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Triond Witch Hunt Signals The End?

August 2, 2011
Burned at the stake

Welcome to Triond

Triond, the relatively new article directory in the same vein as Associated Content and Helium, has been having trouble recently. They used to operate a model with up-front payments and revenue share that ran alongside a very open “acceptable quality” policy.

Historically, this made the site very popular with non-native English writers who had trouble keeping up with a site like Helium’s stricter rules and provided them with a much-needed outlet and earning potential.

However, this year has already seen Triond remove their up-front payments and switch to a pure 50% advertising rev-share model wherein articles get half the revenue earned from ads placed on their page.

This is always a bad sign for a content directory that used to have up-front payments, as it generally signals a drop in company revenue being passed on to authors. It’s happened before and it’s bad news – if not for the company, for the people producing the content.

To put it simply, authors’ wallets are being hit:

 

  • Writers will earn less for their work on average
  • Articles could earn absolutely nothing if their ads are not clicked
  • Pure rev-share is a potential scam (see number 5 here)

 

In Triond’s case, it’s not a scam – they’re big enough to have sufficient traffic to keep revenue coming in – but it’s still a big hit to the average writer’s wallet.

However, to make matters even worse, Triond is using their newly-added “report” button (to flag low-quality, inappropriate or misplaced content to admin) in a truly horrific way.

Triond’s “August Special” offers a bonus for writing 5 articles, which is good, but also states that anyone who “also flags at least 15 articles will receive a 10% bonus“.

 

In simple terms, they’re paying people to witch-hunt.

 

This is one of the worst business decisions I have ever seen. Not only is it inviting batch-flagging by their users, it encourages aggressive attacks between rival writers and dumping the competition.

Not only that, they’re giving flaggers a nice little medal for their work, which is rather inappropriately yellow. Shame it isn’t star-shaped, then that particular (inverse) analogy would be even easier.

In one fell swoop, Triond has created an atmosphere of dissent among their users which, from those I’ve heard talking about it, could spark a mass exodus from the site.

What do you think? Is this a sign of the end for Triond? Is it just bad implementation of a good idea? Leave your thoughts in the comments!

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11 Comments leave one →
  1. August 3, 2011 12:56 am

    No earning in triond. after writing 14 articles for one month I got $0.04 which I am sure everyone will agree is nothing.

  2. spikethelobster permalink*
    August 3, 2011 11:01 am

    Hi Sivan – thanks for dropping by! Revenue share is always low unless you’re either (a) prolific – like, hundreds of articles – or (b) very topical and good with SEO/keywords to attract lots of hits. That’s why I don’t do it any more: I’m not prolific and I suck at SEO!

  3. August 9, 2011 3:54 am

    I think Triond is taking a hit right now from the search engines.Over the past several weeks I was in good with google. I had 4 articles on the first and second page of google. Over the past couple days views are dropping more and more. I was wondering has Triond been tagged by google

  4. spikethelobster permalink*
    August 9, 2011 1:43 pm

    Hey cterrell: that’s an interesting question. I don’t think Google specifically “tags” any site for downgrading (though they do hit whole domains, like the .co.cc thing recently) but Triond’s been getting in deeper and deeper trouble from what I’ve seen. This recent change has caused a lot of discontent and that could, in fact, affect Google rankings – less content equals fewer visitors equals lower status. I really hope they turn it around, as losing a well-established rev share site would affect a lot of writers.

  5. August 12, 2011 7:54 pm

    i only go to triond in hope of making friends and contacts and maybe for information , i won’t waste time publishing

  6. August 17, 2011 7:24 am

    Hey, nice to see you. Are you also writing for Triond or did you give it up?
    I have already almost 60 succesful flags although I did not hunt anyone. I simply flagged the aweful spinned stuff that was not understandable…

  7. spikethelobster permalink*
    August 17, 2011 1:25 pm

    Thanks for dropping in! I’ve never written for Triond – it started when I was on AC and Helium, so I didn’t need another rev share, and I switched to direct work soon after. Hopefully they’ll tidy up and stick around, despite the awful business decisions!

  8. August 17, 2011 1:55 pm

    …….i prefer to write for upfront payments , i have just gone on to associated content , just feeling out the site……helium is ok but the upfronts are low , i just signed to constantcontent…i shall have to see how that goes

  9. September 2, 2011 1:08 pm

    I think Cterrell may be on to something. I remember reading something about new Google algorithms having a negative effect on so-called article directories – in fact, just had a quick rummage and found this article which includes a table demonstrating the drop in traffic to many: http://www.seonode.com/blog/google-black-hat-seo-changes-3-10-2011/ And speaking anecdotally, I see far fewer of these sites appearing in search results.

    I don’t write for Triond (or any similar site) so have no vested interest, but it does sound as though genuine sites and writers are being penalised in an attempt to remove those that are simply a collection of dubious content and adverts. Saying that, the idea that members should get paid for ‘grassing’ on each other is ridiculous, and hardly a good business model! Don’t they have editors to control the standard of their content? If not, maybe they should invest in a few because letting rivals flag content is never going to end well.

  10. spikethelobster permalink*
    September 3, 2011 12:00 pm

    Kate: Ouch, that’s a HUGE drop for most of the sites! Over 75% across the board. Not sure how Google can justify that, since there’s (generally) a lot of good content on those sites: we need better algorithms that spot crappy SEO, regurgitation and spinning, I suppose. Glad I don’t do revenue share…

    Triond do have editors, from what I hear, but I assume they suck, are overworked or are software rather than real people. Whatever the situation, a longer ‘pending’ queue would be preferable to a gang of snitches running around victimising people. We all know that businesses are going to abuse that system, just like they abuse everything else.

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