Thursday 24 January 2013

Is Amazon a compassionate organisation?

Are you an Amazon customer? Chances are that you are. Have you ever written a review after a purchase or have you considered writing one?

Beware before writing a review on Amazon.
If the answer to any of these question is ‘yes’ then this article was written for you.

Recently at the Internet Law Centre, we were alerted to a number of instances where an individual who wrote a review, not particularly complementary to the services that they received from an Amazon seller, became the victim of extreme abuse and harassment by what appears to be a very well organised group of merchants.

The abusers insist that the shopper retracts the review. In one particularly alarming incident, a loyal Amazon shopper who left a review following his dissatisfaction with the goods, became the target of over 130 responses, most of which were offensive and abusive.

The shopper was being made the subject of ridicule and intimidation with their home address being posted on the review forum together with other intruding information.

The unsuspected shopper was verbally assaulted for almost a week before Amazon agreed to co-operate and remove some of the most offending comments. However, this was followed by more abuse which Amazon insisted should stay.

All in all, on this occasion, Amazon proved to be unhelpful and without any sense of compassion to their loyal customer. If this represents a new trend, where shoppers are being bullied into retracting their reviews from, then as a shopper, you might choose to exercise caution before either writing a product review or before relying on one to influence your purchase.

We will keep an eye on this one.  In the meantime, you may find our article on removing content from Amazon useful or need helpful information on cease and desist letters.

By Yair Cohen
Social media lawyer

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