What Is Crowdsourcing? A Simple Definition. Some Of the most Popular Crowdsourcing Platforms


Crowdsourcing is an interesting and relatively new term, though the history of the word is extremely old. “What is crowdsourcing?” is a common question for an interesting topic. This article discusses the answer to this question as well as provides examples that will help in understanding this strange word. Maybe, with this knowledge, you will even find yourself participating in a crowdsourcing project yourself. Once you know the criteria, you will better understand how plausible this scenario is.

So, What is Crowdsourcing …?

Crowdsourcing, a term first coined by Jeff Howe in 2006, is a tool used by organizations and businesses to outsource tasks traditionally handled internally or by contractors. The concept is that instead of completing an entire project or completing a task with a finite budget, an organization can call on the collective intelligence and talents of a large group of individuals or “crowd,” free of charge.



Crowdsourcing, in its most basic form, is the outsourcing of tasks to others, usually, a broad public also called “the crowd”. This also can be either one individual or many, depending on the need and the task at hand. Many businesses, especially large ones use this process in order to find a lower price for work than the workers they currently have or they will use it to do multiple tasks at once. One very popular form of this type of financing is so-called crowdfunding. But the greatest advantage of this method is that you can get thousands of new ideas, from thousands of people and choose the best one. This can lead to more efficient work and a faster return, thus allowing for more profits to be made.

Where Does Crowdsourcing Occur

What is crowdsourcing? pic: sxc.hu

Crowdsourcing occurs in the tangible world. It occurs in offices and physical places of business across the country. Individual employers will give a multitude of tasks to a number of individuals in the office or other offices around the country in order to have the work done quickly. However, it can also occur in the virtual world, too. Many companies are now turning to the online market to provide work for them and return it online. This is becoming a more popular way of crowdsourcing as technology advances and individuals are finding fast returns necessary and accessible on this platform

Examples Of Crowdsourcing

Imagine that you are a company owner and you need a logo for your super duper company site. You can pay a web design company to do the job, but you can also use crowdsourcing. So, you post an offer on a web forum or a classifieds site, telling that you will pay $500 bucks (for example) for the logo design you like the most. Many people (the crowd) will see the offer and everybody who wants to get the money will send you his/her logo design. In the end, you will have hundreds, if not thousands of ideas for logos for your site and you just need to pick the one that fits you the most and pay the guy/gal, who made it. This is crowdsourcing. If you go to a web design company, they will give you 5,10,20 samples to choose from, but the number can not be compared to the hundreds of ideas you can get by giving the task to the crowd. Another example of crowdsourcing is as old as the dictionary itself, literally. The Oxford dictionary was created partially by volunteers and members of the community. The creators sent out a request to individuals to provide words and suggestions for the book. Then, some of these were included in the work, thus making it a crowdsourcing project. Another more modern example of crowdsourcing comes from the online world of voting and prize contests. Opinion contests ask individuals to provide them with ideas or reviews or opinions for a product or website. These crowdsourcing endeavors rely on the work and energies of others in order to achieve success. In this way, they are modern examples of crowdsourcing that are vital to online competitiveness and company success.

Crowdsourcing can be used in various ways to fulfill various needs. It can be used to capture market feedback, spark innovation, complete data-intensive projects, raise funds for a cause, and more. It is also often used to outsource tasks that require specialized skills, such as graphic design, coding, writing, and research.

For businesses, crowdsourcing offers a flexible, cost-effective way to access experts, resources, and services that they may not have access to on their own. It gives organizations the ability to scale up and increase productivity in areas they may not have considered in the past.

Crowdsourcing also provides businesses with data to help inform their decision-making. This data can be used to provide insights into customer behaviors, preferences, and opinions. Feedback from the “crowd” can help businesses gain a better understanding of how their target audience thinks and how to better serve them.

Overall, crowdsourcing is an effective way for organizations to leverage the collective intelligence and skills of a large network of people in order to complete projects, increase productivity, and gain insights from the web’s vast user base.

Crowd Sourcing Sites

One of the most popular crowdsourcing sites is Upwork. Formerly known as oDesk, Upwork has become the go-to destination for freelance and remote work. It connects companies with freelancers, allowing them to access qualified professionals/specialists who can help with projects as required. Upwork offers a variety of tools and features to aide in the process, including a search facility that makes it easy to source the right talent for a project. Projects can be paid on an hourly, weekly, or monthly basis, and Upwork also offers a payment protection service for added security.

Another popular platform is Fiverr. It is a great option for businesses looking for quality, affordable services quickly. It serves as a marketplace where freelancers offer their services, from writing, graphic design, web development, transcription and much more, for just $5. Fiverr also provides a rating system for buyers and sellers, offering greater transparency and trust.

Task Rabbit is another popular platform for crowdsourcing services. This platform offers outsourcing services for a variety of tasks, including errands, home reparations, handyman services, grocery shopping and more. Tasker profiles help buyers make an informed decision when selecting the right service provider, and the platform also offers a range of payment methods, including direct deposit and PayPal.

Here are some big and popular sites where you can participate in crowdsourcing or post a project there to the “crowd”: https://www.mturk.com – Amazon Mechanical Turk http://www.microworkers.com/ – The Microworkers https://www.odesk.com – Odesk http://www.agentanything.com/ – Agent Anything http://www.clickworker.com/en/ – The Clickworker

Conclusion

“What is crowdsourcing?” This question can now be better understood by the above information. One important aspect, however, that was not mentioned is that it can be a lucrative endeavor to participate in. Look online for websites that rely on crowdsourcing and see what you have to do to apply. You may find that it is easier than you imagined and more profitable than your day job. Crowdsourcing is only growing in popularity so capitalize on this growth. It can be both fun and line your pockets with the profits you desire. Research online and find the best crowdsourcing resource for you.