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edited July 2018 in Writing
Got a facebook message from a follower, whom I have never met, saying he has read my new book and loved it. But. Amazon won't let him leave a review because they've worked out we know each other.
So for authors like me, who sell books in single figures, mostly to people I already know through various social media, have zero chance of reviews. This is Not Fair! ''


  • edited July 2018
    Amazon are regularly removing reviews and reinstating them. They are also preventing reviews being posted and then allowing them. I'd let it go, you'll never fathom them out.

    There are many discussions about this on the ALLi page, Lizy.
  • I know they sometimes remove them – I think that's happened to me although it's hard to tell because reviewers can remove them themselves, and I think they vanish if the reviewer deletes their Amazon account.

    First I've heard of a person not being able to post one in the first place.

    I agree it seems unfair, especially to indy authors as social media is often our main way to reach readers, but it's their ball so they can play any games they like.
  • Lizy, do you have an author page? Are you allowed one as an Indie author? If so, you could put reviews in that, have a bit about yourself and then pick bits out of reviews or use them all (ask your friend to review it and use that), with attribution of course.
  • edited July 2018
    It makes you frightened to 'talk' to other writers on social media, doesn't it?

    There is an author on FB whose posts I saw in a group, but we weren't 'friends', and one day she messaged me to say she had bought one of my books and absolutely loved it and would definitely post a review. She posted a lovely 5* one. After that, when I saw her posts in relation to a charity she tirelessly supports, I thought it would be a nice gesture to share them on FB/Twitter as a kind of thank you. I think I must have friended or followed her at this point. I knew a reciprocal review would be out of the question.

    We have never had a conversation on social media, apart from that first message she sent me when I didn't know her from Adam. Still Amazon removed her review, presumably because I was helping her spread the word about her charity, which was AFTER the review had been left. Furious, I then contacted her and asked if she would mind reposting as it had disappeared. Apparently, she got a message to say that she was banned from posting a review for me. In fact, she had lost the right to post reviews anywhere, for anything. Punishment, it seems for flouting The Rules!

    It makes you think twice. Big Brother is always watching, and assuming...
  • Good heavens. It's iniquitous. But how on earth can anything be done?
  • If they can't share their reviews on Amazon then ask them to share them wherever they can.
  • It's almost as if Amazon is punishing self-publishers - which makes no sense.
    I wasn't allowed to leave a review on Amazon because it said I had to spend at least £40 first.
    If it's any consolation - I rarely read book reviews and I never use them to help me decide whether to buy a book or not - and I'm sure I'm not alone in that.
  • I do think writers put a higher value on reviews than readers as it's a kind of validation.
  • Like Claudia I rarely read books reviews and I don't use them to decide on whether to buy a book or not.
  • Just saw this post on Facebook:

    Saw this posted in an author's group I'm in and thought it might be pertinent information for folks here if people aren't aware:
    "I just learned from Derek Murphy that WHEN YOU ASK FOR REVIEWS you should only send people the part of your book’s amazon link that ends in your ISBN or ASIN number. The rest of the gobbly-gook is amazon's way of tracking that YOU sent the link. It's how they try to eliminate reviews from "family and friends.""
  • That's been doing the rounds for a couple of years.
  • aaah, maybe that's why none of mine have been removed, as I've never asked for reviews or sent the link anywhere.
  • Nor have I, come to think of it!
  • Don't you use one when promoting the books, Liz? If they buy via that link, Amazon will 'know' you are friends with them.
  • I do so when on the websites I have, but I get the link when in website mode and presumably what will be on the end is that website address. If someone buys off Facebook or a website, why would Amazon think they are a friend? If it thought that, then no-one would have any reviews at all. although, come to think of it, I'm always amazed at how few reviews there are of quite famous books.
  • Not everyone can be bothered to write a review and non-writer readers don't appreciate the importance. I mentioned this to some friends and they said they never even thought about writing a review for anything.
  • Liz, Amazon will think you're friends if they buy via a link on your Facebook page, as it's generally only our 'friends' who see our pages.
  • There's a lot of book bloggers-like me- who review on our blogs. And Goodreads is popular
  • It's just crazy and so unfair to indie authors.
  • It''s not just authors. Anyone selling on Amazon is affected. All of my reviews were deleted - including garden products, music, etc. Most (all?) eventually came back.
  • They asked me for a review of a toy today. I didn't, not actually having seen it. Sent direct to granddaughter in Canada.
  • I thought you'd removed your book reviews yourself, Baggy?
  • I did. I had added some new ones and reviews for non-book products.
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