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  • Writer's picturejudycoleink

To Absent Friends

Well, well. My, my... It seems that if we're friends on Facebook, the gatekeepers at Amazon will disavow any potential reviews you might care to leave for Jilly. I'm not sure if this just pertains to close friends and family or if it applies to casual acquaintances as well, but so far, looks like if we've ever met via the Internet, chances are..."No reviews for you!"

I get it. Review padding is against their policy and they want to keep things honest.

On the other hand, many of my Facebook friends are professional colleagues. We don't hang out in one another's pockets. I'm just not sure how Amazon parlays the information Facebook shares with them (You know they do this, right? I didn't. I thought when I changed my settings to "friends only" that meant they were private. Oops!) to create the algorithms that determine who is a true friend and who is that woman I met while interviewing her for a story I was writing on frog wranglers.

Not that I've ever written a story on frog wranglers. It was just an example. I could have said "ecdysiast" or "dominatrix" or "that kid who used to live across the street and went on to become a movie/TV star" since I have firsthand knowledge in each of those categories (not that the actor is on my Facebook friend list).

I don't want to make waves. I don't want to go against Amazon policy. What I'd like is to understand how far out the ripple effect must flow before someone is deemed kosher to write a book review. How many degrees of Kevin Bacon must be traversed so that our online DNA no longer overlaps.

In the meantime, since my personal vs. professional Facebook strategy seems misguided, I'll be attempting other methods of getting the word out. Maybe I'll try smoke signals. I doubt Amazon has an algorithm for those.


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