*IF you've got a time machine or have a pocket full of lucky rabbit feet and are sitting with your fingers, legs and eyes crossed in a field of four leaf clover. Rant type thing: One of the things which really annoys me about dooyoo and sites like it is that old opinions, which are not necessarily true any longer sit proudly near the top of category sections, often wearing nice golden headgear whilst completely misinforming the world because none of these sites have been foresighted enough to work out what to do with time-sensitive information. The internet categories are the very worst for this because as we all know, things change fast online, companies alter policies and even their whole business structure, yet the old opinions sit their throwing out a heap of duff information. Still, why would anyone want to change their opinion once written? Seems like a lot of work considering you'll probably pick up just 2/3 extra reads anyway by bumping it up your profile. Member reads that is anyway. Well, aside from reading such things as dooyoo is great because it pays 10p per submission and 5p per read or "Beenz is the best site in the world"(except it has been dead a year) and all that other junk, you also end up with sites like Smartstudents.co.uk being portrayed as being absolutely stonkingly fantastic when in reality, they aren't anymore. They once were of course, well they were if you wanted quick and easy cash(lasted about 2-5 months) then they went shitty but they still have a 5 star rating here of course...whilst very definitely not deserving it. Forget the details, I've no interest in giving you extensive details of the nasty, garish yelllow and pink Smartstudents site and what it offers but rather my mission here is simply to save you wasting your time. You've basically got something like the same set up as dooyoo. You write opinions, they give you cash, you know the drill. Old opinions here will tell yo
u all opinions pay £5 but thats old info. so you'll want to ignore it. Now, if you write in most sections you go into competition with everyone else who has written and stand to win £20, £10 or £5 depending on whether you are adjudged to have one of the best reviews of the month in that area. These will need to be UNIQUE reviews so no using your dooyoo reviews even though there is still nothing on the site which says this. The former policy change they decided upon without letting anyone know for months by the way. Anyway, if on the other hand you write a review of a local shop or service you get a fiver straight off. Very generous you say, much better than hawking around for 3p's and it was for a brief time until they seemingly ceased to have any intention of honouring their claims. Whether the monthly draws are legit is anyone's guess seeing as they never tell you who won them or indicate in any other way which were adjudged to be the best. What I can tell you about the local review thing is that my first cheque arrived in the early days after much badgering(they never did send them without being pestered) whilst my second hasn't and my email queries have been replied to with some of the most outlandish excuses as to why not. I'll not bore you with these excuses however amusing but suffice to say, you'd have to be a bloody idiot to swallow any of it. I'm expecting the reply to my last email(which they've ignored so far) to be along the lines of the whole office having been abducted by aliens or something because it wouldn't be too far off the last excuse. I know mine isn't an isolated experience either, in fact, I've not come across anyone who has been paid by them in the last six months but plenty who have had similar outlandish excuses as to why they haven't paid up or why they selectively ignore pointed questions or entire emails. If a company is in financial difficulties and can't honour its
debts (after offering a seemingly foolish amount of money in the first place for reviews and accepting utter crap for it) then fine, I'll accept that, it wouldn't be the first time I've wasted time with a place like this but to see them STILL asking for student reviewers and STILL offering £5 per review etc. when they seemingly have no intention of coughing up takes the p*ss. To also be fed constant lies and bullsh*t in response to email queries is equally not on. I'm not given to writing this sort of erm 'opinion' but considering all the 4/5 star reviews it has here someone had to in order to redress the balance somewhat. Rate as you please to be honest, just do yourself a favour, heed the warning and avoid the shite, erm 'site'. Bottom line: Useless to opinionators because they seemingly aren't about to pay you and have absolutely nothing in the way of community interactivity and never have. Useless to anyone searching for information because they accept utter rubbish and therefore mostly have a database full of crap 2 line reviews(well if you could write an essay for a fiver or 2 lines which would you have chosen?). Pants all round. AVOID! Much better alternatives can be found at: http://www.dooyoo.co.uk http://www.ciao.co.uk http://.bigrag.com Or simply here which lists all the ones I've ever heard of: http://www.geocities.com/lazycatsurveys/moreopinions Of course I'll be happy to raise my rating to two stars if they ever do pay up(it has been around 8 months and counting now in my case for those interested). Nowhere that requires you to jump through hoops to get at the money you've earned and they owe you deserves anything more. **FEB 19th 2003 - was promised a cheque in the mail this week after another lame excuse...it'll be interesting to see if it materialises and even more interesting to see if it's for the righ
t amount and, or that matter, if it doesn't bounce ;) **
When I first head about the Smart Students opinion site (www.smartstudents.co.uk) it seemed to be the answer to every opinion writer?s dreams as the reward packages associated with Ciao and Dooyoo were starting to get rationalised - the promise they made was that you could write on virtually any subject you wanted and they would reward you with the unheard of sum of a fiver for each opinion you published. Right, I'll have a bit of that, I thought. Like most of these things, though, were limitless rewards are promised there was a fair degree of scepticism that lurking somewhere in there must be a nasty catch. I mean we've all been bombarded with news of get rich quick scams, haven't we? However, this seemed to be the genuine thing and there was evidence that Smart Students had indeed been paying out. I wrote a few ops for them, mainly on sport, and was delighted when they accepted a number of them for publishing on the site. I thought at first that it may be difficult to get ops published, but no that seemed to work fine. So I sat back and waited for the inevitable cheque to come floating through my letterbox. And I waited and I waited and I waited. Two months went by and still nothing. Smart Students promise that they pay you every month, but nothing arrived. I contacted them to ask what was going on. They replied, asking me for details regarding the opinions. About a week after I'd answered they e-mailed me again to say that the opinions had been published to their discussion board section which they didn't pay out for - the only opinions they were nor forking out for were ones on local university type issues - like pubs, residential halls, etc. Now that's understandable, given that they're a website for students first and foremost, but I was pretty miffed, I can tell you, because my chances of making any money from the site were well and truly up the swanee. However, Smart Students do pay o
ut, I can vouch for that and have seen the evidence - it's just that you will need to modify the subjects in order to fit in with their reward package. You can make quite a bit from them, but it feels just that bit like very hard work to me, so I've stopped bothering and I'm sticking instead to the sites we know and love. With regards to the site itself - the main point to note about Smart Students is the steadfastly abominable design - the whole site is based around an appallingly garish sickly yellow colour scheme and is put together pretty amateurishly. They offer you an e-mail program within the site that is basic with few frills, and it's often been down. There's also no real incentive to use the e-mail facility other than submitting opinions and getting their correspondence back. Submission is much the same as BigRag - you attach a copy of your opinion to an e-mail which you send to email@example.com - and that's not as easy a way as submitting as Dooyoo or Ciao. And just as with BigRag, there ain't no community feel to speak of, and there's no rewards for being read, so there's no you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours principles involved, which I always think is a bit of a shame. Apart from making money, there's no real reason you would want to check out Smart Students - the content is pretty uninspiring, you only get one review per film, book or record, and these sections only cover the top 20 so have pretty limited subject matter. I found it extremely hard to track down any subjects I wanted to read about and in general the whole thing just smacks of being poorly thought out and designed. You can't find out how many times your ops have been read and I have to say I've always struggled to find any of the ops I submitted, though they assured me that they're up there somewhere.
I became a member of this site after reading an op about in on dooyoo a while ago. On my old computer the site kept on making my computer crash and it was take a rather long time to load up. But, on a fast modem it works and loads up really quickly. The site is designed for students in mind however it doesn?t mean that if you are not a student you are banned from the site. Far from it. For students this is a really good site, it has information on most of the universities in England and Wales. Along with courses offered which is especially useful since many students who haven?t chose a course will be doing so. There?s also sections on music, books, competition, travel and even a chat room. But, there?s hardly anyone in the chat room so it?s not worth bothering with. When you visit the site you will probably agree with me that the background décor is dreadful. It?s bright yellow and it really does hurt your eyes. The most attractive thing about this site is that they want reviewers to write opinions on their site. Simply, sign up become a member and you can get started. For one opinion you can get £5. The difference is that you do not post the opinion straight onto the site. You email it to this woman called Shashana and she decides whether your opinion is up to scratch. If it isn?t then you don?t get accepted. Also if there?s opinions on a popular topic then you are least likely to get your opinion accepted. At the moment I don?t think the quality of the opinion is very good. The opinions here are much better. I have been really busy with exams but after that I may write a few opinions to earn some extra cash. Payment is made at the end of each month. This seems like a good site, it?s got some good features besides the chance to earn a few extra bob. However, if Shashana doesn?t like your style of writing or your viewpoint she can reject your opinions which can mean a lot of time wasted. Certainly, if you have the ti
me it seems like a good idea. Compared to dooyoo??. Dooyoo is much better, it?s got excellent writers and a brilliant community. Ok, it doesn?t pay as well as it used to but it is still informative. It must be good because I have been visiting the site for nearly two years. With smartstudent.co.uk you can get bored very easily. As a student wants you?ve done a university search, checked the top ten music singles, news etc. There?s nothing much to keep you there. Overall, smartstudents.co.uk could become a good site over time. It needs to develop into more of an interactive website and the quality needs to be better. They definitely need to change the sites décor although the layout is good. Navigation however is good.
~ ~ This site first made its appearance on the Web at the back end of last year, (2001) and having heard on the “opinionated community” gossip grapevine that they were paying £5 per opinion posted, I was naturally enough tempted to go and have a look at what it was all about. Especially as dooyoo (and Ciao) had both cut their payment rates about this time, and it was becoming harder and harder for me to make enough earnings to cover the cost of my Internet connection. (there’s STILL no 24/7 connection here in Ireland) ~ ~ Smartstudents is very much like dooyoo, Ciao, epinions, or any other opinion site, with the exception that it is designed, as the name would suggest, with the student community very much in mind. This doesn’t mean that you actually HAVE to be a student in order to join up though, and anyone will be accepted for membership. If you do happen to be a student, or are about to become one, then this site would prove very useful to you though. It has a comprehensive section on all the Universities and Colleges they cover throughout the UK, and if you want any information on the entry qualifications, courses offered, and so on, then you’ll find it here. ~ ~ I’m not going to go into any great detail about the layout and design of the site in this opinion. If you’re sufficiently interested after reading my opinion, then you can go and have a gander for yourself. “http://www.smartstudents.co.uk/site/” Suffice to say that it is VERY bright coloured, with an extremely bold yellow theme to the homepage. (that I personally find hard on the eyes after a short time) It’s easy enough to find your way around, and has a navigation bar on the left hand side that lists all the different Categories that you can write opinions/reviews in. There are sections for the top computer games, movies, books, CD’s, plays and musicals, and also a travel section. This is fine at
first glance, and seems very inviting to a prospective opinion writer, but appearances can sometimes be deceiving. (more on this later) ~ ~ Once you’ve registered (usual routine) and chosen a username, then you’re ready to go. Pick a topic, and either get writing or ‘cutting and pasting’ from your existing opinions. One difference from dooyoo is that smartstudents will allow you to include pictures with your opinions, so you can brighten them up a bit to enhance their appeal and appearance. I joined in November of last year, and posted about half a dozen travel reviews in a fairly short space of time, plus a book and film review. The method of posting is different to what you’ll be used to at either Ciao or dooyoo. Instead of posting your opinion straight onto the site, you have to send it off by email to a very pleasant lady called Shashana, who will then make the decision whether or not it is acceptable. You can either type your opinion straight into the email box, or write it in Word (always a better idea) and then send it as an attachment. You can do this by using the email account that the site provides you with when you join up, which is handy enough, as it means you don’t have to mess about with different windows, and can keep all your relevant smartstudent’s related mail in the one place. But this is my first real gripe with smartstudents. Here at dooyoo (or Ciao) you can post your opinion without any editing or wondering whether it is ‘good’ enough for the site. It will only be removed if dooyoo feel that it in some way contravenes their terms and conditions. So if it’s racial in content, potentially libellous, or (spare the thought) a copy of someone else’s work, then it won’t last for too long. But at smartstudents, the final decision on whether or not your work is posted on the site lies purely with Shashana. And if there is already an opinion
posted about the film, book, place, etc that you want to write about, the chances are that it wont be accepted. This is fair enough, I suppose, when you consider that if they were to allow say 50 different opinions about a topic, then at £5 a pop, then it wouldn’t be too long before their resources would be very firmly and permanently in the red. But it doesn’t stop you becoming very frustrated when the opinion that is already on the site just happens to be vastly inferior to the one that you’ve submitted. I don’t mean this to sound egotistical in any way, but go and have a look for yourself. The standard of some of the opinions is simply dreadful, and would barely rate a “fairly useful” rating here at dooyoo. ~ ~ And this brings me very nicely onto the next reason why smartstudents will never be one of my main opinion sites. There is a total and complete lack of any sort of feedback from fellow members about the standard of your writing. No rating, no comments box, and no Guest Book facility. (I know we only have "tooyoo" here, but dooyoo have promised us a guestbook on our profiles soon) I can’t speak for the rest of you, but I quickly came to the realisation shortly after joining both dooyoo and Ciao that I was never going to become an Internet millionaire from my earnings, and remember that both sites paid FAR better rates back then (2000) than they do these days. It’s the interaction and sense of Community between the members that keeps me here at dooyoo more than anything else. The way in which I can have a bit of fun in the comments box or my 'tooyoo' Guest Book, or occasionally, a more serious debate about a topic. Smartstudents simply has no sense of Community spirit, and once you've posted your opinion, that's it. No point in hanging around, as nobody is ever going to tell you what they think of it, good or bad. ~ ~ Shashana has done
her best to overcome this in other ways, and shortly after I joined up, I received a package from them that included a t-shirt, and a number of mouse mats and pens, to supposedly help me to promote the site. You get £1 bonus if somebody joins up as a direct referral, but quite how they let the site know that it was you who introduced them I’m not too sure. There’s no email link to send someone else an invitation like we are used to here at dooyoo! Shashana herself is really very nice, and most helpful with any queries you might have, but this doesn’t make up for the lack of interaction on the site itself. There are also sections for competitions, news and weather, TV, a small selection of games you can play, and a ‘Fun’ section with some jokes. But I get my news from newspapers and quality news sites, and I’m not much of a game player, so I haven’t really paid much attention to these. Oh yeah, and a chatroom, if you’re into that sort of thing, although there never seems to be anyone using it! ~ ~ So my overall verdict? Well, if all you are after is a few extra quid, then maybe you would consider joining this site. They do pay, and promptly, at the end of each month, without you having to do a thing. But in all honesty, this is about all the site has going for it, (IMHO) and the money certainly wouldn’t be a big enough incentive to entice me personally to use the site very much. And whether it can remain financially viable for long, given the very high payment rates, must be very open to question. Only time will tell. ~~~~~~~~~~~~ QUICK UPDATE I've since been informed by some other members that they've been experiencing difficulty in obtaining payment. Some of the Categories are now "non-paying" as well, so perhaps the future of this site is now questionable. Approach with care, and with your eyes wide open. <
Remember back in the dim distant past when the dooyoo powers that be used to pay us 10p for every opinion we submitted? Those were the days? (*looks nostalgic*). I had almost given up hope of ever being paid for posting reviews again, until I came across this site last February. Whats this? They pay a whole £5 per review? Surely I was reading this wrong? But no, it is true! :-) ● The website OK, it is quite likely that anyone passing through the smart students website for the first time will be put off by the garish colour scheme and amateurish design. I mean, a fluorescent yellow background with flashing pink, red, blue and green bits is hardly what I would call the height of good taste. But still, if you stay a little longer, you will find sections of reviews on most UK universities, education, health issues, things to see and do, transport, textbooks and just about every other topic of interest to student types. As with dooyoo, registering with the site is free and easy to do, but not necessary to browse the reviews on offer - and I have found no rules to say that you have to currently be a student to join. Navigation does take a little getting used to, and the site itself is pretty basic, but you do get a free email account automatically for registering with them. The mail account is not very good, but it is free and a useful place to have some of my junk mail sent to. There are also a few competitions and funny pages up on site, and I am pleased to report that I have had no spam in my email accounts for signing up. One thing that does annoy me is the lack of an account page, so there is no online record of what you written, when it was submitted and how much money you are owed - so you need to keep track of this yourself to make sure you are paid the right amount of money. ● Writing reviews In amongst the flashing bits on the homepage is an ad for members to work for the site as writers (a sm
all yellow box in the right hand corner). Explanations on what you need to do are not exactly brilliant (I ended up emailing the site for clarification), but the basis of it is that you choose a topic that noone has written about before (sorry, only one review per category), and email your opinion to firstname.lastname@example.org. If the review is accepted (and most of mine are), then the nice people - for some reason though, it is your real name and not username that appears underneath your work. All that they stipulate is that it must be "new and original" and at least 150 words long - and if they think you are missing something, then they will contact you for clarification. Reviews at smart students are somewhat different to those here at dooyoo. They are not as good or as detailed on the whole - well, there is no incentive to be when you are not being peer reviewed or dependant on reads for money. Most reviews are in the region of 1 to 2 paragraphs and are of the sort that would get you SU to U ratings here on the whole. I'll admit I have sent in some reviews of this nature myself, and they nearly always get accepted! This is not a community site like dooyoo, so reading and rating do not exist here and you will never know how many people read your reviews or get paid per read. Neither can you comment on another person's work or submit an alternative point of view for any category that already has an opinion in it. This does of course mean that the site can be quite misleading when you only have one member's brief thoughts on a subject and nothing else to compare them to. For this reason I do not bother reading anything at the site - sorry, but I am only in it for the money? ● Payment There is a one-off payment of £5 per review, and cheques are automatically sent to members each month, providing your balance is over £10. They have recently also started to offer an additional £20 to the best re
view in each category per month, but there is no mention of how this is decided upon - it sounds as elusive as the ciao rewards system! We are told that payments are done on the first working day of each month, but in reality it does take quite a while for the payments to come through. The £30 I earned in February did not arrive on my doorstep until April 11th, and I am still waiting for my March cheque. However long payments take though, I'll have to say that these are pretty generous rates for what I have submitted to the site - I'll earn £100 in a shorter time and with less effort than I did here at dooyoo, but it was also a lot less fun. It's just not the same without a proper community... ● The good bits - Generous payment - Pretty wide choice of topics - Most reviews accepted - Staff are friendly, helpful and reply quickly to emails - Free email account for joining - The site does payout ● The bad bits - Only one review per topic - No community - Terrible site design - Poor standard of most reviews - Payouts take ages to arrive - No account page on site SmartStudents.co.uk is worth a look in if you are after a bit of extra cash, especially if you are actually a student. You can get a decent amount of money from the site - if the categories you know about have not already got reviews in them of course! It will never replace dooyoo though, and to be honest I cannot see then continuing to payout at this level forever. I will be running out of available topics pretty soon and after that will not use the site any more ? the reviews are simply to poor and unbalanced to be much use to readers. If you do want to have a look in though, prepare to be scared by the homepage! :-) www.smartstudents.co.uk
Again this is another way of making money online but this mainly directed at students although you don't have to be a student to join. I first heard of this site from a friend and couldn't believe when I heard they paid you £5 a review, I thought to myself surely this has to be some joke. I went on the website and submitted a review, I was told to many people had written it and so they would keep it and maybe get back to me if they wanted it, this carried on for a while I was about to give up when finally I got an email saying that I had a review which had been accepted, I had £5. They don't send you your money until the end of the month, for example if I wrote review in January then I would have £40 but they wouldn't send it all until the end of February. To submit reviews onto this website you have to be signed up to the website, and when you do this you get an e-mail address ending with @smartstudents.co.uk this is where you write in reviews from and get replied to. When you get an email from them a person called Shshana always comments back so I am guessing they run the website, they are a friendly person and always happy to answer any problems you may have. The homepage on this website is very tacky bright yellow and looking cheap they do need to improve in that area but apart from that everything else is fine. You can only write about what they have in categories for example, music, movies, travel and then there are smaller categories which took me a while to find you go to the universities category and click on the nearest to you there are then the categories shopping, sport & leisure, food and drink etc When clicking on shopping there is a ladieswear category then you click on it and all ladieswear shops in your city come up and you write to email@example.com with your reivew onto it from your email and thats a review submitted. There are many other things to write about, most
ly look for original categories that have not had reviews for them yet which is quite a lot. Once you have had an accepted review it will be under the title of what you have put it for. There are categories for games and they have competitions too it isn't all about writing reviews, it is still for students to have fun on. I have not yet been paid but I have been told you will get paid and I have made a lot of money and shold get it next month I cannot wait, good luck to everyone that tries it.
Read the update at the buttom. Old op follows... According to the blurb, Smart Students is an interactive web site for students, designed by students. If you've been looking for a Dooyoo/Ciao type of site, then this is definitely one for you to check out. Here at Dooyoo, we get paid the princely sum of 3p per rate and maybe an extra £1.50 if our review is really good. It takes an awful lot of reads to make anything, and if you're not a particularly well-known member, it can seem impossible at times. I'm not suggesting you leave Dooyoo because there are lots of reasons to stay (the best one being you get to read all my worthless ops <g>), but if you want to make some extra money on the site, Smart Students is definitely worth consideration because of the much higher pay outs. Like I said, there's quite a few people here who are only going to get a couple of three penny pieces per op. At Smart Students, you get a flat rate of £5 per normal review. I think I've deleted the relevant email from Shashana, but she did explain to me that the rates for music reviews are less. (I think that only applies to singles and not albums. It's something like £1.50.) The two big questions that most of you probably have are: 1) Does it actually pay? and 2) How easy is it to get published? In short, the answer to 1) is YES and the answer to 2) is VERY. I received my first cheque today, which was an unexpected but very welcome surprise. The minimum payout is £10 and considering there are a lot of bad reviews onsite, it's not hard at all to get accepted. The community here at Dooyoo expect a certain level of quality, so if you've been doing okay over here, you should have no problems whatsoever over there. I should warn you though that reviews on movies and music are quite difficult to get on site because they only do ones in the charts and then you have to be quite quick - I thin
k it's a first written, first (and only one) up approach. It's probably a better idea to concentrate on the other categories like Books and Travel. A new section recently started up is "Discussion". This has the following categories: * Books, Mags, Sites * Computing * Education * Email & Chat * Game Reviews * General * Health & Beauty * Jobs & Money * Mens & Ladies Wear * Music & Movies * Sports & Hobbies * Travel * Universities Basically, there's quite a lot to choose from. The "Discussion" part of the site is probably where you'll find the better opinions as well, because not everyone gets paid for writing in there, so they probably make more of an effort with the quality of their writing in order to be one of the ones who do get paid. Each month the best opinion in that section get a £20 voucher, the second best one a £10 voucher and a £5 goes to the third best op. Like I said, this section is fairly new, so I'm not really sure who's getting paid. I haven't seen any ops marked as being top one, two or three, but I do have faith in Shashana to work it out at some point. Well, have I got you interested? If I'm doing this right, then you're thinking of the £5 per op in comparison to the 3p per read here. Some of you may be thinking, "Yeah, there's a higher rate, but I'm not a student!" If that's your situation, then don't worry. Despite the name, you don't actually have to be a student to start writing and make money. This site is just a little gem :D Now, apart from the whole review writing aspect to the site, which will no doubt have interested you, being a bunch of hardcore Dooyooers no doubt, there are other things worth mentioning. Firstly there's the free webmail account, in the form of firstname.lastname@example.org. There's not a lot to say - it's your standar
d free email with an address book, spell checker and ability to create extra folders to organise your emails and you see fit. Unlike some main email providers, it doesn't attach an annoying ad to the bottom of your message. I primarily use mine to submit my reviews to Shashana, but you could use it for anything. With so many free email providers closing, a new one like this is always worth having. Secondly, there are chat rooms. The downside to this is that I've never actually seen anyone in any of them. It's probably because the site hasn't finished growing, but it's there if you and your mates want to use it. Another little thing to mention is the competitions page. There are always a few going such as a caption competition and a "who am I?" one. The last little thing worth mentioning is the news/weather page. Self-explanatory. (Oh and there is a section dedicated to your mobile phone, but it'll cost you. Either a straight £3 or a £1/minute. I can get free operator logos online from FoneTastic, so this bit doesn't really interest me.) So... in conclusion... Should you sign up? Oh definitely. If you want to do me a favour, mention the email addy in my profile to Shashana ;) Oh it's all the interests of a good review because I don't know anyone who's received the £1 referral payout. *cough* Ooh, I do digress. Anyway the bottom line is that you do get paid, the pay is good, the webmistress in charge helpful and quick to reply and on top of that you get free e-mail. There isn't a community spirit like we have here at Dooyoo but that has the advantage of no big fights like you sometimes get here. I'm not sure how long Smart Students will last, but while it's there, it's worth joining, and I do hope it stays around for a bit. ====== UPDATE ====== After receiving my first cheque, I did expect another. However, when the mon
th came and went, I took another look at the site: "By sending in opinions to us on email@example.com, a £20 voucher for the best opinion in each section each month will be awarded, £10 for 2nd place and £5 for 3rd place." What, no crisp fiver per op? Ack, how depressing. Oh well, I suppose the £5 per review rate was bound to go at some point... Well, I do still like the site, so I'm bumping off just one star on the basis that it's become more difficult to make money. Still worth a look for the better writers amongst us here.
Despite the popularity of Dooyoo and Ciao there have been very few new sites of a similar type. One of the few to have sprung up is smartstudents.co.uk, but can it live up to Dooyoo? Their biggest plus point is that they pay a whopping £5 per opinion! That's right, for every opinion you write you receive £5. There's no payment for reads, but I think you'll still agree that's way in excess of anything Dooyoo will pay you. Can you get 166 reads per opinion? Or a crown and 116 reads? I know I don't! And even better, Smartstudents do pay, I've received two cheques. Their policy to pay everyone at once at the end of every month which isn't actually made clear on the site, but the staff are very friendly and are happy to answer any questions you may have. On the payment side they leave Dooyoo for dead, I actually fail to see how they can afford it. Unfortunately for them, the rest of the site is awful. I don't just mean poorly designed, or a little bland, or awkward to navigate - I mean that the site is AWFUL. It looks amateur. Infact it is amateur. It's background is a bright yellow, it uses what look like pictures from standard clip-art. The whole thing feels homemade, like something I would make, and let me tell you; my web pages are amongst the worst in the world. Still, not wanting to judge a book (website) by it's cover (style) can what's inside redeem it? As the name of the site suggests, it's geared towards students, and is not primarily a reviews site as Dooyoo is. It has sections on CDs, movies, books and musicals. These contain top 10 charts as well as reviews of various cds, books etc. Lots of info here, but guess what - it's all rather amateur! The games section is similar, containing game reviews for a number of systems. The reviews themselves are OK, but their layout is rather plain. There's a news and weather section, which unsurprisingly contains
the news and weather, as well as TV listings. The problem with this bit is that all they have is links to other sites, or scrolling news headlines from Reuters which you then have to click to go to the Reuters site to read the whole article. Weather and TV listings are the same. Overall a rather poor section of the site. There are a few competitions on the site, as well as a few web based games to play, some of which are actually quite fun. The travel section is one of the better on the site, as it loses that yellow background contains a selection of solid information, links to useful sites and peoples first hand accounts of travelling. The chat rooms are always empty, in addition you are given a smartstudents email address, but when it's so inferior to most others free web based mail systems, there's not a lot of point in using it. There's also a fun section, sort of like an online magazine, which mostly contains funny photo's. There's also a section to send logos to your phone, although you either have to send them money or dial a £1 per minute number. Rip off springs to mind. The site gets it's content from it users, hence it pays them £5 per review. It specifies at least 150 words, which is probably the easiest fiver you'll ever make. How long they will last is anyone's guess, how they manage to afford to pay this is anyone's guess, how they found someone this bad is anyone's guess, but I know that they send me money so I can't complain that much!
Again this is another way of making money online but this mainly directed at students although you don't have to be a student to join. I first heard of this site from a friend and couldn't believe when I heard they paid you £5 a review, I thought to myself surely this has to be some joke. I went on the website and submitted a review, I was told to many people had written it and so they would keep it and maybe get back to me if they wanted it, this carried on for a while I was about to give up when finally I got an email saying that I had a review which had been accepted, I had £5. They don't send you your money until the end of the month, for example if I wrote review in January then I would have £40 but they wouldn't send it all until the end of February. To submit reviews onto this website you have to be signed up to the website, and when you do this you get an e-mail address ending with @smartstudents.co.uk this is where you write in reviews from and get replied to. When you get an email from them a person called Shshana always comments back so I am guessing they run the website, they are a friendly person and always happy to answer any problems you may have. The homepage on this website is very tacky bright yellow and looking cheap they do need to improve in that area but apart from that everything else is fine. You can only write about what they have in categories for example, music, movies, travel and then there are smaller categories which took me a while to find you go to the universities category and click on the nearest to you there are then the categories shopping, sport & leisure, food and drink etc When clicking on shopping there is a ladieswear category then you click on it and all ladieswear shops in your city come up and you write to firstname.lastname@example.org with your reivew onto it from your email and thats a review submitted. There are many other things to write about, mostl
y look for original categories that have not had reviews for them yet which is quite a lot. Once you have had an accepted review it will be under the title of what you have put it for. There are categories for games and they have competitions too it isn't all about writing reviews, it is still for students to have fun on. I have not yet been paid but I have been told you will get paid and I have made a lot of money and shold get it next month I cannot wait, good luck to everyone that tries it.
Well at least I fit into one of the above categories. I am still in education, so therefore I am a student. One of the ways I try to earn a little extra money as a poor student is write opinions for things like ciao or dooyoo. The prospect of earning £5, that’s five pounds per opinion posted on smart students appealed to me for some reason. I joined a few weeks back, though a few ciao opinions that I later read made me go active and actually start submitting work to them. Now here is my opinion on them. As the name suggests this site is aimed at students. This gives me a bit of an advantage there, but there is no demand to exclude anyone that is not a student. The content is therefore aimed towards students, with movies, music and games more than baby care or other things, so this does limit the content. You are paid for submitting an opinion on a product, like a CD, video or film much like the idea or ciao and dooyoo, only you are not paid by the reads that the opinion gets, just one flat fee for having the work published. You even get your own e-mail address and other perks such as chat, games and chances to win in competitions. Not exactly a widely different idea from some of the others, basically you write reviews about whatever you feel like on all sorts of products to tell others your experiences, say if some film is so amazing you have to see it, or a CD is so bad don’t waste your money. The sign up process is the standard stuff. All your personal details name, address and e-mail are required, but also so is the name of the university or college you are at. I am not sure what happens if this does not apply, but it is all step by step to guide you through. Once you join up you get to choose your username and password. The username then becomes your e-mail address. Mine is ChrisPadden, so my e-mail address is email@example.com. From this e-mail address you are to send your works and reviews to the s
ite. If the content is deemed suitable, then the work will be put up on the site. It is all edited by real people, so there is little cheating of the system, and the people at the other end can offer advice and tips for both the writing and presentation of the opinions. Any problems are dealt with by the same people, they seem very helpful. The site also has a chat room, no one was on there when I looked (maybe I scared them all), but it looks fine and no problems. There are some games open only to members, I have only seen the link to these, though I imagine they are the usual web games. At the moment there are five competitions being run through the site. They are pretty imaginative, they currently are for the best comedy caption, wired dreams, stupidest questions, funniest bouncer one liners and riddles. They change with time and offer prizes including cash. Though I have entered, no news of a win. :( One you are a fully fledged member you are able to log into your profile, from which you can access your e-mail and other member privileges as above. The one thing I don’t like is there are no money details. You have to guesstimate how much you have made, if it is five pounds an opinion then it is a fairly simple sum, but it would be nice to keep track. The site cannot really be accused of looking dull. Bright yellow background, with black and fluorescent pink means it stands out from other websites. It is all very flashy and cool, I guess it is trying to appeal to the young people out there and be interesting, though it is sometimes a little hard on the eye. All the links to take you to the categories and other areas of the site are lined up down on the left hand side, while the rest of the page has the sign in and register buttons and other links to special deals on parts of the site, and other websites which have offers. All these are sort of music sites and other student stuff, it all looks interesting and I have had a browse. CD WOW is
there currently advertising, that sort of thing. As for the categories they are slightly limited. They really are based to go for the students, so no complaints but there is not exactly a huge range. The main categories are Universities, Travel, Games Reviews, Top CDs, Top Books, Top Musicals and Top Movies. Pretty self explanatory really they categories cover basically what would go into them, books films, holiday and universities. The range of content is slightly limited by being open to students, but I find it more restrictive than this. I do not have any problems writing opinions on the entertainments categories, but I have had work turned down by smart students because it is not relevant. Much of the stuff is tried to keep up to date, so you can only write about the top ten current films, not some old video I managed to dig out of the video store. I just found this a bit limited, there is nothing wrong with this, but if you are planning to transfer your life works onto here, then it may not all go. There is also a point that for one product that is very popular then they may not add your opinion as well. They are unwilling to make a new category to fit in with some of the work you do sent in, unlike bigrag when Dan will try his best to do the things that make it all fit into place. It does make a useful source to look at though by this, but if your opinion is better than the one already there then you could feel a little hard done. Again this limits the work further still, though these may have been excuses for them being polite to say nicely that they do not want my work. Probably because of all the bad spelling, but anyway. The main thing I do not like doing is submitting the same opinions over and over again, just cutting and pasting. Think of all the possible sites, ciao, dooyoo, epinions, bigrag and of course smart students there are several places that will pay for your work. If you do put your work on each there is quite a large ear
ning potential for you, but for me it does just not seem right. Resubmitting the same work over and over again takes the fun out, and it seems that you are abusing the things. As well as being pretty boring work transferring between them there is the feeling you are putting stuff in shallowly and putting no effort in, just dumping work. In defense of this, it is your own work overall so what you do is totally up to you, but for me this is just one place too many. The prospect of earning five pounds an opinion is too good to miss, and they are serious and do pay judging by some of the others experiences. If you are writing for something else then this is not too hard to add the same piece and earn more money for it. Great payments, though up to you if you want to go and push all your work across then that is your choice. The site is good, the people helpful and a good idea in general. I have had some work turned down, though I will still try and add some more to this in the future.
And so another candidate in the 'Make a fortune online' stakes comes to the fore, leaving us feeling untouched by its attraction. SmartStudents - http://www.smartstudents.co.uk - is another opinion writing site, just like BigRag, Dooyoo and Ciao which on the one hand looks extremely profitable, but on the other is garishly repulsive looking, totally devoid of any community feeling and quite hard work, all things considered. Like BigRag and as the name suggests, SmartStudents is aimed fairly and squarely at those in Universities and clearly the focus is on our cousins in further education. Let's just consider the upsides first so that you can at least appreciate there is a positive - SmartStudents forks out a fiver an opinion - yes you did hear me right, folks, five quid for getting one of your opinions read, and there ain't no further work to do either because you get nothing for reading or rating the work of others or getting your own contributions read or rated. I'm told (although I have yet to see the evidence, but that should get remedied over the next week or so) that you get paid each and every month, around the 15th with a cheque for all the earnings from the previous period. Of course, you can never rely on such things until you get the lovely money in your sticky little mitts, so I'm afraid proof positive is something I can't give you as yet. However, people I trust swear that the dosh will be forthcoming. You get a SmartStudents E-mail address when you join up (such as PrettyBoy@smartstudents.co.uk) and get all your communication via this route and need to submit your reviews from that account. This was the welcome E-mail I got when I joined up - "Welcome to www.smartstudents.co.uk - your one stop shop for the who's who & the what's what, where to go & of course where not in & around your local scene. www.smartstudents.co.uk is an interactive Web site for stud
ents, designed by students. This means that we want YOU to tell us who's who, what's what, where you go & where not. This site is for YOU. We are currently looking for reviewers to review literally anything and everything whether it be clubbing, drinking, sports, music and whatever else takes you're fancy. We want you to tell us and other students about it, let us know through email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01493 852552. Each review you send which is published on the site, earns you £5 and we have people earning in excess of £150 a month by bombarding us with local and national gossip and information. Live your life to its full potential! Great to have you with us." Okay, that's the upside covered, because really the money is the only attractive thing about this site and you know with an almost terrifying inevitability that there's just no way they are going to be able to keep that payout rate up (DON'T YOU?), so I'd suggest if you're going to take advantage of people with more money than sense then you get a move on. Nearly everything else about SS is a bit of a pain in the ass ... The site design itself is pretty bloody abysmal, being uniformly sickly yellow with pink trim (BLEURRGH). Navigation around the site is not very intuitive or easy to figure out and will tax your patience and I have to say that so far I've found the quality of writing onsite is pretty dismal, all things considered. You submit your reviews by attaching a document to an E-mail (just as you do with BigRag) and they assure you that you can write on just about everything (not quite everything from what I've seen, but more of that later). It's amazingly difficult to find out what subjects you can write on and there are restrictions on many of the subjects. There's a 'Smart Search' function, but it should probably be better termed 'Dumb Search' because it doesn't
work very well. They also limit submissions on some of the most popular sections on the site and this is the E-mail I got when I submitted my Lord of the Rings review - "Thanks for your review of Lord of the Rings but I'm afraid I have been inundated with reviews for this movie. Sorry I haven't got back to you sooner been in London at meetings for a couple of days. Below is all the information you should need so you can start straight away but if you need any further info then please contact me on this email address or on 01493 852552. Basically you can start reviewing straight away, covering any topics you like whether it be pubbing, accommodation, travel - absolutely anything. For each new and original review we receive we pay £5 for. We work in 4 weekly periods that start on the 1st of each month and finish on the 30/31st with a lump sum cheque being sent to you mid month the following month (eg. you send in 5 reviews we send you a cheque for £25) We ask for reviews to be a minimum of 100 - 150 words long just so we don't get "this is a great place to go on a Friday night" All you need to do is send the reviews to us on email@example.com For movies, books and music we only accept reviews on things in the charts onsite due to the popularity of these sections Look forward to hearing from you soon and please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions or queries Please check the site regularly to make sure you aren't covering something that has already been reviewed Regards Shashana" They also claim the copyright on stuff you submit and issue a vague threat that they'll check to see if any of the reviews have been submitted anywhere else before they publish them. They rejected quite a few of my ops as being either already covered by other writers or not relevant to their site, so don't go thinking that it's particularly easy to get your stuff up. They say that they've publish
ed some of my reviews online but as I've not been able to find them I've not got a clue whether they did or not. All things considered, SmartStudents may (or may not) be a very profitable Internet scam, but from virtually every other perspective I can easily get by without a visit to Sickly Yellow Pages of student rants...
www.smartstudents.co.uk is a site basically designed for and aimed at students, however underneath its University mask lies an added attraction, there are numerous categories available and once into these you will find reviews, reviews submitted by people like you and me, nothing out of the ordinary you cry, well the difference here is that smartstudents is not for only students but anyone can join and the £5 per opinion accepted is enough to tempt anyone, interested yet? Well let’s take a tour of the site before you make your mind up. THE HOME PAGE ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Avery busy and bright home page indeed with a bold yellow and pink colour scheme that runs throughout the site, on the left hand side you will see all the various categories available, all clearly listed but in order to proceed you will firstly need to register. All you need to do is to choose a unique username and password, fill in your personal details, as you will see the online form asks you which university you are at, but rest assured there is also an option for anyone not at University, so anyone from any age group can join. Now lets look at the various categories. UNIVERSITIES ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ An extremely comprehensive listing of all the Universities smartstudents cover, a map clearly shows the location then by clicking on one you are given a full review of what they have to offer, all the courses, term times, qualifications needed and lots more. This would be very useful indeed for any perspective student thinking of applying to join. NEWS, TV, WEATHER ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ The latest headlines from around the globe, plus breaking UK new stories, here also is a weather map from the Met office, so you can get your local weather for the next 3 days at the click of your mouse. TOP CD’S ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ This weeks top 10 singles and albums, at a glance you will see some are in
bold blue writing and some are in black, the black means that these are still awaiting a review, so you could be the first person to submit one on any of these. Also above you will see “Music Reviews”, these are all under tabs listed from A-Z, simply click on a letter and it will display all artists beginning with that letter, no pictures each is displayed on a CD case, select the artist of your choice and there you will see all submitted reviews for them. Of course if your favourite isn’t listed, simply write a review and send it in to be added. TOP MOVIES ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Again similar to the above, here are the listings for the top 15 films in the cinema this week, currently at number one is Vanilla Sky, again all are available to be reviewed. Plus the top 20 Video and DVD rentals and sales, again the alphabetical tab lets you peruse back through the archives, just about every film ever released is here and a lot are review- less, each is displayed on its own click able film clipboard. TOP MUSICALS ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Fancy reviewing a musical, comedy or play, well here’s your chance, the newest being displayed on the main page and the rest as before alphabetically. TOP BOOKS ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ This one should tickle the taste buds of any avid bookworm, it lists the current top 10 hardback, paperback and fiction and hardly any of these have been reviewed, so a nice little potential earner if this is your chosen field, even looking in the A-Z reveals the reviews are very thin on the ground. COMPETITIONS ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ At the moment there are 6 available for members, these range from captions to funniest pets, the only thing that is rather off-putting is that it does not actually list the prizes, so not much incentive here then. GAMES ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Fun time and you will not be disappointed here, a whole page of
very playable games from Tetris to snake (for the Nokia addicts amongst you), checkers and a very good version of space invaders for a retro blast, these are all excellent and very addictive. TRAVEL ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Got a travel story to tell? These can be either on a particular destination, holiday, firms, holiday disasters and anything remotely relevant to travel, so lots of scope in this section. FUN HOUSE ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ A selection of funnies from jokes to web sites, even a month by month archive of funnies, not a bad section but then again nothing stunning here, alright if you have nothing better to do but otherwise give it a miss.. FUNK OR PHONE ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Another lets not bother, this is merely the usual mobile logo’s, none of them free in fact £3 each, nothing new even here, next.. EMAIL ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Once registered you automatically have an email account, this of course is only accessible on this site when you are logged in, but is very useful for sending your opinions in, not a bad email service, the account is your smart students username and contains the standard inbox, folders, preferences and address book. GAME REVIEWS ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ Reviews here for the PS2, Playstation, Game boy, PC, N64 and Dreamcast, no A-z tab but each console links to a full alphabetical listing of the games already reviewed, so just as good in terms of navigation. MORE INFO AND THE VERDICT ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ So now you have all seen what exactly smart students have to offer, interested yet?? , Well once registered you are now ready to earn some cash, I find the best way to send my opinions as I said is via the email account you get with them located on the home page, simply paste it into an email or add as an attachment and tell them the title you want and that’s it, you do not even hav
e to say where you want it, they will home it for you. You will always receive a reply from Shashana who seems to run the site, telling you whether or not your review has been accepted, the key factor here is before you send it in, look and see how many if any reviews are already in on your topic, if there are more than 3 then not much chance unless it is really outstanding, 0-1 reviews already on site almost guarantees yours being published. I could not actually believe the quality of some published, say 120 words and very basic, surely they must be nuts accepting these poor offererings. They also accept opinions on other subjects, shopping, web sites, electricals, magazines and anything really, I have sent quite a few that do not fit into the main categories and had them all accepted, however I have yet to ever see them on the site itself!! Payments are made monthly by cheque and the good news for anyone who is now really tempted to give it a go is that YES they do pay, I must admit I was very sceptical at first but they do in fact give you £5 for each published and I have had 3 cheques off them so far so it is indeed a genuine earner. How long they will be able to keep this up is the next question, they do have various advertisements on the home page from CD Wow for example, but surely they can’t keep it up. There is also a incentive to sign up other members and for this you will receive £1 for each joining, however you can also email Shashana and ask for some goodies to give out to promote the site, I received 20 mousemats, pens and a polo shirt, plus hundreds of cards to give out, and all I can say is these are super quality, the polo shirt was lovely!! Shashana is always glad to help and will email you back promptly with any queries and seems very friendly. The other plus is there is no other work involved as this site does not have ratings or reads, you do not have to do a thing, simply se
nd your opinions and sit back and wait for your cheque in the post, what more could you want, of course it has no real community to it but it’s certainly a nice little earner whilst it lasts. © Ana 2002
While the SmartStudents site is a good idea (though done before), it tries to cover too much information, writing little of substance and in the end being of limited use to its users. It tries too hard to conquer the world. There doesn't seem to be a huge number of users, making the site feel a little like an empty club - lots of bells and whistles but no punters! I did like the numerous links on every university section - shops, bars, restaurants etc. However, this seems to be of more use to existing students in their first few weeks at uni. Also, once they at uni for any significant amount of time they will know all the places and cease visiting SmartStudents. All in all, its a good attempt but tries to cover too much and its navigation structure isn't very clear. Certainly worth a short visit, but repeat custom will be hard to estabilish. Also, buy a good pair of sunglasses to view it!
If you are a student you may want to know about this site. Smartstudents.co.uk is a new site on the web particularly for students all over the country. So far it looks great although I won?t know until the cheque arrives through my letterbox. I?m hoping it will anyway although as yet I have not heard from anyone who has got paid. Smartstudents is another way of earning money. In fact it seems quite a good way of making money. Write one review and earn yourself £5. That?s right one review for £5. You can write about your university, your local area and other things like music and films. I have only been a member for a few weeks and have limited my reviews until I find out if the site definitely pays up. After going crazy on as recommended by earlier on in the year I am a bit sceptical about new pay for writing sites. Before you all rush over there I will give you more information about joining up. You have to first of all register to the site. This will then able you to access the appropriate information. You will then see on the homepage there is a box saying, ?Work for us? in. You have to click on this book and then some brief information will come up. It will basically give you instructions and keep you interested by mentioning the word money several times. You then have to email them and tell them you would like to write reviews. They will then send you the necessary information back and you can start writing. Every time you write a review you have to email it with your details. Providing your review is accepted you should then see it published on the site within 24 hours. Many do take longer though especially if they have to create a new section for it. The site is quite bright with the main colours been yellow and pink. Everything is easy to follow and split into different sections. Universities ? As far as I am aware every university in England, Scotland and Wales are listed here. I may be wrong though although I am sure
they are under the impression they are all there so if any of you spot yours isn?t they will be happy to add it. They are split into different areas such as the South of England and the Midlands. This makes them easier to find so you don?t have to go through a long list. Once you click on a university a picture of it should come up along with basic information. This should also contain a list of term dates, and the courses the university offer. There is also another menu where you can find out about things to do in the local area, sports and leisure facilities, recruitment, shopping and health services. If they are no reviewers for your university you may find the information is lacking but this could also give you more to write about yourself. News TV Weather ? This section is as interesting as it sounds. There is a link so you can find out the TV guide for the day. There is also a map of the UK, which links you to the Met Office weather. Last but not least there is links for the top news stories. These are updated very often and I am yet to see old information lurking about. Top CDs ? As you can probably imagine this lists the weeks top ten singles and albums. If you visit the site for yourself you may notice some of these are highlighted. This usually means someone has written a review on this one. Top Movies ? Here you will find the top 15 films at the cinema, the top twenty to rent and the top twenty to purchase. Top 10 Musicals ? As this title suggests here are the top ten musicals although they are really just ten reviews members have written (this is where two of mine are). Top Books ? You can see the top 10 books here and you can also find reviews on different books members have written. Competitions ? There are six competitions available to enter at the minute. They are quite interesting and you can tell a lot of thought has gone into them. The present competitions are Caption Comp where you ha
ve to come up with the best caption for the photo shown. Lecturer?s names comp where you have to send in weird names of lecturers, not so great for me as I have lecturers with simple names. How big is Lara Comp, where you have to guess how big Lara Crofts boobs are on the life-size model in the smartstudents office. What do these mean, where you have to say what the abbreviations stand for. Picture of the month, where you have to send in embarrassing drunken pictures of your friends. Last of all there is a competition where they want you to explain why you think Smartstudents is the best student website. The prizes range from a pair of Calvin Klein knickers to a camera. Not brilliant prizes but they are worth the laugh. Games ? To be honest I haven?t actually played one of these as yet but they are a number to choose from such as Freddy the Frog, Tetris, Snake and Space Invaders. Email ? If you register with Smart students regardless of writing reviews or not you receive a free email address. So far I have only used this for smartstudents itself and it does look pretty basic. An email address is an email address though at the end of the day so you cannot complain. Chat Rooms ? I tried clicking on this once and no one was there so I escaped. It does look all right although I am not a chat expert. Friendliness ? I have so far had quite a lot of contact with Shashana one of the workers quite regularly through email. She seems really nice and is keen to help you. There is a potential to earn more money on smartstudents. You can become a recruiter and earn £1 for every person you sign up as a member. You can also be sent a bag of goodies to hand out to encourage people to join. If you have the time this will be worth it especially if you have a large circle of friends. If Smartstudents do pay up I will be one happy person. If not as a student site it still contains some good information. I will keep you all posted
to let you know if I get a cheque. In the mean time I am just writing a couple of reviews. ***UPDATE*** THEY PAY. I RECEIVED A CHEQUE LAST WEEK. I JUST WISH I HAD MORE TIME TO WRITE MORE OPINIONS!
Yet another website that claims to pay you.... except, unlike most, they actually mean it! Ok, well maybe they don't pay you, i'm not sure whether they do or not seen as i've only recently signed up to this website. By the looks of it thought they're going to pay me to write opinions [remind you of somewhere?!] And, d'ya wanna know the best bit? [that means, tough because i'm going to tell you!] they pay you £5 for every opinion that gets published to the website. £5! Wow, now that is generous! So I guess now you'll all be wanting to know more about this site..... no? Oh well, tough! ~ Whats this website like then? ~ ~Home~ Generally this site is pretty jam-packed with links/information. Some may find it a little too hectic to make easy reading, including myself! It's a little bit ‘amateurish’ and cluttered but hey, if they pay £5 per opinion who's complaining?! On the home page you find links to: Universitites - if you follow this link you'll find yourself on a page containing most of the universities in the UK... each with thier own links. Each university is placed within the part of the website relating to where in the country it is: Scotland, Northern England, Wales, Midlands, East of England, London and South of England. However not *all* the universities are listed. For example, the prime example for me has to be Bangor Uni [my nearest Uni] isn't mentioned! News/weather - again, pretty obviously you find the news and weather here! However Top 10 CD's - features this weeks top 10 singles and albums. Top 20 movies - features "Top 15 Films at the Cinemas this week", "Top 20 rental Videos", "Top 20 retail Videos", "Top 20 rental DVD" and "Top 20 retail DVD" Top 10 musicals - Strangely enough you only f
ind 6 musicals mentioned here. I wonder if this is because most students don't go to see many musicals?! Top 10 books - "Hardbacks: general", "Paperbacks: general", "Hardbacks: fiction" and, yes, you've guessed it! "Paperbacks: fiction". Terms & conditions - well they had to put them somewhere didn't they! Competitions - well apparantly, if you get people to join the website [registration is free by the way] you earn points [sounds like Tesco's!]. The tariff is as follows: 1 = a mellow yellow pen 2 = a mellow yellow pen and matching diskette 3 = A mellow yellow pen, disk and coaster 4 = your very own mousemat - oohh, aahh 5 = don't be one, get one - a mug 10 = a t-shirt - wet if you like! 20 = a polo shirt or a light - read those Jilly Cooper novels! 50 = tunes or tones with a cd player or a scanner 100 = a printer - so you can make loads a money! 250 = are you the weakest couch potato, you could be with a tv! 500 = a tv & dvd player 1000 = a computer - for those last minute assignments! Just one problem though.... how many of you know 1000 poeple?!?! Games - featuring: Asteroids Freddy the Frog The Love Matcher Space Invaders - (Internet Explorer only) Break-Out - (Internet Explorer only) Quick Draw Checkers (Draughts) Rubic Cube Mind Reader Tetris Quick Crossword Snake - (Internet Explorer only) Captain Queeg Travel - we have a "Student travel stories" section here. Theres plenty of variety though as to which country you'd like to read about, including: Velkomin Íslands Gran Canaria Manhattan Ben Lomond to name just a few! (Anyone know where Velkomin Íslands are?!) Chat rooms - does this need elaborating on? Fun house – tonnes
of jokes, are they any good? Well you’ll have to judge for yourself! Funk ur phone – same as with most mobile websites this one. Good logo’s on offer, that is until you read the £1/min bit! Email – you get your own email account when you register with the site. Smart search – again, this needn’t be explained. A search engine’s a search engine right?! Hot gossip – personally I don’t see the point in this section of the website what so ever (unless I’m missing something!). Basically all there is in this section is diary style thing written by some student, what the purpose in it I’m not entirely sure….not read much of it [that’s how boring this bit is!]. ~ So why sign up? ~ Well isn’t the £5 pet published opinion/review a good enough reason!? One thing to point out though is the fact that when reading around on the website it makes out that you have to be a University student to be able to sign up and get paid £5 per review. However on closer inspection I found this: “We want to know what experiences you've had at University, what you've been up to and where you've spent your time. You can review literally anything and everything you wish, all new and original reviews published earn you £5 a time, so the sooner you get writing the sooner more beer money will be heading your way…..” So if you just skim over that you think you have to be at Uni don’t you? Well this is not the case [after all, I’m not at Uni yet!] When you go through the registration steps they ask you your address at University, your course and what year you are in. However they also say that “if you are not at University please provide your home address” then there are N/A options for the boxes requiring answers related to if you are at university. May
be they should make it clearer on the homepage that you don’t actually *have* to be at university to be able to sign up and get paid. Then again, maybe they keep that fact quite because they prefer Uni students! Hah!! I guess you wouldn’t have to be a student either really. Although that really is the whole point in the site. To write the reviews/opinions all you need to do is email them with your opinion/review and if they think its good enough for the site they put it up. The service seems to be quick too – I sent an email with my very first opinion yesturday. The opinion is already up on the site! ~ Any disadvantages? ~ Not sure yet seen as I’m new there, maybe they never pay out, infact there really isn’t much information as to how they pay you. I.e. do they send a cheque. They don’t mention how much money you must have made before they send you the £5 either. Do I have to have say £20 before they pay out? There isn’t any mention of anything like this. So I’ll update this opinion once I know how that works! So if your after an extra bit of cash [aren’t we all!?] then I’d recommend you take a look at this website. *UPDATE* Well you'll be pleased to know that on Saturday morning I received a cheque for my reviews on this website.... so at £5 per review and they do actually pay you it sure isn't bad going!