[Since this article was first published, the archive is now over 400,000 recipes – Ed. / Feb 6 2013]
We’re looking for cooks to become part of our new, paid Kitchen Helpers team. Kitchen Helpers work from home on whatever schedule they’d like, and help us edit, improve and curate the massive and growing recipe collection on BigOven.
We Need You.
At this writing, BigOven has over 270,000 recipes, with thousands and thousands of new recipes added every month.
Here at BigOven, our core team is made up of software engineers, web and mobile designers, moms and dads who like to cook and support staff. Our goal is to keep this engineering team as focused on our customers and building the platform as possible. A great deal of what we do is free to the millions of cooks who use the site and mobile apps on a monthly basis, and that’s the way we’d like to keep it. But we also want the contributed recipes themselves to be the highest-possible quality – and linked up with all the correct nutrition information — today and in the future.
Simply put, we just can’t hire enough people here to cover all 270,000 recipes with a review pass, and by the time they did, there may be another several hundred thousand more to do!
When we thought about this challenge, we instantly thought of you — our community filled with knowledgeable, passionate cooks. So, if you’re someone who enjoys cooking and is comfortable with and knowledgeable about a variety of recipes, we’re reaching out to get your help in reviewing the recipes, linking in nutrition facts, verifying serving sizes, and more.
In short, we want to enlist a team of curators for this great collection.
While our automated nutrition facts linking engine continues to get smarter and smarter (at present, well over half of our ingredients are linked up to nutrition data), human beings are still far smarter than computers. Thank goodness for that! But, since there is such a vast variety in the ways that recipes can be written, some are still not completely nutritionally linked.
For instance, recipes might be in need of:
- minor fixup in the way ingredients are posted, so the auto-linker can do its work
- less-common ingredients which need to be added to the nutrition database
- serving size editing – improper serving size estimates for the recipe can cause the per-serving counts to be off
At present time, we’re not asking Kitchen Helpers to make the recipes, merely to closely review the recipe as written, and link up the nutritional information. It can be easily done from any computer with a high-speed internet connection. You’ll need a good depth of cooking knowledge – for instance, to verify that yes, the overall quantity ingredients as listed look like they’d truly serve 4. (Of course, it’s a judgment call, and some subjectivity comes into play as with all curation/editorial tasks.)
How Kitchen Helpers Works
Kitchen Helpers have special status on BigOven and can uniquely verify recipes. We have a system in place to capture who verifies a recipe, and some criteria in place for when a recipe is eligible to be verified (e.g., all ingredient lines must be fully nutritionally linked).
It’s simple to be part of the Kitchen Helper team. Visit http://www.bigoven.com/join-kitchen-helpers, and express your interest at the bottom of the form. Jot us a note about your cooking expertise, and, if you’ve posted recipes on BigOven, we’ll look at those, too.
Once admitted into the team, you can work from home, and participate whenever you’d like.
BigOven pays you two times a month (via PayPal to your registered BigOven email address) for the recipes you’ve linked and verified during that period on a per-recipe basis. This per-recipe payment starts today at $0.20 per recipe. This rate may change over time – this is a new program, and we’re sure we’ll be learning!
Our goal is to get every single recipe on the site verified by a Kitchen Helper. So far, about 70,000 of our recipes are verified, which means 200,000 are not! We have over 1.5 million registered members — if we get, say, 1,000 Kitchen Helpers, this task won’t take very long. If we hired a full-time editorial team here, we’d have substantial magazine-like costs and lag-time that would eventually impact you, our customers.
What do Kitchen Helpers Do?
You, as a Kitchen Helper, will get special access to a Kitchen Helper Dashboard which shows a dozen or so currently-unverified recipes. You will get the ability to review and edit recipes, even if they are not your own. (We will review these edits.)
The dashboard gives you some recipes that are unverified. You simply visit the recipe, double-check the nutrition linkings and serving sizes. You may also make minor edits to the recipe to improve its readability, without changing the author’s intended meaning. When all ingredients are properly linked to the nutrition information, the serving size looks correct and any minor edits are done, click “Verify” on the recipe.
We then review your work, and pay you twice each month for the recipes you’ve verified.
We have screencasts and of course our support desk to help you out if you’re stuck. There are no minimum hours, no specific working hours – you get paid on a job-completed basis. There’s no need to check in with us, or reporting to do – just let us know if you have a question.
If you’re passionate about cooking, you’ll learn even more. You’ll discover great recipes, and we’ll pay you to share your cooking expertise. We only want Kitchen Helpers who are comfortable in the kitchen, know cooking and the most common ingredients, and who write well. We will also happily pay for your BigOven PRO membership, if you cross a minimum hurdle of work for the year (this hurdle is not yet finalized, but likely to be about 250 recipes).
We’ve got several other opportunities in mind for Kitchen Helpers in the future – this is just where we’re starting out.
Ready to apply? Apply to be a Kitchen Helper today.
We’re going to start by accepting the best first ten or so candidates and monitoring the results before widening the program. Thanks!