"Your Human Intelligence Tasks 'Search for an answer to 1 simple question' have been removed from Amazon Mechanical Turk because they violated the terms of our HIT listing policy."
I . . . what? I went to look at the policies page for the list of "prohibited activities," which include the following:
- collecting personal identifiable information
- definitely did not do this
- disrupting or degrading the operation of any website or internet service
- uh, does making Google searches count as being disruptive??
- direct marketing
- unsolicited contacting of users
- impermissible advertising or marketing activities
- infringing or misappropriating the rights of any third party
- Although Zoogle is called Zoogle, I did that deliberately as well as explicitly stating that the whole point is that people were performing searches "on a modified Google search engine." I cited my sources!
- posting illegal or objectionable content
- My logs do not show any inappropriate search terms, and I don't see how else the content could be illegal or objectionable?
- disrupting operation of the Mechanical Turk website
- creating a security risk for Mechanical Turk, any Mechanical Turk user, or any third party
Since I am not even entirely clear what policy I violated, I have not modified/reposted the HIT for obvious reasons.
Abruptly halted experiment is sad. :(
Fortunately, I collected data from 104 Turkers before shutdown, so maybe I will be able to cull some interesting conclusions from that anyway. I deliberately wanted to avoid polling people like my friends, because they would be a self-selected population of young adults who are probably reasonably computer savvy, which would not make for as interesting of an experiment group, I think.
Research is so exciting.