First online job i ever got was this type of job.
2nd year at Uni armed with laptop and free internet.
I was an early adopter, now the market is crowded
Good money! Upto $500 a month 2/
Developed / developing world dichotomy
So strategy was, only pick jobs where the assignments are topics I am interested in
So i learn while earning
Also a great opportunity to work on my writing and research skills /3
Apparently these were assignment aggregation sites created by russians and eastern europeans. Connecting demand for services and supply in key markets such as Kenya 🇰🇪 (internet, educated workforce etc) /4
Guys made millions!
Others sub contracted , hiring teams to work while they sourced the jobs
Whole apartments were refurbished and turned into sweat shops for academic writing
Biz was good 🔥/5
Increasing demand meant it was harder to open accounts and get approved
Cut off requirements were raised such as Tests, language, citation
So verified accounts became rare and highly prized
Everyone wanted an account /6
Flip the accounts to those who cldnt get accounts
Accounts sold for as much as $5000
1 account = 500,000kes /7
Smart folks made $$$ from flipping accounts
More sweat shops
sometime 20% sometimes 50%
Payment was per page
High tier accounts with more experience and work history got paid more per page /10
Friction of payment was high! Bank took 7 days. ID verification on online wallets was a pain
It ws my first encounter with online payment friction for us lowly inhabitants of the developing world /11
These money changers made money off the spread. They still do. But times have changed /12
I still think it is, and this case by the UK and Kenyan writers carries key lessons (i'll get back to this later) /13
The internet had lots of wallets. More than 20+. There was no way to connect virtual online wallets to Kenya's mobile money and bank and cards /14
This also turned into a booming business!
Google "Kenyan paypal skrill online money to Mpesa" /15
But then the Fintech boom in Kenya happened, and ate up their lunch.
Paypal to Mpesa
Skrill to Mpesa
Paypal to Equity Bank
A similar service that was predictable and smooth. Money changers have been on a decline since '16 /16
The trouble w/ such services is foundational. this case illustrates what is wrong with current online payment infrastructure/17
Who decides what counts as work worth doing? Why is Paypal getting in the way of decent paying jobs and value exchange?
What if this was a cash transaction? /18
PayPal an American company
Skrill is a UK company /19
Because cryptocurrency is NOT a company where someone decides what is wrong or right OR says when you can or cannnot receive payments
Its like cash /20
Early adopters in Kenya earning in virtual workspaces or entertainment in virtual spaces have been using bitcoin for a while now.
For getting paid
For buying virtual goods for gaming
For online sportsbetting
For trading /21
Demand is on the rise, and there are no services that allow quick conversion from cryptocurrency to KES or vice versa /22
Could Kenya’s cryptocurrency peer to peer networks become agents or exchange points in a future where digital currencies and crypto assets are commonplace ? /23
Bitcoin Filling Payment System Gaps in Kenya
Bitcoin’s Growing Popularity Among Payments Brokers in Kenya /24
Data from localbitcoins.com is a good indicator. Current average is 36 million KES per week. Highest peak was 100 million per week. /27
Bitpesa, Kipochi were right on trend, but too early.
Old gateways may pivot
New gateways might emerge
Telcos may integrate
Banks may integrate
Browsers may integrate
Watch this space! /29
'Gig economy' is the old offline informal economy on virtual space.
Is all on the table. Dont fight it /32
Apps that can drive demand and scale reach affordably are transforming African markets, opening up new opportunities for young Africans. kioneki.com/2018/12/13/why… /33
That includes access, education & training, IDs, payment processing, contracting, compliance etc /34
Stuff like this and more
DM if interested!