Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A Quick Classification of the Common Reviewers

Sometimes don't you wish customer reviews on places like came with caveats or personal summaries or something so you didn't have to weed through the obvious morons to find the reviews that matter to you?

I think this is a great idea, actually. A company like Google could totally invent a formula to separate the chaff from the grain and make tons of profit on good reviewers while casting the bad reviewers into a fiery pit of torment. Obviously, for subjecting decent customers to their crappy reviews and uninformed opinions, they deserve to be punished.

This is the kind of dross a person deals with when reading through reviews on

The Diva: this is the type of customer who cannot be satisfied by a product no matter how much the product and it's backing company nears perfection. This person expects their life to be a walk through the Garden of Eden, where all creatures sing glorious arias in response to the Diva's presence, the grass bends beneath the Diva's feet, and food virtually falls into the Diva's mouth when he or she is hungry (yes, she or he, Diva is not a gendered word in the Garden of Eden). I personally resent these customers and their reviews because they're hard to detect at first. You can only pick them out when they give you concrete examples of how impossible they are to please. For instance, I recently read a review where, despite the fact that the company listened to the customer's phone call and offered to send the customer a test device (at no charge to the customer), the customer STILL said the customer service was only so-so. It was kind of difficult at first to recognize the Diva nature of this reviewer, but I read fifty other reviews where the customers were extremely pleased with customer service. Also, the reviewer expected a $40 product to cook him breakfast, take him shopping for a new wardrobe, babysit his children, and give him nightly foot rubs using lavender scented oils.

The Idiot: this customer has no idea how to read or write, but somehow they make their way to a cyber-location where both skills are required. They attempt to construct an intelligible paragraph about something they feel really passionate about, namely, why a product sucks so bad and didn't meet up to their expectations. As you lamely try to pick your way through their badly constructed sentences and mispelled words (honestly, why are you even trying? You probably watched 2012 too, didn't you . . .), you realize you can't possibly take this review seriously. There's something disconnected about trusting someone who can't communicate in a reliable way. If they fail to put a simple sentence together and spell words out rather than using txt speech, do you really think they even understood the product they were buying? No. The good news is that Idiots are easy to spot. Unlike Divas.

The Bizarro Jerry: this customer wants exactly the opposite of what you want. It's like they're a mirror image of you. Everything that should be on the left side, is on the right. Like that mole above your left eyebrow. Suddenly it's above your right eyebrow (cue "Scary Door" music). The problem is that you can't really tell at first. You only come to this conclusion based on tell-tale signs and through clever inferences on your end. Take, for example, Stoker shopping for a new pillow. There were a lot of good reviews on this one pillow, and he thought he'd like the pillow, but he looked at the negative reviews (everyone always looks at the negative reviews). Some of the negative reviews said things like, "This pillow is too tall." But Stoker wanted a pillow that was tall. So, that's a positive for him. Right? So, the lesson with The Bizarro Jerry reviewer is to know what you want and to make sure you don't let someone who wants the opposite of what you want, ruin your shopping experience. Of course, this could totally be fixed with a Google formula that could do all the work for you.

The Confused Reviewer: this customer thinks the review area of's website is the proper location for things like shipping issues, complaints with's return policies, or any of the other aspects that have nothing to do with the product or the company that makes the product. They pop in, give a one star, and say something lame like, "They told me this would arrive in too days and it took for days! Fail. I'll never by from again until they make ths right!!!1!!" Usually this sort of review has a couple smarties who leave comments like, "Um. This has nothing to do with the product. Thanks for being a total waste of air. Please walk off a cliff." And those comments are really the only thing that give a person hope after a terrible waste of a review and a completely unjust rating.

For all these reasons, I suggest swift action on the part of Google. Or any other genius with skills in programming and statistics. And whatever it requires to create a formula that will lessen the amount of time it takes me to discern which customer reviews are actually pertinent to me while I shop

In case you're wondering, I'm the Diva reviewer/customer.

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