Altwork and the competitive element

When markets opened to global competition: platforms have taken two approaches: embraced the trend trying to attract as many clients as possible, driving down rates or restricting access and charging premium. Let’s examine two platforms- Freelancer AND Topcoder and see where AltWork fits into the competitive dynamic. 

As Odesk (now Upwork) was growing into a successful company, copies of it emerged. has been able to distinguish itself from the rest through contests. For a price of a contract, the client could receive multiple work submissions. Any freelancer had the opportunity to get their work out there. The idea was enticing, competitive, and fresh. The execution, however, suffered. When freelancers were submitting their work, many factored in a chance of them not winning the contest. Since contests are a one-time shot and not an investment, quality of work suffered, and clients would receive several products, many unexceptional. Majority of freelancers were left unpaid, searching. 

Contests, however, in themselves are not destructive. A higher rate is what makes them successful. Topcoder is just one example. The process goes as follows: a company submits a problem they have been facing. Topcoder taps into its database and deploys developers which are most suited for solving the problem. Both parties agree on a timeframe. The client deposits money into escrow. The minimum to solve the problem? $5,000, enough to compensate deployed developers at $120+/hr rate. 

The takeaways? Competition can be the company’s sole business model. Competition produces high quality work when the incentive is higher than what each participant would have received if they worked individually. 

AltWork has a competitive element build based on how articles are ranked. Articles which have been chosen as the most ‘Useful’ will move to the top. Only the number of upvotes overrides this. It’s possible to upvote or downvote content multiple times, depending on how many carrots you decide to put behind your ranking. It's not possible to upvote or downvote own content. If you want to see how much your articles have been earning, you can find this info in the drop down menu under your picture, in ‘Contributions’. 

Happy earning!

By: Tanya Medukha , 4 years ago

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