Tagged: qmee

Bills

Schemes active/complete: 35
Money made: £48.77

As mentioned in the last post Rowena and I are currently embroiled in the task of moving our possessions from a mouldy one-bed flat to a hopefully less mouldy two-bed flat, along with all the joyous landlord referencing and disputes over deposit payments that come with this, which is why kooky money-making schemes have taken a back seat lately. However I have another stag do this weekend and the last time I embarked on one of those in early March I drank myself amnesiacal and this blog saw a following month of silence, so I thought I’d jot the latest minor developments down before that potentially happens again.

All the down payments and deposits and impossibly extortionate admin fees that switching from one rental property to another entails has been softened minutely by cashing in a couple of my schemes, most noticeably the £10 Amazon gift card that ShopandScan rewarded me with which actually sold on eBay for its full value:

I can offer no explanation as to why the chap who purchased this did not simply buy a £10 voucher directly from Amazon. Perhaps he’s slyly gambling that I misread the card’s value and he’s actually getting a £50 voucher, perhaps he’s a clod who gets confused easily, we’ll never know. What I can posit with conviction though is that Scheme #71: Scan your shopping has proved to be the most effective scheme so far, bringing £15 to the pile via the combination of ReceiptHog and ShopandScan and very little actual work from myself. Granted ShopandScan still pester me on a daily basis querying why I haven’t scanned any barcodes recently, even phoning me at work to ask with genuine disappointment in their voice, and granted I now have a deep-seated impulse to pick up every receipt I espy on the street which I have to fight and I don’t know how long that’s going to hang around for, but I’ll take these trifling irritations over answering a thousand questions on Weegy for the same sort of dollar (Scheme #31).

Surprisingly my commemorative Samuel Johnson 50p also sold on eBay for almost double its value:

Now these particular 50ps aren’t even that rare, I’ve definitely handled many before when making 50 pence purchases – a pack of Softmints, for instance, or 9 carrier bags with an extra bag to carry them all in. A quick glance on the Check Your Change website and we see Sam’s 50p has a scarcity level of 1 which translates as “A coin that is usually readily available at or very near to face value.” Not to detract from Sam’s Herculean task of writing the first dictionary from aardvark to zygote but over 17 and a half million of these coins were circulated, making it really as common as muck. I’ve basically just sold a normal 50p coin, for a quid.

Scheme #144: Sell some funny money is certainly worth consideration then. I personally find it a ballache to place items on eBay but if you’re one of these strange characters who actually enjoys listing tat and watching the bids notch up then I advise going for it – with some adequate photos and the odd flourish in the description you could sell the contents of your coin purse at twice the price!

The only other contribution to my riches, besides a 20p I found on the floor (Scheme #61), was a result of finally cashing in my Qmee account (Scheme #16: Get paid to Google). This toolbar extension has been perched on my Google bar sporadically flipping me loose change for seemingly arbitrary searches; for a while it rewarded me for searching for “Tesco”, then that abruptly stopped and instead it liked it when I typed in “Deliveroo”, and the odd search for Batman or bananas would occasionally elicit a payment too. 5p was the average handout each time, and after 4 months of being monitored and over 50 installments received I decided to call this scheme done:

I can’t not recommend Scheme #16, it’s entirely unobtrusive and a fully legitimate scheme, a genuine source of free money. However that amount of money is very, very small, and I am criminally impatient, so Qmee is being cast aside in favour of quicker solutions. Hopefully by the end of this month I will be settled in a new flat and motivated to reap some get-rich-quick scheme rewards, motivated namely by daunting deposit payments and an abyssal overdraft! What fun!

Name your price

Day 30
Schemes active/complete: 22
Money made: £15.77

An entirely perfunctory post simply as a Windows update led me to believe for several livid minutes that I had lost my document of notes on this project, teaching me it’s good to preserve them in blog form at regular intervals.

Things are ticking along, albeit very slowly. I somehow spotted 20p in the dark a few nights ago (Scheme #61) which is the only extra funding I’ve made since last time. My Qmee (Scheme #16) has reached the dizzying heights of £0.51 now I’ve learned that most days it’ll flip me 5p for Googling ‘Tesco’, and my slice of Slicethepie’s pie (Scheme #23) is on $2.32 after my generous reviews of such up-and-coming chart-toppers as ‘Deaf Rhino’ and ‘Slickeraci’.

My porcine receipt app is also feeding well (Scheme #71). Am I buying more things than necessary because subconsciously I want those receipts? Happy to spend £9 on tat to claim a receipt worth 0.3p to me? I can’t know for sure, all I know is I’m still pestering my friends for all their receipts too, then slyly pocketing their bare toilet roll tubes when at their houses (Scheme #126).

A couple of grumbles. I keep having incredibly bland and thus frustratingly realistic dreams about finding a treasure trail of loose change whilst walking on the street or a single Google search returning £2.46 on Qmee. Also whilst rereading old blog posts to see if I was missing anything I realized I’d forgotten to check We Dare You To (Scheme #125), hence missing an opportunity to give myself a papercut for $5. I’ve intentionally given myself papercuts for free before just to upset and nauseate my more lily-livered friends, so it was annoying to overlook a chance to finally get paid for the pain, particularly as the monetary dares of Double Dog I now appreciate are a lot rarer than originally thought.

Two new schemes are now in play. I was notified by a work colleague of the most recent money making scheme around – an app named CPM which is making headlines at the moment, the gist being that if you take a photo of a car parked illegally the CPM (UK Car Park Management) will grant you £10. This became the latest addition to my list (Scheme #233: Snitch on cars parked illegally) as sources such as Moneysavingexpert.com are now including this as part of their database of get-rich-slowly methods.

My fears were first piqued when I saw the quantity of bad reviews clinging to the CPM app, complaints not only about its tattletale ethics (the phrase “snitches get stitches” appeared more than just a couple times) but also that the whole premise was misleading. Sure enough when I downloaded it I was informed I couldn’t just run around snitching on whatever bad parkers I wanted to, but I had to provide details of a car park I own, receive some signs to stick up, and only then could I grass on an unauthorized car parked specifically in that space. Still, there’s a scrap of gravel outside my flat which is technically for residents only so I’ve decided I’ll start vigilantly monitoring that.

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I’ve also started putting my innate talent at generating terrible puns into good use with Scheme #120: Name a business. There’s two sites I’ve found which fledgling businesses will use to crowdsource ideas for their brand’s name – they pay for a mass of suggestions all gushing from the same thinktank, largely terrible, and whoever has created the most passable option wins a cash sum, normally around $100.

Naming Force I couldn’t use as you have to be a U.S citizen, but Squadhelp wasn’t so xenophobic and welcomed me with open arms. My account has been active for the past day or so and I’ve been helping name businesses willy-nilly. Not literally naming them ‘Willy Nilly’ you understand, however that genuinely is a better option than some of the truly appalling ideas I’ve cooked up for the many e-commerce businesses, healthy snack companies, electric car manufacturers and more that I’ve helped brand.

That’s about everything I think. Obviously I’d like to be on a greater sum at this stage of proceedings, and this probably qualifies as the tamest and most agoraphobic first month of any of my projects to date, but I do have some interesting plans over the next few weeks, some of which I’ll even be leaving the house for!! Stay tuned.

The answering machine

Day 16
Schemes active/complete: 17
Money made: £0.26

Obviously the sheer notion of updating this blog every other day if not every day has firmly been quashed, but really the last 6 days haven’t amounted to much. You may have noticed I’m 10p richer, predictably thanks to Scheme #61 which is the only way I’ve made anything thus far – I found a 5p in my local HSBC branch and on the same evening another 5p in the pub, so now I can afford half a pack of Super Noodles.

The reason for my silence is as I have been concentrating on Weegy, the website which pings their “experts” (including yours truly) questions asked by its users, disdainfully chucking us a handful of pennies per correct answer. This has turned out to be the only method to achieve Scheme #31: Answering stranger’s questions, having been rebuffed by AQA and 118118, and a more tiresome process I couldn’t imagine. Weegy has a $20 minimum payout which is shelled out on the 1st of the month, and I was keen to get this scheme out of the way in January so have spent the last week essentially living on this site and churning out replies to as many questions as I can.

This has averaged out to answering something like 30 questions an evening, already a tall order when you can easily sit for 20 minutes without a single question rolling in, but made worse when I realised Weegy deducts money from your account if an answer is flagged as incorrect. Fair enough as a deterrent to poorly researched answers, but sometimes they’re deemed wrong even when they’re unequivocally correct; I was asked which is most alkaline out of milk, stomach acid or oven cleaner, I answered oven cleaner (which it is, it definitely is), Weegy said NOPE and docked my funds!

During this period I was asked predominantly dry questions on the government or Macbeth or the D.N.A of an onion – the closest I came to amusingly bizarre enquiries were “What is the magma carter?”, “Why is Gavin a brony?” and “What is mattyb’s cell phone number (I love mattyb)?”, the latter of which was so inane I couldn’t resist responding with my own phone number but alas have received no correspondence for mattyb as of yet.

Reaching $20 doesn’t sound like much but can seem an insurmountable, Sisyphean task when you’re on $11 and each question is only adding 2 cents to your wallet, sometimes not even registering, and other times you’ll answer that beef comes from cows and Weegy will yell “WRONG!” and knock 3 bucks off your total. Eventually however, in the wee hours of this morning, I got there:

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I’ll wait to see if my earnings dribble into my PayPal come early February before giving my overall assessment of this scheme but, spoiler alert, I think there’s a reason this site isn’t very popular. I’ve only been a part of the Weegy society a fortnight and already I’m 6th on their list of top ranked experts:

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As for my other distractions, I’ve sprinkled around the corners of the Web some freelance alternatives to Scheme #8: Hire out your services as a mateScheme #27: Pretend to cry at a stranger’s funeralScheme #65: Look young and buy booze. Interestingly the only one to garner any response is my availability as rented giref, with emails from ‘Scription’ asking me if I was serious, Sue informing me “you are a strange person”, but lovely Jo actually asking me for my rates for a nearby funeral and wake!

I scrambled together some research on Rent A Mourner for an idea of what I should charge Jo, and in doing so found Envisage Promotions offer a very similar service. They also specialise in actors, models, etc which tickles the as of yet unexplored Scheme #56: Become a film or TV extra, and whilst someday I will spend a full blog post on that particular scheme I signed up with Envisage regardless to expand the net of interments with empty seats I might get paid to attend. Unfortunately I was trying to complete my profile with multiple tabs up (including Googling Lego Batman to confirm my suspicions that Michael Cera was voicing Lego Robin which elicited the biggest Qmee hit so far, 13p for a click!) whilst handling Weegy questions about “what causes lightining” and hence inexplicably included a link about why storm clouds are grey as part of my Envisage application. They must have thought that made me lugubriously kooky however as I learned today my request to be on their books was successful.

Also throughout the past few days I’ve been feverishly checking the Double Dog dare app for any challenges which could bag me money, although sadly the only dares I can find have been for worthless ‘bones’ tokens. It was this afternoon that eventually, finally, I stumbled across a dare someone was willing to pay cash money for. Coincidentally it was from Robert who ruined a Sunday of mine earlier in the month by making me bumble around on the hunt for guitars, and this time his request was even more unforgiving: “Video yourself shaving off an eyebrow.”

Now there was no way I was doing that for one dollar – my eyebrows are hearty bushels like those sat atop the stern frown of a Russian chess Grandmaster, things to be proud of – but I suspected Robert wouldn’t perform the same even for $2 so I Double Dared him back, smug with my plan. Aggravatingly Robert replied almost instantly with a photo of himself with just the one eyebrow (I would attach this image but I’m ashamed to say I deleted it in petty rage). I argued that the dare demanded video footage of him shaving the eyebrow clean off, it was taken to trial and voted on by other Double Dog users, and they sided with Robert! I’d lost my $2!! And to add insult to poverty, Rob snidely informed me afterwards that he’d had that brow shaved off for weeks now. He’d essentially cheated, so I called him a knob, and that’s when the aforementioned deletion of our interaction occurred.

I sulked to Tesco to buy some wine to drown my Double Dog miseries, sweeping up the discarded receipts at the self-service checkouts as I went, all good food for my ReceiptHog. The Tesco workers get surprisingly funny about you doing this, and I had the bearded employee on duty staring at me as I collected stranger’s receipts like I’d just ripped the head off a dove.

A pub crawl would have satisfactorily taken my mind off losing money to one-brow knob Rob, but I’d need 3 times my current get-rich-scheme income just to afford a cup of milk in a Wetherspoons, so I came home tonight, opened my wine and looked into how I could get someone to pay me to take them on a bar crawl. The closest my list stretched to was Scheme #25: Become a tour guide, achievable via Vayable which allows you to offer yourselves as a hospitable and accommodating guide in your home town. Mine:

vayablething

For just $20 each tourists to the South coast of England can pay to follow me around pubs and buy me scotch! I think this is my favourite scheme of the list so far.

Walk idiot, walk

Day 10
Schemes active/complete: 16
Money made: £0.16

Can you believe I’m still only on 16 fucking pence? That’s a single penny per active scheme! 16p for a week and a half’s work; I can’t even afford 4 carrier bags with that! If I was on The Apprentice with this sort of entrepreneurship Alan Sugar would be groaning and spluttering and yanking at his ear hairs and clutching that wizened old head of his at my incompetence.

I have to try to remain impartial though. This is an experiment after all, and even if I end the year on 16p it simply means I’ve debunked the thousands of money making sites out there. Data must be valued over dollars.

It’s probably time for a big catch-up list. I imagine this may become a recurring feature as it seems a good way to keep on top of the dozens of plates I have spinning. So here’s where we are so far:

Scheme #1: Start a blog – Well I can state with confidence that at least this one is up and running. I knew I wasn’t going to be able to update every single day and lived up to that pessimistic idleness almost immediately, yet still I have a handful of followers and thanks to a little WordPress tracker I know my blog has been read as far afield as Australia, South Africa & the Philippines. Only 1 view each from those countries so the respective Australian, South African and Filipino who visited clearly liked the blog so much they didn’t tell any of their family or friends and indeed never came back, but still it’s good to see my financial foolishness has some breadth.

Scheme #8: Hire out your services as a mate – Radio silence from RentAFriend, save a monthly newsletter from their Friendship Coordinator, whose name oddly enough is Mrs Rose. No-one wants to pay to spend time with me thus far, maybe I need to change my profile picture to one where I’m not in the sort of shirt worn by a Hawaiian sex offender.

Scheme #16: Get paid to Google – Qmee is still perched on my toolbar watching me Google and occasionally squawking offers at me. I’ve tried researching ways to cheat Qmee, certain search terms which prompt the adverts that pay, but all sources concur it’s best to let the money trickle in organically. £0.17 is in my piggybank at present, which I can withdraw at any time if I want to more than double my current paltry income, although I think I’ll let it grow into a beefy 50-something-pence nest egg before touching it.

Scheme #26: Have adverts appear on your phone’s lock screen – So far Qustodian has done absolutely nothing besides sapping my phone’s battery life. My Yoad’s a loada shite.

Scheme #27: Pretend to cry at a stranger’s funeral – Rent A Mourner not even acknowledged my courteous email. I may have to start offering this service freelance.

Scheme #31: Answer stranger’s questions – I’m still sitting on Weegy and answering the questions of people who don’t know how to Google things for at least a half hour a day. Currently I have $7.78 in my Weegy wallet, and it reports I’ve answered 85 questions, however I know I’ve answered at least 150. It’s extremely frustrating, a good few times now I’ve gone fact-finding and written a comprehensive reply to the query posed (I’d say 95% of them are homework questions asked by the thick and lazy), only to watch in horror as my total answered questions didn’t increase, didn’t even stay the same, but went down! Still, only $12.22 to go until I can get my hands on that irrefutably well-earned cash.

Scheme #41: Take part in a police identity parade – Having left Bournemouth Police Station with the constable on duty, and even the criminals waiting to be fingerprinted, all looking at me suspiciously, it’s VIPER who’s now looking after me. They hid their surprise at discovering someone was willing to travel from Bournemouth all the way to Yorkshire just to get their photo taken and possibly incorrectly identified as an arsonist, and emailed me just today letting me know “We are not currently recording at the moment, I will update you on our next recording session.”

Scheme #61: Look down when you walk – This still has me walking at 75% my normal pace, developing neck ache and striding out into the street straight into oncoming traffic. No joy besides the five- and ten-pence I’ve scooped up, unless you count the beguilingly circular scrap of gum wrapper I bent down for today thinking I’d added something to my funds.

Scheme #65: Look young and buy booze – Bit of a disaster with this one. As it transpires the idea of becoming an I.D’er was a bad one and I was informed by email yesterday that my application was unsuccessful, either because they’re currently not recruiting or, sadly more likely, I don’t fit their age profile. I replied to tell them I was very disheartened to hear this and demanded information on why I’d been rejected. Like pretending to weep beside the caskets of strangers, acting pubescent to deliberately get refused beer may have to be another service I provide freelance on Craigslist as a last resort.

Scheme #71: Scan your shopping – ReceiptHog is ticking along despite my near-constant forgetting to request receipts at the bar, sitting down with a pint and then suddenly announcing “fuck’s sakes!” to thin air, seemingly inexplicable to my drinking buddies around me. Realistically most of my receipts are going to be from the pub as that’s where I get the majority of my sustenance, so I was disappointed to find ReceiptHog had some previously unmentioned stipulation that a maximum of 3 receipts from the same date & same retailer can be submitted in a day. Tipsily smug I’d amassed a whole ream of Wetherspoons receipts discarded on tables before I read that little pisser.

Scheme #125: Do some dares – I was hoping yesterday that Jack would falter at the thought of plunging a cotton bud into his brain but clearly he was more empty-headed than I thought:

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Genuinely I could barely watch him inflict this upon himself but still he’d rightfully earned his money, and this has left me to recoup my Double Dog losses. Annoyingly it’s not been so easy to find a darer who deals in real currency, they’re all playing for valueless bones, which has just made me even keener to take on a $1 dare no matter what it entails.

Scheme #126: Collect and sell empty toilet roll tubes – I have 6. Huzzah.

Scheme #130: Login to paidtologin.com – This simply does not work, and will never be an effective scheme, so will be mentioned no more.

Scheme #154: Queue for quids – Bidvine have gone awful quiet on me after an enthusiastic start to the friendship, and they certainly don’t seem to be promoting my incredibly crucial queuing company as I’ve had precisely no bookings. Perhaps another to start offering freelance.

Scheme #173: Write a short story – The deadline for the short horror story competition I entered is the 31st of January so I have at least a fortnight to wait before I hear if the judges were scared shitless by my tale of Calvin and his bathroom terrors.

Looking at this list as a whole it’s inarguable I have my fingers in a lot of pies, but also inarguable that some of those pies are stale, some pies are stone cold, some are just empty pie tins, some of the pies have mousetraps in them, etc. I decided to bolt one extra on to make this post worth the time, and landed on Scheme #117: Walk yourself wealthy. Like all forms of physical outgoing I try to keep walking to a minimum, but what little trudging I do in a day I figured I might as well be paid for.

There are two apps I could find which measure your daily steps and convert them into points which can be turned into monetary rewards. The first is Bitwalking, not available on iOS like all apps which are fun and work, but I’ve signed up to test the beta version for iPhones whenever that’s released. Bounts is the equivalent for my phone, and true to form is not fun and does not work, at least according to the cornucopia of negative reviews it’s garnered.

Apparently this time a year ago Bounts was the bomb; steps equalled points which equalled cash in your pocket, simple as that. However following a rejig in 2016 these points are now barely worth squat – at this present time of writing they’re redeemable solely for an out of stock women’s cycling jersey. To get my hands on such a sweet prize I’d need to walk over 7,000 steps a day for 100 days, so my only hope is that Bounts take their overwhelming amount of criticism on board, hugely increase the quality of the rewards and massively drop the distance you have to walk to earn them.

Still, the app’s free and can run harmlessly in the background so I’ll keep it there for now. It’s synced up to my Health app I didn’t even know I had, which I realised has been pedometering me without my consent for months now. 7,000 steps is the total Bounts requires for you to log any points for the day, about 3 and a half miles. Disconcertingly I’ve only reached that total once this year, and that was on Sunday when I was sprinting around in a tizzy trying to find guitars (11,000 stressed steps I put down that day). One weekend in November when my hangover was above normal magnitude it states I walked a total of just 112 steps! At the very least when trying to hit my 7,000 plods a day I might find some more coins in the road…

The I.D and the ego

Day 6
Schemes active/complete: 13
Money made: £0.16

Just a quick post checking in. Not a whole lot to report as yesterday was spent drinking and today spent grotesquely hungover. Appropriately enough the only new scheme I have underway is Scheme #65: Look young and buy booze – Serve Legal operates a programme whereabouts if you look underage you can get paid to purchase alcohol from different retailers and test to see if they ask for I.D, sort of like a mystery shopper only with a 100% chance of having some alcohol to drink afterwards. Even though I’m 27 next month and never get asked for I.D anymore I’m sure if I have a close shave and start using the parlance of the youth of today (“on fleek”? Is that one? Have I spelt that right?) I can make for an effective Serve Legal agent. I guess I could wear a T-shirt which literally says “I am a 16 year old” on it as well.

I applied for this yesterday and, much like the vast majority of schemes so far, must now simply wait to hear back from them. You have to send a scan of your passport along with your application, and in my photo I have the gimp long hair only a teenager would dream of sporting so hopefully that will help when I’m being judged on whether I look underage enough.

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Very little movement besides that. The Qustodian app has still done absolutely nothing at all, my Qmee total hasn’t increased and nobody has paid for me to be friends with them for the day yet. I did have my first dream about the project, which I’ve found in previous undertakings is a sign that it’s truly taken hold of your life. In said dream I was walking around finding dozens of coins on the street which unfortunately has thus far proved pathetically unprophetic.

Only other announcement is that VIPER came back to me RE: my request to participate in a police identity parade. The good news is that they confirmed a “cash reward” is on the cards for taking part, the bad news being they “are not recording in the Dorset area due to the distance to travel from West Yorkshire.” I replied to say that I could not overstate my interest in volunteering and was happy to go anywhere in the UK they wanted me.

Now contrary to what you may think based on some of my past exploits, I am not an idiot. I know full well that the cash sum they provide would be significantly less than a train ride to Yorkshire, meaning the whole endeavour would net a loss and so wouldn’t be a money maker at all. However I’m attempting it regardless, likewise with all the methods which I know from the offset will ultimately leave me out of pocket. My role is to test these schemes, to see what each experience is like and moan about them for your amusement, not necessarily to make a profit. Even if a Bournemouth to Yorkshire train costs £150 and VIPER only tender a tenner, it’s my duty as a stupid little project boy to attend anyway just in case there’s a skint Yorkshireman reading this for whom my write-up might actually be useful. This is why I’m not factoring outgoings into the daily total; this is a study into how much money potentially sits in these schemes, irrespective of how much it costs to get there each time.

With that all said and done, if you’ll excuse me, I have to put my hangover to one side and answer some questions on Weegy about tractors. Good night.

Wealth of ideas

Day 4
Schemes active/complete: 12
Money made: £0.16

So I’ve only gained 5p since the last post, and that was found on the cold, wet ground from still walking around looking like I have a crick in my neck (#61), yet despite this I’ve actually been a pretty busy boy. The list of schemes is unflinchingly daunting, 232 ideas and growing, impossible to know where to start, and it’s occurred to me that rushing in willy-nilly writing little spooky stories isn’t the most efficient approach, so over the past 48 hours I’ve taken a step back and concentrated on some of the more boring schemes which are beneficial to get active early.

Currently my phone’s not making me any money; for a piece of technology which permanently lives by my side, this is unacceptable. The idea behind Scheme #26 is to Have adverts appear on your phone’s lock screen, so that every time you check your faithful 4G companion you’re getting a tiny financial crumb. It’s the perfect app to have running and earning in the background especially if, like me, your phone is constantly within arm’s reach from the moment you wake up resignedly stating “you fucker” at the blaring tone of your alarm to stalking the Facebook profiles of your primary school classmates until you fall asleep.

Whilst there are plenty of options available for an Android phone, it’s actually incredibly difficult to find an iOS app which lets you whore out your lock screen. Slidejoy and Fronto are both allegedly working on an Apple-friendly version as we speak, but my research suggests that the only equivalent you can sneak onto an iPhone is Qustodian.

The bad news keeps coming. On the app store Qustodian has a mountain of negative reviews, and when I downloaded it I was informed that:

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Still I signed up and set my interest in all categories to their upper limit so as to maximise the number of potential adverts I might be exposed to, as well as accepting notifications from the app any time day or night (all done via your individual profile which is referred to as a “Yoad” for some reason). And yet, 24 hours on, not a single advert has reared its ugly but profitable face, Qustodian has just sat malingering on my phone slightly slowing it down. I’ll keep an eye on it and report any activity, maybe it’s just shy and needs to start socialising at its own pace.

I moved on to how I could get my laptop doing something similar: Scheme #16: Get paid to Google. Over the next few weeks and months I’ll be having to Google how to whittle walking sticks to sell, where the nearest farm show contest which pays cash prizes for monstrously large vegetables is, and flocks of other such batshit lunacy, so it makes sense to find a way in which this itself can generate some cash.

All I was after was a simple toolbar extension that discreetly pocketed a little something for each search I performed, but this was not so easy to find. Bing Rewards Scheme (now dubbed Microsoft Rewards) is only available in the USA, for example. Scour.com claims to be a search engine all of itself which recompenses you for using it, but under closer examination shows no signs of paying up, completely falls down as a Google replica (as a test I searched Scour for “anything” and it came up with 0 results…) and the Wikipedia page for Scour Inc includes the sub-header “sour redirect virus.” As for Interadmedia, small print explains the deal to be “you get paid $0.001 for every minute you are actively searching online. Once you have $25 in your account you can cash out, which will be paid to you via PayPal.” That means using it solidly for an hour a day, every day, for 14 months. Surely there’s an easier option?

Thankfully there’s Qmee which, so far at least, seems to perform the exact function I want from this Google Chrome extension, namely to sit silently in the corner making me money. You’d hardly know it was there besides occasionally a sidebar appearing with some suggested adverts, triggered by specific Google searches, and clicking on these links slowly adds dosh to your virtual piggybank. They chuck 10p in as a good will gesture just for signing up and you can cash out at any time, so I’ll leave this running for the foreseeable to exploit my constant frenetic Googling of how the hell I’m going to achieve all these schemes.

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I was more sceptical of my next online method which was simply Scheme #130: Login to paidtologin.com. This seemed suspiciously simple – sign up and log in to this website once a day and earn a microscopic fee each time. Even if the daily yield was hilariously, impossibly minuscule, it would gradually amass and seemed an obvious candidate for making easy money if logging in only took 10 seconds out of your schedule each time. Plus, amazingly, a Qmee-subsidised Google search seemed to imply that paidtologin wasn’t even a scam!

Yesterday I created my paidtologin account and saw my wallet began on $0.001. I was cynical logging in again today and my ill-ease was confirmed – my earnings had only increased another $0.001. Whilst you are paid to login, you’re earning one/thousandth of a dollar each time. If you did this religiously every day for 3 years, you’d be on the equivalent grand total of 90p. And if that wasn’t bad enough on my second visit to the site I was interrupted by this message:

Paidtologin is Going to Pay Everyone
You already have viewed as withdraws are not processed and yes due to lacks of funds, where does come from this lack of funds ? It mainly comes from bad trades ( right now i have a trading system that i’m publishing its signals and so you’ll see how it will behave with time ) and hacks. So at today i’m not going to pay you because i don’t have such money and i could disinvest everything just to give you a third of what you have matured right now.

This discouraging gibberish continues for a while longer before closing with the advice “Don’t worry, don’t run and don’t disinvest all your earning units just keep logging and earning on them, all will be paid to you.” It won’t though, will it? Paidtologin is an utter sham. I cannot even begin to fathom the fury of someone who had been signing in every day for a decade, finally decided enough was enough and they were cashing out their £3, and then was confronted with that message. This is the first scheme I can safely say, fuck this, it doesn’t work.

Between PaidToGetSwindled, and Weegy constantly badgering me about Pythagoras, I was growing weary of solely online schemes so applied for something more tangible. Scheme #154: Queue for quids – the busy or impatient (and, I should imagine, disgustingly wealthy) will allegedly pay you for queuing up for them. I don’t think this service is meant for stubby queues at cashpoints or Greggs, rather more for new games consoles or festival tickets.

Don’t go thinking this is some vacuous idea suggested by a site but never acted upon. In New York exist the ‘Same Ole Line Dudes’, a “professional line sitting and line management business” who charge $25 an hour to sit down and occasionally shuffle forward so you can get your latest iPhone without having to camp out at 4am with a bunch of Steve Jobs worshippers. An identical service runs in China where it’s known as Paotui (literally “the running legs”). Li Qicai, the creator of Paotui, says of his business “You don’t need any skills, except the ability to suffer”, which is a startlingly accurate description of all of the projects I do.

As for the UK our only version is Q4U, and I have contacted them on both Facebook and Twitter offering myself up for any future jobs. However the first source I found suggesting I make money by idly standing about recommended I advertise my Line Sitting on Bidvine.com which I set up late last night. I must say Bidvine are nothing if not enthusiastic, as by lunchtime today I’d received a phone call, a voice message and 2 emails from them badgering me for more information about my incredibly unambiguous proposition.

bidvine3

All bullshit by the way of course, I hate queuing and I have the patience of a lit stick of dynamite, but all I need is one local weekend job from this and at £20/h I could be bringing in some serious capital.

I think that just about covers everything, besides the fact I’ve also started collecting empty toilet roll tubes (Scheme #126: Collect and sell empty toilet roll tubes.) This naturally sounds like the sort of factoid slipped into conversation by someone experiencing a shattering nervous breakdown but supposedly there’s money to be made selling cardboard tubes en masse for arts-and-crafts purposes, so I’m going to have to dedicate a corner of my tiny flat to a toilet roll tower.

The only development upon existing ploys is that deeper research into scheme 41 had me realise that the copper from Day 2 was correct, police stations no longer use the traditional culprit identity parade. Instead, like everything these days, it’s done virtually, specifically by VIPER (Video Identification Parade Electronic Recording). Something tells me they only put those 5 words in that order so their acronym sounded cool and scary but I’m certainly not going to tell them that, instead I emailed them to ask if I could schedule a paid session to become part of their database and await further instructions.

So excitingly there’s a lot of monetary irons in the fire! Hopefully this time next week I’ll be juggling queues, identity parades, paid socialising and funerals of people I’ve never met whilst the quality duo of Qustodian and Qmee quickly and quietly acquire me quids. Or perhaps I’ll just be on a total of 17p having fished a penny from a puddle of shite.