Kindle Forum banner

61 - 66 of 66 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,154 Posts
Bards and Sages (Julie) said:
That has NEVER been the case. And I've been reviewing books on Amazon for over a decade (under my real name no less! I have not been hiding!). Amazon just finally put it in clear print I think a year or so ago, but the entire "OMG authors are not allowed to review books" thing has always been an urban legend.

The only real "gray area" is "A seller posts negative reviews about a competitor's product." Unless you are leaving one star reviews on the books of other authors in your genre, this is never going to be triggered anyway. Most authors don't leave negative reviews on other books anyway for a variety of reasons.
I think the "competitor's product" thing has definitely been the guiding principle here. Over the years and in various threads on this board, a LOT of people have said some variation of "I never review books because I don't want to run afoul of Amazon's TOS," or "I review books but not in my genre because I don't want to run afoul of Amazon's TOS." So, like the "code" in Pirate of the Caribbean, I guess Amazon's TOS were considered more like guidelines.

And I too have reviewed many, many books on Amazon-- regardless of genre. If a book is really good, I'll say so, and if it's terrible, I'll say that too. As a reader, I have that right.

Also btw, I think the OP's idea of having a "spoiler" tag on reviews is a good one. Imdb has that when people discuss movies or TV show episodes, so it would be helpful here, too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
264 Posts
MaryMcDonald said:
I've also reported a couple of 5 star reviews that seemed fishy. My book was permafree so probably seen as an easy way to cover up some pay for review practices by adding reviews of a few other books in the mix. Like yours, it was oddly worded and the references didn't make sense for the book. When I looked, the person had copy/pasted about 50 reviews on that day alone. :(

ETA: And they did remove the reviews in those cases. Not sure if it was because I reported it or just that Amazon also caught it for being fishy.
Since Hidden Gems does not pay reviewers, only hooks them up with free books, I don't see what they gain by signing on to do more reviews for books than they can actually read.
 
A

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Paperback Writer said:
Yet I see authors giving out 1-star ratings and negative reviews to competing books of other authors.
If you KNOW as FACT (not hunch, not opinion, not "but why else would they be doing it?" but bonafide FACT) that an author is giving one star reviews solely to tank other books, that is review manipulation and reportable. And yes, I have had reviews removed from my books when I could prove to Amazon AS FACT that this happened (it usually happens to me after an online squabble when some other author will go one star all of my books. But these sort of people tend to be stupid and it is easy to prove it was them).

In addition, as I cited about, Amazon does not want people leaving NEGATIVE reviews on competing products, so, again, if you know as FACT that someone is an author in the same genre and they are leaving negative reviews, that is also a review violation and you should report it.

The problem, however, is that quite often these sort of statements are made as assumptions or hunches, with no evidence that is what is actually happening. I've had people SWEAR to me that all the negative reviews on their books were just people"jealous" of them. Then I go look at the excerpt and think, "Nope, sunshine, this book really is a waste of bytes."

When it does happen AND you can actually prove it (for example, as I often do, with screenshots from social media where certain events take place) then you can report them and have them removed. But while it does happen, it doesn't happen nearly as much as some people want to believe.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,694 Posts
skylarker1 said:
Since Hidden Gems does not pay reviewers, only hooks them up with free books, I don't see what they gain by signing on to do more reviews for books than they can actually read.
I've generally had good luck with Hidden Gems reviewers, but I did spot one who was reviewing five books a day...every day. Given those numbers, I doubt they all came from Hidden Gems, but I also doubt she was reading all of them. I think for some people, it's an ego thing. There's no obvious incentive to behave that way with reputable companies, and most reviewers don't. Maybe the thrill of seeing that huge catalog of reviews as they accumulate helpful votes? I don't know.

I have seen a couple of instances in which reviewers appeared to be creating reviews by paraphrasing bits from other reviewers. I couldn't prove it because the reviewers were smart enough to paraphrase, but having been an English teacher for 36 years and reading thousands of student essays, I have a pretty good sense of the clues to look for. For example, an obscure factual error that would have required two different readers to misread the same part of the book in the same way is a pretty good indicator. A combination of exactly the same ideas in the same order in a relatively long review is also indicative.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,694 Posts
TromboneAl said:
He's now reviewed three of my books and counting, and he's more careful about spoilers.
Good! So he took your suggestion in the spirit in which it was intended.
 
61 - 66 of 66 Posts
Top