Amazon Halts User Reviews to Blunt ‘Rings of Power’ Backlash

Amazon Studios

Amazon has temporarily shut off user reviews for The Rings of Power on Prime Video, claiming to take this action so it can filter out “trolls” leaving negative comments about the new series.

The tech giant is making it clear: don’t ask questions, don’t voice complaints, just consume their content, and be excited about it.

Amazon Prime Video quietly introduced a 72-hour delay for all user reviews posted to Prime Video so that each critique can be evaluated and approved for posting, according to a report by Variety.

The purpose for doing this, the company says, is to determine whether or not the review is genuine or if it is a comment coming from what is known as a “bot.”

Others, however, might look at this explanation with suspicion, as it can appear that Amazon is using delays as a means for filtering out negative reviews or complaints about the new woke series.

“Amazon’s new initiative to review its reviews,” Variety reports, “is designed to weed out ones that are posted in bad faith, deadening their impact.”

The report went on to claim that “the series appears to have been review bombed — when trolls flood intentionally negative reviews for a show or film — on other sites like Rotten Tomatoes.”

On the leftist film and television review-aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, reviews are separated into two categories: Tomatometer, a score that represents the vast majority of professional movie critics, and Audience Score, which refers to members of the general viewing audience.

On Rotten Tomatoes, The Rings of Power received an 84 percent rating from the professional critics and a 39 percent rating from user-submitted reviews.

Amazon’s retail ecosystem relies heavily on user reviews, so it was previously unthinkable for the tech giant to follow in the footsteps of Netflix, which abandoned its user reviews feature entirely after an Amy Schumer special was widely panned by viewers. However, this recent move to protect The Rings of Power opens the door for Amazon to take just as drastic of a move to silence its own customers.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Facebook and Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.


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