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Similiar items, different flavors, multiple reviews?

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Showing 1-15 of 15 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 6, 2012 11:58:07 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 7, 2012 5:10:14 PM PDT
D Taylor says:
I acquired my first "negative" fan today, very curious. In pondering what they were trying to express I have a question about posting reviews where the only difference between many listings is a "flavor". Similiar to color etc for other items.

In this case it seemed reasonable that I could write my review and post it up with several of the flavors of the same item (Mio water flavoring in this case). Given that Amazon is expanding into realms where there are minor differences between items such as this, I used a single review to cover the topic and ranked the flavors as I see them, and then posted the review up with several items.

Please share you thoughts on how best to handle this type of situation?
Thanks oh revered reviewers ;-)

Posted on Apr 6, 2012 12:20:26 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 6, 2012 12:20:58 PM PDT
This topic has been covered in depth here at the Top Reviewers forum.

This is from May 2011:

And as you can see there, I linked back to the even older (and longer) discussion from August 2010:

Posted on Apr 6, 2012 12:32:10 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 6, 2012 12:51:48 PM PDT
D Taylor says:

Thank-you for the links. After reading through the first set and browsing the 2nd, it appears this is a case where there is no concensus. Many feel strongly either way. As more food and household items are added to the Amazon site this will become a larger issue.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 6, 2012 5:13:34 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 6, 2012 5:20:17 PM PDT
D. Taylor wrote: "I acquired my first "hater" fan today, very curious."


"Please share you thoughts on how best to handle this type of situation?"


I checked you MIO reviews and there's no telling for taste and there's no telling what lurks in the hearts of a human. My comment recommendation to you is, there is no handling this type of situation.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 6, 2012 5:19:36 PM PDT

When you write a review for a product and then post it at multiple places people can and do get mad about it. I've seen some of the top reviewers do this quite often. I have often purchased items from different sellers. Like I puchased Godiva chocolate three times so I wrote three reviews for the same basic product. The difference was that one seller shipped out really fast. So I feel justified in writing about a product more than once. I see someone in the top (I won't mention names) has reviewed staplers of different colors. Same review on each one as far as I can tell and they did them basically all in a row. So amazon doesn't seem to crack down on this. I blame this on obsession. Some of us just can't help ourselves. Posting reviews just feels so darn good. But if you can stop yourself from doing it - you will get less negative comments. Or you can just erase those reviews when you get the comments. However it shows that customers are searching around for the best price or reading all the reviews they can get on a product.

Posted on Apr 6, 2012 8:05:53 PM PDT
If Amazon allows it, you can do it.

If Amazon won't let you do it, you can't.

It is that simple.

Posted on Apr 7, 2012 12:06:20 AM PDT
D Taylor says:

Good points, I posted to 3 of the flavors that I enjoyed and left the other 8 or so. I figured there were so many that I wanted to get the review across but not one in each. It's silly to vote no for the review being helpful when it is, and the funny part is that they became a fan and it didn't count against me. I'm leaving it to watch what evolves. I might be curious to delete 1 of the no vote reviews at some point to see how that effects things?

It appears the only real solution is in how Amazon classifies items like this. They need to be in one listing where you then select a flavor instead of many different ads.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 7, 2012 5:45:32 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 7, 2012 2:00:12 PM PDT
"I see someone in the top (I won't mention names) has reviewed staplers of different colors. Same review on each one as far as I can tell and they did them basically all in a row."

Rebecca's referring to me and I don't mind you naming names because I have no problem with doing it. I've also done it (with some variation) on journals and Kindle skins. I wouldn't attribute it to obsession, but to wanting people who see that stapler to know it's a good stapler, which they won't if they go to a product page that doesn't have any reviews posted. Over the years I have become very dependent on the ratings system in making purchases. If I see a product that has zero reviews, versus a product that might have 2-3 (or even 1) five star ratings, I will usually go with the rated product. It might be foolish, but I am very trusting in the review system, and I don't like seeing products with no ratings at all. So if someone is searching for staplers and winds up on the blue stapler page as opposed to the red stapler, I want them to have the benefit of receiving the same information that might help them make a purchase. If there is no change in the product other than aesthetics, I don't see any harm in it and only a benefit. I have never used all of the different color staplers, so the only problem should be the highly unlikely probability that one of the colors does not match the image. If you read my DecalGirl Kindle skins, you'll see that I only review the ones I've used, and while I do paste most of the functional info across the products, I include at least a full paragraph about that specific image since the image is the main part of the product. That is one of my most successful reviews, so if I wanted to somehow take advantage of the system, I would just paste it across the 60-70 different skins that are on Amazon.

I did contact Amazon twice before doing it and asked them to link the product pages together so all of the reviews would show up under the same set. When that failed I made sure it was acceptable to leave the same review across multiple pages and was told it was (which is why Amazon doesn't "crack down on this," because it's not against their policy). Actually, now that I think about it, I would attribute it to a bit of obsession since I spent time writing a detailed review on a stapler, but I don't see a problem with it ethically as the assumption may be, since I gain nothing from it. If all of the product sets were linked, the same amount of people would still see the review.

In my ideal world every product on Amazon would have at least 5 reviews. If I see a product that doesn't have any and I have already done the work on reviewing it (in another color), I absolutely will copy and paste an existing review to it.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 7, 2012 5:52:11 AM PDT
Your reviews look fine to me. You can't really provide a lot of variation on a product like that, and you mention flavor in the reviews so they're relevant to the product.

Also if you're looking for a soda that's Atkins friendly, try Diet Rite. Most groceries have it and it's sweetened with Splenda. Once you're out of induction phase though I would try to get off "soda-type" drinks alltogether.

Posted on Apr 7, 2012 3:02:53 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 7, 2012 4:54:48 PM PDT
D Taylor says:

Thanks for the information, the comments and ideas. I'll have to check out Diet Rite. I'm mainly drinking water with Mio, which was why it's exciting for me to review that. I drink it EVERY day. I go to several stores in the area to get the flavors I like. Sadly the online sellers are really over pricing it. As far as soda type drinks, I'm not drinking fizzy stuff (other than maybe weekly a diet coke), just ice water with some flavoring. Pure ice water is harder to get with a nice taste around town and the MIO makes it all that much easier.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 7, 2012 4:27:11 PM PDT
Tanstaafl says:
D. Taylor, may I suggest that you not label anyone who dares to give one of your reviews as "hater". The #1 reviewer has received over 1,000 not helpful votes. Are you going to show up each time you get a neg to let us know about your new "hater" vote? That name calling is enough in itself to get you more and more negs.

And, don't be surprised if the attitude of "in my opinion my reviews are better than any others on those products" gets you still more negs. You are one of over 9 MILLION people who have posted reviews on this Amazon site. That type of statement could rankle more than just a few people.

Baiting people with "I decided to post the review to one more flavor of MIO and see how long it takes a hater to find it" will add more (if that is possible). Don't complain when you discover you have created a self-fulfilling prophecy. There is ample evidence that there are many, many more Amazon customers who read this (and every) forum than those who post.

You came on here and called attention to your reviews, and have chosen to continue to post about your reviews getting negged. Remember that the question that is asked of readers of reviews is "Was this review helpful to you?" The key word is "you". That refers to the reader. The question is not "Do you agree with the reviewer that he has written the best review of this product?" It is not "Do you think that this review could possibly be helpful to anyone in the world?" It asks each reader to vote (or not) about how they feel about the review being "helpful" to each of them.

If I should look at your reviews and vote one "Not helpful", believe me it won't be because I'm a "hater", any more than voting one of them "Helpful" would make me a "lover". Frankly, I don't care enough about you or your reviews to be a "hater" or "lover" of either. I am a "disliker" of name calling reviewers who think they and their reviews are entitled to be treated as something special.

Posted on Apr 7, 2012 4:48:38 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 7, 2012 4:53:48 PM PDT
D Taylor says:

Very good points, I am glad you took the time to write me and point this out. I will correct my posts and change my tone.

I was using the term Hater loosely, not in a mean way, simply as a way to describe someone who voted negative, which is how I've seen the term used. I certainly wasn't baiting any votes or intending that to be the case, but I can see how it could be taken that way.

By the way I don't think my reviews are special, though I do try to be very accurate in my descriptions and provide plenty of details. That is my goal, clear communication and enough thought to make it worth reading. The very fact that you took what I wrote above in the forum differently than I intended shows I have work to do in improving my writing.

As far as my participation in the forums, it was for enjoyment of discussion with people who share a mutual interest. I have not been wanting or asking anyone to look at my reviews and certainly don't think I'm highly ranked. Clearly I am a newbie at this. Again my posting was mis-understood which means I need to review my own writing and make sure I'm clear in what is posted here too.

Thanks again for the clarity of words and explanations.
Humbly, DT

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 7, 2012 7:13:21 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Apr 7, 2012 8:09:21 PM PDT
But Scott have you gotten a negative reaction from customers? I used to do it more on beauty products because I felt it wasn't fair for just one seller to get my review. When people complain I just delete the review.

I must say...I'm really impressed with your review that has over 20,000 votes. What a review! That is what I call a super review. Most top reviewers have quite a few super reviews.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 8, 2012 5:38:07 AM PDT
If you've already moved away from carbonated drinks then you're much better off than when I was doing Atkins. Good for you. I now only drink water, but it was tough to make that transition.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 8, 2012 5:44:04 AM PDT
No negative reaction yet, but that's probably because only a handful have seen the review. There was pretty much this same discussion about it on the forums a couple years ago after I think someone got banned for it, which is why I contacted Amazon, and I think we came to the conclusion that as long as it is the same product, it's okay. If there are significant differences, I will still copy and paste parts of my review as appropriate. I've been writing a P90X2 review and I'm planning on leaving two reviews, one for the Ultimate version and one for the regular version. Probably 85% of the reviews will be exactly the same.
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Discussion in:  Top Reviewers forum
Participants:  7
Total posts:  15
Initial post:  Apr 6, 2012
Latest post:  Apr 8, 2012

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