(July 13, 2012)
If there are too many rules and too many restrictions about minimum wages, isn’t there a danger that some new projects and new jobs will simply never come out and therefore some people will stay unemployed?
Personally, if outsourcing was not as cheap as it is in some cases, I would have never started with it. Without a high income a private person could never do outsourcing. But since outsourcing – independent if it is on Mechanical Turk, oDesk or anywhere – is like it is…
I feel that most private persons in countries like the US or Europe would easily be able to outsource parts of their online work to workers from poor countries. And I think this would be the best form of outsourcing there could be.
People from the more advanced countries will have the opportunity to learn about foreign cultures and working with them. They will profit from having the projects be completed faster and for an adequate amount of money.
And people from the less developed countries would have an opportunity to work for good money, from their perspective, on jobs probably not as bad as other jobs that might be available. Or they might have an opportunity to work if there are no jobs available at all.
Personally, I really think that “private outsourcing”, as I call it, from a private person to another private person, is the way to go if you really want to stay on the good side of business ethics.
The micro tasks on the Turk might increase mass exploitation of workers
(July 13, 2012)
Here is an interesting theory:
“What if an institution like Mechanical Turk leads to more and more huge work centers with bad ventilation that only have the computers and connectivity and employ big number of workers from very poor countries?
And what if, in exchange of the internet connection and the opportunity to work, they keep large cuts of the wages?”
Normally, you need your own account to be paid for yourself. It would be interesting to find out if for the very same account of Mechanical Turk several people can log in and work. If that is indeed the case, then the danger from such an extreme scenario would be high.
If, on the other hand, the payment system is secured and personalized, then the question of the large cut of wages for exchange of using the computers is much more open again.
The question is
“Is a scenario like this realistic?”
Is the word “Turkers” a disrespectful name for workers on amazon Mechanical Turk?
(July 13, 2012)
If I wouldn’t have read about it I would have never thought to think of this word as disrespectful. It is true of course that people from Turkey are called “Turks” but the Mechanical Turk is a historic machine. It is like an expression of speech.
And only because on Mechanical Turk there are micro tasks which often are very simple, this does not mean in any way that it is a criticism against people from Turkey.
In my personal opinion, if you are offended by the word “Turk” or “Turker” this rather tells a lot about how you think.
Don’t you think?
Read what how my virtual assistant sees all this matter:
OK, it was quite surprising for me if the word “Turker” was derived from a Turk (people from Turkey) and it seems to be a little illogic that amazon easily associated all its workers as “Turks” and apparently this service is limited to only residents of the US.
I could not hold my curiosity too long and I researched for Turkers via internet. You know what I have found?
Read it yourself!
“The title comes from Wolfgang von Kempelen’s mechanical “Turk” in the 1700s, who was a master chess player dressed up as a wooden mannequin. Defeated many competitors throughout Europe, including Napoleon, the Turk usually sat inside a wooden cabinet wearing a robe and turban. Opening the door to reveal gears and springs inside, Kempelen fooled people into believing this was a mechanical device with artificial intelligence.”
Still I was not satisfied with my research and want to cross check and authenticate my results by doing another research. This time I found a pretty authentic source which has the same elaboration of the “Turk”.
Of course you can’t get an authentic source like Wikipedia to verify your results.
Comments for Is the word “Turkers” a disrespectful name for workers on amazon Mechanical Turk?
People are uselessly wasting the time for pennies when they could do much better stuff
I was surprised to read this “argument” against Mechanical Turk.
People waste their time on the internet all the time.
Have you tried measuring your productivity?
I actually running a program in the background of my computer to measure my productivity and I can see which websites distract me.
Believe me, it’s not a pretty sight 😉
If anyone wants to get distracted and make some dollars on the site, I do not see how I would be in the right position to criticize them.
It is not like I come home from work and when I am really tired, say:
“Now I should get Productive. Now I should really work”
No. In general, people slump into the couch and turn on the TV.
Talk about being productive.
If being unproductive is the only thing Mechanical Turk has a problem with, then there really isn’t much of an issue.