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How to Make Money with Amazon Mechanical Turk

Updated April 17, 2017

Amazon Mechanical Turk is a system affiliated with Amazon.com that has been in operation since 2005. The Mechanical Turk was a 1700s invention--a "computer" in its day that played chess. the secret behind this great "robot" was that behind the facade there was a small man who was actually at the controls. Amazon has revived the concept of the Mechanical Turk and made it into a 21st version; take thousands, tens of thousands, even more people and turn them into automata, each doing small jobs for pennies, earning cash or Amazon gift tokens. Want a $.04 job? Find one at Mechanical Turk. As off as it sounds, when you learn how to make money with Amazon Mechanical Turk you will see that this ingenious program holds more promise than you might imagine for making money.

Register with Amazon Mechanical Turk.

Register for Amazon payments.

Read the instructions for how to use mechanical Turk, also known as "MTurk."

Pick a first job. You can sort by job price. Start with a $.02 or less job. Most of these "jobs" involve looking at a picture and clicking on a radio button. For instance, the job might ask "Is there anything pornographic in this photograph?" You click "yes" or "no" and earn $.02.

Find jobs with hundreds of HITS. A HIT is human intelligence task--the job. Then accept hits, complete them, and accept the next one of the same type. Doing the same job repeatedly allows you to earn more money in a short period of time.

Select a HIT that is comfortable. Do the HITs in that group for 10 minutes, and then multiply what you've earned by 6. This is your hourly rate.

Take your weekly or monthly earnings and request an Amazon payment, or an Amazon gift token.

Tip

people who use Mechanical Turk on a regular basis refer to themselves as "Turkers."

Warning

Never try to automate the process to the point of being banned or using illegal software.

Things You'll Need

  • Amazon Mechanical Turk site
  • computer with Internet access
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About the Author

Lea Barton has been writing since 1989, with over 2,000 articles in print and online for such publications as "Today's Parent," "Boston Globe Magazine", and Associated Content. She attended Harvard University's Extension School, completing courses in creative writing and German.