Link: Mahalo Greenhouse Launches. You may recall that the human powered search service (note that it's not a search *engine*) Mahalo launched recently. Today it's been announced that they're now hiring PTGs or Part Time Guides who will be writing content for them, and they'll be paying them real money.
Only.... you have to be in the States. Yup, if you're not an American you can write guides but they're not going to pay you money - they'll make a donation on your behalf to the Wikimedia Foundation. Well, I wasn't thrilled in the first instance, and I'm even less thrilled now. I don't actually understand *why* they can't pay non-US citizens, and it doesn't seem to make any sense to me, but I'm happy to accept that there's a good reason for it. That's not my concern. I just wonder how objective these results are going to be. Now, I don't wish to cast aspersions here, but I reckon you'll probably get a better result on local or national issues if someone from that region or country is the person who creates the result. Even if that's not the case, I'd be willing to bet that's what people's perceptions will be. I'm just getting this real feeling of an American bias to Mahalo - hope that I'm wrong, but I doubt it.
Of course, there's still my original concerns that have to be dealt with - the guides themselves - do they really know enough about 200+ subjects to create sensible results? Do they know enough to check the work of others? And of course, the idea that an answer is 'done'. Sorry, it isn't done - answers to things are changing all the time as new resources come out. Mahalo is looking like a second rate version of a virtual library of the Intute style. I was careful not to say that it's like Squidoo since Mr Calacanis got very snitty with Barry when he suggested it. (Don't actually think slagging off the opposition is entirely the best approach, but there you go.)
Be interesting to see what happens next.