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Can someone "spam" the ratings?
Our survey has three features that discourage "spamming" or help
make it clear when spamming has occurred.
For each specific brand of a specific product, a survey participant
can give only one rating. If someone tries to rate a specific
product again, the new rating replaces the old one.
Ratings are anonymous but do show the rater's domain. If high
ratings of the Acme brand of vitamin C are all from #firstname.lastname@example.org,
#email@example.com, #firstname.lastname@example.org, and so on, it's easy to see that these
ratings are from Acme employees.
Ratings also have dates. If Acme tells its employees to register
for our survey through their personal email addresses, a "spike"
of high ratings all appearing in a single day or week also suggests
that Acme has tried to spam its ratings. (Besides, Acme has
no way of checking that its employees have complied. Unless
the employees are genuinely enthusiastic about Acme products,
such spamming might not occur at all.)
The benefits of participating in this SupplementQuality.com survey
are clear: At no cost to you, you get to share your opinions about
specific supplements, anonymously unless you specify otherwise,
and you get to see everyone else's opinions too. Register
Your participation is vital to this pioneering work. Help us make
it possible for consumers to see what people really think about
1999-2003 Dietary Supplement Quality Initiative. For permission to reprint,
please contact our editor.