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Amazon cracks down on fake reviews, but shady accounts aren't the only casualties

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Amazon's review system has played host to everything from absurdist humor to political grandstanding to the much more mundane practice of inflating a product's score with fake or reviews. Now, The New York Times says, the site is cracking down on book reviews, with mixed results. Some writers say reviews by direct relatives or longtime fans have been purged, but others have successfully urged people who haven't even read their book to rate it, a practice Amazon allows. Power reviewers like Harriet Klausner, meanwhile, raise suspicion by writing thousands of reviews — though Klausner tells the Times that her over 28,000 reviews are the result of quick reading, a lot of spare time, and a lot of quick Harlequin romance novels. "To watch her in action is unbelievable," her husband says. "You see the pages turning."

The Verge
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