Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Anonymous reviews

It seems like every time I get an unpleasant review on B&N, it's "anonymous." (You have the option there to leave a review either associated with your pen name, or not, as you prefer, though you do have to sign in to leave a review.) It makes me wonder why people feel like they can't leave their actual name on bad reviews-- I mean, what's the harm in leaving a link to your profile? You can set your B&N profile to private (entirely devoid of information), so why would anyone care if the author knew their screen name? Furthermore, there's no way to reply to a review over there, so who cares what the author or anyone else thinks? It seems like the only logical reason to use "anonymous" is so that no one can notice a pattern of abusive reviews and report it to B&N.

It makes me imagine there might be someone with an agenda over there using the anonymous feature to run down authors-- but I hope that's just paranoia on my part. It probably is... I think anonymous review systems just breed paranoia. Still, it all makes me wonder. I like Amazon's system better, honestly.

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