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Permlink Replies: 20 - Pages: 2 [ 1 2 | Next ] - Last Post: Oct 22, 2012 5:54 PM Last Post By: jezyg
markwhitt

Posts: 49
Registered: 03/31/09
Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 28, 2012 8:42 PM
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One of my books has been hit by another trolling one star review that has clearly been written by someone who has not read the book. My previous attempts to get Amazon to take down the reviews have been met with refusals. Has anyone else had this problem and if so is there anything that can be done about it?
jonathansturak

Posts: 4
Registered: 02/29/12
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 28, 2012 9:48 PM   in response to: markwhitt in response to: markwhitt
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Hi Mark,

I emailed Amazon through Author Central and I received a canned response about reviews falling under Amazon's policy.
vlgallas

Posts: 2,504
Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 28, 2012 10:35 PM   in response to: jonathansturak in response to: jonathansturak
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Jonathan,

I still owe you a review for a different book.... Need to get in review mode soon and I shall.

I just checked out "Clouded Rainbow". You picked-up a pack of angry trolls! I clicked the 'report abuse' button on all that violated Amazon guidelines - most of the violators were over stating price - It is no more acceptable to state that it was free than to state a price.

I will venture a guess that you angered a group of people somewhere in some discussion. You really need to call Kindle customer service. These people have ruined your book. I wouldn't advise this in many situations, but feel it may be your ownly solution:

Unpublish and let book completely delete (may take a couple of weeks). Publish a brand new book - new title, new cover, and under a pseudonym. Maybe even take the opportunity to make some changes to the book, like character names etc... Think of it as publishing an entirely new book, but with the structure already in place. Don't let it go for free because if you do, you may pick-up the same gang that'll recognize parts.

You are going to have to shake that pack of angry trolls. Just my opinion.
jonathansturak

Posts: 4
Registered: 02/29/12
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 28, 2012 11:09 PM   in response to: vlgallas in response to: vlgallas
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Thanks for taking a look at my book, Vicky. I think I will reach out to Amazon support again. You would think they can see these obvious trolls and take action. I also will recommend others to click "report abuse" for Amazon to investigate some of these.

Unpublishing the book just seems too drastic for me.That would mean the trolls have won! I hope more true readers respond by writing a truthful review and/or reporting these reviews. I have faith in the free market system!
vlgallas

Posts: 2,504
Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 7:53 AM   in response to: jonathansturak in response to: jonathansturak
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Jonathan,

I only suggest the unpublish etc... as it is fiction and could be retitled. I also didn't see a paperback. If they did it to one of my non-fiction books I would try to work with Kindle CS, but if the troll reviews were not removed, I'd solicit my blog readers to help me.

I know that you know how to write as I have read another book that you've written. To look at those reviews, without having read anything you've written, I'd think... well, you have the idea. Yes, they have cost you sales.

It also has me reconsidering any future plans for a free promo.

So where did they come from Jonathan? Who are they? You must have some idea.
skookumpete

Posts: 466
Registered: 07/25/11
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 9:13 AM   in response to: jonathansturak in response to: jonathansturak
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I just checked out the twelve 5-star reviews on your book and with one or two exceptions the contributors have reviewed no other books.

So "trolling" reviews should be removed by Amazon, but shills are "legitimate"?
jonathansturak

Posts: 4
Registered: 02/29/12
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 10:52 AM   in response to: vlgallas in response to: vlgallas
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Hi Vicky,

Thank you for the comments! My book is one with the broken link between paperback/kindle edition. Amazon looks to be still working on linking these up. I read in another thread that someone is suggesting they're bots trying to bring down some books in certain genres to make others look better. The Internet is a scary place so who knows.

I think skookumpete makes a good point. This should go both ways. I think the problem isn't whether there are other reviews by a reviewer, but rather whether the reviews are generic and obviously written by someone (or a computer bot!) who has not read the book. I even have a three-star review (which isn't a bad rating in my opinion) that was written by someone telling a very bizarre story that has absolutely nothing to do with my book.

I even see this with some video games on Amazon that have not been released. People will write all sorts of reviews praising or hating a game that they have not even played! How could the PS Vita get a dozen 5-star reviews a month before it's released just on hype?

The main point: I just wish Amazon could somehow investigate accounts that are just set up to write one review that is generic and does not contribute anything to the community (good or bad).
vlgallas

Posts: 2,504
Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 12:52 PM   in response to: jonathansturak in response to: jonathansturak
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Aha! I just figured that there was no paperback and that had much to do with the advice to remove and republish with a different title and pseudonym.

Yes, I hated to vote down and click abuse on that 3-star because I agree that it isn't a bad rating, but I did as it was pure nonsense/gibberish. Really weird and one more reason that I believe you've picked-up a pack of trolls somewhere.

You definitely need to speak with a supervisor at Amazon. In my opinion, the review system is almost a lost cause and they need to just remove it completely and end the Vine Program (I've seen too many abuses even with this).
markwhitt

Posts: 49
Registered: 03/31/09
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 1:48 PM   in response to: skookumpete in response to: skookumpete
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You have no proof (and neither do I for that matter) that any of my five star reviews are shills. I have proof that many of the one star reviews are trolls, based on comments by political zealots on some of my Yahoo News commentary. The most recent one star, from the wording of the review, was obviously someone who got ticked off by something else he read by me and decided to retaliate.
markwhitt

Posts: 49
Registered: 03/31/09
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 1:56 PM   in response to: markwhitt in response to: markwhitt
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Just as an addendum, my curiosity being piqued, I checked all of the reviewers of Children of Apollo. Only a handful of all of the reviewers had more than a handful of reviews, many just having one. So the point proves nothing.
skookumpete

Posts: 466
Registered: 07/25/11
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 3:36 PM   in response to: markwhitt in response to: markwhitt
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[i]You have no proof (and neither do I for that matter) that any of my five star reviews are shills. [/i]

I never addressed any such comment to you.
thetimucuan

Posts: 5,125
Registered: 09/14/10
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Feb 29, 2012 8:41 PM   in response to: markwhitt in response to: markwhitt
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This is a problem that just will not go away. I recently had a fellow writer attack one of my books with an insane review. Why? He was jealous of my sales. He PMed me (on another board), sending an obnoxious message, and a few minutes later he attacked one of my books. He also voted up my worst reviews and down my best on all of my books. I guess he was afraid reviewing all of them would be too obvious. Since then, every time I get a good review, he down votes it. The Funny thing is he had reviewed some of his own books and done it openly, using his real name. He gave himself five stars for some unknown reason too. :) The funny part is when Amazon investigated, they deleted the reviews on his books. :)
supermodelsonya

Posts: 2
Registered: 03/23/12
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Mar 23, 2012 12:35 PM   in response to: jonathansturak in response to: jonathansturak
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I just downloaded your book and I'm going to read for myself. It really is a shame that people can be so judgmental about things. I'm waiting on a response from Amazon myself about my book.

I got a one star review from a woman making personal attacks. She's never reviewed anything on here before but just obliterated everything. I have more positive reviews than negative but it always burns my toast when a reviewer rates everything but the damn content of the book.
theasman

Posts: 2
Registered: 04/07/12
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Apr 7, 2012 8:09 AM   in response to: jonathansturak in response to: jonathansturak
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HI

I am no writer myself. I only published a memoir and outrage on the state of autistic advocacy.
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007R5TKC0/
But jonathan I downloaded and looked at your book. I did not review it because I dont want hurt your book and as I said I am no writer.
But your book I think overdid the rain metaphors very quickly in the beginning. sky's tears then about the stuble etc. Also it was quite late until there was any dialog.

I saw your description of the truck and the highway. It reminded me of the chapter of grapes of wrath that was all about the turtle. I just read that book for the first time last year. But to me the turtle was struggling and you could identify with it. no identification with the truck.
my 2 cents.
tornfrom

Posts: 22
Registered: 01/16/12
Re: Trolling Reviews
Posted: Apr 7, 2012 9:33 AM   in response to: jonathansturak in response to: jonathansturak
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It appears this is a growing pastime for angry people who have made it their hobby to bash others. I have noticed this on several sites now.

Some of them have written hundreds of only negative reviews--I had one hit one of my books; the reviewer rank of this person was high, so I checked out her reviews--almost all bad-hundreds of long , detailed, angry reviews-average of about three bad reviews a day. It was obvious this person got a high off bashing others.

I suggest posting a note at the top of your book description to the effect that your book has been 'trolled' and to check the reviews of reviewers for legitimacy....especially if you have been hit heavily--readers are not stupid, so they will no doubt check for themselves.
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