iWriter Scam: The Hits Just Keep On Coming

I’ve long maintained that a successful product sells itself; that a positive and upwardly-mobile workplace attracts talent without needing to try to0 hard. When I come across a freelance writing scam site or con, I do my best to write about the reasons why I consider it a bad choice for freelancers, and I don’t tend to bite my tongue when I’m dishing out deserved criticism. When I wrote my blog entry Freelance Writing Site Info: iWriter.com nearly a year ago, I figured that I’d detail the issues I found with the site, steer others off, and leave it up perpetually to serve as a warning. I didn’t expect I’d get a lot of comments on it – the review was pretty straightforward – but I did get a surprising chorus of agreement from people that had been burned financially by the site.

Almost unanimously, my visitors agreed that the ethics behind the site were questionable at best, even if they were claiming to have earned some money with them. My blog post might have answered the basic question of “Is iWriter.com a scam?”, but it was the commentary below it that drove the point home to casual browsers.

Yesterday, I got an email from iWriter, with the subject line “We’d like to deposit free money into your iwriter account balance.”

Here is the text of the email I received from iWriter:

Hi Delany, the holiday season is upon us and I thought it
would be fun to give away some free money sent straight to your
iWriter account.

And it’s valid until January 1st. Here’s how it works:

http://www.iwriter.com/blog/2013/12/wed-like-to-give-you-free-money/

Also, I wanted to let you know that I’ve added a blog to iWriter,
which you’ll see when you visit the link above.

And we’re in the process of adding a feature to allow you to write
Press Releases for clients, which has been a highly requested
option.

Lots of good things to come in 2014!

Have a look at the page below to see how you can earn free money
deposited by us, straight to your iWriter account balance:

http://www.iwriter.com/blog/2013/12/wed-like-to-give-you-free-money/

Happy holidays! :-)

Brad Callen
Bryxen Software, Inc.

Bryxen Software, Inc. 2159 Glebe Street, Suite 270 Carmel, IN 46032

Essentially, the link leads the reader to a page that’s offering a buck or two for every post they get out on the net that promotes iWriter. This morning, my queue on WordPress for my iWriter review piece – the one with over 20 negative comments about how much of a scam iWriter is behind the scenes – is suddenly filled with post after post about how wonderful and amazing and profitable the site is. All of these comments popped up mere hours after the email was sent…

….and if you think that’s a coincidence, I’ve got a bridge to sell ya.

iWriter and everyone spam-posting for the site – you’re embarrassing yourselves and muddying the waters of those looking for legitimate freelance writing sites. You’ll find no “safe harbor” on this blog when it’s so abundantly clear what’s motivating your posting tone.

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8 thoughts on “iWriter Scam: The Hits Just Keep On Coming

  1. Everyone has an opinion, and your own may be just as valid as the next persons. Personally, I like iwriter, and this has nothing to do with the recent email sent from them. Cry all you want big man. If you can write well then iwriter isn’t a bad place to be associated with. I am a writer and writing articles and the like passes time and gets me a few extra bucks to play with. Maybe you got rejected too much for your own good.

    • 1.) The very fact that you haven’t found this blog prior to now tells me that yes, the recent pay-for-positive-comments iWriter email has quite a bit to do with your arrival here.

      2.) In case the name wasn’t a dead giveaway, I’m a woman, and I assure you, I’m a-OK putting the truth out there.

      3.) I have never been rejected from iWriter, nor had any of my work returned on other sites – not that it’s relevant whatsoever. Again, I find myself responding to a “Pro-iWriter” member that chooses to take shots at my professionalism instead of responding to my central point – that the pay-to-play tactics used by iWriter to promote their site and gather up more writers willing to work for sub-living wages are unethical and do perceptive harm to freelancing as a whole.

  2. Hmmm, iWriter isn’t a scam. You just had a negative experience. I’ve been using the site since Brad first launch it, Brad Callen has long history of making quality products in the internet marketing space, you don’t usually hear scam affiliated with his name. Scam is the wrong word to use, iWriter simply launched an affiliate program and then they told their users to promote the site, the unethical part of which you speak about isn’t iWriter but the users and how they choose to promote the service. 80% of businesses have affiliate programs and some of their affiliates do bad things to earn a few extra bucks doesn’t make the company they’re promoting bad.

    That being said, I’m not a writer for iWriter, I’m a buyer so I don’t know what the experience is from your perspective. I have however had over 200 articles written on iWriter and my experience has been mostly positive, I get crap articles from time to time but I also get some gems as well.

    Your clearly unhappy with the service but calling it a scam ins’t accurate, did they not pay you when you wrote something? Did they make you a promise and then did not deliver? Are they lying about the rates? Those would be considered scams. What your talking about is more along the lines of a crappy, horrible or sh*tty experience. No different from when someone gets a credit card with a high interest rate and anal fee, then call it scam when they get charged as if the terms didn’t clearly tell them what would happen.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not some iWriter defender, I use other services that are better. All I’m saying is that it’s not a scam.

    That being said, I suggest you check out other services, like WriterAccess, Scripted and TextBrokers. WriterAccess and Scripted pay substantially higher rates to writers if more money is what your looking for. You will need to be an exceptional writer though.

    FYI: I found this article searching “iwriter wordpress,” I was trying to find a iWriter plugin for WordPress.

    • Hello Glenton – thank you for visiting my blog!

      If this iWriter issue had been a lone incident, I wouldn’t have stepped out, guns blazing, as I did. I liberally scatter the term iWriter scam to nod to the spirit of their business, if not the actual acts themselves – generally, freelancers looking to partner with a business will toss that term – iWriter scam – into Google to check the legitimacy of the site.

      The fact of the matter is, however, that it’s one in a string of issues from not only this company, but Brad Callen – who has a dubious reputation among veteran freelancers for a long line of get-rich-quick type of endeavors which distressingly seem to trend towards elevating his status – business and financially speaking – while dragging down that of those elevating him.

      I point to an earlier post I did on the company, one which highlights how iWriter *charges* freelancers a not-insignificant sum for the “privilege” of working there. I’m not willing to give the proverbial benefit of the doubt to any company that thinks it’s ethical to charge its employees for a job position, period. I think you can agree that stuff like this stinks like 3 day old fish. (http://thefreelancewriterguide.wordpress.com/2013/02/05/freelance-writing-site-info-iwriter/)

      I’m actually on each of the sites you mentioned, five star status on most! WriterAccess has been brilliant for me, Scripted can be a bit obtuse, and Textbroker – well, lets just say they’re less than ideal in terms of treatment and pay. Freelancing is always going to be a moving target, and every site has something to gripe about, but I still firmly believe that iWriter deserves the reviews I’ve given it.

  3. I had a great experience with iWriter until I tried to have the content published. The publisher wouldn’t touch it.

    The reason is that iWriter keeps the rights to all of the content they sell.

    Sure, you get a license to do just about everything with it, but my publisher showed me this from their CONTENT USER AGREEMENT:

    http://www.iwriter.com/ContentUserAgreement.php

    Look at paragraph 7.

    The content is non-transferable, and they keep all the rights, so don’t try to flip your site without taking all of the iWriter content off first.

    Seriously?!

    • So, Paul – you are saying that, as a client, you were unable to use the work that you paid for how you wanted to use it? That’s crazy – I’m used to scam writing sites like these pulling a fast one on the writer’s side, but I’ve never heard of them doing it to clients!

      What a shame. Hopefully other clients will read your experience here and elect to go to another content mill – one that respects their right to use the product they’ve purchased!

  4. I hate iWriter. I was on the site for a year but only used it a few times. I was able to accumulate $4 for my articles. After a few months of not using it, I logged in only to receive word that my account was suspended for poor quality. I was not only insulted (I’ve been writing professionally for the past 5 years) but I also wondered why I suddenly got kicked off the site without even an email from them. I wasn’t even able to withdraw the money I earned and now I’m wondering what the hell happened to it. The worst part is, I recommended it to a couple writer friends who also experienced the same thing.

    A few days ago, I stumbled upon your blog after one of my friends sent me a link to your site. Coincidentally, I received an email from the founder:

    Hi Christine Txxx, I hope your week is going well. In this email, I
    wanted to ask you a question, as well as let you know what we’ve
    recently added and are potentially adding to iWriter… with the
    goal of making YOU more money.

    Ok, first off, we’ve added a new writer tier called Elite Plus.

    This writer level is available to any writer with 40 reviews, and
    an average rating of 4.9 or higher.

    And the pay off for becoming an Elite Plus writer is very
    significant. Instead of earning $5.50 or $10.00 for a 500 word
    article, depending if you’re at premium or elite status…

    You’ll now earn $24.30 per 500 word article! Now, obviously this
    pay level is only available for the best writers, but if you’re
    an excellent writer, we now have that pay level available for you!

    Secondly, I have a question for you. This will determine if we’ll
    be integrating the next feature into iWriter.

    For premium, elite, and elite plus writers we’re considering
    adding a users forum OR private Facebook group so that you can
    speak directly with one another, as well as with me, personally.

    We’re all a team and I want to make sure you have all of the
    resources available so you can earn more money.

    The more you make, the more iWriter makes. The more iWriter makes,
    the more we have to invest in improving iWriter for clients.

    And without happy clients, we would all be out of work. So, it
    starts with helping you as an iWriter and getting you the tools
    you need to provide high quality content.

    So, my questions are:

    1. Would you be interested in us creating a private forum or
    private Facebook group for premium, elite, and elite plus writers
    only?

    2. If so, which would you prefer? A forum or a Facebook group?

    If you could hit reply and let me know, it would be so much
    appreciated. Thanks again for your loyal support and I hope
    to hear from you soon!

    Brad Callen
    iWriter Founder

    Bryxen Software, Inc. 2159 Glebe Street, Suite 270 Carmel, IN 46032

    Good thing I found your blog! I hope I can find other writing websites that are (somewhat) similar to iWriter but aren’t fraudulent!

    • Christine;

      Many thanks for the information! It helps to have this sort of thing connected to my blog because if someone searches a line of text from the email to check it for “scamminess,” your comment will lead them here. As writers, we tend to focus on a payday (mostly out of necessity!) but sometimes fail to consider how many sites like this we’re handing over our pertinent info to – SSN, full name, address, etc. If we don’t get a quality experience and access to a transparent job interface in return, we’re already in an imbalanced work environment – they have everything they want from us and we don’t get anything in return. Callen has used tactics like this – the carrot on a stick, as it were – to try and lure back disenfranchised writers to start the cycle over and over again. You gotta think, if they haven’t bothered to weed out your email – one associated with a SUSPENDED account – from their sending chains, how organized could they be behind the scenes?

      You’ll see from other comments below that they have a history of suspending accounts with money in them and keeping it for themselves. Don’t let it get you down as a writer, they clearly use some very questionable business practices and it’s obvious you’re a good writer from your comment alone. :)

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