Coder sites: Can you really build a gaming site for $10,000?

A few years ago, I signed up for a variety of coding sites. I currently have “memberships” (only the free variety) on,, and a few others.

When I first did this, I got some good gigs out of it. I made a few thousand for a simpler design and layout of a site, which was then taken over by internal developers. I also made good money fixing some performance problems in a database. I completed about 4-5 side jobs in this manner and got paid well on each one. Life was good.

Then the sites began to become offshoring portals, with people willing to work for pennies on the dollar. Now, the sites are not worth my time, as there are far too many people looking for something for nothing, with others willing to deliver. Look at these.

  • We are looking for a programmer for our web based strategy game project. We will support design document and graphics. We need a skilled programmer who can make this game from top to bottom. Game is similar to
    Budget: $5,000 – $10,000
    Average Bid: No bids thus far
    Timeline: 4-5 months
  • I would like to create a website similar to In addition it should support Unicode (utf-8) and both ltr and rtl languages. Please bid if you are able to do the whole web programming, flash programming and so on. Transaction will be done when it passed all security and functionality tests as I am IT engineer and I’ve enough knowledge about the subject.
    Budget: $,1000 – $5,000
    Average Bid: $3,946.85
    Timeline: unknown
  • We would like to setup a music community based on the communtiy platform and look for a webdesigner. The community platform demo can be found under One website our team liked very much was
  • Budget: $10,000 – $25,000
    Average Bid: $13,350.96
    Timeline: unknown

I should have a caveat that the above projects are higher budget for the work than most. There are also the “I want a web site like Trip Advisor” with a budget of $100 – $500 jobs out there. In fact, the $500 website is very popular.

My thought is that most of these projects are impossible. They will never be completed in the timeframe allowed. With payouts based on milestones, the companies are most likely hoping to get some free development to get them started and have likely set up the test environment on their own servers. Even when they are possible, the developer is going to have to be able to live off of a very low salary. To complete most of the projects, the developer would be working more than 40 hours a week and the payout is likely to be less than minimum wage.

I have nothing against commerce and if someone is willing to play the game, more power to you. I do have to ask the companies, however, what type of quality they really expect out of the endeavor when they are paying someone slave wages to complete their projects. It should probably come as no surprise that the majority of the bids are from India, with other bids from Vietnam, Pakistan, Bangladesh and China. I also wonder, when I see “build me an online casino for $500” how the person sleeps at night when, perhaps if, the money rolls in.

Just recently, I started getting emails from one of the sites again and promptly signed in and turned them off. From my perspective, it is pure noise. There are still a few decent jobs on, but the rest seem to be way too low for me to ever consider. If the people in the third world can do the work and make a living, more power to them. I would rather bow out.

Peace and Grace,

Twitter: @gbworld

4 Responses to Coder sites: Can you really build a gaming site for $10,000?

  1. Unknown says:

    I am from India and currently working as software developer at Bangalore. I too registered on to see what kind of project people does. For many project on these sites, it’s way too low price for an Indian to honestly finish the project.

  2. Gregory says:

    Yogee:I think it cheapens the entire "game" for professionals. Years ago, I found some good projects on site like, but it has definitely become the Walmart or Aldi of development with all of the super low bids. And people are now expecting it to be a site where they can get a coder for pennies on the dollar. Of course, the quality of work from many of the bidders is, no doubt, as good as the price paid. But many of the people posting bids have bought a "how to make millions on the Internet". I suspect one of the "hints" is to pay someone in a foreign country really low wages. I would not be surprised if there are hints on how to get the site up and not pay, as the quality is horrible. It is disgusting and makes offshore developers, as a whole, look bad. It is good to see that people who do quality work offshore are as disgusted as I am.Peace and Grace,Greg

  3. Unknown says:

    @Rick:Bad example buddy! First: Though the problem seems hypercritically complex, we can design it to work for practical purpose. I think ‘infinite loop’ is bugging you there but you can always run the program in another thread and you can see if the thread is still running after (configurable) defined infinite time (let’s say 1 minutes for finding prime number on my computer). Obviously, the software must be limited by language which supports scripting languages or languages supported by reflection feature. Also, the function or method should be atomic or dependent dll/assembly should be provided as input.I would do it in 10 days max and within $1000 budget! Would you it to be done by me?

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