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Old 10-23-2015, 04:49 PM
331 posts, read 305,366 times
Reputation: 187


I think anyone could foresee this happening -- back in 1998.

It's obvious that sites like Amazon and Yelp are saturated with fake reviews submitted by people wanting to make a quick buck:

Big problem at a site you probably shop at
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Old 10-23-2015, 08:21 PM
Location: My beloved Bluegrass
14,729 posts, read 10,622,245 times
Reputation: 19896
Gosh, I am so surprised that some of those glowing reviews are fake - said no one.
When I post in bold red that is moderator action and, per the TOS, can only be discussed through Direct Message.Moderator - Arkansas & subforums, Asia, Kentucky & subforums, Military Life, and P&OC
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Old 10-23-2015, 08:34 PM
Location: Type 0.7 Kardashev
10,577 posts, read 7,274,031 times
Reputation: 37474
Gun fetishist John Lott has made a career out of boosting his own books under false names (and then when he was outed, he tried blaming his kids for most of the reviews), and also using false names to write scathing reviews of authors with whom he has disagreements (and sometimes in those reviews he endlessly touts his own books, without ever mentioning that he is that author, of course).

John Lott’s online book reviews – Deltoid

And who can forget Dilbart cartoonist Scott Adams' online trolling, as well as using false names to proclaim Scott Adams (ie, himself) to be a genius?

Scott Adams admits he’s a troll online The Daily Cartoonist

Some people simply have no shame.
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Old 10-23-2015, 09:22 PM
589 posts, read 537,011 times
Reputation: 1609
Phony reviews work so well because the average person is so gullible and desperate for other people's approval. People are so willing to like/dislike something just because other people do. Ever notice how if the first comment in a thread is positive, most of next posters follow suite? Then if someone makes the exact kind of thread later and the first comment is negative then so is everyone else's opinion on the subject.

The answer to the age old question of "if all your friends jumped off a bridge would you, too?" is and always will be "yes!"
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Old 10-23-2015, 09:27 PM
Location: Living rent free in your head
31,012 posts, read 13,578,167 times
Reputation: 22101
I'm not sure that what happened with the Amazon reviews is any worse than what Kohl's does, if you post a bad review they remove it and then they won't discuss the removal with you. I bought a bedding set from them and the whole thing was made of polyester (no content label on outside of package).I posted that the polyester sheets were like sleeping in a plastic bag and that there were large brown spots on the sheets. My review was removed and I was notified that I had violated their terms of service.
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Old 10-24-2015, 04:07 AM
10,083 posts, read 6,314,583 times
Reputation: 8393
My rule of thumb, never pay attention to people who have one or two reviews. I've had really good experiences following like minded reviewers on Yelp. A lot of the ones who give multiple reviews are great.
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Old 10-24-2015, 06:41 AM
11,758 posts, read 5,545,768 times
Reputation: 7964
You now see tons of Amazon reviews where reviewers were given a product for free (or at a steep discount) by the seller/manufacturer in exchange for giving a purportedly honest and unbiased opinion. It is human nature to give a good review in such instance because (i) the reviewer wants more free stuff from the seller/manufacturer to review in the future, (ii) the reviewer is probably very grateful for getting a free/discounted stuff, and (iii) the "value" assessment for the product is skewed because it is free/discounted. The reviews all disclose that they got the product for free or with a steep discount, but that is not apparent unless you actually read the entire review and if you just look at the star ratings, you'd never be able to tell.

To me, that's a rather shady practice but they do it openly and Amazon seems to condone it.

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Old 10-24-2015, 06:47 AM
6,551 posts, read 1,344,624 times
Reputation: 16600

My all-time favorite.
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Old 10-24-2015, 07:01 AM
39,454 posts, read 40,770,461 times
Reputation: 16258
The biggest problem with reviews is people are more likely to take the time and write negative ones. Happy customers don't take the time. About the only thing I've found useful with reviews is look at the negative ones too find out specific things that *may* be wrong with a product.
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Old 10-24-2015, 07:17 AM
Location: Wonderland
44,713 posts, read 36,145,910 times
Reputation: 63310
I do read the reviews on Amazon and find many of them to be helpful and accurate. I also write reviews for nearly every item that I buy on Amazon.

I generally don't pay much - no - ANY - attention to reviews on products if there are only a handful of reviews and they're all gushingly positive. Call me skeptical but it works for me. But many Amazon products have hundreds of reviews and they're a mixture of good and bad. To me, when I see that sort of activity on a product's review section, I feel pretty confident that I'm getting some honest feedback.
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