So I talked a bit about the review swapping scam a coworker got hoodwinked by – basically a product got a lot of good reviews (it was a wine glass as I recall,) and then the product description and images were swapped for some junk electronics. The result was a five star rating for fake product after they swapped out images and description.
TL;DR – it feels like in every department I’ve talked to they’re deliberately working to misunderstand the problem at this point and let bad actors roam free.
I attempted multiple times to get an Amazon rep back then to understand what had happened and that the seller was a scammer selling a fake product (ridiculously inexpensive storage device,) and I felt like I was talking to a bag of hammers over the course of two days. They were hell bent on letting their customers get ripped off by a scam seller, so be it.
I went to update one of my Vine reviews yesterday as the product had outperformed expectations and found that a pretty solid 4.5+ star product had the same damned thing had happen. My review, which had been pretty good, was sitting on a product I did not possess, had never reviewed, nor had anyone else. It was now a very highly rated, but entirely different product. Same with 25 or so other reviews.
I contacted Amazon Vine’s support, told them exactly what had happened – that a seller had swapped out pictures and product and description after getting a fairly decent rating on the real product, and replaced it with something entirely different so it shows as highly rated when people are searching for that thing. There were no reviews of that thing. They’d done it just to get stars.
My first response was that they reviewed my review and saw no reason to remove it. Well, no, I had not asked for my review to be removed I asked for the product to be glanced at and all the reviews for the item looked at as literally no one had reviewed the product that was now there sitting with 27 pretty good reviews. You see a review for a garden hose and it’s not on a garden hose product page? Why is that?
The second response on it I got was basically the same – that they wouldn’t remove my review for violating community standards because it didn’t… once again, I did not ask for my review to be removed.
I sent in a third attempt to get someone to do something – this time I left out as much information as I could and still get the point across. They’re going to have to ask me what product and not cut and paste the wrong answer again.
But seriously, it’s not like anyone had to do anything other than just look at the product page, look at any of the reviews as they’re all for something else… *sigh*
Updated day 3
By giving Amazon absolutely no useful information such as links to the product or to my review but only describing the outline of the issue I forced a human to look at it on Vine and supposedly the seller is being looked at… we’ll see. Only took three days and three attempts.