Someone asked how and why did we reach this decision. Well, it's really a combination of things.
- One, busy lives. All the reviewers in this blog are authors and when there is a deadline, we stop blogging and focus on our writing.
- Two, busy lives. When life sends us lifedramas, we have no choice, but to sit down and listen.
- Three, the schedule no longer looked fun. Truth of the matter is, the request for blog tours came to such a degree we no longer could focus on cooking lunch. Yes, I agree, we could always refuse the tours, but wow, we have received emails to the effect of why we are no longer friends. Uhm...we are friends, it's just, we don't have 48 hours in one day.
- Four, I, multitaskingmomma, discovered some of our reviews were being summarily removed. I will focus more on this in a bit.
- Five, Amazon. The Blogger Police came knocking on the door.
Okay, let's talk about the reviews. As you well know, we at multitaskingmomma take pride that every review we write are cross posted everywhere we can link it to. These links we send off in an email to the organizers and authors who requested them. That said, we are happy to say, we strove hard to comply with our end of the bargain. We also take pride in stating we have never accepted money for those reviews. Not a cent. Nada. Most times, not get thanked by anyone either. *shrugs*
When I noticed some of the reviews posted on Amazon were taken down, I thought it was a glitch and would reappear. Then I began to read threads of blogger reviews summarily removed by Amazon because of some weird new policy they have. Que horror! What do they remove, you ask? Well, here's a list:
- Reviews from family members
- Reviews from friends
- Reviews from other authors
- Paid Reviews
Now, hold on, don't get into a fit! Look at this video and listen carefully to what K-Lytics says
Okay, you've watched it? Good! But hold up, that is just the tip of the iceberg, peeps.
Ever heard of Algorithms? I'm sure a whole lot of you can lay claim to saying you've heard of the term, or you've encountered it somewhere. So how is this related to your reviews? How is this related to removal of reviews linked to blog tours? How is this related to bloggers getting banned from reviewing on Amazon?
Lets do a simple definition:
a process or set of rules to be followed in calculations or other problem-solving operations, especially by a computer.
I've seen statements to the effect of: that mysterious Amazon algorithm...
Yes, it is mysterious as Amazon sets its own parameters in terms of rules and calculations. This includes their bots searching tags which will link you to the authors.
No, this is not an infallible program and it leaves a huge margin of error where many bloggers and purist reviewers fall into.
What about the Blog Tours? How is this involved?
Simple peeps: Blog Tours are an algorithms' paradise. Think: Search Engine Optimization!
Reviews posted within a specific set of time, frequency and such, they eventually get taken down because the bots know it was from a scheduled tour, whether or not the reviewer was involved in said tour.
Look at those hashtags!!! LINKS!
No! Amazon is not always right in terms of this, we have no argument there. Although algorithms are what they rely on, it is still full of errors and if it calculates a targeted parameter, then it takes down the review. Unfortunately, it's what they rely on but also seek to improve daily. And not only Amazon either, the NSA does it, and you do, too. How?
Links. Links. Links.
Back links, home links, short links–these are all link resources commonly known as network-accessible resources. This system is distributed throughout the internet and provides the resources we, its clients, uses. This includes anyone and everyone that can access them. Each resource is linked to other resources and are categorized, or typed, to bunch them together or lump them into a specified relationship. Each specified relationship is linked to others of the kind and so on and so forth.
Bloggers, reviewers, everything you write, including what you're reading now, these are all translated into a code. I won't go further into what specifics, just bear in mind, everything is linked and somewhere along the way, Amazon bots will link the links and eventually remove what their set parameters dictate as non-compliant to their policies.
In short, links rule the internet world and Amazon has become the bloggers' police.
How will this affect the future of multitaskingmommas Book Reviews? I have no idea. Right now, I am caught between wanting to continue the blog and see how it goes insofar as how Amazon treats our reviews, and wanting to close it down for the futility of it all.
I am also playing around with the idea of closing down the blog and be done with it all. I still am. What's stopping me? Well, this is my baby, and frankly, this is my first love. Blogging. It allows for me, as a reader, to be introduced to new ones and keep on with the old. The thing with reviews being taken down, it's not making me miserable, not at all, it's just disheartening to see something created torn down because it crept within the secret parameters a strong-arm site created.
Right now, it is a wait and see situation for this blog to join up with tours. Promote, yes, but with the surfeit of people sending emails at the last minute and saying sorry, but emergency! it's just not working anymore. Especially as there are no thanks in return, even a simple PM would do it, but no, none. Again, disheartening.
For now, we will continue to accept the Review Requests, but it will be very limited. Promotions, if we have the time, and not working with deadlines ourselves.