GPT (Get Paid to) Scams

Yesterday, Andrea Heiland, who writes Fools and Sages, brought to our attention the rise in work-at-home scams in her blog post, “Work At Home Scams On The Rise.” Loved her comments and added my two cents on how MLMs or Network Marketing companies can become a financial drain on people who are not cut out for their model. I guess this made me hyper-sensitive to ads on the Internet today, because I noticed the acronym GPT for the first time. So I had to go out and do some research on GPT, only to find the article, “Learn the Real Truth About Get Paid to (GPT) Sites“, which seems to best outline this scam.

I admit I do spend a lot of my time in my head, writing stories, out of touch with reality. So, I may be behind the times on knowing about this scam, although I’m sure there are others out there unaware like me. There really is nothing more ugly than a scam that suckers people in and then encourages the suckers to scam more people. And considering what you have to do to make a small amount of money, this is almost like volunteering to go to Hell. Hmmm…. There’s a short story idea in this.

8 thoughts on “GPT (Get Paid to) Scams

  1. I ran into your post browsing through wordpress tags. Hope you don’t mind a comment.

    I read your post here, and I read the article that you linked. Yes, there are scams claiming that you can make tons and tons of money doing nothing… but there are GPT sites that work. You can honestly make money through these sites even without referring other people.

    You just have to understand HOW the sites work.

    Say you joined a site called GPTcash2009 (just making up a name). They show you a page full of “offers” for you to complete. These may be surveys, signups, trials, whatever. So you pick an offer, and you earn $1 for completing it. GPTcash2009 earned more than $1 for you completing that offer, but that’s what you’re being paid. GPTcash2009 profits, and so do you. Complete 20 $1 offers and you get $20, while GPTcash2009 may have earned $2 per offer so they got $40 for your signups and paid you half. I hope I made sense with that.

    No, you’re probably not going to join a GPT site and get rich, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t earn money from them.

  2. Woosh,

    Although there are sites where you can earn money for doing surveys or looking at offers, the amount you earn in return for the time you have to spend doing their task probably isn’t worth it, and the information you provide to marketers who will flood your mailbox (real and virtual) adds to the drain on your time and your soul.

    It may not be a scam all of the time, but from the standpoint of doing yourself some good, reading a book or learning some new skill is probably a better use of your time than letting some cereal marketer know that you would prefer to be persuaded to pay too much for overprocessed-barely-food with red letters on a gold box rather than maroon letters on a gold box.

  3. “the amount you earn in return for the time you have to spend doing their task probably isn’t worth it”

    I just wanted to weigh in here. With the economy the way it is, many of us have nothing *but* time. If I can spend 30 minutes to earn $3 when otherwise I would be earning nothing…it’s worth it. It’s sad, but true. You can usually use a PO Box and a “spam” email address and you don’t have to worry too much about junk mail or junk e-mail. In fact, I find that most offers request your mailing address but don’t actually do anything with it…few of them even sell the information you give them, for that matter.

    Then again, some people have their own definition of a scam and what some may consider legit, others don’t.

    I’m not arguing, or anything, so I don’t want you to think that I came here just for that! I just saw my husband’s comment and yours and felt like adding my two cents. =)

  4. Woosh & Lynn,

    I didn’t take the comment as trying to start an argument. You were right to point out that not all “get paid to” sites are scams and I agree. In my response, I was thinking specifically of a site called Zoomerang, which gives you points to fill out surveys (or at least – they used to, I don’t even know if they’re still around!). If you build up enough points, you can turn them in for goodies – magazine subscriptions, household items, stuff like that. I actually did it for a while and got a couple of kids magazines for my kids and it wasn’t all that much time. But as it evolved, it started to just be an incredible volume of mail, and it would turn into a bunch of mini surveys just to determine whether or not I was survey worthy for a particular product. If I wasn’t, there was no point value award, just “thanks for your time, we’ll send more surveys later.” And then in the once in a blue moon case where I was chosen, the surveys were LONG. After a few months of that nonsense (actually, not even that long, but it took a few months for me to just spam filter their mail), I was soured on the whole idea.

    HOWEVER, back to the original point I was making on my blog – and please do come visit! – and Wendy was repeating here, there are lots of GPT sites that are flat out scams. From another post that I wrote a long time ago, http://www.foolsandsages.com/2008/06/13/work-at-home-scam-autosurfing/, “Unfortunately, these companies prey on people who are struggling to make ends meet and want to hope that there is an honest opportunity out there.”

  5. @Andrea: Gotcha. Yeah I’m not fond of surveys like that. I can’t seem to qualify, so I don’t bother with them.

    Unfortunately there are scams out there, and some sites that end up being a waste of time even if they do pay out in the end. The bad sites end up turning people away from all of the sites, good or bad.

    The link I had an issue with wasn’t yours though. It was this one, actually: http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/390710/learn_the_real_truth_about_get_paid.html?cat=3

  6. I just wanted to say “Thank You” for this post and the links. I too had never heard of GPT marketing; and I WORK in high-tech! So, curious as I was; I was trying to find something out about it via Google; and your post came up. Thank you for enlightening me about what this is, and making me feel less clueless for never having heard of it!

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