Harriet Klausner: From Amazon Top Reviewer to Unhelpful Hack

Harriet Klausner, known for many years as Amazon’s “top reviewer,” has banged out uncritical reviews for damn near any book that came her way, “writing” as many as seven reviews a day. But it appears that Klausner’s glory days are now over. Amazon recently modified the criteria that determines the rank for Amazon’s top reviewers. Here’s the first priority to becoming a top reviewer under the new system:

Review helpfulness plays a larger part in determining rank. Writing thousands of reviews that customers don’t find helpful won’t move a reviewer up in the standings.

It appears that not enough of Amazon’s customers have found Ms. Klausner’s reviews helpful. Because of this, Ms. Klausner has plummeted from #1 to #442. It is not known if there were any tears shed in the Klausner household. But everything falls eventually. The Roman Empire. Rod McKuen’s popularity. The hair on Ron Howard’s head. And now Harriet Klausner. But Amazon has been kind enough to give Ms. Klausner a consolation prize, noting her Classic Reviewer Rank of 1.

Amazon’s new top reviewer is Beth Cholette, who jumped from the Classic Reviewer Rank of 85 to the current Reviewer Rank of 1.

I’m unsure if “Classic Reviewer Rank” is a bit like playing the first edition of AD&D when everybody’s just getting used to the fourth edition. But perhaps Steve Jackson will develop a GURPs-like solution that will appease Amazon reviewers of both types.

(Thanks, Gwen Dawson, for the tip!)

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3 Comments

  1. […] Whether they are paid, traditional newspaper reviewers or hybrid ‘expert-amateurs’ (like Amazon’s top reviewers) it doesn’t matter. So long as you rate their publication (I wouldn’t trust the music reviews […]

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