It may come as a surprise but yes, I actually do get this question sometimes (I also see on my Google Analytics dashboard how a few people have googled the words “proofread anywhere scam”. I’ve been asked, “How do I know this isn’t just another fly-by-night scam and I’ll pay your course fee and never get anything in return?” or someone leaves a comment on a promo post on a very reputable partner website saying, “That website looks like a scam. I closed it.”
Honestly, I’m not surprised by the people crying “scam”, either, because I’ve seen firsthand how many actual scams there are out there. I can’t blame people for being natural skeptics. There are so many “courses” that promise to teach you how to do home transcription but end up being just a bunch of garbage; plus you’ve got pyramid schemes, “email processing” which is nothing more than selling nothing to people over and over, clicking ads all day, the list goes on. It’s horrible the stuff people fall for, and despicable there’s people out there who create it all.
So if you’re one of the people wondering whether my blog, website, and courses are part of the hundreds, even thousands of scams out there on the world wide web, you’re in the right spot to find out.
Not even close. In fact, by definition, calling it a scam isn’t even remotely logical.
Why not? First, let’s talk about what a scam actually is.
According to the dictionary, a scam is “a dishonest scheme; a fraud.” If you take a moment to look over my FAQs section and my student success stories, you’ll get virtually smacked in the face with one thing: honesty. I don’t sugarcoat my program at all, make it seem easy, or lie about how much work it is. It is a LOT of hard work. I post honest, open stories from actual students where they share the truth of how much work the course is. I even share the very modest, realistic amount of income I make doing actual work.
Not to mention, I’ve put tons of grueling work into creating this website. I spent months of time personally writing and editing the course materials for both my full courses and the free 7-day intro course, and I spend hours a day answering e-mails from prospective students, giving away free advice without asking for anything in return, and providing support in our student community on Facebook. Simply put, “scams” don’t offer any level of service — but I offer a very high level of service.
And yet even the most legitimate websites will still attract trolls — you know, the people who say mean things in the comments just because (the same people usually don’t ever say anything positive). A couple other things tend to happen as a result of the scam saturation on the web.
1) People may check out the courses and, once they see they actually have to DO something in order to make it work, the first thing they think is it’s a scam. Why? What is scammy about being honest about the amount of work that goes into something? Some people are truly looking to get something for nothing, and while that’s sad, I don’t mind much, because it doesn’t do me any good to have slackers in the courses. I only want hard working students to enroll. If by stating openly (and often!) how intense the courses appear like a scam to some people, let those people stay far, far away 🙂
2) When some people see the words “work from home,” they mistake it for “easy.” For some reason they totally miss the “work” part and expect it to be easy. I’m sure there are plenty of qualified folks out there who’ve seen this website and missed out on an opportunity to change their lives just because they didn’t want to do actual work to turn this into a real income stream. I’ve received e-mails asking if I find clients for people once they take the courses. I want to write back and say, “Really? Do you ask the same question of your college professors and instructors?”
I’ve also received e-mails from people asking if I guarantee they will make money if they take my courses. If I were to guarantee any and all students will make money, I’d have to by default guarantee they will actually do the work. See the problem with that? I can’t guarantee anyone will do the work. It’s sad to me to think super smart, qualified people who’d make amazing proofreaders are too scared to invest in education without a guarantee they’d make money.
Ironically, it’s often a sure sign of a scam when a program guarantees you’ll make money by purchasing their program. With this program, on the other hand, I do guarantee you’ll have all the tools, resources, practice, and support you’ll need, but I will never, ever put a blanket guarantee you’ll earn anything simply by taking the courses. It’s much the same as a university or college not guaranteeing you’ll earn an income as an accountant simply by taking an accounting course.
The thing is, I can’t guarantee you’ll do the work, but you can. You can guarantee yourself you’ll do the work it takes. It’s ALL you. Many of my students thank me profusely upon completing the courses and getting clients, but I always respond the same way: YOU did this. I just told you how. YOU took action with the tools and made it happen; my work was already done.
I’m fully aware some people just won’t get it, though. I’m sad for them. I’m sad for the folks who can’t see the forest through the trees. I’m sad for the folks who, without a guarantee, they’ll make money, won’t even try. I’m sad for the folks who are crippled by fear and would rather choose to stay right where they are, instead of investing in training and taking steps to better themselves by creating a totally legitimate new income stream for themselves, and change their lives.
Is this you? Are you still scared this is a scam? Send me an e-mail and ask me anything you want. This may shock you, but I actually respond to e-mails 🙂 caitlin [at] proofreadanywhere.com