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Showing 26-50 of 235 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 6 May 2012, 19:31:33 BST
Last edited by the author on 6 May 2012, 19:33:05 BST
Jim Webster says:
Oh I think you're right, they are just an annoyance.
But I demand the right to be irrationally irritated by them at times

but the bitter twist to the joke is that they are often pushing work that frankly doesn't do their reputation any good whatsoever. A more realistic person would bury it, or claim it was something they wrote when they were eleven

In reply to an earlier post on 9 May 2012, 22:20:50 BST
Worse they damage the reputation of self published authors who actually have bothered to write a decent book.

I do sympathise with some of them. I'm not bad at marketing, I used to do it for a living but when I'm the brand I'm completely pants.

Cheers

MTM

Posted on 11 May 2012, 03:06:33 BST
I hate it when authors review their own books. Of course they like their books. If they didn't like them, they would change them.

Sometimes the author is open about it, saying that the publisher just didn't give enough information about it, but they still give it 5 stars, which skews the ratings. (Example: Hapless Papa.)

Posted on 11 May 2012, 09:49:49 BST
John says:
I'm a bit evil, usually when a thread I'm monitoring gets spammed, I use the See Inside feature and review the writing quality. Usually its terrible, once I even had good things to say. And of course I call attention to the self reviewing/fake reviewing and the spamming. Reviews that call attention to spam reviews tend to creep up in the ratings too due to yes voting. I guess that I hope its not worth their while spamming, if there are people who will call them on it and honestly review their book. I was going to do the same for Haplass Papa, but then he mentioned that the royalties for the first 500 copies were going to charity and I had a guilt trip.

If you want to see some quality work I recommend checking out Lumans by jonathon miller, which has no less that 7 fake five star reviews and one four star. Fake or dishonest. jason hicks and Jasmin are using the same computer and got their posts mixed up. Jonathon Miller is championing their defense. The book is dedicated to Nadia. There are 7 five star and one 4 star reviews, non of them have review a single other book as of today.

Adama spammed the forums repeatedly for his book city inc. It was truly terrible. He also reviewed it. He spammed so badly that we started discussing his books in the spammed threads, and his uselessness and how much he was spamming, then after we had this 2-3 page discussion about him and the conversation was at a lull, he came back and spammed again. I was laughing hysterically for about five minutes after that :-) Oh yeah, also in the product description there is an amusing typo.
"They travelled from their home planet to eventually rid Earth of humans and any other living orgasm which the ORBs saw as a threat."

City Inc.

There was also Mr Bamber, who spammed the threads repeatedly. Then someone discovered that he was mentioned specifically on his publishers website for self reviewing his own book. The publisher had also left a comment on his review saying the same thing. He wrote super red sun. His review has since been removed. The book is also terrible. I think he actually tried to argue his case for a bit, saying he should be allowed to self review, and that it was okay to spam...
Super Red

If you discover anymore please do mention them...

In reply to an earlier post on 12 May 2012, 11:21:46 BST
John
I actually slightly know the author of Hapless Papa and tried to persuade him that writing his own review is tacky. (He started a writing group where I live. I quit after a few sessions. I was the only fiction writer.) He is active in the community and probably really is donating royalties for the first 500 copies to charity. His review is very open about him being the author and doesn't claim anything about the quality of the book. The only real problem is the five stars. If he gave it three or four stars, I would have no problems at all. It is too much to ask an author to give his own book only one or two stars.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 May 2012, 11:27:50 BST
Jim Webster says:
This is the Fantasy forum, surely we'd all be professionally obliged to give ourselves either one or five stars?

Posted on 12 May 2012, 12:28:44 BST
There's one guy on the MOA forum who complained about having received a 'bad' review for his book where the poster said, he spammed the fora, and the author said he didn't know what the reviewer was talking about.

The post was under a female name, but signed off with the real author's name and link to the book. A male.
I clicked and saw that the female personal of his has reviewed that book. Hence s/he admitted openly to have reviewed his own book under a different account.

A further search of the book's title revealed that the author has spammed the fora under a slightly altered name (initials and surname), which had me shaking my head.

The 'bad' review, by the way, was a wonderfully balanced one.

What angers me is such behaviour reflects on all Indies.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 May 2012, 12:36:21 BST
Oh, you are the reviewer of that Lumans? Very well-balanced and good review.
It's the one I spoke about in my post. I wonder what goes on in the authors' heads.

The only book I reviewed where I was part of, was an anthology. I wrote one story of 40 and read the others, but I think I said so in that review. Can't remember, that was before I published my own stuff, which, by the way, I would never think of reviewing.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 May 2012, 12:42:33 BST
Jim Webster says:
Actually at this point we run into the problem of our level of involvement in a 'product' or 'organisation' when we comment. It's a bit like 'declaration of interest'
On another thread someone mentioned a map on their facebook page. It turns out to be produced using software produced by a company I have done some work for (But not software).
Now they're a good company, their products are well respected and I feel that so long as people know I have done work for them in the past, I'm entitled to say this.
So I think you're perfectly entitled to review the other stories in the anthology, especially if you've mentioned your part in it.

In reply to an earlier post on 12 May 2012, 12:54:01 BST
I think so, too. Didn't review my own story, that's up for others to decide. And it's a charity book, too. Words to Music, if anyone is interested.

The biggest problem is with fake reviews or those publishers who ask their author to review each others books. The result are five start reviews on all their books and then comes a real customer and with it often the negative reviews.

I still say, get rid of that review function, but that's not going to happen.

Posted on 12 May 2012, 13:05:23 BST
Last edited by the author on 12 May 2012, 13:05:52 BST
Stella Deleuze
Getting rid of the stars in the review function might help. I particularly want reviews to tell me about the book in ways that help me decide if I want to read it. There was a book that sounded good from the reviews, but the sample had such graphic violence that I didn't even finish it, much less buy the book. I also want to know if the women in the book are bimbos or human. (This reminds me: it's not a fantasy, but fantasy readers might enjoy Bimbos of the Death Sun.) I want to know if there is graphic sex or not. (I prefer not.) If reviewers talk about symbolism or literary qualities, I will avoid the book. Other people may make opposite choices to mine, and that's fine.

To Jim Webster about the 1 or 5 stars:
:)

In reply to an earlier post on 12 May 2012, 13:08:55 BST
Ohh. I find this whole thread deserves a place in the fiction forum, not only fantasy. (JOHN?)

I agree, getting rid of the stars would be a good idea. Then again, I only read the negative reviews anyway, never the positive ones. They help me to decide, if they don't contain spoilers, that is.

Posted on 12 May 2012, 21:06:08 BST
John says:
Wow, I did miss a lot of posts in the last 12 hours. I may repost this thread elsewhere. Or someone else can. I think its important to link them together, so we can read them all. I think the stars is fairly pointless, I prefer the IMDB rating system because its way more accurate(although thats partly averages because they get way more reviewers). Its really pot luck with the reviews, sometimes a good review points you towards a good book, sometimes a bad.

I personally read the negative reviews first(sometimes is because of print quality, late delivery or personal taste, like a book thats too long). Then I see if there are a lot of 1 star reviews, 2 star reviews and 3 star reviews. I look for what I call scatter. A three to one ratio of five to four star reviews and very few 3 star or below reviews is good. I look out for a spike in one star reviews, as they can be more informative. It sounds complicated but its not, I get an idea from just a glance. Then I look for really sincere reviews from people who have reviewed lots of other books(eg, I just loved it!).

Okay, totally rambling now. Thanks Stella, I try and review fairly, even I am harsh about it. Name names so we can see who this guy is, and what his pseudo-names are.

Posted on 12 May 2012, 21:25:24 BST
Last edited by the author on 12 May 2012, 21:27:36 BST
When I have my Thriller out (takes a few more months, I think) would you review it? Honest, fair and square, of course. If you read Thriller with graphic scenes of violence, that is.

Posted on 12 May 2012, 21:35:56 BST
John says:
Sure. I used to run workshops for new writers so I have reviewed new work before. Send me a pdf when you are ready. If its unpublished and I see any major problems, I'll mention it(privately). As for violence - dont worry about that. I have written my share of gruesome gory deaths, I think there is nothing wrong with violence, gore, sex or whatever as long as its handled well. Actually, its far worse where a scene calls for a bit of violence or sex and its not there.

Posted on 12 May 2012, 21:45:46 BST
Last edited by the author on 12 May 2012, 23:24:06 BST
Thank you. I herewith declare you to be a Beta-reader. Thank you. I doubt you'll find any major problems, unless it's language-related, but that's going to be sorted out. :-)

The violence is in form of torture scenes. I'm not a new writer, though, but new to this genre. Will send it out to a handful of people who are familiar with Thrillers and feed me back.

Edit: I'm planning to run workshops for new writers. Would be interesting to exchange a few information/experiences about it some time.

Posted on 18 May 2012, 19:02:06 BST
Donna129 says:
Finally someone I can agree with (accept and ignor).
Sorry to all of you but I've read through this whole discussion and you all moan so much. All the moaning makes me want to review all these books and give great review just to annoy you. I personally love reading and always look at the reviews the book has before I purchase. Now I agree I would be very p***d off about buying a crappy book just because someone has put a great (false) review or their own book, but at least someone like me could actually tell them how crappy it is and then maybe they would give up trying write! Anyway it's been fun reading your thoughts! And feel free to give me as much abuse as you like because most of you seem to be good at that!

Posted on 19 May 2012, 10:54:00 BST
John says:
Hey guys, a while ago I wrote a review for Lumans by jonathon miller

http://www.amazon.co.uk/review/R2LM8X9W75T7XG/ref=cm_cr_rev_detup_redir?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx2T2ATKZPXVC1L&cdPage=1&asin=B007SGG6PW&store=digital-text&cdThread=TxO2Q4F5SBWVQJ&newContentID=Mx1JUT3FEQ98156#Mx1JUT3FEQ98156.

The book was terrible and had quite a few fake reviews. It was 8 the last time I checked, including one by his wife Nadia. She just posted this as a comment below my review. I thought I would share it. Please let me know what you think. I feel a bit on the defensive now... Its not every day i get threatened with legal action (as ridiculous as that actually is)...

Nadia says:

Beware this false review! This person, who chooses not to give his proper name or what his credentials are - for instance what books he has published or what his status is in the world, writes reviews of books he hasn't purchased or read. He is a fake reviewer and an attention seeker of the worst kind. I have been very patient with him, but he is like an irritating fly - you want it to just fly out the window, but eventually you have to swat it. I have asked Amazon to investigate him and if I find out who he is, I will consider legal action. He cannot slander people and attempt to damage an enterprise in this way, it is illegal.

Posted on 19 May 2012, 11:17:23 BST
John,
You were threatened by legal action from someone who considers what you are doing is illegal, but doesn't know the difference between slander and libel. It is interesting that Nadia calls it an enterprise. That suggests something more than just publishing a book.

With over 40 reviews, you certainly are a legitimate member of the Amazon community.

Posted on 19 May 2012, 12:57:08 BST
I was reading a page on TV tropes about an author famous for doing this I really wish I rememeber his name. From the TV tropes page he sounded like he was notorious for doing so but going as far as to photoshop himself into publicity shots for promotional tours for other authors.

Posted on 19 May 2012, 13:39:50 BST
We are seeing the cases where authors' dishonesty gets caught. I suspect that the ones who are good at it don't get caught.

In fairness to the authors, it must be hard to have one's income dependent on public approval. However, I wonder about indie authors who are so desperate for sales that they are dishonest. Surely they have other sources of income, and if they have professional covers, that costs money. Their hourly wages are probably less than they make elsewhere. Sometimes I think they are delusional about the quality of their work.

(Full disclosure: I am an indie author. My books were a lot of fun to write, but mediocre and priced accordingly. I have a day job.)

Posted on 19 May 2012, 19:36:20 BST
John says:
Teresa, I agree. Funny how ignorant people always threaten legal action. If I were somebody important or even rich, I might be worried, but as it is... Also, funny how ignorant people always threaten to sue, or to involve the law enforcement agencies... Like anyway gives a damn.

I think that amazon has become quite well known for having shill reviews. Many self published authors do it, and its a real shame because it cheapens the commodity, and when they get caught no one wants to read their stuff.

I think that most self published writers dont earn an income from writing, its not about money, its about self recognition. Look at my amazing book, look at how amazing I am. Sadly, many self published authors haven't read all that widely, or have not had any experience as a critic. If they did they might wait longer before publishing...

In reply to an earlier post on 19 May 2012, 20:03:48 BST
Jim Webster says:
After a glance inside (it's the 'surprise me' way of looking which doesn't let you get a feel for coherence) but I'd say there are a lot of people write worse than you and the story was certainly better than mediocre

Posted on 19 May 2012, 21:04:04 BST
Thank you, Jim Webster.

John, I agree, there's a lot of ego involved in self publishing.

Posted on 20 May 2012, 18:11:36 BST
Garscadden says:
This one is funny - an author getting all annoyed that I am accusing her of reviewing her own book. I don't think she realises that the conversation is taking place as comments to her review.

She is also obviously spamming - the children's book forum is about as bad as the Thrillers forum.

Book review
http://www.amazon.co.uk/review/R3F6I6VIXR0XZQ/ref=cm_cr_rev_detup_redir?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx2PX9WDCKZLV9W&cdPage=1&asin=190765240X&newContentNum=5&store=books&cdThread=Tx2SK4M4KJQ2UGL&newContentID=Mx3G6J7MDX6539H#Mx30KAPV6SMQWL2

Post where she is saying it is her book
http://www.amazon.co.uk/forum/childrens%20books/ref=cm_cd_et_md_pl?_encoding=UTF8&cdForum=Fx2TFCBPP37ECM4&cdMsgNo=12&cdPage=1&cdSort=oldest&cdThread=Tx1785UU3C0E0CF&cdMsgID=Mx2OC8WGH7RPGHI#Mx2OC8WGH7RPGHI

She is trying to claim it is someone else - which means I suspect she posted the review under the wrong account, and has a second account. Will be interesting to see if she pulls the review and reposts under a different name.
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Discussion in:  fantasy discussion forum
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Initial post:  30 Apr 2012
Latest post:  27 May 2012

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