It's a kind of rite of passage now. You know that, no matter what, people will dislike your writing. One small grammar mistake? 0.5. One humorous take that didn't feel right for that reader? 0.5. I was looking for a fantasy cultivation isekai and it's a litrpg system apocalypse? 0.5 ("It's written on the blurb, dude!").
In a way, having a 0.5 star review shows I'm finally getting enough people that I can at least miss the mark with my readership...
At the end of the day, it's what makes the scores reliable since everyone has to deal with it. If you don't think the scoring system is fair, then I dare you to stop using it.
I love RR's system. Try webnovel where every author has the ability to delete reviews and everyone can leave as many reviews as they like. Now that is a garbage system. RRs system I find to be pretty damned accurate and useful. I don't even bother trying to look for new fiction to read on other sites because their systems are so bad.
Seems you're not the first to bring it up
Create 100 accounts, or maybe just 20, and put up an add: 5 x 5 star review $5, 10 x for $8 or something. It's something every site I know of that offers a review service has to deal with and as an amazon affiliate they should be familiar with it.
I mostly know about hotel and travel sites though, like TripAdvisor. Maybe there is nothing to be earned here
This morning I got my first 1 star review. Dude absolutely hated everything about my book and commented as such on every chapter they read. It got me thinking though that maybe he went in expecting one thing and getting another. So I updated the blurb to say that this isn't going to be a heavy book and is geared for kids and kids at heart. Maybe if I can set the expectations for what I'm delivering then it'll work out better. I'm guessing the 0.5 rating was also going in expecting 1 thing and getting another.
I clicked on dude's profile to see just what kind of books he DOES like (I'm assuming male, sexist I know). There were 2 bad reviews for books other than my own, trashing them. So I guess he's one of those types that only likes to complain so no point taking it to heart; though sucks that his poor review might turn others away.
Trying to take them as opportunities to improve, even when they aren't constructive, but it sure does hit you in the ego.
FAHyatt Wrote: You may remember some of the early online games where a bunch of childish trolls would hover around the game entrance and bash on levelless newcomers to collect easy points. Often it got so bad that the site had to shut down, either because it offfed so many player candidates that the site couldn't support itself, or due to the moderators not being able or interested in penalizing the trolls and expelling them., or member disgust.
This is one real scenario. Another is that readers raise the bar in terms of vetting work that make it to read levels high enough to qualify for the (basically) free advertising space list presence represents.
For any number of obvious and logic driven reasons, I think the first scenario is much more likely. It could be moderated much as games are, to prevent it any number of ways, such as turning off rating for a an initial period of time, say a month, until the only meaningful measure, the number of completed reads for the work, is well established, for people to assess. Then such trolling would be seen for what it was and discounted.
A list of people who regularly rate new arriving work poorly could be provided, a "Trolls Are Us" Blacklist. Reviews from those on the list could be marked with a badge of dishonor, (my favorite) since the site likes to badge behaviors so much. The internet data pool is replete with ways to categorize users appropriately, Based on standard curve skews, and such algorithms are certainly possible, and such behavior would penalize their own reader pools. Fair, because they did it to themselves. Written reviews where reviewers are required to explain their ratings could be excluded from the algorithm. I have no respect, or concern for what happens to trolls. None.
The common adage that if you don't like something, don't read it and shut up could be employed. Note that an average rating is not a bad rating, its a middle of the pack rating the meaning of which depends on the excellence of the pack it is part of best hoodie. Ill note that I am not a fan of "weighted" schemas, and that such are simply open doors for such nasty manipulations. Most read / least read is plenty. Reviews are fine, weighting them is not.
Well...the most you ever got was 2 in one day. I just got FIVE only today.
Will Wrote: --
you're writing a novel in a far more difficult setting than I am, my respect for that! Due to my topic/concept choice it's a lot easier for me to find people interested in reading the story. Best of luck!