Avoid the Panda: Working on SimpleTense Isn’t What you Think

After working on dozens of freelancing websites, I wanted to post a review about a site I haven’t seen too much of but deserves some special attention, especially as we exit the pandemic. This comes after having worked on Freelancer.com 10 years ago, then Upwork and Fiverr later on. I’ve also been on Chegg as a subject matter expert, so I understand something about how the online education industry works. SimpleTense wasn’t what I expected.

I worked at SimpleTense Education for less than a year, and the experience was, shall I say, something close to sitting in a warm bath for too long. My skin got wrinkly and by the time I moved on, I felt like I was going to get nauseous. Simply get in too deep.

I found them on YouTube helping students and thought it was a neat offering. I certainly felt stress working through my undergraduate courses myself. In COVID, the stress must be even more annoying, paying 5-figure bills to sit at home on Zoom meetings. So I happily joined. But once I got into SimpleTense, it wasn’t at all what I expected. Don’t get me wrong, there are some benefits. You get paid. That’s the only pro.

But let’s be honest here. The job is to write essays for Chinese students who are here in The United States or overseas but go to school here. That’s why the logo is a panda; it’s meant to appeal to them.

Basically, they put down what they need to be written like a 5-page essay on The Great
Gatsby or whatever and you do all the work for them. The students don’t read anything or write anything. They don’t learn anything. It’s a paper mill. You do all the work and they take credit.

You get paid, which is nice, but that’s all the benefit. As a writer, you’re being asked to
throw away your professional reputation for a few bucks. And by throw away, I mean that this is the kind of job no working professional could credibly put on their resume.

If you get on Chegg they have an Integrity Shield so professors can declare their answers before they get posted all over the Internet and students use it to cheat. Cheating is a huge issue in online education, even the biggest sites are actively offering it whether they admit it or not. Chegg claims to fight it at least. On the tutor side, tutors claim to flag questions from students as blatantly cheating. SimpleTense offers editing services too, but they also just write papers for pay. As I said, you do all the work and they get all the credit.

If you’re willing to discredit yourself for this job, I recommend you, at least, use a
pseudonym. You’re going to have to be John Hancock or Lucy Liu for a little bit. But
seriously, if you want a legit writing career, this might not be the best of all possible
options. Avoid this and get a real job.

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