A new paid research service?

Now that the Google Answers service is closing, some people are interested in developing a paid research service: similar in some ways – and different in some ways – from what the world has seen before.

How should it work? What features should it have? What could be really special about it? What would make it compelling for you?

Comments are welcome from everyone…

7 Responses to “A new paid research service?”

  1. Cynthia-ga says:

    I think FREE is a great business model for attracting traffic. There must be a way to incorporate the traffic that ‘free’ generates into a serious pay Q&A site.

  2. Sublime1 says:

    Some of us are looking at AskMe Pro, which offers almost immediate setup (in time to place some timely links on all the blog sites reporting GA’s demise). The software’s actually free if you use their partner hosting at $10/month, which is guaranteed compatible with the software requirements for SQL, etc.

    It offers less customization than a professionally-designed site, but has the advantage of being workable in short order. The locking system is more like Kasamba, where the researcher first answers, then locks the answer and waits while the customer responds to the email notification and pays, at which point they unlock the answer. It also seems like more than one answer can be provided, with different ‘bids’ set by the researchers, within the limit set by the customer, and the customer can pay for and unlock the one they want. Not ideal, but readily available.

    I personally loved almost everything about the GA setup, but reproducing it would seem to require more organization and resources than we could muster in a timely fashion, and if it isn’t timely, it seems less likely to work.

    Some time ago, I also created a front page on GooglePages, where it’s fairly easy to set up and edit a site at no cost. The URL and title are GA Researchers, and I set it up so that other researchers could add their subpages which would be accessible by a link on the front page, on the right side. I also set up what I intended to be a communal Gmail account for the site, to which all researchers could have access.

    No one has expressed interest in joining me on the site, and no emails have been sent to the email address listed on the site. I’m not surprised, but this seems to me to be the kind of difficulties we’ll run into in trying to collaborate and publicize a site.

  3. Cynthia-ga says:

    John, I’ll join you! –PM me the info to get started.

    FWIW and FYI, I think we are experiencing our 15 minutes of fame!

    We have an invite from Yahoo! to join them.
    At the least, it is a very nice gesture.

  4. cartack-ga says:

    I am interested in helping. I toyed around with using askmepro for a previous project. I have a few dedicated hosting servers as well, so hosting shouldn’t be a problem.I also have some limited php experience. The key is too get something up and running quickly, and make improvements over time. drop me a line.

  5. Dave says:

    I’d be willing to help develop such a site, but I’ve ditched PHP for the .Net framework.

    I think you’d be better off with a customized site than a boxed product. I’d also recommend allowing two tiers of q&a, one free, one paid.

  6. Yaniv Golan says:

    It’d be great if you’d find the the time to take a look at Yedda, and let me know what would you change in Yedda to make it better suited to be a new home for at least some of you.

    It’d be great to see you sharing your knowledge and your research talent with the Yedda community.

    Re locking mechanism, we actually take a different approach in Yedda – the system proactively reaches out to selected potential answerers and invites them directly to a specific question (according to their personal profile). So basically, you decide what topics you’re interested in, how many questions you’d like to receive and how often, and that’s about it – Yedda will send you personal invitations to these questions using email, RSS or IM.

    This is not a full replacement for the locking mechanism in GA, but it could be an interesting start.

    I’d love to hear your thoughts!

  7. Erlend Lee says:

    AAArrrrrrrgggggghhh!!!!! I just went to google answers to ask a question and……. I cnat believe this is happening -has happened. I’ve used GA evry couple of months since it started (perplexed-ga) for quic authoritative answers to qs that would have driven me crazy else.
    Blessings on you guys who are building a lifeboat. Hurry! Hurry! hurry!

    Oh no! i can feel ANOTHER q building up