Do the people who give fake reviews practice their freedom of speech?

The people who gave the fake reviews are overstepping their boundaries of freedom of speech.  Many people look at the product review before buying something so they know whether the product is reliable or not. Amazon is one of the many websites I use and look at the product reviews to know if the product is reliable because it is not directly from the consumer Unknownwebsite. If the product review is bad then obviously I will not buy the item but if it is good and I want the item, the product review will almost persuade me to buy it. Amazon has recently found that there are fake product review posted on their website. CNN Money article tells us that Amazon is suing about 1,114 people of posting ‘fake’ product reviews. The big question that some may have is, “Is it acceptable for Amazon to sue the sellers of ‘fake’ product review?”

So the question is this, is it acceptable for Amazon to sue the sellers of the ‘fake’ reviews. According to BBC Amazon said, “We have conducted an investigation, which included purchasing fake customer reviews on Fiverr from people who promised five-star ratings and offered to allow purchasers to write reviews.” Now that Amazon knows that some reviews on their website are fake, I believe that it is right for them to sue the fake reviewers because according to BBC in their rules on the site it says that they forbid paid-for or fictional reviews. The 1st Amendment is about the freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and petition. The reviews-435cs091912false reviewers were using their freedom of speech, however, they were saying was false information meaning they were overstepping their boundaries. Even though what they were saying was false they could not get arrested for it because it is not a federal crime and does not go against the Constitution.

When I was younger my parents would teach me to always read the reviews of the company that was selling me the product and the reviews that were given about the products. Was Amazon right to sue the companies that gave false reviews? The companies could have potentially been expressing their freedom of speech, however, they were not telling the truth. The companies that were selling ‘fake’ product reviews were offering their service for about $5 on the website Fiverr.com according to BBC. Technology giant told BBC, “ While small in number, these reviews can significantly undermine the trust that consumers and the vast majority of sellers and manufacturers place in Amazon, which in turn tarnishesUnknown-1 Amazon’s brand.” As technology giant said these fake product reviews will harm Amazon because people will begin to distrust the company and their sellers. This could lead people to sue Amazon and the companies within them because they will begin to distrust them. Since my parents taught me to look at the reviews of each product before I bought something, I have always trusted the reviews that were given, but now I am beginning to doubt the reviews that I had read when I was younger and even when I buy things today. Recently I was looking at buying a hoverboard, which is best to buy on Amazon, and I was looking at the reviews of the companies that were selling them and how they were rated as well as the review of the item themselves. After seeing this article on CNN I am beginning to become worried about all of the people that bought hoverboards within the past couple of months from sellers on Amazon. To some people this may seem small but in reality it is a big thing: it affects Amazon, buyers, sellers, and many other people that deal with these type of websites.

The other question that may arise is if the people  involved are getting a reasonable punishment for their actions. I believe that these people are getting a reasonable punishment for their actions because what they did does not go against any law. However, if the people that were providing false reviews were to give false information in court then they could go to jail or be put on probation.

Amazon took responsibility of their company and took care of the problem. They began to protect their customers from the false reviews that were given by websites like Fiverr. The consequences that Amazon gave to the people on Fiverr was acceptable and they could not have had a bigger consequence because giving false reviews on a website does not go against the Constitution.

Sophia I.

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About SaintsGOV16
We are students in Dr. Ostroff's sections of U.S. Government at All Saints' Episcopal School in Fort Worth, Texas. (www.aseschool.org).

7 Responses to Do the people who give fake reviews practice their freedom of speech?

  1. Isaiah H. says:

    I agree whole heartedly with your article and attempting to use any part of our constitution to cover up ones wrong doings is wrong

  2. 16goitej says:

    I found this article to be extremely interesting.. Your title immediately got my attention because I was curious to see how the first amendment could be applied to this occurring problem. Although they are expressing their “opinion”, they are giving a false review for money over a product they never bought. I am glad Amazon took action to solve this problem.

    • Sophia I. says:

      Thank you for reading my blog post and commenting. I’m glad that my title was interesting. I agree that it is a good thing that Amazon took action to solve their problem. Fake reviews can make a difference because it can lead to someone buying a product that they will not end up liking.

  3. govallenah says:

    I agree with Sophia. Someone is falsifying information and making other people believe things that aren’t true. Someone using their 1st Amendment rights for covering themselves doesn’t give them reason to do this.

  4. 16carrolla says:

    I agree with Sophia’s article. I think that when you lie to get ahead in the market, or to get a good story on the news, you are over stepping your right to freedom of speech.

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