Google alumni launch new answer brokering site

Former Google Answers researchers launch uclue.com

A group of former researchers for the Google Answers search and research service have launched a new answer brokering Web site.

A beta of the site, uclue.com, was launched Feb. 28 with about 35 former Google Answers contract researchers tackling questions from users. Google Answers, which was launched in 2002, stopped accepting new questions in December, although answers to previous questions are still posted on the site.

Emily Moore, whose researcher handle at uclue.com is "journalist," said the impetus for reviving the concept of a question-and-answer site came from a group of former Google Answers users looking for help with questions.

The goal of uclue.com is "to assist people who don't have the time to search for themselves or don't know how to search, how to get into the deep Web," she said. "The niche that uclue fills is for quality detailed, comprehensive information. People are quite willing to pay for that."

For now, the site is only allowing those who worked as researchers at Google Answers to tackle questions. Since the site launched, it has received 100 questions from users, Moore said.

Some questions have included how to donate a kidney in Britain and why there are two high tides each day.

Users post a question and a suggested value between US$5 and US$250 that they will pay for the answer. Users also can provide a tip to the researcher who answers their question. If a user is not satisfied with an answer, a refund will be provided, Moore said. The site will not write an essay for a student or complete a homework assignment, she added. It also will not provide personal details about a living person.

Unlike Yahoo Answers, which allows users to post answers to questions for free, "a paid answer service not only produces better answers, it also attracts better questions," Moore said.

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Heather Havenstein

Computerworld
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