I first heard of Fiverr a number of years ago through a friend who had recently started using it as a way to try to make some spare cash. He had recently finished college as well as quitting a dead-end job stacking shelves. After that it was the dreaded giro. He had had enough, it was time to try to make something out of himself.
Fast forward a few years and a lot of writing later, my friend is now one of the highest-rated sellers on the website, making a very handsome income for a 23 year-old.
When starting out, I was sceptical about how a person living in Scotland could make a decent wage from a website that was using dollars, a currency not even accepted in that country, and which seemed full of nonsense short-term work. I had always been inclined to writing in high school and I had done a bit of journalism in college. My friend's success prompted me to have a go myself.
Bored of a dead-end job that offered under £7 per hour and little in the way of career options, I was your typical 24 year-old with not much direction. Now three weeks into my writing career at Fiverr, I feel useful at last.
I'm doing something that is great fun, massively interesting, and very easy going. No nine-to-fives any more, waiting for my wage and praying for my next day off. Interacting with interesting people who want your help is a great feeling - much better than dealing with a disgruntled shopper.
As far as I am aware there are not many places that allow people to feel so empowered in their own work. That said, at the time of writing this, I am three weeks into my life on Fiverr and am yet to be financially better off.
I admit it is uncertain. But I could move on quickly were the site to get shut down, even if for a few days. These things are possible.
To make money on this website, you do have to put the work in, and have good ability. Without my friend showing me the ropes and giving advice, and generally mentoring me on how to be a good, efficient content writer, it would have been much more difficult, and I can see how people might struggle on this site.
It can be overwhelming if you don't know the best approach to take and sometimes I pity my mate, because he had no one holding his hand. But I think that shows what a person can achieve.
With the right drive and motivation - for us it is to have a steady income doing something we enjoy - you can break free from the wage-slave shackles of mundane employment. And it's not just that: you feel empowered as a fully employed, self-sufficient adult. I look around at many people my age. They look lost, with little purpose to their work, most hate it.
I don't blame them, because in the current economic climate things don't look as if they will be getting better soon. I'm just glad a website like Fiverr is around to show me that there are many unconventional paths a person can take to finding a satisfying and enjoyable way to earn a living - you just have to look for them.
Read MT's article on the rise of freeworking here.