5-star phonies: Inside the fake Amazon review complex

I spent two weeks in the underbelly of Amazon’s fake review economy — and emerged questioning our collective trust in the stars.

One day in 2015, a bodybuilding enthusiast named Tommy Noonan was perusing testosterone boosters on Amazon and noticed something strange.

“This product had 580 reviews and every single one was 5-stars,” he recalls. “People would write things like, ‘I haven’t tried this product…BUT,’ then leave a glowing review.”…

…In a spot check run prior to the publishing of this article, I confirmed Noonan’s findings: 10 of the 22 first-page results on Amazon for “iPhone charger” were products with thousands of 5-star reviews, all unverified and posted within a few days of each other.

The Hustle