Susan P. says: "Personally I hate tiered companies" and "I think phone sales are becoming very problematic" and " I think stuffing envelopes and doing similar jobs from home useful"
The job I am referring to that I work is NOT a tiered company; I do NOT make outbound calls bugging anyone to buy something or give money to charities; and I do NOT stuff envelopes. I answer customer service calls and emails from major corporations that many of you in the U.S. use services from and most of you have heard of. You may have spoken to me or one of my colleagues if you called one of them.
Here's the thing: the OP asks about jobs on the internet, and I responded with a link to a free online forum where work-at-home jobs are discussed by people working them, just like knitting is discussed here. The folks at that forum know the ins and outs of work-at-home jobs, especially those on the internet - so I was hoping that forum info would help the OP (NakedPancakes) find paying work at home. If you want to know what is legit and what is not, go there and post your questions - and read all the forums to learn what companies are hiring and what services they offer.
The link is Work Place Like Home
and anyone can find a lot of good info about how to work at home, what scams to avoid and how other people are doing with the various companies that offer work-at-home jobs. Most of the jobs discussed are for US-based workers. It's the "work at home" equivalent of Knitting Help forum. It's free and there's a lot of helpful folks there, just like here.
And because I work in the "industry" I can say with confidence that is possible that legitimate companies may ask you to pay fees. If you don't want to pay for a background check or training to a company from which you will make that money back many times over, working from home, then that is ok - don't pursue it. But if you want to work from home via the internet - do a lot of research, check out the forum, ask a lot of questions - and then do what you need to do! It is possible (at least in the U.S.) to work from home via the internet with legitimate companies. Some of them don't ask for a fee, by the way.
Good luck to NakedPancakes - I hope you find the job you are looking for!