July 27, 2005

Ask The Expert For July 27th

They Want My Social Security Number With My Query?!


I noticed an entry in under "Paying markets". I went to the web site and it indicates that a writer's contract should be attached to the guidelines and to the submission. The contract requires the writer's social security number and that seems odd to me. Per their guidelines, the contract should be submitted regardless of acceptance. This seems to be quite suspicious - there is no need to know about social security numbers unless there is a payment coming through - otherwise, why ask specifically about it upfront?. In this day of rampant identity theft, it seems irresponsible and fishy to ask for it in a NON SECURE site to top it off. Is this site legit? It is ironic for a website deemed to protect consumers to require such private information and offer no protection to it.


If a publications asks for your social security number before accepting your work for publication, state, "Social Security Number will be provided on assignment."

Are Merchant Accounts Really Necessary?

I'm considering selling my own ebook from my own website. Is having a merchant account really necessary? Z.

Merchant Accounts are not necessary if you want to use an organization like paypal. However, before you use them, you should read this page:

There are alternatives to paypal here:



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