What is an Online Proofreader?

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  • Written By: wiseGEEK Writer
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 02 April 2020
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An online proofreader is someone paid to read web text, other Internet communications, or offline text, and find the errors in it. They might correct these errors, or point them out to others for correction. These editors chiefly hunt for things like misspelled words, errors in grammar or poor punctuation. However, they could do more editing as required, including checking facts or rewriting.

It is abundantly clear that the Internet needs a lot more online proofreaders than those already employed. People don’t have to look far to find significant grammar and spelling errors. Not everyone wants to pay for this service though, and sometimes websites that provide content chiefly hire people without strong skills in the English language. The reason they do so is because they can pay these writers a dollar or two per article. They don’t want to add on more cost by hiring a proofreader, even though this might improve the work.


Savvy website owners, conversely, may realize quickly, that they appear more professional when any content on their site is in clear English (or written impeccably in another language). The online proofreader can certainly be helpful here to create more polished text. People who proofread typically must have a good eye for errors and strong writing skills. Those interested in this business can take proofreading classes, and it may be necessary to learn standard proofreading symbols, though this isn’t always the case. Fairly skilled writers can often pick up proofreading easily and learn proofing symbols too.

Finding proofreading jobs may be harder than finding the misplaced comma. There are plenty of sites that charge money to allow people to bid for freelance proofreading jobs. The amount charged may be fairly high, and it might not be economically wise to begin in this direction. Instead, people might consider free job sites first, and look around for writer’s job sites that have a proofreading section. Even companies like craigslist have a writing gigs section, which offers the occasional proofreading job, though there are many scams listed on the site too.

Another way of getting work as an online proofreader is through self-marketing. Visit websites everyday and start offering proofreading services to the site owners. It helps if there’s some experience to back up claims of skill in this area. People might want to begin by first doing a few proofreading jobs for free for friends, business associates, or community service groups that have websites. With a few referrals in hand, it’s easier to make a claim that proofreading skills are strong, and this creates a better resume. Owning a website where the topic of proofreading is discussed in blog form, might also be a good idea, especially if it provides a handy link to a webpage about proofreading services provided.

Rate of pay for the online proofreader and amount of available work can vary depending upon experience, proven success and also the market rate. Some people can easily make $30 US Dollars (USD) an hour or more. Others may work at much lower rates. There are companies that advertise they will help people make unbelievable sums of money through proofreading, but it’s likely these companies overstate their case dramatically. The smart online proofreader should learn to first edit expectations of financial glory when considering this work.


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Post 1

In order to improve your chances of getting an online proofreading job, you should obtain a degree in English or Journalism. If a degree is not possible, then you should take college courses in English and grammar.

Your resume should highlight any proofreading experience that you have including any volunteer work as a proofreader.

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