In a time when money is so hard to come by and writers are some of the worst hit, these online sites promoting their media seem ideal ways to supplement between freelance jobs. Having said all that, BEWARE. Demand Studios, which owns several of the sites they actually provide their writers work to, are a rip off.
Yes, you are going to get a ton of people on here telling you how great it is and how they make X amount a week, but at what price?
Demand Studios has a very low quality writer as an ideal target. They pay 15 dollars an article if you work directly for them and for any experienced writer a ridiculously narrow writing style you MUST follow.
They stipulate ownership of your work, meaning that not only do you not get to claim ownership of your work, but also your name can be erased and while you made 15 dollars that came in handy that week or month, they will forever go on making money from your work. It is like an actor signing their rights to syndication royalties away. In a desperate market, this works. Do note though, they are always hiring.
Part of the problem is that really decent writers rely on them for supplemental income if anything at all. They often have duplicate and triplicate titles, rarely have titles that appeal to all tastes and it can take hours to find titles to write about.
Then they have three main "styles". One is called "About" one "Strategy" and the other is called "How To" after their infamous site (where these articles are funnelled to, e-How) . The rules are more or less like the old game "Ad-libs" where you are given some words and told to fill out the rest. They ask for a ridiculous amount of information for some articles that have titles that only need a one or two word answer, and then too few words for articles that have more complex titles.
In either event, the CE quality is questionable, after all at $3.50 an article reviewed do you think they care? Some are nice and put their all into it, others are not, ask for unreasonable re-dos, are insulting without any reprisal and so vague when they do give a rewrite back that the poor writer, who often spends hours researching topics due to the lack of diversity of titles, is left with no more than a guessing game.
The appeals process is foolish, 99.999% of the time the CE is right. The forums are poison, if you want to stay out of trouble or getting beat up, stay out of them unless you have a question about one of their ongoing technical issues.
By and large they are thieves. They are stealing work from desperate writers, funnelling them to their own sites, then making royalties for as long as the articles remain, which seems to be a decent amount of time if not forever or until they are irrelevant.
In fact, Demand Media, who I guess owns Demand Studios, Answerbag and e-How, basically stopped all e-how writers, forced them to apply to be writers for DS recently and now they have no writes to all future articles they write but a one time payment rather than the 100's if not THOUSANDS some of their e-How articles brought in over time.
All in all I would not be surprised if this company ends up in court in the next year or so.
I am sure there will be a billion defenders, but more sure there will be just as many with experiences like mine. As an experienced journalist for 20 years, I find their model morally reprehensible, their site leaving a lot to be desired and their CES usually not helpful.
Just stay away, there is work out there if you look and can actually write beyond a third grade level.