Archive - Sep 15, 2007

Online Surveys and Second Life

What is your opinion worth? This morning, I got an email from Survey Savvy offering me $1 to fill out a survey. e-Rewards offered me $4 to fill out their survey, and ZoomPanel offered me an unspecified number of ZoomPoints. Zogby doesn’t offere me anything for filling out their surveys, but I often fill them out.

With ZoomPanel, when you get to a certain level, you can redeem your ZoomPoints for something from their catalog. The dollars you get from e-Rewards can be exchanged for gift certificates. It is sort of like the good old shopping stamps from my youth.

Back then, we would get our stamps, put them in booklets and take them to the redemption center. The brand name I remember was S&H Greenstamps, and I wondered how they evolved. Now, you can earn Greenpoints online.

All of these are ways of doing micropayments online. Everyone has their own little currency, some of which gets redeemed into tangible assets. In many ways, the Linden Dollar in Second Life is another microcurrency that is particularly well suited to micropayments. There is an active market in Linden dollars to buy things in Second Life or to exchange Linden Dollars for U.S. Dollars. If I were S&H Greenstamps, or some other micropayment group, I would think about setting up a redemption center in Second Life. Likewise, there are some sites that provide for exchanging points between programs. They would probably do well to and Linden Dollars as another type of point that can be exchanged.

All of this takes me back to the online surveys. One way that people can make money in Second Life is shaking money trees. I visited a money tree last night. When I touched the money tree, it gave me a URL to go to. At this URL, I was given the option of filling out several different surveys. Each survey paid in the range of 50 Linden Dollars. This works out to be around fifteen to twenty cents. It’s a pretty poor payout. Looking at the survey’s they seem mostly to be simply trying to buy email addresses.

So, for my purposes, I’ll probably keep filling out e-Rewards surveys when I get an interesting one, Zogby surveys when they come and maybe a few others if I ever have more free time or if they ever are particularly interesting or have a good payout.

Meanwhile, I’ll keep my eyes open for good paying high quality surveys in Second Life. I expect one of these days, some of the redemption centers will find the value of the Linden Dollar.