Helium is a directory of user generated articles. Anyone can submit an article to any of 24 different categories (arts, autos, politics, etc.). Articles can be submitted directly to channels, entered into contests, or as part of a debate. Since Helium’s launch last October the site has gotten over 69,000 writers and accumulated over 400,000 articles on 60,000 topics.
Over the past couple of months they’ve been running a pilot program for new “Marketplace” service that connects authors and publishers. Today, they’re officially launching the service. Using “Marketplace”, publishers can list bounties for articles they want written. Authors then submit their stories following the publisher’s writing guidelines and compete for the bounty. Publishers can select any of the articles as the winner, although Helium’s peer review ratings help rank the list. Payments per article range from $20 to over $100, with 20% transaction fee going to Helium.
For the pilot they have 14 publishers listing about 10 bounties a piece. In September they expect to have over 1000 publishers on the system.