Really, Jeff? Really?!

First, let me say thank you to Amazon for allowing a lowly, self-published children’s book author to have a safe and welcoming space through which to sell my books.  I’m thrilled to say that I’ve sold a few and given away a truckload!  I’m also proud of the 30+ reviews I’ve gotten from satisfied readers including parents, grandparents and educators.  After all, the books do have a message of kindness, friendship and being good human “beans.”  [A silly euphemism for “beings” to add a bit of levity. You will see why soon]

Despite the praise offered above, I have to say that your e-mail of August 3rd was super harsh, dude.  Here is one excerpt to refresh your memory:

We understand that you may have manipulated product reviews. Authors on are not allowed to manipulate ratings, feedback, or reviews.

Really? Being dishonest and crooked is not allowed? Thank you for the tip because I was certain this was acceptable behavior. Shows you what I know.

But I digress.

Since I’m barely capable of updating my author page, I found this accusation quite amusing. How does one accomplish this so-called manipulation?  I would assume tech skills are required and this Amazon seller is seriously considering getting one of those Cricket cell phones because the smart versions are just too damn intimidating. Besides,  I need bigger, Playskool-like keys so I can see the numbers better.  Get the picture?

As I read further, my shock and dismay became more and more profound.  Get a load of these little nuggets of what-the-fuck:

Violations of our policies may also violate state and federal laws, including the Federal Trade Commission Act. Amazon tries to maintain customer trust and provide the best possible shopping experience. For this reason, Amazon investigates if it learns that sellers, vendors, or others have attempted to manipulate reviews. It also investigates if it learns that third parties have offered reviews in exchange for compensation.

Breaking federal FTC laws?? Seriously, Jeff, I have 37 total reviews.  Logic would dictate that if I actually knew how to rig the system, I’d go for broke and crank that Richter scale up to at least a 6.9. You know,  all Loma Prieta like.

Perhaps you’ve been hacked by the Russians? Or the Trump campaign? I hear he’s all hot to trot to wrap you around that greasy axle known as the IRS for avoiding taxes by getting all cozy with Luxembourg, so there could be a conspiracy afoot here. You might want to have your tech peeps look into that.

Be that as it may, I believe you owe me (and perhaps others?) an apology.  Nothing too elaborate. “I’m sorry that you were wrongly accused and I hope the FTC doesn’t fine you a billion dollars” will suffice.


Jules Howe

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