Friday, August 28, 2009

eHow Article Sweep: Conclusions?

If you write for eHow, chances are that you've recently had one or more of your articles deleted in what is known as an 'Article Sweep'. Getting that message in my inbox was disheartening to say the least. Two of my articles (one a growing earner) were deleted. Here are their titles and the "reasons" for deletions:
  • How to file for a FAFSA pin number (SPAM)
  • How to Plan Summer Brunch Parties (Poorly Written)
I can see why they marked the first article as SPAM- it mentioned a website. But, in the internet age, how can you NOT mention a website? If a person is looking for a how-to article on the internet, chances are that he or she will benefit from the website in question. Other writers have reported articles with places and products have also been deleted as SPAM.

I re-posted the second article on another site. You can view it here. Tell me if this is a horribly written article or not. I could not find any major grammatical or spelling errors. I even followed proper how-to format. This article was becoming a steady earner for me the past couple months, and I am irritated at eHow for claiming it was poorly written without providing advice on how to correct it to meet their standards.

After reading several other blogs and the forum, there seems to be a common theme with this article sweep: Many people had articles deleted for no good reason. One writer had an article deleted that had earned over $1000. Some have had more than 50 articles wiped out, and a few had their accounts closed.

Although my original plan for the month was to reach the 50 article mark on eHow, I am not sure how I feel about it. I am worried that my articles will all eventually be deleted, thus ruling out the "earn forever" highlight of passive income. Would I be better off writing for flat fee sites or other passive income sites that have a solid reputation, such as Suite 101? I guess this is why writers need to diversify their work.

What was your experience of the eHow article sweep? Do you think some of the deletions were unjustified? How does this affect your writing goals/plans for eHow and other sites?


  1. I'm going to write 3 more articles for eHow to hit my 100-article goal and then I'm done with eHow. Where there is smoke, there is fire. When they delete my articles (which I have no doubt they will eventually do) I'm going to place them on InfoBarrel, which has gotten some good feedback on the eHow forum.

  2. Hey Rachel,

    Thanks for following my blog. I too have lost one article and I read Eve's posting about how Demand Studio articles are popping up in the place of residual articles. It sounds really troubling. I have decided to scale back a bit because of this. It will be interesting to see where it goes. Great blog by the way!

  3. Hi! Luv your blogs- they are terrific!! Can you be my mentor? lol j/k :) I am following you on blogger. When I have more time, I plan on reading more. And congratulations on being published in July!! :) Jen (I am jenicoe2001 on eHow and twitter! )

  4. Eve,
    I agree with your sentiments about eHow. I have not decided if I will discontinue writing for them yet, but the future doesn't look promising.

    Busy Bee,
    I appreciate your admiration of my work! I am learning everything as I go, recording what I discover here on this blog. Thanks for your interest in my other blogs- they are my 'babies' :-)

  5. I lost one article. Reason: not up to eHow standards. It was a silly article designed to make people laugh, but I didn't think of it as below standard, considering "How to Pick Buggers" is still there. It's pretty disheartening, but all the article sites that don't preview material before posting it are getting slammed with spam and plagiarized material. It's just a shame that they review in a hurry and delete some really good articles.

  6. I read your article and there is one thing wrong with it. The intro is too short. I don't think it's a reason for them to delete it, but Squidoo will definitely object if your intro is short. I've had a warning on one of my articles on ehow before they started with the mega purge that one article's intro was too short and I needed to re do it. They don't give you warnings any more it seems.

  7. I've been discouraged when mostly DS writers' articles turn up on eHow in searches. The only way to find eHow member articles is to do a site search on Google for the subject. They are burying our articles because they don't have to pay any more for the DS articles. I think when Demand bought eHow, that was the idea, to replace all our articles with DS articles eventually, then they get to keep all the income. Plus, they figure when an article makes over $15, that's enough and they'll delete it. I'm very discouraged by this as a new writer on eHow.

  8. With over 550 articles I lost a least 50. And yes some was high earners. But all in all I think my earnings evened up. When I started writing they did not have as much guidelines as they do now. I am looking forward to automatic review, so I know if a article will be not approved. As for getting articles to show up on the google search pages it really has to do with SEO, not that ehow is making it easer for contributer writers to get more views. I believed that is where I benifited the most for writing for DS. Wile I do not write that much for them, because I prefer to write for myself I do think writing for them has made me a better SEO writer.
    Rachel your blog looks great and your doing well on your articles. I wish you the best of luck with ehow. As a rule I suggest if someone is serous about making a real income with ehow that they work hard to get to the first 100 well written articles. While you will find that some article will earn more then others, it is sometimes very supprising what the high earners are. My highest earner was a article that I had written in five minutes. I wrote it to answer a freinds question, now it pays for my car loan each month.



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