Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct is a self-imposed guideline designed to create a basis for a trusting and fair cooperation between crowdsourcing platforms, their clients, and crowdworkers.

What is Crowdworking?

We are living in an exciting era of technological innovations. The rise of digital technologies has revolutionized how businesses operate and how employees collaborate. Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) have streamlined business processes, resulting in increased productivity and creativity. Additionally, remote work has become the norm, driven by modern communication tools and cloud-based platforms. Digitalization has also paved the way for new job opportunities, such as data analysis, cybersecurity, and software development.

However, these developments have also raised concerns about job displacement and the need for upskilling and reskilling to adapt to this new digital world. Nonetheless, digitalization continues to reshape the world of work, offering exciting opportunities and challenges for individuals and organizations alike. Crowdsourcing, which involves outsourcing projects and tasks to a worldwide community of internet users, is a well-established outcome of these developments and has gained popularity in recent years.

Crowdsourcing – A Definition

According to Wikipedia, the term crowdsourcing was coined in 2006 by two editors at Wired, Jeff Howe and Mark Robinson, to describe how businesses were using the Internet to "outsource work to the crowd", which quickly led to the portmanteau "crowdsourcing". Howe published a definition for the term in a blog post in June 2006:

Simply defined, crowdsourcing represents the act of a company or institution taking a function once performed by employees and outsourcing it to an undefined (and generally large) network of people in the form of an open call. This can take the form of peer-production (when the job is performed collaboratively), but is also often undertaken by sole individuals. The crucial prerequisite is the use of the open call format and the large network of potential laborers.”

Jeff Howe and Mark Robinson
Wired Magazine

The term crowdworking encompasses various tasks, ranging from data processing and text creation to software testing and mobile crowdsourcing at the point of sale. These tasks are executed through online platforms or mobile apps, which serve as intermediaries.

While crowdworking is generally considered a part-time or side job in most countries, some crowdworkers rely on it as their primary source of income. Apart from financial incentives, other motivations for crowdworking include passion for the latest digital technologies and a sense of enjoyment. This type of work is voluntary and characterized by a high level of flexibility. The decision to accept a task or not always rests with the crowdworker.

On the other hand, crowdsourcing platforms do not guarantee incoming tasks since the supply is regulated by the market. Crowdworkers can earn money at their convenience, while crowdsourcing platforms gain access to a multitude of resources, including experts available to contribute to various projects.

Code of Conduct

Initiated by crowdtesting provider Testbirds, the Code of Conduct at hand is a self-imposed guideline for prominent crowdsourcing platforms and is continuously developed and improved.

It aims to establish general guidelines on how to conduct crowdwork and create a basis for a trusting and fair cooperation between crowdsourcing platforms, their clients, and crowdworkers, complementing existing legislation. There are still uncertainties regarding the specific form of cooperation, particularly concerning legal aspects and the crowdsourcing platforms' corporate responsibility towards crowdworkers. Crowdworking is typically subject to the same legal regulations as freelancing or self-employment and does not constitute long-term insurable employment.

This Code of Conduct serves as a guide for crowdsourcing in its role as a modern method of work. It also aims to contribute to a win-win situation for all parties involved, unlocking the full potential of this new form of work. Unlike unpaid crowdsourcing, where volunteers complete tasks without payment, this Code of Conduct focuses on providing principles for paid crowdworking.


The undersigned members commit to following the indicated principles and promoting them within their company, as well as with collaborating parties. In the event of changing circumstances, such as the emergence of legal aspects, the members will discuss whether the rules need to be adapted. The members consider themselves as the spokespersons for self-obligating platforms, engaging in constant exchange with political, scientific, and other social groups , such as unions or associations.

Since the crowdsourcing Code of Conduct is voluntary and self-regulated, it does not claim validity outside its circle of supporters. However, all interested companies are very welcome to join us and adhere to the Code of Conduct and its following principles.

You are in good company

This initiative is officially supported by Deutscher Crowdsourcing Verband e.V. and IG Metall.

Are you also interested in signing the Code of Conduct?
Do you have any feedback or questions?

Get in touch