Associatedcontent.com is a site written by people like you and me for people like you and me. You may, in fact, even come across the stickers that the company gives away for free advertising itself and asking for submissions. The content producers, as the writers are called, get their own bylines and even their own website if they choose. They also get paid!
True, the pay isn't spectacular, but if you've ever written something you are really proud of and just couldn't get anyone to buy it, it's still a pretty good deal to get published and make enough money to buy a CD or a nice pair of shoes.
The content covered by Associatedcontent.com covers the gamut from personal opinions (which doesn't pay well at all) to travel to entertainment to health and wellness. Mainly, the site offers advice on where to go for inexpensive travel, or alternatives to the right wing mainstream spew that commercial news media outlets pass for actual news. Recent articles have ranged from sex advice to movie reviews of Revenge of the Sith. There seems to be no particular ideology espoused by the company; they are willing to publish both from the left and right. Ad-driven, the ads usually coincide quite closely with whatever article you may be reading. For instance, if you are reading an article about food, expect to find links to restaurants, but also links to sites offering recipes, advice on cooking utensils, etc.
If you are reading an article about headaches, then the advertising will focus on products and ideas related to that.
The writing is surprisingly high in quality considering that many obviously are amateurs, though the bulk of content producers seem to have backgrounds in journalism or English according to the writer profiles that accompany all submitters of content.
The company offers advice on what they really want and how to best get published. Their writers section offers almost daily updates on how to get to the top of the search engine. The process for submitting content and getting published and getting paid is lightning-like in comparison to writing for magazines. You can expect to see your work on the web site within a week or two of submitting.
All in all, AssociatedContent.Com is a beacon both for those looking for information and for those seeking to provide it.