Demand Media

www.demandmedia.com

Demand Media Reviews

Updated January 23, 2015
Updated January 23, 2015
130 Reviews
3.0
130 Reviews
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Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
Demand Media Chief Executive Officer Sean Moriarty
Sean Moriarty
5 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Can work from home, library, coffeeshop, anywhere my laptop can get the internet (in 8 reviews)

  • Free lunch every Friday was icing on the cake (in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • Demand funnels each submitted article to an anonymous pool of copy editors (CEs) assigned to each special topic section (in 5 reviews)

  • Demand Media is also notorious for low pay per industry standard, which is typically justified by throwing in stock options (in 4 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1. 1 person found this helpful  

    Soul-crushing for experienced writers.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Freelance Writer in Santa Monica, CA
    Current Employee - Freelance Writer in Santa Monica, CA

    I have been working at Demand Media as a contractor (more than 3 years)

    Pros

    Flexible hours. You work when you want, if there's any worthwhile articles to claim in the areas you're approved for.

    Cons

    I applied and was accepted as a freelance writer working from home. I was approved to write in four areas. I went into the job with an open mind, despite reading hordes of negative review about the company. The first three months was a learning experience as it takes a while to get used to their style of writing. The copy editors - who not only control your scores but have the final word on whether your article gets accepted or not (read as whether you get paid or not) do not mince words in their criticism. Several editors I worked with were very, very good. But there also were those whose comments always carried a condescending tone. And there were a couple editors who were highly regarded by the company - despite the fact that they made glaring editing errors. By the time I reached the six month mark, my scores were very high but I'd had my fill. The time I was spending researching and writing to turn in a $25 article that wouldn't require a re-write was boiling down to earning less than minimum wage per hour. The pool of articles available to writers dropped as the company lost clients and half of the articles left were un-writeable (i.e., "Top Five Schools to Learn Flooring Installation" and "How to Get in Shape Without Exercising or Dieting"). Even though I'm still technically one of their freelancers, I haven't written an article for them in months. And I never even applied to write for the area I am most knowledgeable in because I ultimately realized neither I nor any of my associates in the industry would ever consult Demand's articles for information.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I wouldn't know where to begin.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  2. 1 person found this helpful  

    No respect for writers and inconsistent copy editors

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Freelance Writer
    Current Employee - Freelance Writer

    I have been working at Demand Media as a contractor (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    Work whenever and wherever you want -- if there's work

    Cons

    Writers are expected to be experts but then have to do hours of research for a 400 word article in order to provide sources for every detail. Copy editors are notoriously inconsistent and some are just plain obnoxious. The editing process is punitive towards writers, with little or no give and take. Hostile senior editors on power trips can make the whole thing a nightmare. Beware. Things can go along nicely and then suddenly you'll encounter unreasonable and arbitrary demands from editors. I don't know how this company is still in business. I wouldn't buy its stock.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    They don't care so I'm not going to waste my time with advice.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  3. 1 person found this helpful  

    Demand Media Not Interested in their Writers

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Article Writer in Palm Coast, FL
    Former Employee - Article Writer in Palm Coast, FL

    I worked at Demand Media as a contractor (less than a year)

    Pros

    You can work from home.

    Cons

    Demand Media pays nothing. They expect writers to research, write and if not initially accepted, rewrite. All for the top dollar of $25 per article. Then, if not accepted, the writer gets nothing. Writers can expect to earn much lower than minimum wage for their talent.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Pay for decent talent and decent articles. You are no better than big business paying nothing for their workers.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Don't ever work for demand!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Photographer in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Photographer in Chicago, IL

    I have been working at Demand Media as a contractor (more than a year)

    Pros

    the only pro is that there are a bunch of jobs...

    Cons

    almost all of the jobs you can't complete because it would cost more than it pays.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    learn how to run a company and take advice from the people that actually do the work!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 7 people found this helpful  

    Sinking ship. Avoid if you value job security

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Director in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Director in Santa Monica, CA

    I worked at Demand Media full-time

    Pros

    Some great people work here. The coffee machines are nice. Plenty of space to spread out since the brand new office has so few people in it now.

    Cons

    This place is a sinking ship. All the quality leadership has left in the last year. The site teams haven't made much progress in reversing the enormous drop in site traffic and the current focus on content marketing is over ambitious and lacks real growth opportunities. The stock is in perpetual decline. Santa Monica is loaded with better tech companies to work for.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Sell and cut your losses.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  7. 2 people found this helpful  

    Extremely Low Pay

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Digital Content Writer in Los Angeles, CA
    Former Employee - Digital Content Writer in Los Angeles, CA

    I worked at Demand Media as a contractor (less than a year)

    Pros

    Time flexibility. Ability to claim yourself as a "published writer".

    Cons

    To research and properly write an article that will make it past the assigned editor, it will take several hours. Most of my articles (decent pace - I'm not slow), averaged me about $1-$2 per hour at best. Most "good" topics get taken once posted, so you waste time watching for opportunities. I tried an article that was supposed to make royalties if "sold" to other sites. I have actually seen it on several websites ...but so far I've been paid about $0.49 TOTAL and that was THREE years ago. It's basically digital content slave labor.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I'm embarrassed to put Demand on my resume. People have literally laughed.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 3 people found this helpful  

    Notorious and despised for many reasons

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Editor in Santa Monica, CA
    Former Employee - Editor in Santa Monica, CA

    I worked at Demand Media full-time (less than a year)

    Pros

    Office near beach, 3rd Street Promenade, free snacks, laid back to an extreme

    Cons

    Laid back to the point where people on the content team such as editors and content managers are instant messaging for half the day with friends and giggling. There's no shame. Many have no formal training or eduation in journalism. No wonder the company has such a horrible reputation. Wired, LA Weekly, and Business Insider have all written about the shoddy work of this content farm. If you're an editor, manager or writer working for the content team, working for Demand Media is only going to harm your resume. Real journalists look down upon such unprofessional work. They don't fact-check or verify anything. I was also verbally and sexually harassed, and management failed to address any of my complaints. That is simply wrong, callous, and shameful. I resigned because of the lack of morals and values here. Pay is also ridiculously low. You'll earn more at almost any other desk job. I am confident that this was the worst job I've ever had.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hire content managers with professional journalism experience, people who have actually studied journalism at reputable universities or publications, or else your reputation is only going to get worse. Treat employees with some ounce of respect. It is so incredibly disrespectful and cold to ignore the concerns of your employees, especially when they involve sexual and verbal harassment. Keep things professional. Make it known that a professional environment requires professionalism. No ogling, crass behavior, remarks about female bodies, breasts, prostitution, and yelling. Demand some decency.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    Ho hum

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Writer
    Former Employee - Writer

    I worked at Demand Media as a contractor (more than a year)

    Pros

    Some editors actually provide decent feedback to make your article more engaging. The pay is decent and the site does supply helpful information.

    Cons

    Gee, where to start? Articles, though there are a lot of them, need to be more specific. Many of them are VAGUE and need to be thoroughly researched before even claiming the title. Of course while looking to see if the title would be something you want to write about, someone else could grab it. Many of the articles are How-to and focus on cars and DIY. If supplying a picture, you must choose from a limited file of pictures the site supplies. Most editors should not be editors. It's not always their fault though. DS has so many rules that must be followed, there is very little wiggle room for creativity.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    More topics, less cars. Screen the hired. More pictures!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10. 1 person found this helpful  

    Made great money for a while, but only by ignoring the blatant favoritism and inconsistency in policies.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Writer-copy Editor
    Former Employee - Writer-copy Editor

    I worked at Demand Media

    Pros

    A good freelance opportunity to get experience and decent part time money -- at least initially

    Cons

    Do not invest any emotional or real time energy into this company -- they are a handful of founding influences making money -- for freelancers, the management style is execrable: no consistency, loyalty or even decency in how employees are treated. Management never tells the truth, period.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I am not at all sure senior management knows or cares what middle management is doing. If they do, they should be ashamed. The company is as unethical as they come. Also, writers and editors do not have to be experts in their subjects to effectively handle short articles; that's what writers do -- research, understand language syntax, grammar and style principles, and write. Experts may not have any writing ability. The management policy of asking for degrees and certificates from writers and editors in their subject areas will not yield higher quality writing. Hiring better editors and writers will do that. You will have to be able to actually evaluate writing and editing ability in order to hire them, not go by abstract principles.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Don't count on them

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Titling Department
    Former Employee - Titling Department

    I worked at Demand Media

    Pros

    It was good while it lasted

    Cons

    They get rid of people like they are disposable napkins
    They change the rules and regulations but don't tell you. You are expected to look at the guidelines daily as they can change daily, I even saw them change from hour to hour, rarely consistent
    Department leaders will tell you one thing but then you are judged by a completely different standard by completely different people
    They say you will get a chance to retest if you have a poor review but instead they just remove your privileges

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Have the leaders in forums who are telling you what to do actually do the reviews
    Actually allow people a chance to retest when they make a mistake, especially people who work for months without a bad review and then make their first mistake

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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