Friday, September 12, 2014

Frankenstein's Monster in 311 Words

Meet "bernie."

Bernie is a top 500 reviewer.  He's been at it for a very long time -- longer than Harriet, even!  His first review was posted in May of 1999.

Bernie has developed a bad habit.  He likes to post the SAME REVIEW dozens -- or even hundreds -- of times.

Why, on July 24 and 25 of this year, he posted at least 68 reviews of A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs.  The exact same 146 words, over and over again.  On EVERY edition -- illustrated editions, annotated editions, even a CD-ROM.  Now HOW can those 146 words apply equally to ALL VERSIONS of this product?  Hmmm?  Oh wait, THEY CAN'T.  Some of our favorite quotes:

  • "Written in 1912 this book is well written for its time..."
  • "It is a tail worth reading..."
  • "This is a part is a series by the writer that brought us 'Tarzan.'"

Sloppy, sloppy, sloppy.  And NOT HELPFUL.

We also have:

  • 18 reviews of 84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff (not all the same this time, though -- there seem to be a long version and a short version)
  • 19 reviews of Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne (mostly 242 words)
  • 23 identical reviews of George Orwell's Animal Farm
  • 35 nearly-identical reviews of Ann Veronica by H.G. Wells
  • 31 reviews of Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  • 27 identical reviews of Busman's Honeymoon by Dorothy L. Sayers
  • 18 identical reviews of Dinosaur in a Haystack by Stephen Jay Gould
  • 33 325-word masterpieces of Bram Stoker's Dracula
  • 66 identical reviews of Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  • 63 reviews of King Solomon's Mines by H. Rider Haggard (there seem to be two versions of this one)
  • 43 reviews of On the Beach by Nevil Shute
  • 46 reviews of Samuel Taylor Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (including audio, paperback, hardcover, and Kindle editions -- ALL OF THEM get the same 179 words)
  • 20 reviews of Science and Sanity by Alfred Korzybski
  • 29 reviews of The Duchess of Malfi by John Webster
  • 28 reviews (or more) of The Dunwich Horror by H.P. Lovecraft
  • 42 reviews of The Gods of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • 27 reviews of The Jewel of Seven Stars by Bram Stoker
  • 29 reviews of The Odessa File by Frederick Forsyth
  • 21 82-word wonders on The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester
  • 35 reviews of The Razor's Edge by W. Somerset Maugham
  • 21 reviews of The Time Machine by H.G. Wells (most around 205 words although there's at least one other version)
  • 39 reviews of The Warlord of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • 21 reviews of Warrant for X by Philip MacDonald

And that's NOT EVEN ALL of the repeats.  The sad thing is, most of these so-called "reviews" don't even have votes.  We wonder why bernie is WASTING SO MUCH TIME?

As for the title of this post, well, there WERE 71 identical, 311-word "reviews" of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, although Ammy (rightly) saw fit to delete those (and don't get us started on the 200+ "reviews" of The Iliad that Ammy zapped last week -- although we see that 44 of THOSE WONDERS remain -- most at around 1372 words).

And now to clear our browsing history so Amazon doesn't recommend 71 versions of Frankenstein to US.  (One is more than sufficient, thanks.  And we won't be taking bernie's opinion into consideration when choosing an edition, either.)

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