Operating an Employer Reputation System: Lessons from Turkopticon, 2008-2015

Silberman, M. Six; Irani, Lilly
Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal, Forthcoming

In November 2005, Amazon launched Mechanical Turk (AMT), a website where "requesters" can post tasks, called "Human Intelligence Tasks" or "HITs", for workers to complete for pay. Workers are required to agree that they are independent contractors, not employees, and that they are therefore not entitled to minimum wage or other employment benefits. Requesters post tasks to the platform, workers choose and do tasks, and requesters then review and "approve" or "reject" the submitted work. Workers are paid for approved work; they are not paid for rejected work. Requesters can reject (i.e., decline to pay for) work for any reason.