9 votes Posing as Amazon seller, consumer group investigates fake-review industry Posted February 16 by joplin Tags: amazon, fraud, fake reviews, ecommerce, retail, consumer groups https://www.which.co.uk/news/2021/02/how-a-thriving-fake-review-industry-is-gaming-amazon-marketplace/ Link information This data is scraped automatically and may be incorrect. Title How a thriving fake review industry is gaming Amazon marketplace - Which? News Authors Hannah Walsh Published Feb 16 2021 Word count 1716 words 4 comments Collapse replies Expand all Comments sorted by most votes newest first order posted relevance OK  post_below February 16 Link The thing that's remarkable to me is how much press this has gotten, over the course of years, with very little proactive response from Amazon. Not just about fake reviews but also... The thing that's remarkable to me is how much press this has gotten, over the course of years, with very little proactive response from Amazon. Not just about fake reviews but also faulty/dangerous/counterfeit products. A common take is that Amazon allows it because it makes them money but that would be such a stupid move on their part that it's really difficult to believe. When you're Amazon size you don't care about short term profits, you're trying to dominate the market long term, and for that (unless you have a true monopoly) you need to maintain your reputation. Which leaves the explanation that Amazon is just too big to respond efficiently to things like this. Injunctions against groups that sell fake reviews or sketchy products have almost no impact. They'll just recycle under new names in a matter of weeks, or other groups will take their place. Playing whack a mole with grey and black hat actors hasn't worked for anyone, ever. It's a token effort meant to sound good in meetings so no one has to spend the time and energy to actually solve the problem. Better automation and a horde of employees dedicated to manual review are the only real solutions (short of scrapping the review system and raising the barrier to entry for sellers). It's amazing to me this hasn't happened yet. But maybe that's good, maybe Amazon will continue to drop the ball on this long enough to damage their reputation to the point that there will be room for other players to move in. 8 votes  whbboyd February 16 Link Parent There is another possible explanation: Amazon has decided that retail is not a sufficiently important part of its business to to invest the effort needed to police it. This seems outlandish at... There is another possible explanation: Amazon has decided that retail is not a sufficiently important part of its business to to invest the effort needed to police it. This seems outlandish at first glance, of course (it's Amazon, they practically are retail), but to the best of my recollection, AWS is more profitable (as a percentage of revenue, obviously it's smaller) and faster-growing than retail, and their new CEO came from the AWS side, not the retail side. Time will tell, I suppose. Any damage to Amazon's retail monopoly is of course beneficial, regardless of the cause. 3 votes post_below February 16 Link Parent That AWS is more profitable is true, and interesting. But there is no universe where Amazon walks away from the (mind blowing) investment they've made in their global fulfillment infrastructure.... That AWS is more profitable is true, and interesting. But there is no universe where Amazon walks away from the (mind blowing) investment they've made in their global fulfillment infrastructure. As long as there's any profit at all they'll continue to devote resources to retail. Even breaking even, or making a small loss, would be justifiable if it gets them prime members and an audience for their other products. And of course right now they're making all kinds of profit in retail. 6 votes joplin (OP) February 16 Link "In December 2020, we signed up to 10 sites offering review manipulation services, including free or discounted products in exchange for reviews, or sales campaigns for sellers to boost their positive reviews," according to the report published yesterday on Which?, a website run by the Consumers' Association ... The consumer group said it found an army of "702,000 product reviewers across just five businesses" and "one site selling contact and social media details for Amazon reviewers."