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Paid Surveys And The Five-Minute Mistake

Mar 27, 2008
There is one aspect to paid surveys that seems to prey on the human vice of greed. In my very personal research on paid surveys I came across what seems to be the dark underbelly of paid surveys. If most people don't want to talk about their experience, you'll soon see why.

This type of survey is presented in much the same way most other surveys are. The survey taker is presented with the opportunity to win something like a prepaid debit card or a store gift card.

When the survey taker accepts the offer they are asked to fill out data that one would typically associate with a survey. This includes a registration form that asks for personal data.

This is where the dynamics of this survey change. In most standard survey sites this information is protected for the purpose of your protection and privacy. Registering in this scenario is essentially the same as signing up for email marketing campaigns with third party partners.

Of course this is only known when the survey taker spends time with the terms and conditions (most will not read them before they begin the survey).

The next phase of this offer takes you to a page asking you if you want to take advantage of a variety of 'free' offers. This series of offers simply takes the contact information you just filled out and passes it on to each of the businesses you said 'yes' to.

Still oblivious to what is happening in most cases the survey taker soldiers on to the next stage in the survey. At this point the page indicates the need for the consumer to accept a certain number of offers the individual must pay before they can accept the gift.

The survey takers may find it strange or even suspicious that they would have to pay anything to take what they thought was a 'free' survey. In the case of the survey I followed for this research I was offered a $500 shopping spree.

I think in most cases individuals would feel that accepting a couple of offers that cost less than a hundred bucks might just be worth it. However, if you accept the offers and move on to the final page you are finally apprised of the fact that in order to be eligible for the prize you will need to recruit another survey taker who will follow the survey all the way through including recruiting yet another survey taker.

At this point the survey taker realizes they should have read all the terms and conditions first. The choice is either to abandon the survey knowing that you will need to track down the offers you just accepted and cancel them or simply pay the fees and accept this as a loss. The only other option at your disposal is to provide an email address of someone you know and risk their wrath when they learn what they will have to go through (and most will not). In the end many of these survey takers leave and try not to think about their mistake.

If you take this type of survey you are most likely going to receive email from third party 'partners' for a while as you work to sort out your five-minute mistake.

The whole research mode I immersed myself in has generally proved what I have always maintained - when something sounds too good to be true it usually is.
About the Author
Ecommerce Website Builder at HighPowerSites.com or Business Website Builder with BuildAGreatSite.com. Start a HOME BUSINESS and Resell Ebooks at BooksWealth.com.
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