Though the internet has helped the sweeping community diversify, there remains a large contingent of sweepers who are stay-at-home mothers. For them, sweeping starts off as a way to pass time, occasionally growing into a noteworthy source of income. "When I started hardcore sweeping again in May, part of my goal was winning Christmas presents," says Thompson. "But the other part was to show my husband that this is a viable work alternative, because my four-year-old's going to go into kindergarten next year."
On Twitter, you may be able to find lists of businesses or influential accounts that you can follow in columns using apps like Tweetdeck or Hootsuite. Twitter also has a handy geotagging feature that lets you see tweets within a set radius of your location. Using Tweetdeck or an advanced Twitter search, you can run a radius search to find these local tweets. (For example, you can search near:"Washington DC" within:15mi in Tweetdeck or a Twitter search box.) Keep these in a separate column you can glance at over the course of the week.
Buried on the Web sites was information about this resulting in a $9.99 monthly charge on my cell phone bill. These were premium text scams, third party companies get you to enter a PIN and accept their charges. While premium texting is a great way to pay for ringtones or use your mobile phone to donate to the Red Cross, it's also an easy way to trick you into paying $10 a month or more into a black hole.
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Even if you type something like "get free stuff no scam", or even, "free stuff online without surveys" you still might end up spending hours looking up and visiting websites offering freebies by mail just to find out that the offer that you recently found is yet another scam. Without a doubt, this can get old and frustrating, and in the end, you will find yourself at your nearest retailer paying full price for the item that you initially set out to get for free.
Plus, real-life, non-sweeper friends and family members can get a bit concerned. "My parents think I'm a little crazy, because I do have a degree and I'm not really using it," says Ambrea Kuhn, a 25-year-old in Utah. She cater-waiters part-time and is able to cobble together a living through that and sweeping. A fast typer, she manages to enter 1,500 "dailies" and 200 new contests a day, all in about two hours.
Then there is the problem with the forums themselves. Full of increasing negativity and crackpots. Racist jokes are allowed, anti-gay, bigoted comments are allowed, and if reported for being offensive, the person reporting them are told they are aggressively attacking the racist and that they will be banned. Over the last 18 months, it has only become worse, reminding this member of websites like Stormfront. Any member who publicly challenges those members, is immediately banned, as are their spouses. It does not matter if you are a paying member. Any attempt to contact the owner about this development has gone unanswered.
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