Associated Content: A Giant Big Scam

Jeffrey Torres By Jeffrey Torres, 5th Mar 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Reviews>Web Sites

Why Associated Content is a scam. If your new to blogging, here is why you should stay away from AC.

Why you shouldn't write for them

Associated Content is a straight on scam. Chances of you getting published is slim, because their guidelines and writing styles are incredibly strict. For them to syndicate your article on another Yahoo! website that allows performance payments, you have to give them exclusive or non-exclusive rights to your articles. You rarely get up front payments, and editors are extremely picky on what you can post.

First, their guidelines and writing styles are immensely strict. They of course reserve the right to do as they please before they publish your articles, but a lot of new and experienced bloggers are wasting their time. The requirements for upfront payments alone will make you think twice before giving them exclusive rights to your work. They can reject your articles if they do not exhibit enough depth, is too common, too similar to other publishing's by AC, short shelf life, dependent too heavily on links to other websites, has been published elsewhere (fair enough), and is not a humor, tutorial, creative writing, review, opinion or recipe article.

Then you have to worry about publishing rights. If you opt for exclusive, you are selling your article to AC and while it's possible to get an upfront payment of 2-5 dollars, you will not have any control over it, but you still get your pocket change for every 1,000 views. Then we have non-exclusive rights. It must not have been published anywhere else, but you can republish it elsewhere. It's basically the middle ground. Lastly, we have the display only option, which gives you maximum control over your article, but "is not eligible for distribution with Yahoo! Contributor Network partners as well as Yahoo! sites that do not have Performance Payments enabled." In other words, even then they tie your hands with what you can do with your work.

Editors will be extremely picky on your articles. When they reject an article, you will not know what you did wrong. They will tell you to refer to the submission guidelines. You can review it 1,000 time, but you'll see nothing wrong with it. Spelling is one thing, but they check grammar intensively. One mistake and you won't get published. It'll probably take you a few days just to figure out what you did wrong, and by then why bother writing for them. You can't even write about the problems your having with Associated Content. Huzzah for censorship.

If your new to blogging and want to make yourself a little bit of money, do yourself a favor and forget writing for Associated Content. You won't make money writing for them, unless it's an extremely well written article, and you sell it to them, but then you're left with 2 dollars and no longer own your work.

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Associated Content Review, Associated Content Scam, Associatedcontents, Blog Scam, Scam Blog

Meet the author

author avatar Jeffrey Torres
I was born in Germany, and have lived in Europe most of my life, until recently. My father served the U.S. military for over 20 years and my mother is German. I must admit, my thinking has been more European than American, but that all changed as I b...(more)

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author avatar Ruby Benjamin
7th Mar 2011 (#)

Jeffrey, I am kind of frustrated with the options out there in webland for writers. Your writing is good and you have great ideas for stories--if you have made a grammatical error, why wouldn't Associated Content make a couple of editing changes so your work can be published? I have taught grammar for many years, but I am capable of a typo or a clunky sentence. I would stay away from Associated Content because I just don't like the attitude that creativity doesn't count. Yet other sites publish any tripe that is sent to them.

Is it just not possible to make money as a web publisher if you have to add an apostrophe or change a semicolon to a colon to publish a good writer's work?
Why is there no middle ground?

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author avatar Jeffrey Torres
7th Mar 2011 (#)

Thank you :)

I have no idea why they would not just simply edit some minor errors or at least point out what is wrong specifically and let you correct it. That's how most of the other blogging websites handles grammar errors.

It's true that other websites are much more lenient on what people choose to write about. A lot of websites only loosely recommend using their article styling recommendations.

There is middle ground, but in my experience, not with AC. There are only a few well known websites that pay you for writing articles. The pay is low in AC. With Triond, they accept most articles within a few hours and you get paid a penny for every 5 views on any article. And it's confirmed that Triond and Wikinut do pay.

AC frowns on creativity. They expressly say that in their guidelines for up-front payment.

I don't really know anything about publishing articles yourself. I suppose it is possible, but you would have to either find a website that pays you to review and publish articles, or make your own website like Wikinut, Triond, Bukisa, etc.

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author avatar Ruby Benjamin
7th Mar 2011 (#)

I write for Triond also and they don't do any editing as far as I can tell. Read some of the articles other people write...they clearly just went through Google Translator and were accepted.

I wish I knew something about web publishing, because I believe there is a big wide gap between sites that accept everything and sites like AC,, etc. that treat writers like dirt. I know I could make money taking great writing and editing into superb writing...alas, the technical requirements not in my skill set.

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author avatar LOVERME
10th Mar 2011 (#)

thank u young man ur smart can i ask u a direct qs please pst ur answer on my libra gal poem. AS i can't access emails


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author avatar Ruby Benjamin
7th Mar 2011 (#)

Jeff, I think you should do it LOL..but I will def take a look at the sites...thx

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author avatar Jeffrey Torres
7th Mar 2011 (#)

Lol, web design is definitely not my are of expertise, but I'm glad I could help!

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author avatar Dafeenah
9th Mar 2011 (#)

I had never heard of Associated Content. I am very new to this whole concept. I started on Triond, but I find wikinut much better. I swear on Triond if you just type a bunch of letters together even if they aren't words it will get published. The quality of writing seems much better here on wikinut. I would say there definitely seems to be a huge gap. Sites either are so strict i can't be bothered or so lenient I get frustrated and don't want to write there.

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author avatar Jessica
28th Apr 2011 (#)

I stopped writing for AC when I wrote a review for a local store. I followed the same format of another article review article that was written that had received an upfront payment. I also checked to make sure that the content itself was unique and that there was not any other similiar reviews on the site.

Anyway, the article was rejected and honestly after researching through the forums to figure out why I had an "ah ha" moment. I realized that all of the articles that I was spending my time researching, writing, editing, and etc. was not worth the pennies and the fact that AC still owned my work.

I ended up publishing the article on a review site where I do not earn performance pay. However, I did receive a certain amount upfront that it is still more than what I have made on certain articles from AC.

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author avatar Karin
30th Apr 2011 (#)

Na und?
Of course they're going to be strict with their editing, as they should be. Anyone who wants to write for a publication or website should be equally strict with his/her self-editing.

I guess it depends on your goal as a writer. If you want to be taken seriously and have a career as a freelancer, then yeah, your grammar, spelling and sentence structure should be correct. Why would you even think otherwise?

Personally, I think Yahoo is fairly relaxed. Try sending something sloppy to a magazine editor and see how much you earn.

The dumbing-down of everything irritates me. If you just want to express your opinion without regard to spelling, etc., start your own blog.

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author avatar C
10th May 2011 (#)

You should proof your work better...Looks a little dumbed down to me.....

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author avatar D
21st Oct 2012 (#)

.... I'm sure that is not the appropriate way to add a period DUMB ASS!

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author avatar Susan
14th Oct 2011 (#)

Interesting viewpoint. I just submitted my first articles to AC. The first was an assignment that I got from them, and they published it within 2 days of submission. The 2nd was an article where I chose my own topic. I received a kind email from them, saying that they do wish to publish my article but requested that I change the title. I have done so and just resubmitted it. I am fairly sure it will be published after making their suggested change. I'm new to AC, but I certainly don't find them difficult. They just expect good grammar, punctuation and concise to-the-point articles. No, I don't expect to make a ton of money there. I'm there to get my name out there as a freelancer who can meet standards. Yes, AC gives feed back and lets you what you need to correct in your writing.

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author avatar Tena
15th Jan 2012 (#)

how do I sign up with AC?

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author avatar D-Bo
10th Feb 2012 (#)

I used AC to make some extra money for a couple of years. I never had anything denied out of nearly a couple hundred articles, although I did receive a couple of deserving editing requests from their editors. Not too shabby from my experiences on that end, although It certainly wouldn;t surprise me if they have some annoying hard-asses in their editor pool.

If an editor likes you, they will send you preferred assignments which pay quite a bit more than their standard upfront pay. So you should maintain a certain level of politeness and professionalism in your communications and not a bitchy artist type. I never took up a "performance only" pay option either. My angle on it was to write quick yet concise keyword rich articles. That's what they want, and if you have professional journalism experience you'll have an immediate knack for it. At $4-5 for a 400 word article back in the pre-Yahoo days, you could pull $20 an hour, obviously a lot more if you got on their preferred list.

I simply got out of it because I took an in-house gig with a good salary and benes, and my other freelance work was more rewarding on all levels. I simply did not have the time for AC anymore. However, checking in from time to time I did notice that the upfront paying assignments were beginning to dwindle and now I haven't even seen one listed within the last year at least. Whether that be from my lack of activity or an overabundance of writers? I dunno.

However, I have noticed some issues with them lately regarding my performance payments. Straight jacked me on my biggest month actually. When I called them on it they gave me some lame excuse about how I hadn't logged in for 90 days, which was a crock as I had changed me PW only about 40 days previously. I have yet to hear back them after providing that proof.

Yahoo doesn't seem to be a very stable company these days. Wouldn't surprise me if that had something to do with some of these issues we're hearing about in the slightest. Even if I had the incentive to start using them again as a freelance outlet, I probably wouldn't. At least not with the way things seem to be going with them.

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author avatar Neil
5th Jun 2012 (#)

Before Associated Content sold their soul to Yahoo they were the place to be to make a decent income and have work, yes scrutinized, become published. The mentality of the people there seemed to be to actually work with you and help you gain some exposure.

The problem is now Yahoo convoluted the process and made it harder to succeed with them. My most recent attempt at publishing a work was denied with the most random list of excuses I have ever seen.

Fortunately, I am doing work elsewhere and making a reasonable living at it....slow going but able to work from home. Maybe someone will attempt to establish a website similar to what Associated Content use to be like and give writers an opportunity to once again display their talent.

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author avatar Rochelle
6th Jul 2013 (#)

I appreciate that you took the time to write this article, and to share your views. However, if this is typical of your writing, I can see why you have problems getting published. You could really benefit from brushing up on your writing technique. For example, subject/verb agreement that doesn't match, and changing from first to second person in the same article would beconsidered unprofessional. Just something to think about...

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
14th Jun 2015 (#)

I did post 400 articles but being non US resident I was not eligible for payment. All my articles were published but later YCN took over and my posts just disappeared - nothing is certain in this world! Interesting article and comments, thanks - siva

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