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Amazon’s ‘Elite’ Reviewers Score Tons of Free Stuff

Who knew glorified Internet commenting could be so lucrative?
 Amazons Elite Reviewers Score Tons of Free Stuff

I’d like to review the solid gold swimming pool, please.

If you’ve ever wondered what motivates ecommerce’s top customer reviewers to keep plugging away at their computers, logging every last reaction to every single purchase they make, NPR has the answer: free shit.

At least, that’s the case with some of Amazon’s reviewers. A reviewer with enough clout can be invited to Amazon Vine, a program through which the site doles out two products a month to its top reviewers, NPR reports.

Each month, a reviewer will receive a list of items to choose from, including earbuds, laser printers and even a spin bike, NPR says. They choose the two they want, in exchange for crafting their own reviews on the products.

Amazon can ask for the products back any time they want, but one top reviewer told NPR they hadn’t asked him to return any in five years. That’s pretty cool of them. An unbiased consumer review system would be even cooler, but we won’t hold our breath for that.

Follow Molly Mulshine on Twitter or via RSS. mmulshine@observer.com