Mar 5, 2011

New Writing Site - The Citizen Herald

The Citizen Herald is one of the newest sites to earn by freelance writing online.  I haven't found much information except what's available on the site itself, so my comments will be based on that alone.

The Citizen Herald is an online newspaper riddled with articles written by regular folks like you and I.  It's run by self-proclaimed media junkie Michael McGimpsey, and from the looks of the archives, has only been in existence since January 2011.

What does The Citizen Herald have to offer the freelance writer?

The Citizen Herald pays its writers revenue share only; there is no payment upfront for articles based on word count or any other method of calculation.  Ad revenue is accumulated for the site as a whole, and 50% of that revenue is given back to the contributing writers according to an algorithm (where have you heard that word recently?), based on how many impressions your articles receive, among other things.

The site reports that articles may carry a different weight based on the date of publication, how fresh the information is, etc.  I'm not sure why a page view of an older article wouldn't have the same dollar value as a page view of a newer one, but that's the way I read it.  If the same type of advertising is shown on all pages, older content as well as new, I would think that the rate of revenue earnings would be the same for each page loaded, but I'm sure there's a method to McGimpsey's madness.

Click here to see more about the site's revenue share.

What does The Citizen Herald have to offer the reader?

When landing on the main page of The Citizen Herald, I saw a page chock-full of article thumbnails, making it hard to focus on any one aspect of the paper.  Each article was featured with an intro and byline with a link to read more.  I'm not a web designer, but as a reader I found the layout to be very busy - my eyes didn't know where to go, so my focus bounced all over the page.

When I clicked through to read individual articles, some were extremely short, only a paragraph or so, and contained little information.  The page layout was better than the home page, making it easier to focus on the article.  The advertising wasn't too intrusive - another plus.

The Jury is still out on The Citizen Herald

Will The Citizen Herald stand the test of time?  Who knows.  Right now there are approximately 35 writers providing content for the site and it's too early to tell whether it would be worth jumping into the pool.  With Google's recent algorithm tweaks (there's that word again), does McGimpsey have the 'google juice' to pull the internet reader to his site to bring in any revenue at all?  Since writers are paid only by revenue share, will their articles be worthy of reading, or will The Citizen Herald be another small fish in the big pond known as the content mill?

If you have first-hand experience with The Citizen Herald, sound off!


  1. The design is a little busy. A focal point above the fold would solve that, I think. Pay scale seems a bit..odd. I bookmarked the site. Will be interesting to see if it gains traction.

  2. Thanks for sharing the info. I will definitely check them out.

  3. After reading about The Citizen Herald here I applied & was accepted. I wrote three articles, all of which were published. The following week, the site went down. I couldn't access the main site or the login page. I sent them a tweet and an email, never received a response. Hoping it gets resolved soon. I won't get any revenue share money until next month...hopefully its more than a few pennies.