Chris Gardner

The joys of self-publishing.

Buying Reviews

3 Comments

I’ve recently come across this phenomenon via Facebook and personally I find it sickening: people offering to review books for self-published authors for money, guaranteeing 5 star reviews. I saw one a couple of days ago stating they could put several reviews on the one book on Amazon, using different names and addresses! I have no idea how long this has been going on nor how many authors actually buy such ‘reviews’, but it makes me think differently now about those books on Amazon with lots of 5 star reviews. I know Amazon pulls reviews they’re dubious about and, like most self-published authors, I complain about that, but I sincerely hope they can put a stop to this practice, which makes those of us who only have honest reviews at a disadvantage. As a reader I’ll disregard reviews now.

I’m not so adamantly against the common practice of authors providing free copies to readers in the expectation they’ll write a positive review but it still seems a little off to me. There’s also quite a lot of trading going on–review for review–and I confess I did that once, trading a review for an app with one for a book of mine. Never again! The ‘reviewer’ clearly read only the outline and while the review was certainly positive it was totally out of whack and I have asked Amazon to remove it. Like all self-published authors I very much appreciate hearing from readers, and 5 star reviews certainly help sell books, but I’ll stick to the honest reviews from those who actually read and enjoyed my books! For info on any of my books please visit my Author Pages at Amazon.com and Amazon.UK.

 

 

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Author: cmsgardnerblog

I'm a writer of fiction and non-fiction, for teens and adults. I live in Central Victoria, Australia and my books are available at https://www.amazon.com/author/christinemgardner and https://www.smashwords.com/interview/ChristineGardner

3 thoughts on “Buying Reviews

  1. Yeah, it’s beyond disillusioniong, and it hurts readers too. I’ve taken to ignoring the 4 and 5 start reviews and instead, reading the most negative ones. If the book still seems interesting I’ll ‘Read Inside’, and maybe buy. But reviews have become a double-edged sword thanks to so many people gaming the system.

    • Love that ‘Read Inside’! At least it gives you an idea whether you like the style of writing and if it has mistakes in those first couple of pages it will only get worse!

      • So very true. Unfortunately, the one thing Look Inside can’t do is predict whether a good beginning ends up turning into an equally good middle and end. But it’s a start. šŸ™‚

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