Tech News and Commentary
Dave and the team discuss small plane safety tech, Amazon losing ground to Walmart, prison cellphone jamming, Chinese drone grounding, lookalike robots from Russia, untrustworthy apps, AT&T unlimited plan woes, smartphone distractions in the classroom, and more.
Steve in Lake Villa, Illinois listens to the Podcast and is calling in via the Free IT App and asked: “I do a little bit of shopping online with Amazon and I look at the reviews and it drives me insane. There’s 100 reviews. 10 are fabulous, 20 of them are ‘ok’, some of them say it’s just the most miserable product in the world. How do I filter out or determine what’s 100 percent accurate? I’m stunned. I can’t buy anything between the good and the bad ratings, it stymies me to try and figure this out.”
Steve, there’s not an awful lot you can do there.
People can post whatever their opinion is and as long as it doesn’t violate some basic guidelines Amazon will allow it, there’s no such thing as 100% accurate.
Your best workaround may be to look at the counts next to the stars, for example, 100 5-stars, 100 1-star, and 10,000 3-stars tells a different story than 10,000 5-stars.
Having said that, the only real filter that will work here is common sense, you just have to read the reviews and see what impression you personally walk away with.
It may be worth noting that Amazon reviews are constantly gamed and abused both by the people posting the products and by their competitors.
It’s a practice that can get people banned from the Amazon Marketplace and Amazon does try to curb it, but it does still happen and as it usually is with these things, there’s a little bit of an arms race going on and sellers can get creative.
For example, sellers have taken to leaving obviously fake 5-star reviews on competitors products to get those products banned from Amazon for fraud, there are lots of shady tricks like that, so take reviews with a pinch of salt and rely on your own common sense and your own personal impression of how each of them reads and whether or not it seems trustworthy.
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