A General Rant

Posted: September 29, 2014 in Ramblings

Got no place else to write this, so I’ll post it on my blog.

Amazon recently came out with the “Fire Phone,” a new kind of smartphone.  My main thought was “why?” and then upon reading the features I felt it was a rather silly hybrid product (uses Android, but not a lot of apps; has a bunch of dumb gimmicky features like an app that will identify a product and then take you to the Amazon page to buy it).  So I’ve been reading the reviews of it, just to see what other people think.

Many people have posted legitimate reviews where they pointed out things like battery life, the gimmicky-ness of the special features, and so on.  Many people have said the “Mayday” button, which connects you instantly to an Amazon tech representative, worked well.  (This basically tells me “this phone requires too much tech support” because everyone is using Mayday!)  But also, many people love it.

However, in the last week, there have been over a thousand different reviews from non-owners complaining about Amazon’s use of “dirty energy” to power their cloud storage.  Many of these reviews are word-for-word identical to each other.  My guess is that some pundit on an alternative energy blog posted about this, and his/her readers scurried over to Amazon to spam the product with these reviews.  (Apparently Apple and Google use renewable energy.  No idea about Microsoft.)  As a result, the reviews for the Fire Phone – which were average at best – are now in the under-2-star range.

What I wanted to rant about is the idiocy of all these people spamming with the canned review.  Do they all drive hybrids, have solar-powered homes, get their groceries at stores that only use alternative energy, and so on?  How can they get so picky about Amazon’s use of traditional energy sources when I’m sure most of them use “dirty energy” in some way?

I have been wanting to see the Fire Phone fail, both as a loyal Microsoft customer and just as a consumer who’s baffled by all the gimmicks – but I despise reading all these moronic “reviews” (which are just mini-rants against Amazon) when the product should be reviewed by people who actually own or have tried it.  Short of wiping out all the product reviews I don’t even know what Amazon can do about this.

Comments
  1. vallere says:

    Why don’t you post a positive review, saying, “If I weren’t a loyal Microsoft customer, I might buy a Fire.”

    • But that’s not a review. That’s just as bad as what all these other people are doing. A review means that you have seen and tried the product and are giving feedback on it. “Reviewing” to say you don’t like the features – which a lot of people did initially (like, “I give this a 1-star review because it’s only available on AT&T and I hate AT&T” or “I give this a 1-star review because you can’t upload your own ringtones”) – is not providing any useful info to potential purchasers. They can learn this stuff by reading the product page.

  2. vallere says:

    Give it 5 stars!

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