Online reviews: Take ’em with a grain of salt

Today’s RetailWire discussion centers on the value of online reviews at Amazon and other sites. The focal point is Amazon’s tendency to rate more positive reviewers as “more trusted.” Here’s my take:

It’s not surprising that those most motivated to post reviews on Amazon or elsewhere are the most enthusiastic about the product/book/service they are reviewing. As a regular reader of these reviews, I’ve learned to take them with a grain of salt. (Just as importantly, it’s worth recognizing when a book gets “down-rated” on Amazon because of reviewers who complain about the Kindle price even if they haven’t read the book.) No system of online reviews — Amazon, TripAdvisor, Yelp or others — is going to be flawless.

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