Articles & Discussions

Whoooo! Complaining Works! Amazon Book Reviews Are Now Exempt!


I just wanted to celebrate that as of today, amazon have seen sense in their guidelines and have now made exceptions to their 5 non-verified purchase reviews rule.  In case you didn’t know what I’ve been talking about for the last few days, had recently changed its rules on posting reviews.  The original rules can be found in this blog post: Amazon’s Even Newer Reviewing Rules  These rules led to a great deal of commotion and anger amongst authors and book reviewers as it restricted both how many non-verified book reviews you could write each week, as well as potentially deleting many verified purchase reviews when too many are posted in a short time.  However today the US rules have been updated again but this time they are clear:

  • Customers can submit 5 non-Amazon Verified Purchase reviews each week. Non-Amazon Verified Purchase review counts are calculated each week from Sunday at 12:00am UTC through Saturday 11:59pm UTC. This policy does not apply to Vine reviews or reviews on digital and physical books, music, and video.
  • When we find unusually high numbers of reviews for a product posted in a short period of time, we may restrict the number of non-Amazon Verified Purchase reviews on that product.

So THANKFULLY book reviews are exempt from this new rule!!!  And there’s no need to worry about verified purchase reviews being taken down either.

I can’t help but wonder how amazon changed its rules though.  They don’t usually chop and change their policies within days so I can only assume its because enough people angry at the changes complained>  So to those that did THANK YOU!

The UK guidelines aren’t as clear to understand yet but it is expected that the same rules apply though aren’t as clearly stated.  So business can get back to normal now :).  Thank you to everyone who has been following this blog for updates.  I hope you will continue to support this blog and enjoy reading some great book reviews, poetry and important articles like the ones I’ve been posting the last few days.  Thank you again!


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38 thoughts on “Whoooo! Complaining Works! Amazon Book Reviews Are Now Exempt!

  1. This is great news! I didn’t realize that amazon would remove my book reviews off of their sites until now, and apparently they won’t anymore anyways. What about books that I have not purchased from them but I have read and posted a review?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so sorry for the late reply. Those books that you’ve not purchased directly from amazon count as non-verified purchases. Anyone can leave a review for those and they can still be written and amazon might publish them. The only real problem seems to be if lots of reviews are put down at the same time for a book. Amazon says that if that happens then it might delete the non-verified ones and only keep the reviews that were written by customers who bought the books there. I wouldn’t worry about it though. It seems to be a bit hit and miss for some people whether amazon will even accept a review that’s been written let alone anything else. My advice would just be to write a review when you want regardless of where you got the book. My reviews (most of them are currently non-verified) are accepted at the moment on amazon UK with no problems :). Again sorry for the delayed response. I got a flood of messages and lost some of them :(.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s completely fine! I’ve been copy & pasting most of my reviews on my blog to amazon. Whether it’s driving any traffic to my site or not, I have no idea. Thank you for taking the time to write such a long reply

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hey Cat,
    it’s thanks to you that we small Indies will at least get a toe in the door with reviews.
    It’s brilliant how you and others spearheaded a campaign that someone actually listened to. I had considered taking my book off Amazon all together and finding an alternate method to promote my book.
    You are a life saver!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the kind words :). I couldn’t believe it when amazon changed the rules like that and they did it in a sleath way – not announcing it at all. I hope now all authors whetherindie or trad will be safe with their books and can get reviews :). Thank you for taking the time to read this, I really appreciate it :).


  3. Thanks for bringing this matter to our attention, and for keeping us informed as changes were enacted.

    And NOW, all who complained must write thank you emails – at least we do if we expect Amazon to understand the importance of listening to their customers in other matters as well — underscoring the idea that we are paying attention, and that our continued patronage cannot be taken for granted.

    This last book reviewer nonsense really made no sense – their decision-makers must not be readers, and certainly don’t seem to be writers. If they want to SELL books, they simply must welcome reviews, whether the book was originally purchased on Amazon or not. Readers read reviews and make purchasing decisions based upon them.

    Five may have seemed a logical upper limit of the number of books they believed most people could read, but it totally overlooks voracious readers (and they REALLY want those reviews) — and ignores the reality that we all have more to do than run to Amazon the moment we finish a book, so batch review sessions are not that unlikely.

    To me, the most effective thing they could do to slow down trolls and scammers – probably their original intent – would be to stop the competition for Vine reviewer status by clearly posting how they make that decision. That program has been a mess for some time now.
    (Madelyn Griffith-Haynie – ADDandSoMuchMore dot com)
    – ADD Coach Training Field founder; ADD Coaching co-founder –
    “It takes a village to transform a world!”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your comment. I agree amazon aren’t ever thinking about the authors in this they are a business and right now instead of trying to really get rid of corruption, which would need them to go after individual dodgy reviewers/sellers, they are trying to look good on paper by doing grand rule changes like these. I don’t understand vine reviews. How amazon picks the reviewers is a mystery, some of them leave decent reviews but others are useless and if you sign up to it you can’t choose which vine reviewer will reviews your stuff :/.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow that’s bold but great :). Unfortunately sometimes the person who reads/replies to messages has a plastic brain and don’t even know what we’re talking about. I hope it sinks in though. I did read somewhere that blogging is the future of advertising 🙂 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. You are way behind on this matter. It was some time I learned about this rule. It was made clear at that time books 📚 were excempt. Prior to that time my email was full of special office that were free for a r3. Most were not worth much and I deleted them at once. I no longer get these annoying emails. Amazon must ch,anger this rule to limit them to give per week. They are trying to handle a bad situation. I am glad to see you on NetGalley. I need to update my badges. BTY, while you new theme is lovely, it very hard to read..
    Have pleasant 🙌 week

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My new theme’s not quite up yet and I know that this one’s a bit tough to read, will he changing it very soon :). When did this rule come into force? It was last week that both the US and UK amazon forums went into overdrive with everyone discussing the new rule change. The way the rules were listed hadn’t been clear at all hence all the confusion. I know Amazon is curbing the corruption that is all over the site, but I still find that there are obviously corrupt reviews and reviewers on the site and there are deeper issues with small western businesses which I won’t go into. On the UK site the rules are still very unclear unfortunately. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am not sure when it was first called to my attention last August, I would guess. I was concern as I write many ARC reviews and books from my library. I checked into the matter and found out books were excluded. I just forgot about it. My email was full of requests for reviews often for one item. I just delete them. Now I get very few non book requests but my book requests are up. Like most people I lost interest when it really didn’t concern. I know of instant when Amazon deleted a number of book reviews. I never found out why. I know they, have recently changed their review site so it is harder to find some one else site. Someone was marking negative reviews on my site. I get a plus and than two or three negative ones. That is not happening any more. I don’t take the time to read the Amazon forums. I prefer to spend the time reading books. Have great week.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Ah, I think you’re talking about the original rule change which was no more freebie reviews, but only last week they updated those rules and it wasn’t clear at first that 5 non-verified purchase review were exempt. Plus books aren’t exempt from the new rule where too many non-verified reviews at once lead to them being deleted, which is still a potential problem for authors. This plus the UK amazon only just got the new no freebies rule. Thanks again for commenting and have a great weekend too 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I get annoyed with some authors their demands can be unreasonable. However, I have seen they have become successful. I now try and put the source of the book on my review of it not NetGalley or brought from Amazon.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes I do wonder about that. They don’t seem to change their rules often at all and certainly don’t usually amend the text at least twice in 3 days so it does make me wonder who or what caused this. I’m glad I wrote the blog post about it. 🙂


    1. The last post went viral and I think a lot of people must have sent complaint emails. I only posted updates about the changes, I didn’t do much more than that, but thank you so much for reading and I hope it’s an end to all the craziness we’ll see from amazon :).

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It was through your post (and Chris The Story Reading Ape’s reblogging of it) that I discovered your blog, and the potential problems with reviews on Amazon, so you did a great deal in making me, and many others, aware. Thanks!!

        Liked by 1 person

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