Being a product reviewer can be an odd and sometimes frustrating thing to be.
I’ve been told that I’ve got one of the greatest jobs in the world, and I’ve been told I’m ‘envied’ by some, it’s odd to hear that really, but whatever, guess I’m just modest..
Actually getting products for review can be fairly difficult, at least the new stuff. The idea of course is to get it first, early, before anyone else.
The new Zune HD comes out tomorrow and of course I hit up my contact to try and get one, but I was turned down. Why? I’m not sure, I got the canned, general response that you get instead of just NO, it basically says they don’t have enough units and you’ll be added to the list, that means you won’t be getting one, plain and simple.
My last Zune review of the Gears of War2 Special Edition 120gb version is still on the first page of Google search results. You can just put ‘Gears of War Zune’ in the search box and it’s there, near the bottom # 10 actually if you count the ads etc. If you knock out the ads it’s number 8. That rank isn’t too bad for a review that I posted almost one year ago, November 12th 2008 to be exact.
In fact a lot of my reviews are in the top ten search results, which is an achievement in itself I would think. Some of them were actually above the company product page for quite a while before dropping below the official page, but still they are there, a year later, in the top ten search results.
Another thing that bugs me, and one I’ve yet to understand is the what qualifies as a loaner product or a product that you can keep. I’ve kept products that sell for upwards of $800, and I’ve had to send back products that sell for $50… There’s no standard there at all when it comes to trying to figure it out.
I also can’t quite understand why a company would request a product be reviewed, and then never mention that it needs to be sent back, only to have the product arrive and find a shipping label inside of it to send it back..
This job is fun though, don’t get me wrong, it’s great, it’s awesome being on the ‘cutting edge’ of new products, but it’s not all it’s cracked up to be really. It truly is a whole lot of work, and like anything, you can never please everyone, everyone as in the readers. You’ll also find someone to disagree with you about what you wrote or how you did or didn’t test something, or how you did the pictures or how you did the videos. For the most part though, the good people outweigh the bad, it’s the nature of the internet though, you’re always going to have ‘trolls’, people that just like to insult others and people that have nothing better to do than attack people they are jealous of.
The majority of the insults don’t bother me too much, I laugh them off and maybe I’ll have fun with them, the ones that really piss me off are the ones that accuse me of getting paid by the company for the review. I’ve never, and will never accept payment from a company for a good review. I post or publish my objective views, and of course toss in my thoughts, experiences and feelings as well. If those don’t correspond to someone else’s experiences that’s not my fault, it’s just my experience with it.
It might sound bad, but there’s another thing I do like about it, I appreciate the ‘Thank You’ that I get from people, it does make me feel good, like I am appreciated and that’s all we could ask for really, do the job to the best of your ability and have your work appreciated.