Freelance site using software to recruit and pay workers

May 12, 2010 by Lin Edwards report
API Flow Overview

( --, a freelance site based in Sydney, Australia, has come up with the idea of using software to recruit and pay professionals to carry out work. The site enables software developers to write programs to post job adverts, select from those bidding on the jobs, and even pay them, without any human input.

Matt Barrie, Chief Executive of, said that after 60 years of people controlling we are now “getting to the stage where software can control humans.” One possible application of the system could be a company having a large online inventory of virtual goods for sale. The software could stock the store with content created by writers recruited automatically, and those who produced the best-selling product would be selected to create more content. The process could continue as long as the company had money in the bank to continue paying its workers. Barrie said the company was looking forward to “where this might take us.”

Barrie said the site has enough programmers on file to make it possible for software to be developed that could even improve itself by hiring programmers to improve its own code, perhaps perpetually. The new software algorithms enabling automatic , training and paying of workers have just been released for a number of different industries using the site.

Barrie said the software algorithms would in many ways ensure performance assessments were more objective, since they are not influenced by subjective factors, such as whether or not the boss likes the worker. Barrie also said in a press release that the system could be used to automatically hire “one, three, or 500 humans,” and that it could “literally assemble an army overnight to solve complex problems.”

Automating the hiring process is not an entirely new idea, since many companies now use programs such as TalentFilter to sort through large numbers of applicants to select a short list for interview. In these systems it is quite possible an application or CV is never viewed by a human.

There are many outsourcing sites on the Internet, and like the others has a large membership of people with a wide range of skills such as programmers, Web designers, writers, architects, graphic designers, and so on. claims to be the largest of these sites, with over 1,500,000 workers registered in 234 countries.

The application programming interface (API) is accessible from

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