Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Plus Ça Change, etc.

For all its huffing and puffing, has Amazon advanced one inch in any honest effort to clean up the improprieties disfiguring its website?

True, there's been some reshuffling of Top Reviewers, but Amazon intends to keep BOTH its older, more corrupted classical ranking and its new, pretty baffling one, awarding a reviewer the numerical ranking which is the higher of the two. If honesty has any role besides commerce as usual in these recent changes, one has to wonder what it is?

Moreover, it looks as if the Maestro of the highly questionable vote totals, Grady Harp, is already well on his way toward figuring out how to game the new system, amassing bizarre helpful vote totals for the same sort of marginal or frankly wacky books which "earned" his often hastily composed reviews hundreds of yes votes in the past. Dispossessed of the #6 ranking last month, he's begun moving up again in the new ranking system, and he'll probably be # 6 here after only several discomfiting months of excessive posting and Mystery Voter helpfuls. Plus ça change, indeed!


Mark said...

Shocking, isn't it, that the cheaters will find some way to cheat no matter what system Amazon comes up with.

There's only so much Amazon can do if someone is determined to cheat their way to the top.

Malleus said...

>>For all its huffing and puffing,
>>has Amazon advanced one inch

Well, they do seem to be trying to hold Mr Harp back a bit. I constantly see his count inflating and then being fairly speedily deflated. So that's good. As far as ranks, no, you're absolutely correct, nothing much changed as long as both table of ranks remain in use and our frinds topreviewers get to keep the highest they get in either of the two. Perhaps the 'promotion' will now be different (they said they changed the algorithm). Fundamentally, it'd be very good if they found a way to bump off guys like Harriet and Boudville. I'm not holding my breath, naturally. In fact, I was very surprised (pleasantly) that they did what they did on the 23rd. Is it radical? Not visibly.