[Please Help!] Noob mTurker with Q's!

Discussion in 'Help & Guides' started by roughcriminal, Nov 13, 2017 at 10:49 PM.

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  1. roughcriminal

    roughcriminal New Member

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    Hi all! I've just started turking 3 days ago, and I've registered 114 HITS and made around $16. I've mostly done low value batches to get my numbers up, but I've dabbled in a little bit of transcribing and surveys and free writing. But, after looking at some subreddits and seeing what other people have made, I just wanted some tips and if you guys have time, I'd really appreciate the answers!

    -What sort of goals should I aim for? (I'm sure $16 for 114 HITS isn't great, so should I focus on money or getting my total HIT's up?)

    -What sort of scripts should I use and what do they do? (I have TO but idk if I'm using it effectively)

    -When trying to maximize earnings, should I even bother with penny HITS, even if they are fast? Or should I do audio transcribing and stuff?

    -There seem to be some really random qualifications (like "CL Data Verification is not less than 80" [what does that mean??] and "Catalog Qualification - bvis is greater than 0") how do you get them? If you request a qualification like those are they automatically granted? How do I get relevant ones? (I know about the 100, 500, 1000 HIT limits and stuff and the content settings and stuff, just not about the seemingly arbitrary ones)

    Sorry that this is kinda jumbled and confusing, I really appreciate you taking the time in reading this, I'm just trying to make some money on the side ya know? If you need any clarification, just holler! Thanks!
     
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  2. ChrisTurk

    ChrisTurk Administrator

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    IMO, and I'm largely in the minority it, follow the money and the #s will come. Focus mostly on your $/hr.
    We actually built our own version of TO, the data quality tends to be higher since most of us are, on average, better Turkers than the randos sitting on TO. Use both for now, though, because TO is way better for tracking Requesters who are likely to reject and as a new worker your #1 priority (yes, even more than making money) is to avoid Rejections like the plague because they can seriously mess up your account early on if you get too many.
    Main site: https://turkerview.com
    Script: https://turkerview.com/assets/turkerview.user.js

    As for other scripts, Panda Crazy, HITDB mk2 are the two biggies. A scraper of some sort (HF Beta or MTS HF) is also preferred to just browsing the website manually.
    If you want to maximize money, worry about your hourly not what you're doing. Find what you like that pays a good hourly. There are many avenues to success on mTurk, but most of them follow the path of finding what pays well and is worth your time. GOOD transcription work can be fairly difficult to find. Transcribe This is the best intro to transcription requester because the work is plentiful and their styling guideline is nonexistent (ie, they don't care) but they reject happily if you screw up.

    The only qual you need to request right now is the adult content qual. If you see PicsFromAbove (PFA for short) and want to try them out request those quals too. Otherwise, just trust me, requesting qualifications is a huge waste of time. You can find the long winded explanation in my search history, but unless a qual is auto-granted (like PFA) the requester will NEVER see the request b/c mTurk is broken and has been since 2001 or w/e it opened haha.
    No need to apologize my dude, we've all been there. mTurk is, quite frankly, garbage w/o community support so we all get it haha. Make sure you hangout in the Daily HITs Threads, there is a bunch of off topic banter because, well, mTurk can be lonely & boring for folks but there is also almost always folks around who are happy to answer questions & work frequently gets discussed/posted. You'll learn very quick just by hanging around :)
     
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  3. Melting Glacier

    Melting Glacier PE: $30.01 - That's over $1.25/hour! ┬┴┤( ͡° ͜ʖ├┬┴

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    Welcome to TH! To tackle your questions, I'm gonna break them down.

    114 HITs for $16 is neither good nor bad. What matters most on MTurk is your hourly rate. A dollar survey that takes 30 mins pays $2/hr and is bad. A batch of 10 cent HITs that takes ten seconds to complete means 60 cents per minute, or $36/hr, which is awesome. As for goals, you essentially want to do better than you did for your previous week. MTurk has a very steep learning curve. Learning the ins and outs of the platform is critical.

    If you're just starting out, I'm gonna go ahead and recommend grabbing the MTurk Suite extension from www.mturksuite.com . It's a Chrome Extension that packages many small userscript into one along with a HIT scraper (HIT Finder).

    We have very few members that regularly make a large amount of money doing transcription work. @jessers is our top transcriber, so she might be able to offer some more insight.

    As for pennies, yes and no. Once again, it comes down to the hourly rate. However, as a new worker, you must get your HITs Approved number to 1,000 then 5,000 ASAP to qualify for some more HITs. Past that, you'll want a large buffer of approved HITs so you can take the eventual rejections without having your HIT Approval Rate go below 99%.

    Very very few quals will be granted just by requesting the qualification. Many of them are closed and will only accept new workers for a very short period of time by putting out qual HITs that are open to everyone. Some others don't mention quals for their first HITs and decide to qualify their best workers for later batches. If you see a HIT with "Take Qualification Test" on there, that means there is a test attached that you can attempt.
     
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  4. jessers

    jessers Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]
     
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  5. roughcriminal

    roughcriminal New Member

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    Wow you guys are amazing, thank you very much for all your help!!

    A couple more things though haha:

    -What's with the constant refreshing? What does that do? Like if it refreshes every second do you even have time to look at the page???

    -How many hours do you guys work and how much do you guys make? Do you guys have goals set?

    -If the requester qualifications aren't ever seen by the requester, what's the point of them even posting if no one can access them?
     
  6. Randomacts

    Randomacts Well-Known Member

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    If you don't quote people it is hard for people to see if you replied to them btw. You can also tag like @ChrisTurk @Melting Glacier @jessers

    I'm just quickly reading through this but I assume that it is with scripts like panda crazy and hit finder. It basically is doing stuff in the background automatically and the user doesn't need to do anything crazy.

    I'm a bad person to base this on but a lot of people here to seem to make $200+ a week and I personally have been making at least $500 a week and closer to $900 the past few weeks. I wouldn't worry about trying to make that much and look more at other people. Oh and I am around basically all the time but I think that I prob end up 'working' ~30 hours a week if I only count actual work time. I am at the computer all the time though dicking around on the internet and just jump on anything that is worth doing.

    ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
     
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  7. ChrisTurk

    ChrisTurk Administrator

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    Just to try and clear it up a bit: the qualifications themselves can be seen/managed, your request for it goes into a deep dark black hole.

    You can always send a polite message to a Requester to discuss their qual/work. But clicking the "Request this Qualification" button on mTurk does nothing (consider it broken) unless its auto-granted. Your worker ID (and no other useful info about you like approved hits, country, etc) and nothing else is added to a gigantic list hidden way way deep in the API, which most Requesters don't use.

    Qual tests are a totally different story.
     
  8. jessers

    jessers Well-Known Member

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    the most important thing for you to know at this point is it'll be a learning curve and a little while before you're making "good" money. between learning the platform and gathering quals, requesters, figuring out your workflow, it won't just happen overnight. your best bet right now is to concentrate on figuring out what works best for you personally. some people make insane money doing only surveys. some people will only do batches. some people do writing tasks. you'd be best off "playing the field" to really get a feel for your strengths and weaknesses. (but like chris said - watch out for rejections, especially early on!)

    to actually answer your question - it varies from person to person, based on their lifestyle/jobs/whatever. some people drop in for an hour, grab $10 and are back out the door. some people come by for just a few buck whenever they feel like it. some people don't stop all day/night. this is one of three jobs for me, but by far the most profitable. i'm lucky that i can turk at my office job, where i basically always have my laptop in my face anyway. and when i'm at home my laptop is almost always at arms reach. it's hard to calculate how many hours i work on here, because even when i'm not actively working, it's passively running in the background waiting for something good to pop up. otherwise i'd say i'm turking 24/7, lol.

    the hourly script calculates how much time you're actively in a HIT window, and apparently i've worked -- actively worked, in hits, for 7 hours and 30 minutes today and i've made $144. but that's nowhere near what can be expected on just any random day. i usually aim for $50-75 on a normal day (during the week, at least).

    a good rule of thumb is that if it's slow, conserve your energy, or direct it to learning something new about the platform. you're not going to feel satisfied digging for $3 and burning out, when you can direct your energy elsewhere and end up making $15 on it's a better day. (shout out to chris for phrasing this advice better yesterday somewhere.)

    i think the first rule of mturk club is nobody actually knows how mturk works. there are so many elusive things, especially on the requester side, that absolutely nobody knows the answer to. RA said it best with ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
     
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  9. CorvusSapiens

    CorvusSapiens Well-Known Member

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    You've already gotten some good advice here, but I thought I'd mention something that's relevant because your account is so new. For the first 10 days, you'll only be able to accept 100 hits per day. If you submit at least 1 hit per day for 10 days, that will be lifted to 3800 accepted hits per day. So if you need to make money right now you may want to focus on higher paying individual hits, but keep in mind that once you're through that probation period a lot of the low paying batches become much more reasonable since you can do 3000 of them.
     
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  10. roughcriminal

    roughcriminal New Member

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    @Randomacts @jessers @Melting Glacier @ChrisTurk

    Thank you all for all your help! I really appreciate it. I think I'm learning pretty quickly what sort of things I need to do to maximize profits, but I feel I'm behind the game because I still don't utilize scripts. If one (or a couple of you) don't mind, could you walk me through what sort of scripts I should use and how they work? I've heard of PANDA but idk what it is really. I'd also like to know how the autorefresh ones work too (like do they snag HITS and add them to your queue in order to basically call "dibs" on them and snatch them before other people?) and are there any ways that can notify me when the BEST hits are posted? I'm a full time student so it's hard to set a time full hours on end to turking, so I'm trying to make as much as I can with my limited time!

    Thank you all again so much!
     
  11. ChrisTurk

    ChrisTurk Administrator

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    As someone else said, and considering what you said about being limited on time, definitely just considering installing MTS: www.mturksuite.com and maybe grabbing questions off that for stuff that's still confusing.

    Its about as user friendly as it gets (which most mturk scripts are not) and will do the basics like pandaing/searching for hits.

    You may wanna check out the wiki for a little more depth on some of the basic terminology: https://turkerhub.com/wiki/

    It'll at least give you a fair overview so you can ask more pointed questions. Not so much about scripts but for things like how PandAs work and stuff its good for learning the basics.
    They rely on Javascript (and libraries/frameworks surrounding JS like jQuery depending on the author) to manipulate the site / interact with it quicker than a worker could. More or less anyway.

    Essentially yes. Then you have a certain amount of time (specified by the Requester as the "duration" of the HIT) in order to complete the work and submit it before it leaves your queue (dibs) and falls back to the rest of the worker pool.

    That's kinda what the forums do, you can check this though its somewhat broken atm: https://turkerhub.com/pages/daily_log/

    It'll list most of the "good" hits that have posted throughout the day and you can sort it by various aspects. But good HITs disappear FAST so really if you're not around to catch them a lot of time they'll be gone. Doesn't hurt to try though.

    But "best" is often very subjective and depends on the worker, so that's almost always an impossible thing to answer haha.
     
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  12. jessers

    jessers Well-Known Member

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    Chris covered it all, but I'll try to chime in too. Definitely definitely check out the Wiki though, it'll be your cheat sheet/cliffnotes/study guide/savior. Also, Chris made certain keywords trigger wiki links in every post - as you can tell.

    I made a mistake when I first joined a forum because I downloaded every single script I saw and tried to learn them all at once. I basically melted down, deleted them all, and started with one at a time.

    All of the recommendations for MTS are right on point. MTS will give you three crucial things bundled together:

    - Your daily earnings laid out in a nice little chart, and a tracker to watch your daily goal.

    - Scraper (HitFinder - this will search mturk for work with any specifications you give it - how quickly you want it to refresh, what work you're looking for, the amount you're looking for, etc).

    - Hit Catcher is where you'll panda things. You'll notice in a HIT that you accept, the link says "previewandaccept", which = P and A = panda. When you "panda" something, you put it into a script such as Hit Catcher (an alternative for this is PandaCrazy) and it'll refresh the panda link at whatever interval you set it at. This way, it'll keep refreshing the "accept" link in the background and whenever one becomes available (due to a return, expire, or more work posted), it'll accept it and go straight to your queue. You'll find either the GID (group id) in a hit, which is this part: https://www.mturk.com/mturk/previewandaccept?groupId=3XB7PZ5TYK7XXYVAPRG6CGHIXHMO7W and copy and paste that into the catcher, or you can copy and paste the entire link. So, say you clicked on a survey you really want to do, but it says there are none available. Panda it, and it'll refresh it until it finds one for you (or until you admit defeat and turn it off).

    Once you figure out those ropes, you can branch off to another scraper, catcher, or whatever you prefer to use.
     
  13. roughcriminal

    roughcriminal New Member

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    @jessers @Randomacts @ChrisTurk @Melting Glacier @CorvusSapiens

    Thank you all so much for your help I'm already getting so much better and I thought an update would be cool. Since I'm at school and stuff, I only Turk for 30 minutes-1 hour at a time because of my schedule in between classes and stuff, and I've made around $20 in like 3-3.5 hours! I focus on surveys for now because otherwise i'll meet my HIT limit way too early (I can't wait for the limit to be raised!) but I'll definitely start putting more emphasis on turking as time goes on, but I wouldn't have gotten this far without any of you guys so a big heartfelt thank you goes out to you, ya'll da real Mvp's.

    I haven't really started using the HIT catchers or anything yet because I'm struggling to figure them out, but I realize I'll need to soon because the best HITS go so fast and when the limit gets raised I'll definitely want to do some of them.

    Anyway, to sum it up, my expected earnings for my first week of turking (so far, I still have tomorrow before it's officially a week) is $58, and even though it's not a whole lot, it's making me $58 richer than I'd be otherwise. Thank you all again!
     
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  14. Yuk

    Yuk Well-Known Member

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    That's awesome to hear! Stick with turking utilizing the awesome advice provided so far in this thread and after your probation is over you'll be surprised at how much you can make imo. HIT catcher (or anything similar) is important but not as important as following some sort of community like this forum. Just take it at your own pace, don't stress, ask questions if you have them and you will make some $$$ :)
     
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