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Top 3 MTurk or Amazon Mechanical Turk Alternatives in 2024

Updated on Mar 27
8 min read
Written by
Shehmir Javaid
Shehmir Javaid
Shehmir Javaid
Industry Research Analyst
Shehmir Javaid in an industry & research analyst at AIMultiple.

He is a frequent user of the products that he researches. For example, he is part of AIMultiple's DLP software benchmark team that has been annually testing the performance of the top 10 DLP software providers.

He specializes in integrating emerging technologies into various business functions, particularly supply chain and logistics operations.

He holds a BA and an MSc from Cardiff University, UK and has over 2 years of experience as a research analyst in B2B tech.
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Top 3 MTurk or Amazon Mechanical Turk Alternatives in 2024Top 3 MTurk or Amazon Mechanical Turk Alternatives in 2024

AIMultiple team adheres to the ethical standards summarized in our research commitments.

The interest in AI data services grows as AI-powered solutions spread across industries. Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk) is also a popular AI data service that is known to work with tech giants like Google. Despite its popularity, our research and recent news have identified some drawbacks of working with MTurk that may lead customers to look for its alternatives.

Readers interested in MTurk alternatives usually fall under 3 categories; select yours to see relevant alternatives for your business:

This article compares the top alternatives to Amazon Mechanical Turk in the AI data market and also evaluates the companies to help businesses find the right partner for their AI projects.

MTurk alternatives for workers

Here is a table comparing the alternatives based on criteria useful for workers.

Table 1. Amazon Mechanical Turk alternatives comparison table for workers

AlternativesWorker ratings
(out of 5)*
Number
of reviews*
Clickworker4.42454
Appen1.3257
Telus International1.788

* The data was gathered from the review platform Trustpilot because most of the reviews on this platform are from workers.

This section compares the alternatives based on data that is useful for workers. We analyzed worker reviews from platforms such as G2, Trustradius, Trustpilot, and Capterra to identify data that can be used to compare MTurk alternatives, specifically from the worker’s point of view.

1. Clickworker

Clickworker offers a platform for workers to complete microstasks in exchange for compensation. Clickworker sign-up for workers. 

Here are some aspects for workers to consider:

Onboarding/Sign up 

  • Free sign-up through a computer or the mobile app. 
  • Users found the signup process easy.1

Compensation

  • Payments are promised to be processed on a weekly basis.2
  • Payments are made via Payoneer or PayPal.
  • Some state the payment process took around 30 days.3

2. Appen

Appen’s network of workers includes over 1 million contributors. Appen sign-up for participants. 

Here are some aspects for participants to consider:

Onboarding/Sign up 

  • Sign-up is not offered in other languages such as Spanish, French, etc.4
  • Others found the signup process easy.5

Compensation

  • Payoneer is the only payment option.6
  • Some workers stated that the withdrawal limit is too high.7

3. Telus International

Telus International also claims to operate with a network of over 1 million contributors. Sign-up for Telus International’s AI community

Here are some aspects for workers to consider:

Onboarding/Sign up 

  • Workers state that the platform requires personal information to sign up.8
  • The onboarding process requires multiple tests.9

Compensation

  • Workers found the payment system misleading. Time given to finish jobs is also said to be less.10
  • Workers faced payment delays.11

MTurk alternatives for requestors (Buyers)

If you are interested in a quick comparison of MTurk’s alternatives, here is a table summarizing the data.

Table 2. MTurk alternatives comparison for requestors (Buyers)

CompaniesUser Ratings
Out of 5 (Avg)*
Number of
Reviews*
Mobile
application
ISO 27001
Certification
Code of
Conduct
Clickworker4.168
Appen4.254
Amazon Mechanical Turk428N/A
TELUS International4.310

Notes:

  • *Based on data from B2B review platforms such as G2, Trustradius and Capterra.
  • Companies are ranked based on the number of reviews.

Figure 1: Crowd size comparison of all companies

A bar graph showing the crowd comparison of each company based on their claims. Clickworker has the largest crowd with 4 million workers, and Amazon Mechanical Turk has the lowest with half a million.

MTurk alternatives for surveys

If you are interested in MTurk’s alternatives for survey participant recruitment, check out the table below.

Table 3. MTurk alternatives for survey participant recruiters

Vendors# of reviewsFree trialSurvey respondent sizeLanguages offeredMulti-channel survey distributionCustomer support
Amazon Mechanical Turk28✖️500KNot providedWeb-based panelThrough e-mail
resonio by Clickworker686M45Web-based panel, Android or iOS24/7 phone support
Qualtrics CoreXM3,682N/A50Web-based panel24/7 live support
User Interviews8262.4MEnglish onlyWeb-based panel, Android or iOSNA
Pollfish232✖️250M50Web-based panel, Android or iOS24/7 live support
SurveyMonkey Audience29,477✖️175M16Web-based panel24/7 phone support

Notes:

  • The number of reviews are gathered from B2B software review platforms, including G2, Capterra, and Trustradius.
  • Vendors are listed alphabetically with Amazon Mechanical Turk and resonio by Clickworker (sponsored) at the top.

For more: 

Amazon Mechanical Turk review

A line graph showing the rising global traffic of amazon mechanical turk indicating an interest in amazon mechanical turk alternatives.

Launched in 2005 and owned by Amazon, Amazon Mechanical Turk or MTurk is a crowdsourcing platform that offers a marketplace for companies that need an online workforce to outsource small tasks (also called micro-tasks) and jobs such as AI training data collection, data entry, image annotation, etc.

The key service that Amazon Mturk offers is a platform or marketplace; hence, the client can specify which service they require from the crowd and post it in the shape of an online task or job on the site. The crowd, on the other hand, performs these online tasks to earn extra money. These “human intelligence tasks (HITs)” or micro jobs can be:

User Ratings

Pricing

  • The client decides workers’ pay for each assignment.
  • Amazon Mechanical Turk charges 20% on the worker’s pay and 20% extra on tasks with 10 or more assignments.
  • MTurk charges an extra 5% off the pay for workers with a Master’s qualification. However, some clients complained that the quality of these workers’ output is not different from other workers’.12
  • A free trial is not offered.

Why are we looking for Amazon Mechanical Turk alternatives?

Our research highlighted some negative aspects of working with MTurk based on customer reviews from B2B review platforms like G2:

  • Lack of user-friendliness: Some survey service users claim that MTurk is not as user-friendly as its alternatives.13
  • Difficulty of communication: Data collection clients identified communication issues with the workers.14
  • Quality-related concerns:
    • Studies identified quality issues in the data gathered by MTurkers.15
    • A recent research estimated that 33-46% of MTurkers leveraged large language models in their responses.16
    • Others hypothesized that quality issues could be due to the limited language abilities of the MTurk’s crowd.17
    • Other clients also identified issues in the language ability of the MTurk’s crowd.18
  • While the company claims19 to have a crowd of around half a million, studies show that there are around 100,00020 workers available on the platform.
  • It was also identified that a large number of Mturk’s crowd uses Large language models for text production tasks.

For a more detailed evaluation of Amazon Mechanical Turk, check out this article.

Top 3 alternatives of Amazon Mechanical Turk (Detailed comparison)

This section provides a detailed comparison of all the alternatives discussed in this article.

1. Clickworker

A popular MTurk alternative is Clickworker, which offers AI data solutions through a crowdsourcing platform. Its offerings include:

  • Datasets for AI/ML models (Image, audio, video, document, text)
  • Services are offered by a diverse crowd of over 4.5 million registered workers proficient in ~45 languages and more than 70 target markets.
  • Sentiment analysis datasets
  • SEO content & text creation services (product descriptions, etc.)
  • Online surveys
  • Their data collection platform includes an application

Pricing

  • The client determines workers’ pay for each assignment (Free recommendations on setting the rates are provided by the Clickworker).
  • A free trial is offered.

Pros and cons

1. Reliable and user-friendly

Clients find the crowd “reliable” and the platform “easy to use.”21

Clickworker's customer review about the platform being easy to use, making it one of the best amazon mechanical turk alternatives

2. Supports mobile and PC

Clickworker’s platform can be used both from mobile and PC, making it easier for customers to track the progress of their projects and making it easier for the contributors to work.

3. High-quality output

Some clients found ‘quality’ to be a strong characteristic of Clickworker.22

A clickworker customer review from Capterra for the amazon mechanical turk alternatives article.

4. Effective annotation but pricey

A client found its image annotation service effective and suggested that the pricing could be reduced.23

2. Appen

Another good alternative to Amazon Mechanical Turk is Appen, which also offers data collection and management services via a crowdsourcing model. We have discussed Appen in detail in a separate article. 

Appen’s offerings include:

  • Data collection service with datasets (Audio, image, video, text, sensory)
  • Data solutions of all data types (image, video, audio, text).
  • Data annotation and mode evaluation services are also provided.

Pros and cons

1. Diverse network of contributors

The company offers a relatively more diverse crowd (130 countries & 180 languages, as claimed by the company). Clients can gain access to a larger crowd for projects that require diverse datasets.

2. User-friendly with server downtime

While customers found its data processing service effective, they also faced server downtimes on several occasions.24

Appen review number 2 from G2 for the amazon mechanical turk alternatives comparison.

3. Low compensation

Workers at Appen also find the compensation rates low. According to some comments, the rates were as low as $2 an hour25, which is much lower than the US minimum wage. This can be an issue for clients as they might not wish to work with a partner following unfair compensation practices.

4. Weak financial situation

Our research identified that in 202226, Appen had a revenue decrease. These losses also impacted their customers.

3. Telus International

Founded in 2005, Telus International also offers data solutions through a crowdsourcing site. Its offerings include:

  • Scalable and custom datasets for developing and improving AI/ML solutions (video, image, audio, sensor-fusion, & text).
  • Data annotation services
  • Content summarization, formatting, and processing
  • Data entry, analysis, and enrichment
  • Dataset creation across multiple languages

Pros and cons

1. More diverse and offer worker quality checks

  • A significantly more diverse crowd (500+ languages and dialects, as claimed by the company) as compared to other alternatives, such as Appen.
  • Offer secure data solutions with built-in validation and spot-checking of workers (based on client’s requirements).

2. Lack of reviews and pricing info

  • Even though the crowd is more diverse, the size (~1 million) is significantly smaller than other MTurk alternatives, such as Clickworker.
  • Information regarding prices is not available on the website
  • Fewer reviews are available online for a more detailed evaluation of the company.

FAQs for MTurk alternatives

  1. Why are we looking for MTurk alternatives?

    Data quality and sourcing are pivotal elements in the development and refinement of AI models, directly influencing their efficiency and output. In this context, the selection of a data collection or generation partner, such as Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk), necessitates a thorough evaluation process.

    Critical considerations include:

    1. Assessing the data solutions and collection services provided by MTurk, ensuring they align with your project’s specific requirements, including the necessity for data mining, sentiment analysis, and diverse data entry tasks.

    2. Evaluating the cost-effectiveness of MTurk’s offerings, to ascertain whether their pricing aligns with your budgetary constraints, potentially impacting your project’s extra cash and earn money goals.

    3. Gauging customer feedback regarding MTurk’s services, which can offer insights into their reliability and the quality of their micro jobs and online tasks.

    4. Confirming the availability of data in the requisite languages and dialects, crucial for projects targeting specific geographical regions or cultural groups.

    5. Verifying that MTurk can supply the specific types of data needed for your project, whether it involves tagging objects, completing surveys, or watching videos for data analysis.

  2. Why work with a data collection service?

    Companies aiming to enhance their AI models find immense value in collaborating with data collection and annotation services like Appen, Clickworker, and Amazon Mechanical Turk alternatives. These platforms offer comprehensive data solutions, including data annotation, labeling, and image annotation, essential for converting raw data into high-quality training datasets vital for sophisticated machine learning and neural networks. With a focus on efficiency and user-friendliness, these services provide access to a variety of tasks, from micro-jobs and online tasks to complex data entry and data mining projects, which are crucial for developing effective AI technologies.

Further reading

If you need help finding a vendor or have any questions, feel free to contact us:

Find the Right Vendors

Transparency statement

AIMultiple serves numerous emerging tech companies, including the ones linked in this article.

External resources

Shehmir Javaid
Industry Research Analyst
Shehmir Javaid in an industry & research analyst at AIMultiple. He is a frequent user of the products that he researches. For example, he is part of AIMultiple's DLP software benchmark team that has been annually testing the performance of the top 10 DLP software providers. He specializes in integrating emerging technologies into various business functions, particularly supply chain and logistics operations. He holds a BA and an MSc from Cardiff University, UK and has over 2 years of experience as a research analyst in B2B tech.

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