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WriterBay.com and Paperwritings.com – Living Under the Same Roof – Is It A Question of Ethic’s
Whilst looking at WriterBay.com to see whether it was a legitimate operation or another scam I turned up an interesting fact which may pose many writers a quandary with their ethics.
WriterBay.com and Paperwritings.com – The Discovery
Marc Babineau, freelance writer and steward at Helium, asked in a group discussion on LinkedIn if anyone knew anything about WriterBay.com. Having managed to whip myself up into a frenzy over freelance writing scam sites I set off to explore.
After a cursory exploration I posted this reply to the group: -
“Nigel Lewis-Davidson • @Marc My initial look at the Writer Bay site shows a list of their top 10 earners this month. Louis Logic apparently earned over $4000. A Google on the name after showed, passing over the NY hip hop star, pulled up a WordPress site for Louis Logic. There are archives there going back to October 2010. Every archive, article and blog took me back to the same page which is about 10 articles long, all very generic and the type of thing I was writing for $3 and less. None of these articles was posted before November this year. Obviously this a may be a glitch.
You have probably already guessed my feelings.
I would not be accepted there if I were to apply as you need to have a BSc or more and I only have a diploma.
I will investigate further when time allows”
Obviously not conclusive proof against WriterBay.com but enough to make an old plod suspicious.
The Itch You Know You’ve Got To Scratch
The itch wouldn’t go away. I was like a dog with a flea I just had to scratch, so I figuratively scratched and departed for Google land. I read through WriterBay’s ‘terms and conditions’ and ‘about us’ pages but never actually followed through with an application; I felt I was under qualified with only a diploma despite Marc’s reassurances.
The topics available to write on were quite diverse and the offer of $20+ per page seemed very reasonable. (Oh if only I’d gone to uni (sigh)).
Still something nagged at me so I searched on the contact address. This showed me two things, first, the address matched a company offering a virtual office service operating from there, second, there was a second writing company operating from the address.
Now Paperwritings.com were a different type of writing service, they offered writing
services to those who needed something written for them. What are those services? Well to list a few they include such ethical minefields as, dissertation, thesis, coursework, homework and college papers to name but a few. However there are also categories that do not raise the eyebrows.
I suppose what this all about is the ethics of the writer and the self-control of the buyer.
If the buyer pays for a dissertation and uses their purchased item to frame their own then I would say the job was legitimate and the writers could hold their heads high, but how when you are writing that piece of work do you know the buyer will not submit it as their own work? You cannot. I suppose a question that needs to be answered is what type of person goes and buys a dissertation?
- Is it the student who has meticulously organised and worked on their work since it was set? Probably not.
- Is it the student who has a good support network to turn to for help when they suffer moments of doubt? Probably not.
- Is it the type of student who has left everything until the last minute and now find themselves with a mountain to climb? Probably so.
- Is it the type of student who really does not have a clue what they are doing or talking about? Probably so.
- Is it the type of student who really does not care as long as they pass? Probably so.
My thinking here is the last three students will have no qualms about presenting the dissertation bought from Paperwritings.com as their own, in fact the chances are it will only be these types of students that approach companies like Paperwritings.com.
Why do some students need this type of help?
For some the excuse given is they have no support networks which is why they turn to this type of company for ‘advice’ with their dissertation. I don’t doubt that for some students university and college can be a very lonely life but if you intend doing well you will turn to your tutors for the necessary help rather than pay a third-party, unless of course…
Or the student is having difficulty with getting their dissertation presented or formatted correctly. My guess is somewhere in the university there is not only advisers on these subjects but probably also many, many dissertations stored in a thing called a library.
Are there some coincidences here?
Is it coincidental that: -
- Two writing companies are housed in the same building with one side advertising services to students and the other looking for writers to complete similar work.
- If there was no concern over the legitimacy and ethics over this type of work why are they not just one company?
- The address is also used by a company offering virtual office space, I wouldn’t dare suggest that neither company actually work from the address.
- Louis Logic, their top earner before Christmas and the second top now, has such a debatable website.
- Other names on the top earners list have no trace on Google, not conclusive by any means but…
Back to the original question
The original question was about ethics. A dictionary definition of ‘ethic’ courtesy of thefreedictionary.com is: -
b. A theory or a system of moral values.
So ethics are not a set of rules others set for us but ones we set for ourselves, other than professional ethics, so whether it is unethical for a writer to produce a dissertation for another to use in their own name is a matter for where that writer sets their ethical ‘bar’.
It is also true that there are people in this world who set their ethical bar low enough so it is easy for their conscience to jump over whenever they wish.
I believe that a writers bar should be set at a height where it is a struggle for their conscience to climb over it therefore giving the writer a chance to reel it in when temptation is giving it a leg-up.
My deepest sympathy goes to those poor (in both senses) writers who are so desperate that they have to gag and blindfold their consciences and duck under the bar to survive. And damn the companies and clients of those companies who force these poor writers into what we should all try to hold close to our hearts, the loss of our conscience.
This company was hotly debated within a few LinkedIn group discussions the link to one of the discussions is below. The discussion went into far more detail than my blog has gone and is well worth a read.
Without sadness happiness would become mundane