WaPo: Amazon Reviews For Bluetooth Headphones Are Mostly “Fake”
By Natalie Daher
Maybe don’t trust that five-star review for those cheap wireless headphones?
Most Amazon reviews for product categories including Bluetooth headphones could be disingenuous, according to the Washington Post. Merchants have allegedly been seeking people who write fraudulent reviews on Facebook, the Post reports, to write phony, paid reviews on Amazon.
It’s no secret that illegitimate reviews proliferate the internet. While the Seattle-based consumer giant has tried to assert that 99 percent of its reviews are from legitimate customers, the Post crunched data from analyst site ReviewMeta.com that showed otherwise.
Paid reviews have been banned by Amazon, yet data from ReviewMeta.com has flagged a majority of questionable reviews for products including Bluetooth headphones, along with weight loss pills, Bluetooth speakers and Testosterone booster.
Some flags of questionable reviewers: large numbers of reviews over a short period of time, and “‘sock puppet’ reviewers who appear to have cut and paste stock language,” The Post reported.
Customer reviews were once a tenet of Amazon, setting a standard for start-ups including Yelp and Airbnb, the Post notes.
The Post reports: “The vision [Jeff] Bezos popularized, of a review and ratings system that serves as a guide for consumers to make smarter choices, has given way to a system where some consumers are manipulated and misled.”
Writer & journalist based in NY.