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Customer Discussions > Top Reviewers forum

Plagiarism in a review?


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Showing 201-225 of 1000 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 7:45:40 AM PST
"To me that was a sarcastic statement, since his review was personalized it obviously was his, and he was goading TruthSeeker to say it wasn't."

OK, I can buy that interpretation. I guess I wasn't giving ol' Amos enough credit for creative writing ;-).

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 7:48:29 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 12, 2010, 7:50:42 AM PST
<duplicate deleted>

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 8:07:55 AM PST
"I was trying to point out that it looks like he's too dumb to even know what plagiarism IS. "

Ignorance shouldn't be a defense.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 9:01:16 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 12, 2010, 9:08:12 AM PST
"The Classic Ranking System required effort to advance . . . .The new system is designed to sling people up the ladder ASAP"

There's truth to what you say, but my new-review-writing efforts generally drop me in the "classic" rankings. My best guess is that new reviews with no votes lower my per-review percentage, but that's only a guess.

I have no plans to "game" the voting system, because I don't care THAT much about rankings. But I am wondering: What kind of effort does it take to advance in the "classic" rankings?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 9:05:45 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 12, 2010, 9:09:17 AM PST
"If you get the right review for the right product, you never need to write another review again."

Yes, the "new" system does reward blockbuster reviews, which is why so many people with relatively few reviews are highly ranked in the current "new" system. That's a major flaw, if the "new" system is intended to recognize new reviewers faster, because the "new" rankings start to calcify as more reviewers hit it big with one or more reviews.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 9:47:16 AM PST
Justin

Nothing is going to keep people from cheating but we could make them work harder to do so.

In terms of not counting votes, Amazon is doing it via Fans. If required, allow as many votes as are made but only count ten a day toward the rankings.

Theo, I don't accept HK as justification for the new system. IF she is so bad, Amazon should have done something about her. Do we want Amazon doing a system to "get" one person?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 9:51:41 AM PST
"IF she is so bad, Amazon should have done something about her. Do we want Amazon doing a system to "get" one person? "

I think Amazon suspected (or at least acknowledged that many people suspected) many of the Top (Classic) Reviewers were questionable.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 9:55:21 AM PST
T. S. says:
Only counting ten votes/day towards the rankings would dramatically change the new system. It's really not that uncommon to get 50+ votes in a single day for writing the top review of a hot new product. I'm not sure why such a cap would be a better solution to the problem of voting rings etc. than the Fan system is.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 2:49:42 PM PST
Theo says:
James,

Justin and Muzz have already given the main responses to your position that I would have anyway, so I won't restate them.

I'll only add that if you look through the Harriet thread, you'll see why I believe that there is a very conclusive case that Amazon is in cahoots with Harriet. So however bad she is, they're in it with her.

Posted on Nov 12, 2010, 3:54:00 PM PST
Many of the new system's top reviewers fall into the few reviews many votes group. With approval rate being the major item, a few reviews of "a hot new product" will place you in the top 1,000.
I do not care about HK! I do look at how the rankings impact me and find the new system to be worse than the old one.
IMO, a few reviews and high approval rates should not push a person into the top reviewer ranks.
The fan system is only stealing votes from reviewers working in an area.
Taking points from older reviews is wrong unless a review becomes "new" each time a vote or comment is made.
Number of reviews and number of helpful votes should be the major items in the rankings.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 3:57:55 PM PST
"Number of reviews and number of helpful votes should be the major items in the rankings. "

And that's exactly why Harriet is Number One!

Clearly that system is broken. Helpfulness as a ratio is important. In other words, quality over quantity.

Posted on Nov 12, 2010, 4:10:04 PM PST
Theo says:
James -

"I do not care about HK! I do look at how the rankings impact me and find the new system to be worse than the old one."

Well, I guess that says it all.

Are you for real?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 4:13:28 PM PST
Muzzlehatch says:
What are you talking about? The Classic system, in addition to Our Lady of Perpetual Fast-Paced Subgenres, also spotlights this wonderful critic:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/pdp/profile/A9Q28YTLYREO7/ref=cm_cr_tr_tbl_49_name

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 4:21:09 PM PST
You talkin' to me?

You know my retort to James was sarcastic. Specifically, evidencing why (in his words) "Number of reviews and number of helpful votes should be the major items in the rankings" means Harriet will forever be #1.

I know mistermaxxx and Acute Observer for that matter. Both are great examples of how many "Top" reviewer aren't really tops in anything but raw quantity.

Neither system is perfect, but a differential of more than seven million places between the two rankings illustrates why the new system is at least better.

Posted on Nov 12, 2010, 4:26:15 PM PST
Jason, different is not better. You like the new ranking system and I do not. Do we agree that two systems produce very different ranks and one should be dropped? IMO, two ranking systems, two number ones, and two sets of top reviewers makes any rank questionable.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 4:28:27 PM PST
Muzzlehatch says:
Yeah I know you were being sarcastic. Following sarcasm with more sarcasm doesn't always work....

Haven't checked out Acute Observer, actually, but I will now.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 4:31:06 PM PST
"Haven't checked out Acute Observer, actually, but I will now. "

Steel yourself for the worst kind of book report reviews.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 4:33:21 PM PST
"different is not better."

In this case it is. (As long as a main determinant of "good" reviews is that they are judged to have been helpful.)

Maybe it would be best if Amazon simply renamed the two ranking systems. Classic could become "Quantity" and New could become "Quality" because that is essentially what they respectively offer.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 6:43:14 PM PST
Theo,

The new system may seem worse to some
because it gives them a lower rank. To others
it might appear that it is too easy to reach
the top. I'm not sure the top reviewers on
the new ranking system actually appreciate
their position like the reviewers do in the
classic ranking.

Posted on Nov 12, 2010, 10:14:53 PM PST
Rebecca, I have a higher rank in the new system, that I did nothing to earn.

Jason, popular is not "Quality". Under the New system going against popular will kill you, no matter how good a review you write.

Posted on Nov 12, 2010, 10:43:47 PM PST
Muzzlehatch says:
James said,
"Jason, popular is not "Quality". Under the New system going against popular will kill you, no matter how good a review you write."

That's really true under both systems. Sure, under the new system you could get dropped into the 7 millions, but under the old system writing a lot of negative or contrary reviews isn't going to get you all that high either. Mark Bennett, who writes mostly negative and vituperative reviews, has a rank in the 2600s in the old system though he's been reviewing for years and has 200+ reviews and almost 1000 positive votes. If you don't like the things that the majority likes, you're never going to be a top 10, probably not even a top 100 reviewer, under either system.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 10:46:37 PM PST
vituperative

Nice word! I have to work that into my daily vernacular.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 12, 2010, 10:58:10 PM PST
Muzzlehatch says:
Glad to be of service. I like that word; can't say that I've had much use for it in speech, except when talking with my brother who also likes to use less-common vocabulary words, but it's a good one when the situation calls for it.

Posted on Nov 13, 2010, 12:48:44 AM PST
I am barely into a groove here on amazon.com (newbie) and I have to confess I'm crashing this thread considering I have written 2 reviews and I've yet to receive a helpful vote...laughing...having had confessed... What I'm wondering is, why amazon.com does not moderate for acts of plagiarism? ...what a way to run a business...or not!

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 13, 2010, 1:49:42 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 13, 2010, 2:06:16 AM PST
T. S. says:
Neither system is perfect. Mr. Durney has a good point that there are some products -- chiefly, political books -- that you basically can't write reviews of if you want a high ranking under the new system. For the most part, though, the new system encourages honest, quality reviews -- multiple times I've written what I thought would be my death-knell, "no way in hell this is going to be popular, it'll get me voted down for sure" review only to find that review become the #1 spotlighted review for that product (because Amazon readers for *most* products do actually value honest, intelligent reviews).

What I'm confused by is the notion of "earning" a reviewer rank. What I don't like about the classic system is that it rewards sheer amount of time spent entering reviews above anything else -- quality of any individual review, perceptiveness, anything.

If I want rank in the classic system, my best strategy is to copy/paste book jacket cover blurbs onto as many products as I possibly can. If I want rank in the new system, my best strategy is to write intelligent, perceptive, honest reviews of popular products, and post such reviews before anyone else does. Which of those two is more "deserving" of a high rank? Which one "earned" it more? (As I think has been pointed out, compare Alana and Ms. Klausner).

I don't mean to imply that anyone with high rank under the classic system is a mindless blurb spammer, nor that everyone with high rank under the new is there because they write perfectly crafted reviews -- some people with high classic rank and lower new rank just review a lot of less-popular or more controversial products, some people with high rank under the new are just there because they happened to strike it big with a small number of well-placed reviews. If you want to succeed under both systems, your best strategy is to write as many reviews as possible of as high a quality as possible, and the people who get high rankings in both systems are generally doing exactly that.

Overall, both systems serve a function -- the classic system encourages reviewers to write reviews for as many products as possible, while the new system encourages reviewers to write reviews of as high quality as possible. (Note that "encourages" is not the same thing as "gaurantees" -- neither system is perfect). The new system does have some flaws -- people whose ranking gets torched because they wrote an unpopular review of Going Rogue: An American Life, or people whose ranking skyrockets because they happened to luck out and write a spotlight review for the Kindle 3G Wireless Reading Device -- but overall those seem less critical to me than the too-obvious flaws with the classic system (as typified by our mutual friend Klausner).

At least the guy with the skyrocketing rank from his one Kindle review wrote at least one extremely high-quality review. That's something you could spend a full year reading Klausner reviews and never, ever find, and that's a problem.
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