Published: November 28 2010

Quick heads-up, in case anybody else runs into this problem.


I've been working with passing an ExternalQuestion to MechanicalTurk, and have learned (the hard way) that the 'ExternalURL' component, set up as a "xs:anyURI" in the MTurk AWS schema, does not allow ampersands '&' except if escaped via '&'. 

That was not at all obvious. The AWS exception gives is:

          <Message>There was an error parsing the XML question or answer data in your request.  Please make sure the data is well-formed and validates against the appropriate schema. (1291006584155 s)</Message>


Replace any instance of & in the ExternalQuestion URI (IE, with &amp; (IE,;bar=false).

That'll fix it.


ebay developer docs (strangely enough), External Question documentation.