Finally, proof that online reviews are made up. “Homeland” makes Carrie even crazier. And a dog that does step-aerobics

fake reviews baby

Just a reminder: The entire United States federal workforce, save a few essential employees, has been shut down for an ENTIRE week because a few dozen members of one wing of one party don’t like a law that was passed, and want to stop everything until it’s thrown out. A law against which they ran an entire election season on in 2012 and lost.
This continues to be disgusting, how one part of one party is destroying America. And wait till they let the default happen in 2 weeks… God help us all. Read this and tell me how in the world it’ll all be OK.

One of the beautiful and awful things about the Internet is that no matter what you’re about to purchase, you can go online and read what people have to say about it.
Wanna try that new restaurant, book that hotel, buy that massage chair or SUV or battery-powered robot? Chances are at least six others have bought it and have plenty to say about it.

Everything about our lives can be crowd-sourced now, but you never know who to trust. One guy says this hotel is the greatest ever, another says he wouldn’t let his fleas stay there.

Who writes these things, anyway? I always wondered. Well, now we know, and the headline isn’t exactly a shocker.

The New York state attorney general’s office did a yearlong investigation of online reviews, and last week fined 19 companies more than $350,000 total for writing fake reviews.

The settlements were the result of a year-long investigation by the AG into “astroturfing” online (great, a new word!).  Astroturfing is not playing baseball on fake grass, nor throwing around the dog from “The Jetsons;” it’s the practice of drafting and disseminating biased or deceptive reviews in a manner that makes them appear to be the disinterested opinions of neutral third parties.

I love that the New York AG did this, but I don’t know how in the world you ever stop it. I mean, I know for a fact several authors who post phony positive reviews of their books on Amazon when they’re released, hoping to spur sales. How can you stop businesses from doing the same?

**Sorry my “Homeland” review is a day late this week; life and the Jets’ Monday night game conspired against my usual Tuesday sked.


But man, what a crazy, moving episode it turned out to be. And “crazy” is definitely the right word; the writers are making Carrie Matheson as nutty as she was midway through season 1, and while it’s a little painful to watch this brilliant woman be so tormented by her demons, Claire Danes is so freaking great in this role that it’s a pleasure to watch anyway.

I have no idea how they can bring Carrie back from this; her three-word reply to Saul, who sold her out to the Senate committee last week, was pretty much a coda to their relationship, right? Poor Saul; I really do think he’s trying to help her now.
Meanwhile, we’ve got a new Muslim agent in the show (did Galvez die in the explosion? They’ve never really said) who in just a few hours has cracked the code of the CIA bombing (well, not really, but almost), we’ve got Peter Quinn suddenly growing a conscience and then threatening an international banker, and Dana Brody, bless her teenage heart, breaking in to a rehad facility to shtup her new boyfriend, yet then bringing her mother to tears in explaining that now she wants to live. (Morgan Saylor, who plays Dana, is fantastic this season.)

I’m a little worried my favorite show is going in too many directions at once, but most of the directions are fascinating. And it looks like Brody’s back next week!

**Finally, something you won’t see anywhere else today: A dog doing aerobics.
I swear that’s not a dog, it’s a kangaroo.


One response to “Finally, proof that online reviews are made up. “Homeland” makes Carrie even crazier. And a dog that does step-aerobics

  1. I have a feeling Cesar Millan would not approve of that kind of behavior.

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