO think about how to make the site more accessible for those of us with less than stellar vision and I really do appreciate that. While the review hasn’t occurred yet, I have to admit to being pleased with the effort at least.
Teams and Direct Orders
I have applied to many teams on TB and have had fairly good luck getting on them. I have to admit however, that most of my work is still done in open orders. I’ve submitted 198 articles, 31 of them have been team orders (almost all of them on mortgage titles), 37 have been on direct orders and the remaining have been open orders. I have been doing a lot more direct orders in the last two weeks however since I managed to pick up a couple of really awesome clients! I strongly recommend that anyone who is trying to make their way around TB to make sure they have great samples in their profile and apply for as many teams as possible. I feel this is the best possible option in most cases and perhaps the most lucrative.
Take your time doing the work there and proofread everything carefully. I have revised my original opinion about the editors primarily because I have found a lot of my own errors when I take the time to proofread them carefully! Good luck in 2013~