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March 2015

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TGR, Gutenberg, Rubric

Another Open Letter to Amazon

This from my partner at Long Tale Press addressing the review of indie and self-published books on Amazon:

Another Open Letter to Amazon
by Jason on 05/27/2010

Today I came across an Open Letter to Amazon in which author James Becker proposes how Amazon could create an "indie book index" to help buyers know what's good and what isn't among independently published and self-published books.

The problem Mr. Becker addresses is a serious one. It's not easy for independent publishers to get trusted, well-known book reviewers to review their publications. It's even harder for self-published authors. Yet, when shopping online, reviews are one of the chief sources of quality assurance customers look for.

I encourage you to read the full text of Becker's open letter, but in short his proposal amounts to Amazon a) allowing customer reviews on indie and self-published books (note: they already do allow customer reviews on independent publishers' books; I can't personally speak to how they treat self-published books), and b) developing some kind of algorithms it can use to filter out spammy ratings for times when a self-published author rallies fifty of his closest friends and family to rate up his book.

Read the rest at Long Tale Press.

Jason has hit the nail on the head. Indie and self-published books need more reviews and more reliable reviews. This solution could work well.

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