Fake Reviews on The Hacker Hunter

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Showing 1-25 of 30 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 2 Dec 2011 00:58:41 GMT
Iola says:
The Hacker Hunter - in the UK, this book currently has 350 reviews, of which 342 are 5-star reviews.

Last week, Amazon US was showing almost 250 reviews for this same book, again, almost all 5-star reviews. Many of these were exact copies of reviews currently showing on the Amazon UK site.

Amazon US are now showing just 3 reviews, because a little investigation has found that all the others were fake. We look forward to Amazon UK taking similar action, especially as so many of the reviews were identical.

Posted on 5 Dec 2011 10:01:53 GMT
Mr. L. Duffy says:
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Posted on 24 Dec 2011 14:10:26 GMT
John Green says:
FYI- it's starting again. All the reviews & discussions had been deleted and already this morning two sockpuppets have returned, with the exact same formula. Both have a few reviews to look legit- all dated Nov 20- and a repost of their HH review- dated Nov 3. Someone thinks you Brits are really, really stupid.

Posted on 11 Mar 2012 20:12:23 GMT
Mina says:
Actually I have found this to be true of the US site. Not only this I have found and bought to the attention of Amazon US that alot of the US reviews were being duplicated by the same reviewers for the same item, I know that this isn't possible to do on the UK site as I accidently clicked the submit review twice and on the second time it had said that I had already submitted a review for that item.

It seems that the US should tighten their controls a bit more, and I never thought that I would ever say that.

Posted on 23 May 2012 02:34:35 BDT
The US side has all the same procedures in place as the UK site. What this guy has to be doing is setting up completely different accounts for each fake name and fake review. He might have used the same name twice on two different accounts. I really don't know, but I do know I can't leave 2 reviews on the same item and I'm in the States.

Posted on 23 May 2012 12:32:58 BDT
John Green says:
What's strange about the UK site is that the reviews keep getting taken down and then completely restored and voted up again. I don't see how they can keep allowing that to happen. Go have a look.

Posted on 30 May 2012 16:50:01 BDT
Last edited by the author on 30 May 2012 16:51:14 BDT
T.J.Byford says:
All this nonsense would cease, or be severely restricted, if Amazon dispensed with according a star system and the option to vote on whether the review helped you. Surely, as long as you found the review helpful, hasn't that achieved its goal? Does the fact that a million others said the same thing really matter? When I read music critics in the press, I don't get any opportunity to vote on them, so one is forced into a consensus by reading more than one. So why not with reviews posted here on Amazon? The fakes are there to promote the product, not to assist you.

In reply to an earlier post on 1 Jun 2012 10:21:00 BDT
Last edited by the author on 1 Jun 2012 10:51:55 BDT
Mr B Tonks says:
I agree it has got to the stage where many reviews cannot be trusted and the star system has become superfluous,
Only recently a critical review I did on quite an appalling book was actually mocked by an Amazon Vine Reviewer just 3 days later in their own glowing 4 star review of this book,
even without the mocking it was suspicious as it was a pretty obscure book with reviews few and far between up till then!
I had no axe to grind, only wrote what I thought of the book which was a poor effort,
The whole system is flawed and the fact that a so called AVR who is supposed to set an example consistantly writes 4 and 5 star reviews of all the products they have encountered shows they must be easily pleased or have a hidden agenda!

In reply to an earlier post on 23 Jul 2012 14:46:39 BDT
I think we're in danger of throwing the baby out with the bathwater by ditching the voting system on reviews - I'm one of many people who find reviews a very helpful way of judging whether to buy or not, and if a lot of people find a review helpful I tend to assume it's pretty accurate. But Amazon really should tighten up on these fake reviews. I came across one reviewer who was supposedly a Vine Voice who had a grand total of three reviews to their name, all glowing five star ones attached to obscure indie cds, which seems odd when you think I was told I was invited to become a Vine reviewer because of the number of reviews I'd posted. I'm also tired of copy and paste reviewers, and reviews for the wrong product tacked on any old how.

In reply to an earlier post on 23 Jul 2012 15:02:36 BDT
T.J.Byford says:
Chinatown Blue,

I agree entirely. Recently, I had reason to call into question a 5 Star review which was gushing with praise for a famous American female opera singer. There was no issue with the artist, she was, unfortunately no longer, a great Diva, about that I have no quibble as I agree, but when one looked at this reviewer's "credentials" to make valid comment, it turned out his other 80 or so reviews were on rock music and obscure performers, well, to me at least, and not one was anywhere near classical music. It was clear that all the reviewer had done was plagiarise the liner notes.

Given his apparent total disinterest in opera, judging from his many reviews, I did wonder why, or even if, he bought the CD. If he did, and still found it wonderful, well that is in itself wonderful. But none of his comments were his own. The point is, if I came out with a rave review of some obscure rock band as the greatest ever, and you checked my reviews and discovered my main interest was classical music, wouldn't you query my competence?

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Aug 2012 18:00:19 BDT
D. J. HORN says:
Ha ha - the author must've had over 300 mates or a shed-load of PCs at home as it stops you reviewing one product twice! Glad the tw*t got caught anyway but I bet they didn't ban him.

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Aug 2012 18:07:21 BDT
D. J. HORN says:
What, may I ask, is a vine reviewer please? I've done hundreds (well a lot) of reviews on Amazon UK, mainly on music, and have never seen this or an invitation. I also managed to get, at one time, a top 10 music reviewer accolade on Play UK (which of course requires many less reviews than Amazon for this sort of thing).

In reply to an earlier post on 17 Aug 2012 18:12:48 BDT
D. J. HORN says:
Don't tar us all with the same brush mate - we're not all thick - you could say the same for people from any other country, like America for example, and still be wrong. Personally I trust the UK reviews more than those on US Amazon.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Aug 2012 19:28:19 BDT
Last edited by the author on 27 Aug 2012 15:50:47 BDT
I too found many North American reviews to be plagiarised and worthless. One particular "reviewer" must have spent countless hours copying and pasting other people's words into hybrid texts which she then passed-off as her own. I know because I found she had actually plagiarised a published review I had written for an obscure print magazine which had become digitised and turned up online.

I complained to Amazon about the plagiarism. I posted comments on her reviews, exposing plagiarism and identifying the sources, but Amazon did nothing. Eventually, unable to establish the real identity of the plagiarist in order to take further action, I simply gave up.

Posted on 27 Aug 2012 03:36:31 BDT
John Green says:
If your review was published you should contact the publisher and let them know their content has been used without their permission. Trust me- Amazon won't ignore a legal issue.

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Aug 2012 03:37:36 BDT
John Green says:
You're misunderstanding the post; I didn't say you all were thick- I said whomever is spamming thinks you are.

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Aug 2012 03:40:16 BDT
Last edited by the author on 27 Aug 2012 03:41:00 BDT
John Green says:
Vine is an Amazon program where based upon your reviewing history/rank/who knows what, you get selected to participate in a scheme where twice a month you're allowed to select merchandise soon to be available- so long as you post reviews for them. Don't ask what the criteria is, because even though I'm in the U.S. program I haven't the faintest idea. One day you just get an email asking if you want in.

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Aug 2012 16:54:41 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 27 Aug 2012 16:58:37 BDT]

In reply to an earlier post on 27 Aug 2012 19:51:18 BDT
T.J.Byford says:
Mr. Green.

Does this mean you get to keep the product, or simply have it on loan for evaluation?

Posted on 28 Aug 2012 00:30:28 BDT
John Green says:
We keep it. It's the same as ordering it; we just have to maintain a certain percentage -80%- of reviews for what we select. I'm sure if you search you'll find a site entry or Google link for it.

Posted on 28 Aug 2012 00:34:01 BDT
John Green says:
Plagiarism Avenger, as you can see your post got deleted, but I think I got the gist of it. All I can suggest is what I've already said: alert the parties in question that their content has been misappropriated and let them lodge a compliant. That really should handle things.

Posted on 28 Aug 2012 10:47:21 BDT
T.J.Byford says:
Plagiarism Avenger.

I, too, noted that your post got deleted, but not before Amazon sent the email alert that you had posted. Thus the link was still accessible and I was able to see some interesting comments you had posted. It is odd that this particular individual, having posted some 896 reviews up to Feb 2008, has posted nothing since.

Posted on 29 Aug 2012 14:14:31 BDT
Isn't it a bit odd that Amazon should delete a post that provides a link to Amazon reviews? Perhaps there was some sort of technical error. Here's another link to the reviews for those who are interested (and yes, Amazon, that includes *you*, despite the lack of interest you've shown in this matter in the past):


In reply to an earlier post on 24 Sep 2012 07:57:19 BDT
J Austen says:
I like that idea, but the system would still be cheated. The like and dislike buttons are also abused.

Posted on 24 Sep 2012 08:06:57 BDT
[Deleted by Amazon on 24 Sep 2012 08:08:49 BDT]
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Participants:  12
Total posts:  30
Initial post:  2 Dec 2011
Latest post:  25 Sep 2012

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