Amazon Targets More Than 1,000 “Fake Reviewers” in New Lawsuit

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Amazon has taken a stand against “fake reviewers,” filing a lawsuit against more than 1,000 people who allegedly offered to post fake product reviews on the global commerce website for money.

The lawsuit targets people who were using, a website where people complete simple tasks or services for strangers for a cost of $5, to write fake product reviews. Following a private investigation, Amazon uncovered and named a total of 1,114 “John Doe” defendants that were found to have “promised positive or 5-star reviews for Amazon sellers’ products.”

Amazon Complaint by Jacob Demmitt

Some of the defendants even went as far as faking purchases in order to make their phony reviews seem more legit. The lawsuit reads,
In at least one instance, the seller of a ‘Verified Review’ (i.e., an ‘AmazonVerified Purchase’) was willing to receive an empty envelope, not the product itself, simply to create a shipping record in an attempt to deceive Amazon and its customers.

If this lawsuit feels a little like deja vu, you might recall the company filing a similar suit in April, where it sued several websites that sold fake reviews of products on

However, this time instead of going after, Amazon chose instead to target the individuals on its site that were offering to make the fake reviews. The decision was clearly motivated by the company’s desire to uphold the integrity of its comment feature and discourage others from continuing the practice. The lawsuit reads,

Defendants are misleading Amazon’s customers and tarnishing Amazon’s brand for their own profit and the profit of a handful of dishonest sellers and manufacturers. Amazon is bringing this action to protect its customers from this misconduct, by stopping defendants and uprooting the ecosystem in which they participate

As an avid online shopper, I can personally attest to a product review’s power of suggestion. Sometimes just a few positive words from a stranger can be the deciding factor between buying one item or the next. Sites like understand this, and expect its database of feedback to remain a  trustworthy resource for its consumers. So when people use sites like to craft fictitious opinions, it taints the whole system. Amazon is smart to go after these phony reviewers.

Alexis Evans
Alexis Evans is an Assistant Editor at Law Street and a Buckeye State native. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and a minor in Business from Ohio University. Contact Alexis at



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