Friday, October 25, 2013

BlackBerry disavows involvement in faux Android BBM reviews

BlackBerry has admitted that not only is it aware of the clearly faux Android BlackBerry Messenger reviews appearing in the Google Play Store, it neither condones nor has direct involvement with them. The company issued a statement on the matter to The Verge, on Friday.

As we noted on Thursday, a number of one- to five-star reviews appeared in Google Play, all of them with the exact same text. A BlackBerry spokesperson said:
We have been made aware of a number of potentially fake reviews of BBM for Android on Google Play, with ratings anywhere from one to five stars. We have no knowledge of how these reviews were created or populated.

We do not approve of or condone such activities. There are also many genuinely great and useful reviews from our new BBM users on Google Play. We would like to encourage our fans and users to continue to provide true assessments of the BBM experience through the proper channels.
To be clear, a lack of direct BlackBerry involvement doesn't necessarily mean that BlackBerry is totally free of any blame. It's possible that a marketing firm working for BlackBerry may have created the campaign on its own.

In addition, the writing of fake reviews isn't unknown or new. It's called astroturfing, and on the same day (Thursday) that BlackBerry was hammered for the fake posts, Samsung received a $340,000 fine for astroturfing of its own.

No comments: