Sunday, November 14, 2010

Petty idiots on Epinions

I write product reviews on Epinions. It started out as a hobby, but over the years it's become a fun and profitable pastime. To date, I've written well over a thousand reviews and earned almost $5000; I've also made lots of friends. I generally really enjoy Epinions, but one of the shitty aspects of that site is that we sometimes get nutcases that show up and try to spam the system with duplicate reviews and then get pissed when they get "not helpful" ratings.

Yesterday, my spouse presented me with a new digital camera in honor of our anniversary. I went to Epinions to see if anyone had reviewed the one he got for me. A couple of people had, including one woman who had written a review that was "off topic". Basically, she wrote a very short, poorly constructed review of a different model camera and then copied and pasted it under about a dozen Nikon product listings. Surprisingly enough, one well-known person on Epinions had rated this review as "helpful", which surprised me, since it was obviously off topic (she didn't even bother to change the model number). I rated it as "off topic" and wrote a quick explanation why. I rated a couple more reviews as "not helpful" because they were duplicates, also leaving a quick, but polite, explanation for the rating. I didn't bother to rate the rest of her reviews, most of which were the exact same review copied and pasted in one day last month and left unrated.

So this morning, I find that this person rated my most recent review as "not helpful" and left a comment that I was rude to her. I went back to her review and left a longer, but still polite, comment explaining that what she did is not allowed on Epinions and that, furthermore, it really is frowned upon to "revenge rate" people. I also told her that I might re-rate if she cared to update. I left it at that.

Next thing I know, this nutcase has gone through at least 40 of my reviews and rated them "not helpful" or "off topic". She also left the same comment on about six reviews saying that she thought I must be running a "scam", since so many of the same people had rated my reviews. There's no scam going on. I just happen to have a following of people because I've been on the site for almost eight years. Anyway, now she says she's gonna "report" me...  That doesn't worry me, since I'm not the one who broke the site's rules.

But that's not the worst of it. For some reason, two or three other people have now rated her reviews and given her "not helpful" ratings. She revenge rated all of them and claims that I sicced them on her.  The reality is, I have no idea how these people found her reviews. I'm not particularly friendly with any of them. Maybe they saw the nasty comment she left for me and decided to investigate on their own, but I didn't send them there to carry out some kind of vengeance.   

At first I was sort of irritated by this person, then amused, and now I think she must have some serious anger issues if a couple of "not helpful" ratings on Epinions provokes this kind of white hot narcissistic rage. I reported her to the powers that be on Epinions and blocked her so I can't see her comments or ratings anymore. I think she must be some kind of a freak in person.  People who revenge rate are just impotent little pests.

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