I have to blow off some steam about something that's been bugging me for a while now - voting whether reviews on Amazon are helpful or not. I know it's kind of a silly thing to be ticked off at all about. I'm more annoyed than steaming about it really.
Right now, I've posted 168 reviews with a total of 93 helpful votes out of 107 votes total, which really isn't bad when you look at it. But I don't see the point of voting my review as unhelpful if it really isn't. For instance, had I just written something completely generic, then I would understand how that isn't going to help someone in deciding whether or not to buy a book.
But my reviews aren't like that. Maybe if they're a bit rambling then that wouldn't be helpful? I don't know. I put a lot into writing my reviews and keep at them until I'm 110% satisfied with what I've written. Sheesh, if I'm complaining about this, I can only imagine what I'll be like when I'm an author and get negative reviews. ;) Nah, I'll handle them like a champ. For real.
I recognize I'm obviously not the only reviewer who gets voted as unhelpful, and there are reviews I've read from other bloggers which are helpful so I can't help but wonder why they are not voted as such. Sometimes it almost seems like people do it to be jerks. And I bet they aren't reviewing nearly as much as we are.
If an author gives a book in exchange for an honest review and say you rate it two stars, does the author have the right to ask you not to post your review on Amazon? And if the author asks you this, do you end up not posting it there? Is it fair? I'm feeling torn about this because I know how much work goes into writing a book and can only imagine how much goes into publishing it, especially if he or she is self publishing.