Monday, November 07, 2011

Reviewing my choices...

How do you choose to buy something on Amazon when you're not familiar with the item? Me, I've found that I depend completely on reviews from people who've tried and tested it (whatever "it" happens to be - a novel/craft book/cookbook, clothes, games, a  new author whose works I'm not familiar with, etc).

I usually read a few comments and reviews, both pro and anti. If there are two or more commenters who have left positive reviews that are thoughtful, coherent and well-written, with minimal spelling mistakes, I normally commit to buying the item. More often than not, my choices are vindicated.

Sure, there have been a few duds over the last few years, but on the whole I'd say that 97% of my purchases that were based on positive reviews by educated reviewers/commenters have been worth it. Is that snobbery or just good sense? If you were to ask me, I'd have to say honestly that the ratio is skewed about 70-30 in favour of snobbery. It might make me a snob, but my instinct is to trust a review from someone who's able to write effectively and briefly about the pros and cons of anything - whether the review is of a book or a saucepan.  

PS. When it comes to negative reviews, if there are three or more comments that are pretty much unanimous on the quality of the product (never mind the language/spelling here), I don't buy the item. I'm pretty sure that my choices here are vindicated as well - although, obviously, I'll never really know for absolute certain.


mim said...

so which was one was TOTALLY right? something you are thrilled you bought...?

ummon said...

these are the physical books? i love it that i can sample books on kindle before i do the 1-click :)

almost through with isaacson's steve jobs bio... have tonnes to say on it. have you started? and have you read the reluctant fundamentalist?

any reccos?