Monday, June 11, 2018

The Mysterious Case of the Missing Reviews

You may have heard that some Amazon reviews are disappearing.  In their defense, they're trying to get rid of fake reviews and scammers to make Amazon a better place to shop.  A noble endeavor, but unfortunately, there has been collateral damage during this bloodbath.  Actual, legitimate reviews are getting caught in the crossfire.  And actual, real, honest authors are taking a hit.

First off, you can't review a book if Amazon thinks you're friends with the author in question.  Because, in their minds, friends can't be objective.  And to use their verbiage it might be 'perceived as bias'.  I've had some reviews I've written suddenly disappear and others get rejected for this very 'reason'.  And it pisses me off.  I am friends with some writers - BECAUSE they write good stuff.  And I review their books because the books are GOOD.  derp.  If that's bias, then I guess I'm biased toward a bunch of awesome writers I don't even know.  I'm not shining readers on.  I'm not faking my enthusiasm, so my friends can get more sales.  I'm geniunely enthusiastic about good writing.  Always.  I'm not trying to pull the wool over anyone's eyes.  For Amazon to delete or reject my reviews is insulting as hell.  Not a damn thing I can do about it, though.

Harrumph. In case you can't tell, I got a 'you can't review this... ever' notice when I tried to post a review for a friend's book that I honestly loved.  GAH!

Yesterday morning, an acquaintance of mine posted to Facebook that Amazon had deleted ALL the reviews she's ever written.  Which explains why Accidental Death had 9 reviews and now only has 8.  I've known this gal since before either of us were published - when we were both part of a group of writers encouraging each other... so like 2006.  She made it going traditional and I'm indie, but we made it.  And now, suddenly, Amazon has decided her reviews are faked.  I hope she's contacting Amazon and pitching a fit.  It sucks for her.

But, yeah, this hurts me.  AD didn't have that many reviews to begin with and I've got a big marketing thing going on starting the 19th.  Every review counts.  And that one I lost was a 5-star.  :sniffle:

Then again, fake reviews hurt us all.  Actual fake reviews.  I'm hoping that once this storm is over, the honest reviewers can get their reviews reinstated.  I'm also hoping that once the storm has passed, and the majority of the shithead scammers are gone, the rest of us will reap the benefits.  We just have to survive this and ride it out.

Hang in there, folks.  It's likely to get worse before it gets better.  Until then, if you want to review a book but Amazon won't let you, go post it to Goodreads.  I'm hopeful this will out get fixed eventually.  Hopeful is all I can be right now.


  1. I'm hoping Amazon is going to hire a bunch of temp workers to address the issue (it needs *real* human beings working on it, not bots. And I'm wondering if bots are behind the review pulls...)

  2. Strangely, I've never had any reviews I've written removed. Perhaps it's because I post under my "real" name, which my Amazon account is listed under, rather than a nickname, plus my pen name is different. And I always buy the books I review so they are a verified purchase, but yeah. I have an old friend who is a book reviewer who isn't allowed to review my books on Amazon. She does on Goodreads and other platforms but I'm not sure people/advertisers pay attention to anything BUT Amazon. :/

  3. Such a nuisance! I'm afraid to go look - for reviews I've written or reviews I (used to) have.