I also have used Synovate Global Opinion Panels, which is now I-Say by Ipsos. They send you surveys pretty frequently and the points you accumulate can turn into actual money! You can receive an actual check from them, or choose to redeem for a gift card. I haven’t cashed out with them since they changed into the new system, just because I’ve really stopped taking the surveys because I’m lazy 🙂 Here’s the link: http://i-say.com/Rewards/RewardsProgram/tabid/203/language/en-US/Default.aspx
When companies want to better focus their marketing, advertising, and product development efforts, they will contract with a market research firm to target their ideal demographic (for example, men between the ages of 40-60 who play golf), and gather information about consumers’ opinions on their product or service. You can read this article, to learn more about market research.
It’s a very well-known scam. You cash the check, then they ask you to either wire some of that money back to them as some sort of fee or buy something for them and send the item to them. So, you deposit the check, then wire some cash to them thinking that the check you just deposited will cover that. A few days later, after you already send them the money, the check will bounce and the money you send to them will come out of your own account.