CrowdFlower Bolsters a New Era of Work

Share Article

Statistical quality control technology finally makes cloud labor a viable business reality with the largest pool of workers ready to handle your job 24/7

the act of taking tasks traditionally performed by an employee or contractor, and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally large group of people or community in the form of an open call.

Statistical quality control technology finally makes cloud labor a viable business reality with the largest pool of workers ready to handle your job 24/7

News Facts:

  • CrowdFlower (, a TechCrunch50 company, launched today at the event.
  • CrowdFlower is the first Labor as a Service (LaaS) offering to hit the market - similar to cloud computing, LaaS is labor in the cloud.
  • The Company also today announced an angel investment round which closed in March 2009. The round included venture capital firms: Freestyle Capital, Founder's Fund, K9 Ventures, Quest Venture Partners and Felicis Ventures. And individual angel investors: Alex Edelstein, Auren Hoffman, Gary Kremen, Lorenzo Thione, Steve Bennet, Travis Kalanick and Barney Pell.
  • CrowdFlower taps into the world's largest labor pool, over 100,000 workers across 80 countries, and creates a human platform for cloud computing with an on-demand, online workforce.
  • CrowdControl, CrowdFlowers's statistical quality control technology, directly measures worker accuracy and competence for maximum reliability of results and dynamic allocation of resources. It also provides final confidence estimates in its results - eliminating the need to choose between manually verifying all the results or blindly taking the good with the bad.
  • CrowdFlower is now open to the public with an easy-to-use do-it-yourself web interface. It automates LaaS to offer these key benefits:

** Speed: Thousands of people can work in parallel on tedious tasks that would take any one person months.
** Affordability: Hire exactly the number of people you need, and pay-as-you-go.
** Simplicity: Eliminate the need to hire and manage the labor yourself.
** Reliability: By tapping into people's extra time, you can get help 24/7.
** Quality: Technology flags bad answers and assures accuracy.

  • For web workers, CrowdFlower brings together three things people naturally want but rarely get to do together - a chance to be productive, zone out and make money. This is a real way for people to make money online.
  • Try out CrowdFlower today at to get great work from real people. For a CrowdFlower video demo, go to:

CrowdFlower Product Offerings:
1. CrowdFlower WebApp: A self-serve version, instant gratification.
2. CrowdFlower Content Moderation (CrowdSifter): A fully-featured interface for image moderation tasks - social networks, UGC and content portals.
3. CrowdFlower Custom Solutions: An end-to-end solution with a Program Manager advising on all stages: scope creation, trial projects, production and results reporting/analytics.

Background Facts:

  • What is Crowdsourcing: According to the crowd on Wikipedia, crowdsourcing is "the act of taking tasks traditionally performed by an employee or contractor, and outsourcing it to an undefined, generally large group of people or community in the form of an open call."
  • What is Cloud Labor: Not unlike cloud computing, cloud labor is a dynamic, scalable way to tap into the global workforce via the Web to work on tasks that are hard for a computer but relatively easy for a person. While cloud labor offers inexpensive, fast, easily scalable, pay-per-use work, the vast amount of noise in the results, high variations in accuracy and potential for spammers, present significant obstacles to adopting it as a viable business solution.
  • What is Labor as a Service (LaaS): Labor as a Service (LaaS) takes the speed and affordability of working with online labor pools, and adds a layer of quality, efficiency and accuracy to make cloud labor a sustainable business reality:

** LaaS creates jobs and offers a workplace that is a complete meritocracy: people are paid strictly based on the quality and speed of their work.
** LaaS offers a cost conscious way to eliminate the major lead time and massive overhead associated with hiring or outsourcing by bringing quality control and efficiency to the cloud.
** To save money and time, companies' will look to cloud labor for speed and efficiency and demand LaaS for quality control and accuracy.
** Some examples of tasks appropriate for LaaS include medical transcription, research, translation, data entry and content moderation.

  • Cloud Computing Market Size: In October 2008, IDC predicted that IT cloud services will reach $42B by 2012 with more and more overall IT spending going toward cloud computing every year during the period.


  • Attributable to Lukas Biewald, CEO & Co-founder, CrowdFlower: "Computers are a great way to streamline work - but there are some tasks that people are just better suited to do. Our machine learning and AI backgrounds allowed us to build an algorithm to filter noisy inputs from the cloud and pull out a high quality signal. Labor as a Service allows companies' to use the same parallel options of cloud computing among the online workforce."
  • Attributable to Christian Wiklund, Founder & CEO, Skout: "CrowdFlower address the quality control issues that make most businesses avoid using online labor pools. By tracking workers and aggregating our data into an instantly usable format, we know that CrowdFlower will get the job done right in a way that saves us time, money and headaches."
  • Attributable to Tim Ferriss, Author, the Four Hour Work Week: "CrowdFlower has the potential to make everyone more efficient by outsourcing not to one person, but to thousands of people at once."

About CrowdFlower:
CrowdFlower ( provides Labor as a Service (LaaS) by letting customers access an always-on, scalable workforce. Unlike traditional methods of outsourcing and hiring which require major lead time and lots of wasteful overhead, CrowdFlower's web offering allows businesses to instantly access thousands of workers without even picking up the phone. CrowdFlower's statistical quality control technology finally makes cloud labor a sustainable business reality through accuracy guarantees and efficient use of workers. Founded in December 2007 by former Powerset (MSFT) employees, Lukas Biewald & Chris Van Pelt, CrowdFlower is headquartered in San Francisco.

About TechCrunch50:
Founded in 2007 by leading technology blog TechCrunch and entrepreneur Jason Calacanis, the TechCrunch50 conference provides a platform for early-stage, and frequently unfunded, companies to launch for the first time to the technology industry's most influential venture capitalists, corporations, angel investors, fellow entrepreneurs and the international media. Companies are selected to participate exclusively on merit. TechCrunch50 is supported by corporate sponsors Google, Microsoft, MySpace and Yahoo!, as well as venture capital firms including Sequoia Capital, Mayfield Fund, Clearstone Venture Partners, Charles River Ventures, Founders Fund and Fenwick & West.


Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Julie Crabill
(408) 219-5617
Email >

Lukas Biewald
(650) 804-5470
Email >
Visit website