How did the opponents of the “Rings of Power” series disarm Amazon?

Virtual mobs are attacking movies and TV series, destroying these works and not even Jeff Bezos can stop them. "We will hate it forever", this is the unfair reaction of some fans of "J. R. R. Tolkien's take on Amazon's $1 billion project, a Lord of the Rings spinoff called Rings of Power, seems to have more detractors than fans. Some fans consider the show a huge affront to Tolkien's legacy, from a cast that includes people of color to a "bearded female dwarf" (Tolkien preferred his female dwarves to have hair) and, of course, the famous "elf" transformation. , Galadriel to an action hero wreaking havoc from the days of the orcs.

BingMag.com How did the opponents of the “Rings of Power” series disarm Amazon?

Virtual mobs are attacking movies and TV series, destroying these works and not even Jeff Bezos can stop them. "We will hate it forever", this is the unfair reaction of some fans of "J. R. R. Tolkien's take on Amazon's $1 billion project, a Lord of the Rings spinoff called Rings of Power, seems to have more detractors than fans. Some fans consider the show a huge affront to Tolkien's legacy, from a cast that includes people of color to a "bearded female dwarf" (Tolkien preferred his female dwarves to have hair) and, of course, the famous "elf" transformation. , Galadriel to an action hero wreaking havoc from the days of the orcs.

Obviously, the opposition would do what all underground armies would do if they were in their position: step into the world of the Internet and hate speech In this regard, Rings of Power has become the latest collection to be affected by "all-out attacks" or so-called "Review Bombing". You've probably heard of review bombing, a process in which a large group of people (or a small group using different user accounts or with access to bots) write numerous negative reviews of a piece of art in order to sway the public's mind. to poison Sauron, wherever he is, would probably favor this symbolic move.

BingMag.com How did the opponents of the “Rings of Power” series disarm Amazon?

For Rings of Power, they have targeted all platforms but their primary target was the Amazon Prime website, where you can rate videos. In response to the flood of negative reviews, Amazon disabled ratings for the series for three days to investigate whether the reviews were genuine or part of an organized campaign to destroy the series, the same people who probably watched ten minutes of the show. They haven't watched Rings of Power either.

But Amazon alone can't stand up to all those who hate this series for various reasons. As mentioned above, they have also attacked Rotten Tomatoes, Metacritic, and IMDb (which happens to be owned by Amazon). The series has an average audience score of 39% (out of 100) on Rotten and 2.9 (out of 10) on Metacritic, which ranks it among the worst of the last few years, while being realistic, this series is not a historical disaster. . Yes, there are flaws and criticisms of the series, no one describes it as a "masterpiece", but you don't need special glasses to see that it is being wronged. In order to gain a powerful presence on the scene, these internet mobs use bots to make their army look bigger than they really are. You can find it in another medium. In video games, review bombing has been around for over a decade. It is a long-standing tradition among gamers to write numerous negative reviews on platforms such as Steam. But there is one particular difference from before, in the past the "goal" of these attacks was so that fans could "get the attention of creators or publishers". Sometimes there was a problem with a game, and negative reviews for players were actually a way of communicating with the developer.

A famous example is the game "Mess Effect 3" (2012), which fans felt did not have a satisfying ending. . The game was designed in such a way that you had the right to choose in each version and your choices could be transferred to the next parts, so it was expected that the end of the third part would be more meaningful for the players and they would see the reflection of their previous choices, but this was not the case. In line with this, fans launched the "Reclaim the Copper Effect" movement and flocked to Steam and other game rating platforms.

BingMag.com How did the opponents of the “Rings of Power” series disarm Amazon?

Like a virus that is transmitted from animals to humans, the bombardment of criticism was gradually transferred to the cinema as well. One of the memorable adventures is the remake of "Ghostbusters" by Paul Feig, which was released in 2016, and unlike the original versions, all the main roles were played by women. Regardless of the extreme feminist elements of the film, for which Feig is to blame, Ghostbusters was treated unfairly. Its initial announcement quickly became the most hated video on the YouTube website, and more than 800,000 "fans" reacted negatively to it, forcing YouTube to remove the "dislike" option from the video.

Criticism sites in In recent years, they have tried to fight these attacks and have achieved some success. Three years ago, Rotten Tomatoes gave users the option to prove they had purchased a movie ticket. As a result of criticizing and scoring them, they will gain credibility was doing Rotten Tomatoes also disabled "reviews for movies that haven't been released yet", mostly due to what happened with Marvel's Black Panther (2018). Amazon used a similar trick for rings of power, but did not get the expected answer. They are not suitable for expressing a person's ideological differences. However, [criticism] can draw attention to a social problem. For example, if a producer or actor has behaved inappropriately or done something wrong, negative reviews from different people will show them that their behavior is not accepted. However, if these attacks are carried out using bots, then they are planned by a small group and often there is no positive purpose behind it.

It goes without saying that these attacks are not always biased or malicious. For example, when the game "NieR: Automata" (NieR: Automata) was released without a Chinese translation, Chinese users were outraged and attacked the Steam platform, writing many negative reviews for the game. Or when the company "Valve" (Valve) tried to get money to upgrade the characters ("mods") in the game "The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim", it faced a lot of negative feedback.

BingMag.com How did the opponents of the “Rings of Power” series disarm Amazon?

Those pushbacks are understandable and we can't compare them to what happened to the rings of power. do; "fans" who can't stand a beardless dwarf or who are outraged that Galadriel can be a mighty warrior (interestingly, no one cares about the Harfoots' offensive caricature of the Irish, except perhaps the Irish themselves). .

These hatemongers should be thrown in the "Mountain of Destruction" instead of the Internet. But this negative feedback, even its organized kind, is sometimes a positive thing for content producers. In this regard, Dr. Morrow says: "In recent years, we have had a trend of removing negative points. YouTube, Instagram and some others have abandoned the "dislike" option and are focusing on "likes". We recently published an article in which we discussed how positive and negative feedback can help a product. "Hearing both sides of the story gives the producers a great perspective on what to focus on in future updates or how to improve their work." Is it against the fantasy genre?

The current dilemma for Amazon and other platforms is how to distinguish genuine negative reviews from malicious ones. The worst idea is to remove all reviews and not allow the audience to post comments. Do this and both the producer and the consumer lose. "When both positive and negative reviews are visible to the consumer, it benefits everyone," adds Dr. Morrow. For example, the removal of the dislike option on YouTube has made the audience unable to recognize the quality of a video at first glance. This becomes more important for some videos, especially for things you want to do or make something at home based on a video.

Removing dislikes also makes it easier for viewers to be tricked or go to a video. Borund, which has a different content, unlike its headline and image. "On the other hand, if the reviews aren't genuine, they've actually become fake information and provide unreliable statistics," says Dr. Morrow. For this reason, we need a structure that allows real criticism to be published and separates the bots and criticism bombardment".

Like Tolkien's "The One Ring", criticism bombardment is a dark and destructive force that affects the culture of patronage. It causes irreparable damage. Amazon's main challenge is to filter out toxic comments while giving true fans of the series a chance to voice their opinions, even if they're negative. Unfortunately, this is not an easy task and even Jeff Bozo with all the facilities he has may not be able to find a way to solve the problem.

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