Most of the books I review on amazon get just a few votes, usually less than 5. For some reason, the book "Code Reading: The Open Source Perspective" by Diomidis Spinellis, has generated 24 votes (including quite a few negative votes. It just seems odd that this book would generate so many votes.
It would be hard work, but I imagine you could stuff the ballot boxes; the two reviews that got the most votes are the more negative ones, both with plenty of "unhelpfuls," so maybe the guy got his friends to help.
Thomas Hi, Just out of curiosity. 1200 reviews!. Am just in awe ! for it obviously means that you have read that many books. How long does it normally take for you to finish a book from start --> finish? do u finish it off in one sitting? Do you manage to retain all / some of what you read? I think you s'd be amazingly knowledgeable if the number of books that you have read is any indication. What is the secret? concentration? what else? I find it extremely difficult to finish a book once i have picked it up. Probably 4-5 chapters and then goes back to the shelf until i need it when i run into some problem.
My guess why that book received so many votes is because it appeals to a wide cross-section of the field, and there are simply more people looking at it than say a Java book you may have reviewed. For example, I've only done eight reviews so far, but out of those, only one of the books was not really slanted towards Java, but that one has received the most votes (of course it's a popular book). So I guess what I'm saying is that you'll probably get voted on more often for books with a wider appeal (well, duh!). I bet Amazon has some pretty cool stats that correlate the number of times a review is voted on, to the number of page views the page a review is on receives. What I still haven't figured out, is why on earth some reviews get voted as "not helpful". For me, I only ever rate something as "not helpful" if it really gives no useful information about the book. A review that pretty much only said "This book is great!", for example, would be one that I would vote as "not helpful". I know it goes with the territory and all, but I pride myself on being thorough (within the confines of review length restrictions), so when I look at the "not helpful" votes that a couple of my reviews have received, I can't even hazard a guess as to what was found to be objectionable (I understand the "not helpful" for the regex book, since my review was slightly slanted towards Java). Maybe Tom or some others have thoughts about this? [ October 06, 2003: Message edited by: Jason Menard ]
I had thought that perhaps the book was unusually popular but its ranking says otherwise. A far as negative votes go, it appears a lot of people vote on whether they agreed with the review as opposed to whether they found it helpful. Negative reviews do tend to attract more negative votes in general, although that has not been the case with me. The two one star reviews I wrote got only positive votes. There is a general belief in the amazon reviewers forum that 2 and 3 star reviews tend to attract the most negative votes.