Amazon is helping Queen Hill out a little bit….
By making sure no one says meeeeean things about her!
Amazon has been monitoring and deleting reviews after Hillary Clinton’s new book was greeted with a torrent of criticism on the day it was released.
What Happened, which covers the former Secretary of State’s unsuccessful election campaign against Donald Trump, was published on Tuesday. Clinton and her publisher Simon & Schuster claimed the book would offer a candid account of her failure and her own reflection on it.
Reviews of What Happened have been mixed, with some suggesting it Clinton uses it as an opportunity to blame others – such as Bernie Sanders and Vladimir Putin – for her failure, rather than herself. In The New York Times, which supported Clinton’s campaign, Jennifer Senior writes that the book is “a score-settling jubilee”.
The readers on Amazon, meanwhile, are even more divided – but not all of them have read the book. The online retail giant has a “verified purchase” option to signpost whether reviewers have bought a product, and none of the 42 reviewers leaving comments on Tuesday had done so.
Few of the one-star reviews remain on the website, but reports and screengrabs show that reviewers used the space to criticise the former First Lady and spread conspiracy theories about her and Bill Clinton.
One one-star review, which remains on the website at the time of writing, reads: “Read all the promotional excerpts, which combined come close to book length – pretty good novel. It is fiction, isn’t it? Surely, someone is playing a joke.”
I have mixed thoughts on this.
On one hand, I think these reviews should be limited to those who have read the book. I always feel that way, and will not make an exception to that thought just because I don’t like Hillary and relish the horrible (and true) comments she’s getting.
I should be consistent… and so my opinion that only those who have read a book should be reviewing the book will stand.
Amazon DOES offer the option to review a book whether or not you have read it. They always have. So I think it’s wrong that in THIS CASE they’ve decided to start deleting those reviews.
In fact, it’s something they very rarely do.
Amazon is rarely moved to delete reviews so publicly, although in November negative comments under a book by anti-Trump broadcaster Megyn Kelly appeared to be removed by the retailer.
Speaking to Fortune, a spokesperson from the company said: “In the case of a memoir, the subject of the book is the author and their views. It’s not our role to decide what a customer would view as helpful or unhelpful in making their decision. We do however have mechanisms in place to ensure that the voices of many do not drown out the voices of a few and we remove customer reviews that violate our community guidelines.”
See, I don’t get that. They confirm that the subject and their views are open for review….and that they will not decide what’s “helpful or unhelpful” ….so are they not just confirming that they shouldn’t be deleting those comments?
I understand removing comments that violate community guidelines by crossing the line into vulgar, or violent language. None of the comments above do.
Hmm…..seems to me like they’re just helping out their ol’ pal Hill.