Amazon lawsuit targets hundreds who write and sell fake reviews

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Amazon is suing more than 1,000 people it claims are posting fake reviews and selling them for a cost starting at five dollars.
Amazon sues over 1,000 people for writing and selling fake reviews - CBS News


Joe Mobley
  • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
    A good move on Amazon's part.
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    • Profile picture of the author Gandolfo85
      Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

      A good move on Amazon's part.
      I agree, it's not very fair to cheat by buying something which will harm not only your business, but also customer's trust in the review system.
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  • Profile picture of the author Star Man
    That's great. What about satire / hilarious reviews that make fun of the products? A few years ago I read about a guy who made a career out of writing silly/funny Amazon reviews. I hope this kind of activity is allowed as this is not about deceiving potential buyers?

    P.S. You are a bit late, Joe.

    http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...reviewers.html
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    • Profile picture of the author seasoned
      Originally Posted by Star Man View Post

      That's great. What about satire / hilarious reviews that make fun of the products? A few years ago I read about a guy who made a career out of writing silly/funny Amazon reviews. I hope this kind of activity is allowed as this is not about deceiving potential buyers?

      P.S. You are a bit late, Joe.

      http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...reviewers.html
      Satire IS deceiving buyers! And you HAVE to say how many stars. Anyway, ANY number affects the stats unless it is equal to the current value. And people, like me, ALSO judge by NUMBER, so a review that is not honest and in line with the CURRENT trend is deceptive! If they want to satire, they should do it AWAY from amazon and as satire.

      The fact is that they are violating FTC law, hurting amazons resources, and putting amazon in a bad position. BESIDES, who is to say they aren't doing this to affect sales?

      Steve
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      • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
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        Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

        Satire IS deceiving buyers!

        .... blah blah blah

        The fact is that they are violating FTC law, hurting amazons resources, and putting amazon in a bad position. BESIDES, who is to say they aren't doing this to affect sales?

        Steve
        Amazon freaking loves the humorous reviews. If they didn't, they would delete them but they don't. Why? Because people love them and come to the site to read them.
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        • Profile picture of the author Star Man
          Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

          Satire IS deceiving buyers! And you HAVE to say how many stars. Anyway, ANY number affects the stats unless it is equal to the current value. And people, like me, ALSO judge by NUMBER, so a review that is not honest and in line with the CURRENT trend is deceptive! If they want to satire, they should do it AWAY from amazon and as satire.

          The fact is that they are violating FTC law, hurting amazons resources, and putting amazon in a bad position. BESIDES, who is to say they aren't doing this to affect sales?

          Steve
          I have a really hard time understanding your response. I will try to decipher it later, gotta run now.

          This is the type of review I was referring to..

          Freaking Hilarious Amazon Customer Review 10,705 people found it helpful

          Amazon.com: Silver Plated Ballscratcher -" For...Amazon.com: Silver Plated Ballscratcher -" For...
          Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

          Amazon freaking loves the humorous reviews. If they didn't, they would delete them but they don't. Why? Because people love them and come to the site to read them.
          How far can you go with a review on your own website, not amazon itself? Can you for example voice your opinion, to say that only an idiot will buy a certain product, to piss the visitors off (read: spark the discussion) and make them sign up to my website to share their view and protect the product? If they do, then you know whom to sell similar products.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    What I don't understand is that the lawsuit names a whole bunch of anonymous defendants. How are anonymous defendants going to be hurt by a lawsuit?
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    • Profile picture of the author Kay King
      I doubt they will remain anonymous - court orders perhaps to get their info from Fiverr??? Of course, I am assuming Fiverr requires identifying information for those who sell there - and don't know it for a fact.
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      • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
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        Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

        I doubt they will remain anonymous - court orders perhaps to get their info from Fiverr??? Of course, I am assuming Fiverr requires identifying information for those who sell there - and don't know it for a fact.
        Fiverr doesn't really require much that is verifiable except for a Paypal account, so I guess they would have to get it through Paypal.
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        • Profile picture of the author sconer
          They will probably do the old fashion way of getting a court order for the IP of the sellers from Fiverr and then another court order to find out who was using that IP from the ISP.

          But this is all thru different countries so who knows how it's all going to work.

          I still think it's just a big publicity stunt from Amazon to get their name out there as the good guy.
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    Mere fact that they are suing will put a stop to a lot of fake reviews.
    A giant coming after you and whoever hired you...

    Isn't satire protected by some amendment?
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    • Profile picture of the author sconer
      Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

      Mere fact that they are suing will put a stop to a lot of fake reviews.
      A giant coming after you and whoever hired you...

      Isn't satire protected by some amendment?
      Do these people giving the fake reviews even know about the law suit?

      How often do people in other countries watch American business news?
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      • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
        Banned
        Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

        Isn't satire protected by some amendment?
        Parody is covered by Fair Use

        Originally Posted by sconer View Post

        Do these people giving the fake reviews even know about the law suit?

        How often do people in other countries watch American business news?
        I doubt that they know or at this time care. People in other countries are somewhat out of the jurisdiction for a lawsuit from Amazon. I think they're overreaching, personally. We have Fair Trade laws that disallow fake reviews and testimonials, but those laws don't apply to people who aren't Americans.
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        • Profile picture of the author Kay King
          I don't think Amazon expects to be able to bring foreign providers to justice...but found this

          Another huge risk is this: Amazon plans to use the lawsuit to ferret out the identities of the buyers of Amazon fake reviews. The Amazon lawsuit demands that the Fiverr reviewers provide "information sufficient to identify each Amazon review created in exchange for payment, and the accounts and persons who paid for such reviews."
          An article about Fiverr providers "running scared" mentioned that Amazon could, if it chose, provide the physical location of people posting reviews. That would reflect directly on the product seller.

          I think blowing this off as nothing is wrong. Not the first time Amazon has gone after such reviews - remember the author who boasted about creating multiple identities to pump his own books? I think this will lead to Amazon deleting products of sellers suspected of buying reviews.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
    Someone in the main forum thread, Jeannie Crabtree(?), said that this is targeted at people doing fake Kindle/book reviews - not physical products. I didn't read either one because it doesn't affect me.

    Thread:

    http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...reviewers.html


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    http://techcrunch.com/2015/10/16/ama...share=facebook
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