I just found out about the Amazon Vine Program earlier this week. It was by accident, really–I was going through some book reviews on Amazon’s website and came across one from a reviewer with the words “Amazon Vine Member” next to their name in dark green. So I did some checking to see what this was all about.
What is the Amazon Vine (TM) Program?
Amazon Vine (TM) is a program that allows reviewers who are hand-selected by Amazon to receive free copies of books and other products to try out and review. Vine members–officially called Amazon Vine (TM) Voices–then have their reviews posted on Amazon’s website under the appropriate product listing.
The Amazon Vine program was created so that Amazon would be able to offer unbiased product reviews for pre-order books and other products to customers interested in making a purchase.
Sources say that the first batch of Amazon Vine Voices was selected in 2007. Those individuals receive items to review a couple of times a month.
Who Can Join the Amazon Vine Program?
Amazon invites customers to join based on how well the reviews they’ve already written have been rated on Amazon’s website, based on the opinion of customers who’ve read them. The exact entrance requirements are not publicly released, but there is evidence that most of the initial group of Amazon Vine Voices was selected from reviewers ranking in the top 2000.
Do Members of Amazon Vine Keep the Products They Review?
Yes they do! Lucky ducks….
Do Reviewers in the Amazon Vine Program Receive Monetary Compensation?
Not as far as I can tell. And I think it’s highly unlikely, because Amazon purports to not influence Vine Voices in any way, and paying them would certainly be a form of influence.
I have seen some talk out there that publishers have to pay Amazon a fee in order to receive this service, as it helps to increase sales. It also appears that Amazon Vine is offered for companies including book publishers, including movies, electronics, and foods, as well as others.
I think the Vine reviewer program is an excellent idea–people love to read reviews about lots of different kinds of products before they make their purchases–me included! And it’s helpful to read reviews for items that are still at the pre-order stage when considering a purchase.
This program sounds like it would be pretty cool. I’ve always wanted to be a product reviewer….wait a minute, that’s one of the things I get to do on this website! Seriously, I’d probably participate in Amazon Vine, if invited. But instead of working my way up to the top 2000 reviewers on Amazon, I’d prefer to post my reviews right here on NindoMom.com–for my own readers.