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Bubblews: Maybe Not an Intentional Scam, but Not to Be Trusted

Ron is a long-time writer of non-fiction articles who also enjoys writing short fiction.

Fraud alert!

Fraud alert!

Back in November of 2013, I published an article about my experiences with Bubblews, the controversial social media and writing site. The title of that article was “Bubblews: Probably Not A Scam, But Not Ready For Prime Time.” But since that time, Bubblews has changed a lot, and so has my assessment of just how much of a scam Bubblews should be considered to be.

On the positive side, there have been major improvements in the “look and feel” of the site. A lot has been done make it look more professional, and to reduce the amount of fraudulent posts and comments.

But most importantly, the underlying business model has changed drastically. I still don’t consider Bubblews to be an outright scam. But I believe the way the business has been managed, and the cavalier way writers on the site have been treated, could hardly have been worse if the site was a deliberate scam.

That’s why I thought I needed to write an updated article explaining my view that while Bubblews may not be intended as a scam site, it has defrauded users just as if it was one.

Bubblews has often failed to pay its writers what they were due

Bubblews has long had a reputation for not paying all its writers for their work. Throughout its history, the site has held back payments due, sometimes amounting to hundreds of dollars, and has many times closed users' accounts when they complained. Often writers received no explanation and discovered there was little they could do to force the site to pay what was owed.

(NOTE: I personally have been paid 12 out of 13 redemptions. Apparently I will never be paid for the 13th due to the policy change explained below).

These frequent failures to pay were bad enough. But then it got worse.

Originally, writers were paid one cent for each view, "like," and comment on their articles. For example, during a period in which I had posted 28 short articles, I accumulated 2372 views, 120 likes, and 16 comments, which earned me $25.08. In the world of online writing that was an unbeatable rate of pay.

But in October of 2014 the site stopped showing the number of views each article was getting, making it impossible for writers to determine how much their articles were earning. Then, with no announcement, the rate of pay was reduced, drastically and surreptitiously. Writers were left to guess how much Bubblews would pay them for their work.

Finally, on the last day of 2014, Bubblews announced a change in its payment policy that set off a bombshell among the already frustrated writers on the site.

Bubblews officially refuses to pay writers what it owes them

In its New Year's Eve announcement, Bubblews made official in policy what was already evident in practice. Here’s how the new policy was described:

Bubblews recently changed its compensation policy to a flexible model to match our advertising revenue. Instead of the previous fixed rate, Bubblews now pays a variable amount, depending on local advertising rates in your country. This ensures that the site remains sustainable, and may allow us to process redemptions more quickly.

Unfortunately, due to extremely high levels of manipulation and fraudulent activity, Bubblews will not honor redemptions made before November 11, 2014.

Furthermore, all redemption requests submitted after November 11, 2014 will be processed according to the new compensation model.

An explosion of rage against Bubblews management

So, now the reduction in pay rate was official. From November 11, 2014 onward, the site would do what it should have been doing from the beginning – it would pay writers based on the amount of revenue that was coming in. But that announcement set off torrents of angry posts from writers on the site, with a number of them threatening legal action. Why?

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It wasn’t because Bubblews was adjusting its payouts to a level commensurate with its income. Had that policy been put in place and explained in an honest and transparent manner, most Bubblews users would have understood and actually welcomed it as a necessary step in keeping the site viable.

What writers were up in arms about was Bubblews’ unilateral decision to simply not pay for work done prior to November 11, 2014. For some writers that meant a loss of hundreds of dollars that Bubblews admits they are owed, but which it will now simply not pay. (At least one writer will lose more than $1100). And why? Because other people, not the writers who are owed the money, engaged in “extremely high levels of manipulation and fraudulent activity” which the site’s managers admit they should have stepped in to control much sooner than they did.

In addition, writers who have outstanding redemptions submitted after November 11 will be paid, but the amount will be significantly reduced to fit the new model. Some writers say they are receiving as little as 10 percent of what they earned.

Understandably, a large number of Bubblews writers have been thinking, and expressing, some very hard thoughts about the way the site has handled things.


Bubblews has paid out more than it's brought in

The reason Bubblews management feels overwhelmed by the amount they owe to writers is understandable.

CEO Arvind Dixit laments in a post on the site that “Bubblews has distributed over $1 million to date, considerably more than our revenues.” He also admits that “Part of this was poor management of our vast growth.” Dixit goes on to offer an apology for not acting sooner to fix the financial and fraud problems that had begun to bedevil the site. But, he says, with the change in policy, “the situation is under control,” and he is confident the site will now be able to survive.

My concern: Bubblews management still doesn’t seem to understand the real issue

Personally, I believe Arvind Dixit when he claims that Bubblews had no intention of defrauding people, and was overwhelmed by the amount of money siphoned off by scammers as well as what was legitimately earned by writers. He says they have the management issues under control, now, and the revenue and payment model now in place will allow the site to sustain itself. I hope that’s true.

But the problems with Bubblews go far beyond bad management.

The issue isn’t management skills; it’s integrity

What I have yet to hear from Dixit or any other Bubblews official is any indication that they understand the very evident lack of integrity that has characterized their dealings with writers on the site. One staffer expressed their understanding of what went wrong this way:

Yes there was mismanagement that has since been dealt with. We understand that we messed up, we have made the necessary changes to the site in order to be sustainable, and are moving forward.

In other words, “we did what was necessary to fix the problem. Now let’s just all move on.”

What Bubblews management does not seem to understand is that at every point along the way, they have failed to be open and honest about what was going on. Many writers feel that they have been deliberately lied to and misled.

Moreover, it is not an act of integrity to refuse to pay what you clearly and legitimately owe to workers who trusted you to honor your commitments to them. Writers put in a lot of time and effort based on the promises Bubblews made to them. Yet Arvind Dixit’s expressed attitude is:

We reported lots of money that we didn't have. The money that you "earned" never existed. We didn't "steal" it and go on vacations to Aruba or buy motorcycles. It just didn't exist.

Bubblews management still doesn’t get it

To me it’s clear that Bubblews management just doesn’t see any need to change the ethical basis on which they’ve been operating; they think they just need to do a better job of management. And that’s dangerous!

With their evident lack of understanding of the ethical standards that should guide them, how can anything this management team says be trusted? As far as I can see, they see no need, and have no plan, to work at restoring the trust that has been destroyed between management and the writers on the site. It’s my belief that without that trust, Bubblews may survive, but it will never thrive.

To leave or to stay, that is the question

For many users of the site, the question of whether or not Bubblews is a scam is already definitively settled, and not in the site's favor. Some are threatening class action suits and other legal measures. Writer after writer has expressed their intention of removing all their articles from the site and leaving Bubblews forever.

On the other hand, I've seen posts by dozens of writers who express appreciation that management is finally coming clean, and doing what is necessary to insure the site's survival. In my opinion there is no clear-cut right or wrong answer to this - each Bubblews writer must decide for himself or herself whether to stay or leave.

I’ll stay on Bubblews, but with my eyes wide open

Let me be clear. I plan to continue to post articles on Bubblews. But not because I have any assurance of being paid for any work I put in. As I say in my Bubblews article addressing this issue, I’ll stay simply because I enjoy writing the kinds of short, personal articles that Bubblews encourages. Maybe I’ll get paid, maybe I won’t. But since I won’t be there for the money, I’m willing to take that chance.

But I won’t recommend the site to others. In fact, my advice is that if you expect to be paid what you are promised for your writing, stay away from Bubblews!

It may not actually be intended to be a scam; but you may be treated as if it is.

UPDATE: June, 2015

After being offline for four days, Bubblews has completed a major upgrade to the site and is back online. According to Bubblews CTO Tyler Pearson it is "a revamp of the code, infrastructure, and database to match the needs of a modern high-traffic website."

It's encouraging to see that the Bubblews team is working to upgrade the site technologically. It shows a commitment to the site continuing and improving. But a more important effort should be in changing their policies to demonstrate greater transparency and integrity in their dealings with writers.

That's the upgrade I'm really looking forward to.

UPDATE: November, 2015

Bubblews finally shut down for good, and did so in a way that is entirely characteristic of the way it was operated. The shutdown was sudden and without warning. Writers were given no opportunity to retrieve their articles before the site became inaccessible [you may still be able to recover some Bubblews articles. See How To Recover And Reuse Your Bubblews Articles]. And of course, no one who was owed money will ever see a cent of it.

Goodbye, Bubblews.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2015 Ronald E Franklin


Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on August 13, 2018:

As of 8/13/2018 still goes to a "403 Forbidden" page.

Wizardloo on August 13, 2018:

It's August 2018 and I just googled bubblews only to find the site back

up and running again

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on September 03, 2015:

Thank you, Brian. I'm only posting there occasionally. At this point I definitely don't plan to invest a lot of time there.

Brian Leekley from Bainbridge Island, Washington, USA on September 03, 2015:

Thanks for this appraisal of Bubblews. It will help me decide whether to continue to occasionally post there.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on June 22, 2015:

Marisa, I just checked, and at least the site is back up. Now I'll have to do some investigating to see what the changes are. My main concern continues to be ethics more than technology.

Kate Swanson from Sydney on June 21, 2015:

It may be encouraging that Bubblews is willing to invest in an upgrade, but it's concerning that they need a planned 4-day outage to do it. What if something goes wrong and the outage needs to be extended? Posts on the site barely get featured on search engines as it is - an extended absence could mean even they will get de-indexed and that will be the end of that!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on May 04, 2015:

Hi, Lady_E. Your experience at Bubblews parallels mine. Even with more than 600 articles still on the site, some of which have to be getting views, the bank never changes unless I post something new. And even then, the rise is minimal. Even if the site could be trusted to pay what they've promised, the return on hours invested makes it not worthwhile to put any effort there. Thanks for reading and sharing.

Elena from London, UK on May 04, 2015:

I will tweet this later to raise awareness. I spent a year with Bubblews and when they changed the payment threshold from $25 to $50 everything changed. I have lots of articles there and my balance is not changing, even though I receive lots of clicks. That's definitely wrong. When I have time, I will delete all my articles there. I do not trust them and have not posted there for months. It's just a matter of time before Bubblews get taken offline.

Debra Allen from West By God on April 04, 2015:

True, true dat!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on April 04, 2015:

Interesting, Lady Guinevere. I'm not sure getting booted by the BBB matters to Bubblews. After all, how much worse can their reputation get? Their ethical cluelessness seems to be ongoing.

Debra Allen from West By God on April 04, 2015:

I just this from another blogger that I am familiar with through Bubblews and he did research on them. btw they owe him over $600.00 and he used to be on staff. Here is his write up and discovery for the Bubblews owners:

Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on April 04, 2015:

Good point. I'll steer clear from that website for good.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on April 04, 2015:

Thanks, Kristen. At this point I think it's wise for anyone not already involved with Bubblews to avoid it.

Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on April 04, 2015:

Great hub Ron. I've heard of Bubblews and I'm glad I didn't seek it out. Thanks for sharing your experience with them. Voted up for interesting!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on March 12, 2015:

Lady Guinevere, that may be our best option these days for diversification.

Debra Allen from West By God on March 12, 2015:

I am also putting more focus on my new blogs.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on March 12, 2015:

Hi, Teresa. The landscape for writing sites has never looked more bleak. Bubblews is essentially dead as an income producer, and other similar social media-based sites are barely breathing. Only HubPages, and to a lesser extent InfoBarrel, have remained relatively stable though all the Panda/Penguin upheavals. Like you, I'm putting added emphasis on my blogs. But they don't produce revenue (not yet, at least), and I'm grateful that HubPages still does.

Teresa Schultz from East London, in South Africa on March 12, 2015:

I've been very wary of joining new (to me or to the Internet) writing sites since all the things that started going wrong with Bubblews (or things that were never dealt with or improved) and I'm glad I've stayed away from CGP Gallery, as now it's a dead site (has a message there saying the account has been suspended - probably left there by them themselves or by the hosts of the site, - most likely the hosts of the site. I won't put my head on a block but I doubt I'll ever spend too much time on any writing sites I do still belong to, in the future, or join any new writing sites. I'd much rather continue trying to increase income on my own sites, which I neglected when I spent too much time on Bubblews.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 28, 2015:

Thanks, DzyMsLizzy. Neither the money nor the ethics at Bubblews seems to be on the increase. It's clear now that probably never again will that site be a real source of income - anyone who goes there for the money will be working for literally pennies per hour. BTW, there's no need to put "earned" in quotes - despite what Arvind says, and his refusal to pay, you did earn that money!

Liz Elias from Oakley, CA on February 28, 2015:

I began writing there just before all the changes, and some of them went into effect very shortly after my debut there. I did not yet have a lot of followers, so it took me a while to reach the payout threshold. Once I did, my redemtption claim fell after the Nov. 11 cutoff date for not getting paid, but I was quite annoyed that the new rates were applied retroactively, and I got $20 less than I had "earned."

Since then, my so-called 'earnings' are crawling along--a snail would move at light speed by comparison.

That said, I'm staying, but not for the money at this point--after all, my HP articles don't get much income, either, and I'll be lucky to reach payout twice a year, instead of about quarterly, as I used to--but you are correct; BWS is a good site for short, 'personal' posts and social interaction of the type that don't make good fodder for HP.

Thanks for your clear explanation of their ethics, or rather, lack thereof--it is about what I had thought--you have simply put it into words.

Voted up, useful and interesting.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 28, 2015:

Hi, Lady Guinevere. At this point, I don't think Bubblews has the money to pay what they owe, even if they wanted to. And they don't seem to want to. So I think you are right in deciding to just move on. Thanks for sharing.

Debra Allen from West By God on February 28, 2015:

I wrote to Arvind on Suday night and have yet to get a response from him about my payment that I was supposed to have gotten on November 5, 2014. I was going to file a complaint, but I do not think it is even worth it. I am owed $100.95. Arvind and his team, if you want to call them that, do not work together and Arvind is such a !$@. I am just going to move on and be done with it all. I have not ben on his site or my account in three months. I deleted all of my bubbles that I ever wrote there. I have them all in word and so I will use them other places. I do not even read anyon'e bubbles there either.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 27, 2015:

Glenn, fraud is an appropriate description, IMO. They have undeniably defrauded writers of what they earned, and to date have not expressed any remorse about it. Thanks for sharing.

Glenn Stok from Long Island, NY on February 27, 2015:

From the beginning I never thought of Bubblews as a scam. But since they reneged on the last payment, blaming it on paying out more money than they had, I saw right through it and I consider them a fraudulent business now.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 26, 2015:

Me too I finally found a good site write for and I am pleased with my results.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 25, 2015:

DDE, sad to say your experience with Bubblews is not untypical. I'm glad for HP!

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on February 25, 2015:

I was at Bubblews and wrote daily they still owe me three payments of which I have written off. It was a waste of time and a scam too.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 19, 2015:

darkprinceofjazz, the work/reward ratio has become much worse since your time on the site. Now, you can put in hours of writing and commenting for a return of literally pennies. At this point, it's clear that Bubblews is no longer a source of significant income, even if you get paid. Thanks for sharing.

darkprinceofjazz on February 19, 2015:

I earned 3 payouts (back when they were $25.00) from them back in 2013. As soon as many of my friends were not being paid, and one deleted for some nonsensical reason, I knew the writing was on the wall, it was time to leave.

It has just been one thing after another, I am so glad I spent the past 18 months doing other things. Personally I felt the amount of work for reward was to high compared to other sites as well.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 18, 2015:

Thanks, Writer Fox. I continue to be disappointed that the Bubblews leadership seems to be going on with business as usual, and has not at all acknowledged that they have been wrong in their treatment of writers. I hope contacting the BBB does help some to get paid. I have to admit, though, that based on past experience I'm not sure anything will move Bubblews to honor their promises.

Writer Fox from the wadi near the little river on February 18, 2015:

Thanks for sharing all of this Ron. This writing site just up and claimed one day that the 'money' in writers' bank accounts wasn't real and refused to pay them!

I never wrote for that site, but many people got burned.

There was a forum post on HubPages last week where a writer posted that she filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau against Bubblenews and, as soon as she did, they paid her. That might be good information to add to your article here. Enjoyed and voted up!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 14, 2015:

Rota, I think you're exactly right - there's no excuse not to pay writers what they earned. And there is certainly no excuse to just write it off, and blow it away. Again, the issue as I see it is lack of integrity. Thanks for sharing.

Rota on February 14, 2015:

Yeah, I reckon there's no excuse not to pay people. If the payments need to be paid slowly to writers over time or at a date far in the future, that is ok. But they should be paid regardless. And the fact that Bubblews have said they pay people at all, well, I can't justify that.

I have stopped writing on bubblews for now. I am waiting for my own payment, and will decide what to do once I get it. Hopefully.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 06, 2015:

junecampbell, it does seem that if some of the things Bubblews has done in not paying people for work they did are not illegal, they should be.

June Campbell from North Vancouver, BC, Canada on February 06, 2015:

I have to wonder if they have crossed the boundary from unethical to illegal. I suspect they have but proving it would be a difficult thing. Still, it just seems not right that Arvind and crew continue to operate.

Lana Adler from California on February 05, 2015:

Ooooo you're so special :) But I'm special too! I was 'followed' by Arvind and it used to be a very short list then, in Bubblews' heydays... I can't believe it was a big deal to me at the time.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 05, 2015:

kalinin1158, let me tell you how special I am - I once actually got a reply from Arvind to one of my emails. Not many people can make that claim!

Lana Adler from California on February 05, 2015:

My pleasure. I really like how you emphasized the ethical issue as an underlying foundation for all other issues. They really don't get it - many people, including me, would have stayed on Bubblews just for the sake of writing and interacting, if they were treated with respect and consideration.

From the get-go, the member support was appalling. People would write email after email without ever getting a reply. They tried to correct it, but it still has a lot of room for improvement, to put it lightly!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on February 05, 2015:

Hi, kalinin1158. So far, nothing seems to be changing in the way Bubblews treats writers on the site. As you say, they continue to close accounts of people who dare to criticize the way they've been operating. That indicates that there's still no appreciation of the ethical issues that desperately need to be addressed. I certainly understand your decision to pull out. Thanks for reading and for your kind comments.

Lana Adler from California on February 05, 2015:

I couldn't agree with you more - maybe it's not an intentional scam, but they definitely don't do things out in the open, and some of the decisions (like removing the views display) were real head-scratchers. What?? I CAN'T edit my post after 24 hours? But the last drop was when they removed the account of a fellow writer-friend with no explanation whatsoever. They just do whatever they want. So I'm finally done with Bubblews, phew...

Great hub, btw. So well-written and fair, in my opinion.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 31, 2015:

Peg, Bubblews seems to be getting worse. I just saw a post in the "Happy Bubbling" Facebook group from one of my fellow former Yahoo writers. After she complained to the BBB, Bubblews not only closed her account (without paying her), but also in their reply to the BBB insisted she was just a disgruntled violator of their TOS. It all comes back to the fact that the Bubblews leadership seems to have no understanding of what an ethical operation looks like. Thanks for the note on PersonaPaper. I'll have to check it out.

Peg Cole from North Dallas, Texas on January 31, 2015:

Ron, the site has lost all credibility as far as I'm concerned. When they opted not to pay certain people and looked for reasons not to pay, they seem to be intentionally defrauding people. I was hesitant to write there after the lack of responsiveness they demonstrated when I contacted them. I have since asked that my account be closed and received no response from them at all.

There's a new site where it seems the management is responsive and that they are careful to ensure that photos are given the proper credit. So far, I've been having fun on PersonaPaper which I found after reading a review article written here by Glenn Stok.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 14, 2015:

Hi, iwrite100. Sorry that you've been stiffed out of what you were owed. Closing accounts for some fancied violation of rules has been part of the Bubblews pattern for a long time, now. It just reinforces the fact that until management there has an ethical awakening, the site is not to be trusted. Thanks for sharing your experience.

Maribel Taleghani Asl from Philippines on January 14, 2015:

Lack of transparency, not observing ethics : I think that both of these are the offshoot of the fact that the people behind this site are inexperienced. I believe that they do not even know what "plagiarism" means and what duplicate content means. They simply use it as an exit to evade payments. Anyone who will make a follow up of unpaid redemption run the risk of being deleted for "not unique content."

Bubblews, I forgive you for you to not know what you are doing. I said forever goodbye to my $700+ redemption that I worked hard for more than two months plus the pain of being labeled as one who posted "not original content."

Carola Finch from Ontario, Canada on January 12, 2015:

I agree with you RonElFran about the lack of transparency at Bubblews. Recent communications from the CEO are vague to say the least and full of what seem to be empty promises. I have a website where I monitor traffic and have found that nearly all views are "unique" so no worries. I just posted three articles on Daily Two Cents (what a name!) so I am waiting to see what happens.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 12, 2015:

Carola, part of the problem at Bubblews is that nobody knows what they pay for. The lack of transparency continues. I've been writing for Daily Two Cents and its sister site Writedge since last July. Most of what I've placed on those sites are articles I salvaged from Yahoo Voices or transferred from Bubblews. So far, with about 20 articles on each site, I've made the $5 payout on WE once, and am just halfway there on DTC. They pay only for "unique" views, so articles can have many apparent views without moving the needle much. But for me, that's ok. Since this is recycled content (allowed once it's no longer indexed by search engines) that's additional income I wouldn't otherwise get.

Carola Finch from Ontario, Canada on January 11, 2015:

I believe that Bubblews is now only paying for likes and comments, which makes the income next to nothing. The like button is just a big star - really obvious!

I have been hearing good things about Daily Two Cents, which is similar to Bubblews but seems to have much better quality work on there and from all accounts, treats its writers well. According to my understanding, it takes posting three articles before posts are published rather than sent for editorial review. I am trying it out.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 11, 2015:

June, I've been following what Arvin has posted, and still see no evidence of a reappraisal of ethics. I haven't checked out CGP Gallery yet. I'll probably give it a little time before jumping into something else.

June Campbell from North Vancouver, BC, Canada on January 11, 2015:

I bailed out on New Years Eve when the bombshell dropped. I am now using CGP Gallery which strikes me as being much more ethical with their writers and the rates are still good. I belong to a FB group for past and current Bubblews members who want to stay in touch with one another. Some of the stories being told in that group are downright shocking.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 10, 2015:

Thanks for reading, nybride710. A while back Bubblews made it a point to say it was a social media site, not a writing site. Well, I think the only reason to continue to post there is as a social outlet. As you say, there is no financial incentive to do so anymore. Like you, my last posts have earned pennies.

Lisa Kroulik from North Dakota on January 10, 2015:

I first joined in the fall of 2012 and had a good experience for about a year. I was paid on time, had lots of connections and a good per-post earning. I dropped out of all writing for a while and was not at all impressed when I came back. My last post there literally earned two cents. I am at $39 and am not going to toil at two cents per post to get to payout. I'm glad it's finally revealing itself to be a scam.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 07, 2015:

Thanks, Pawpawwrites. I've deleted more than 100 of my posts that I plan to place elsewhere, but still have over 600 to go! Those that are not suitable to be republished, I'll probably leave, at least for now.

Jim from Kansas on January 07, 2015:

Well said. I deleted all of my posts there. I got paid every time, but the site always seemed like a scam, even though I got paid.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 05, 2015:

Thanks, SoundNFury. I'm sorry to hear that Bubblews staff is spending their time deleting the accounts of writers who criticize the way they've handled things. It indicates, as I stated, that they still don't get what it means to deal ethically with writers. If they carry that policy to its logical conclusion, the site is doomed - there won't be anyone left.

Michael Valencia from Los Angeles, CA on January 05, 2015:

Completely nailed it. I was unceremoniously deleted today after being there over a year without any issues and never cheating. Guess I was one of the writers who got too vocal for them. But even before I was deleted, I had removed all of my stuff and had no plans of continuing on there. Great hub!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 04, 2015:

Thanks, Joe3santacoloma. As I mentioned, they've gotten themselves a pretty bad reputation that I hope they can eventually overcome.

Joseph Santacruz from Warsaw, Poland on January 04, 2015:

Good article sir, it's not the first time I hear non favorable things about them.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

Thanks, MsDora. With all the anger, there's still a lot of folks hoping for Bubblews to survive.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on January 03, 2015:

Thanks for this insight into Bubblews, its problem and effort to survive. All the best to those who stay!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

Treathyl, I must say I miss Yahoo Voices. Yes their editing cycle was sometimes frustratingly long, but I learned a lot from having to meet their editorial standards. The fact that they allowed you to post and earn from content that you had already posted elsewhere was a unique bonus. I really miss that!

Treathyl FOX from Austin, Texas on January 03, 2015:

RE: Bubblews - I wondered about that. You have answered the question of whether or not to include links from HP and other sites. The “edit mode” at that site is real quirky, isn't it? Didn't know 24 hours was the cut off. Good to know. But you can't change or fix an image at all!

I really appreciated your tip about YAHOO Voices. Before they shut down, I actually made a few pennies from old articles that had been published elsewhere. Truthfully though I didn't really like their publishing process. It was too slow!! In this day and age of automation and real-time – the wait period to get an article approved was outrageous!!

Thanks man!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

Thanks, Treathyl. When I started on Bubblews in July 2013, I often included links to articles on HP or Yahoo. I don't do that any more for two reasons. First, as things got more uncertain at Bubblews, it wasn't clear to me exactly which kinds of outgoing links were permitted and which were not. So, to be sure of not leaving myself open to claims of having violated the TOS, I don't link out at all anymore. Also, they eliminated the ability to edit your posts after 24 hours. I have a lot of articles there with links pointing to my Yahoo articles that are, of course, no longer there. But there's nothing I can do to fix those broken links. I'm not sure outbound links will be a problem, but for me it's not worth having to worry about it.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

Thanks, Carola. Like you, I'll post there when the mood strikes me, but I have no intentions of investing time on anything serious. I'm ahead of you in one respect - I did actually receive an email reply from Arvind; and it wasn't even about a missing redemption. Or maybe that's why I got the reply!

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

June, I think you're probably right about the suits not going anywhere. And I'm not sure it's a good idea anyway. As you say, if Bubblews is already in a financial hole from paying out more than they have taken in, how much will anybody get even if a suit is successful? But having to fight legal actions might drain the site so much it would be forced to shut down. I hope that doesn't happen.

Treathyl FOX from Austin, Texas on January 03, 2015:

Always keepin' it real and honest! What do you think about just using Bubblews for backlinks? If you get paid, that's gravy!

Set up my Bubblews account on the last day of 2014. Yeah I know everybody was complaining about the money. But I figure this “controversial” site is still showing up in the search engines. Extract some link juice from it! (O.o) :)

Love the HUB! Your last paragraph surely sums it up!

The folks who run the site apologized. They said they'd clean up their act. Either they will or they won't.

Happy New Year!! :)

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

Thanks, Mel. Yes, it was clear that the pay rate they started with was unsustainable, and adjustments would have to be made eventually. If they had been honest about it, and had done it openly, they wouldn't be taking the hits they're taking now.

Carola Finch from Ontario, Canada on January 03, 2015:

Your hub is right on point. I agree about the integrity issues. I have been paid all my redemptions, though it took two emails to get one of them. My emails were never answered - I just got the money in the bank one day. I, too, enjoy writing about news topics that suit a short format. I am torn about whether or not to continue there. I may post now and then but mostly I am going to wait to see what happens.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

Thank you, Jodah. What Bubblews had going for it in the beginning was the prospect of quick money, but with little expectation of ongoing passive income. That's just the opposite of the HubPages model. Now Bubblews doesn't even have the advantage of high initial earnings. I'll use Bubblews for quick-hit articles off the top of my head, but I won't invest any significant time there. HP is far, far better for any "serious" writing.

Ronald E Franklin (author) from Mechanicsburg, PA on January 03, 2015:

Hi, Akshayy Rohida. Thanks for reading. At this point earnings on Bubblews are way down from what they were before. In my opinion, for the hours it takes to get a decent amount there now, you'd be better off with a minimum wage job.

June Campbell from North Vancouver, BC, Canada on January 03, 2015:

I have reached the same conclusion that you did. I don't think the site is a scam but the lack of integrity and the blatant disrespect shown the writers makes it a poor place to be. Despite the fact that I greatly enjoyed the Bubblews community, I have opted to stop posting or interacting. I doubt if the proposed class action lawsuits will go anywhere. The TOU covered all bases, plus if there are no assets, where would the money come from if there was an award or settlement?

Mel Carriere from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado on January 03, 2015:

Like you I have been paid most of my redemptions, but all the same came to the conclusion I was wasting my time because it requires too much effort to make money. The Bubblews business model was doomed from the beginning. Great hub!

John Hansen from Gondwana Land on January 03, 2015:

Thanks for this hub Ron, I have heard both good and bad about Bubblews and have even considered giving it a go at times, but for some reason always resisted. I think I'll just be happy to write on Hub Pages after reading this.

akshay from goa ,india on January 03, 2015:

i have written many posts on bubblews and have got good traffic

but my earnings are zero

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