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PHDMAMA06 SparkPoints: (93,518)
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Posts: 6,334
5/10/13 10:07 A

I didn't read the review nor did I read the Spark Solution, but if I reviewed a Spark book on Amazon, I would give it my honest opinion (trying to keep it constructive/useful to other Amazon customers) even though I am a loyal member of Spark and LOVE the website. As it turns out I did really enjoy reading The Spark, so had more or less good things to say about it. But I wouldn't think badly of a person for panning the book, in spite of being an active SP member, if they honestly didn't think it was a worthy read. It's not hypocritical. One's opinion of a book doesn't necessarily reflect their view of the community as a whole or what it's done for them.

Cheers :)

GOLDEELOCKS SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (29,283)
Posts: 1,425
5/10/13 9:45 A

There should be a like and dislike box for some of these comments!!! I'm with the few that said ....."She has a right to her own opinion and opinions can be valuable!!" Enjoy ur days!!!!

AMARANTHA120S Posts: 474
5/10/13 9:26 A

Honestly, I see no reason why a review on Amazon should be an issue one way or another but then the OP also has a right to her opinion.

I don't buy books or anything on Amazon anymore, but a review would mean nothing to me if I wanted any specific product.

As an aside, I have the Spark cookbook and really love it, but would be unlikely to buy any of the others right now unless they are on the electronic book site I use.

But it is all good. Being reviewed means people are paying attention.

VATRUCKER SparkPoints: (20,629)
Fitness Minutes: (36,922)
Posts: 526
5/9/13 4:27 P

Its just to many folks on sp to spaz on someones opinion. We all have rear ends and we all have opinions, personally I would have said nothing in or about the book, but I am just one person. The only complaint I have with people is their constant chronic complaints concerning the FREE website. emoticon

BREWERFAN71 SparkPoints: (32,482)
Fitness Minutes: (57,761)
Posts: 388
5/9/13 4:08 P

Funny, I was on Amazon the other day, had this book in my shopping cart, then took it out. I did not read any reviews, but I thought I would be spending money on information I already have access to. Not that it won't be beneficial to other people-for instance, newbies, or those who prefer to read a hard copy rather than search for info on the computer. I have bought the recipe book & I think it's great, so it's not that I am opposed to supporting the site.

As far as reviews go-one of my favorite authors also has a blog. She writes mainly memoirs & about personal experiences, and when one of her books came out a couple of years ago, I was disappointed because I had read most of the material in her blog already. I wasn't the only one, she received a lot of feedback from readers regarding the same issue. She actually posted a mea culpa on her blog & said in the future she would refrain from repeating material. Not saying this is exactly the same situation, but some people do appreciate feedback.

Edited by: BREWERFAN71 at: 5/9/2013 (16:20)
LOSTLIME SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (21,430)
Posts: 19,221
5/9/13 2:10 P

Everyone has their own opinions. If we didn't, we wouldn't have the freedoms in our country as
we do. I bought the book and just started to read it. So right now I don't have an opinion one
way or the other. When I am done reading it, I will lend it to my daughter to read.

JGIRL5799 Posts: 561
5/9/13 11:12 A

I totally understand both sides.. When I went to buy my bodymedia the reviews were split in half, so it was ultimately my end decision whether I brought it or not (which I did to see for myself and I did turn around and sell it after 2 weeks because I became very, addicted to it LOL)

As for books I think it goes the same ways.. I do feel some people are very truthful, on the other hand if a company really upsets that customer, I have seen them to do a "bad" review just to be spiteful.

I was interested in buying the book myself, even though Most all advice are "free" here, I do not come to the site just for the "free" things, It is the people and the community that makes this site to what it is which is very valuable and I have found this site to be a huge potential beneficial part of my getting my goals met... If we have to pay for the book, for me, it is just "helping and supporting" a site (which they would have to pay for servers, bandwidth just to keep this live and its free?) A book price would be a small price to pay to keep this going free. I have left weight loss sites (like the biggest looser site) Just because they decided to start charging a monthly fee and they did not offer even half of what sparks does.

To her opinion of not liking the book and the bad review, ok, so this info is free and she thought it was a waste... dooey on her.., but for those that don't know sparks site and they read the book, like the others said, it will create much more traffic for the site, more people to talk to on the forums and more advertising that we won't have to pay because they will be able to keep it free.. Bring it on!

For those that read it, what were your thoughts about it?? I would really like to know if you liked it or not.

SUZIEQUE77 SparkPoints: (9,271)
Fitness Minutes: (40)
Posts: 1,068
5/9/13 10:06 A

I understand both sides of this. Of course, the reviewer had a right to give a bad review of the book and that is the reason for reviews. That does not really stop me from losing some general respect for the types of people who order something, probably knowing there is a good chance they won't like it, with full intention of requesting a full refund (at the expense of the company). I have taken advantage of full refunds, but usually what I got was either wrong, it was a product that was defective/didn't work, or something, not just because I didn't like it. I have never returned a book nor even thought about it, to be honest. That doesn't really make a me a better person than the one who gave a bad review of a book, but I do think that probably would not be "my kind of person." I would have a little more respect if the person said he/she didn't like the book but sucked it up and kept it rather than asking for a return.

LAST20FORME SparkPoints: (4,152)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 158
5/9/13 9:10 A

Thank you all for responding. Some of you gave me some "real food for thought." It could be a generation thing. I was not raised with the internet (I'm 60) and every piece of weight loss knowledge (as little information there was back then) had to be bought. High prices for now we know is bad information. I just see a bad review from a fellow Sparker as biting the hand that feeds you.

MYUTMOST4HIM Posts: 11,453
5/9/13 8:50 A

everyone is entitled to his/her opinion

DMJAKES Posts: 1,635
5/9/13 8:26 A

I never pay much attention to the revews, but is there one of those buttons for "This review was helpful"???? If so, click on the NO button and you've put your opinion out there where others can see it.

ICANTODAY Posts: 975
5/9/13 7:29 A

OP, that reviewer didn't do anything wrong. I think most people know in their heart of hearts that there is no "secret" to living a healthier lifestyle, and barring some new revelation in a science lab somewhere, most discussion about diet and exercise is going to be people trying to come up with creative ways to rehash what we already know- eat healthy, exercise regularly, engage in weight training, and the healthy lifestyle and weight loss will fall in line. The point is that a lot of us lack the motivation to keep up with it long term, and the processed food industry doesn't help with that lack of motivation.

You seem to really have "drunk the kool-aid" OP, but there's no kool-aid to drink. SP's not pushing some kind of agenda and we're not all cult members here. People out there are going to feel differently about things than you do- try not to let it trash your day.


MAGGIEVAN SparkPoints: (204,392)
Fitness Minutes: (83,980)
Posts: 47,641
5/9/13 6:27 A

One can't stop people from acting selfish and or stupid. That is life. We don't have to buy into those opinions. Did you set the record straight on Amazon?

ANARIE Posts: 13,200
5/9/13 1:27 A

Well, now, it's not *always* virtuous to tell the truth. White lies exist for a lot of very good reasons.

Take the answer to "Does this dress look stupid?" It all depends on when the question is asked. If you're in the try-on room in the store, the virtuous answer is, "Yeah, sort of. The blue one suits you better." But if you're just outside the HR office door thirty seconds before her job interview, the virtuous answer is, "You look fabulous. Go get 'em."

But book reviews are pretty useless if people don't give their real opinions. Authors probably never should read them, but editors and publishers need to know what people really think. If the pattern kept up and 25% of the reviews of this books said "it's too same-y," then the publisher will know that there's a significant market for material that doesn't overlap with the site, and they'll either give a chance to a author who's trying something new, or modify their marketing on this book and future ones. A review that says, "I hated this book for the following 10 reasons" is far more useful to the editor and publisher than a review that says "I loved everything about it and I wouldn't change a thing!"

I_HEART_MY_FAM Posts: 1,809
5/9/13 1:19 A

Believe it or not companies even like truthful feedback rather positive or negative, that way they know if and when to improve something. You are not grasping the concept of reviews at all.

5/9/13 12:37 A

"Some say she is entitled to her opinion but when it could damage others one should not be that selfish."

Telling the truth is always right. Lying by omission is still lying. It is not selfish to tell the truth. It is virtuous. Period.

Sometimes truth hurts...and I wouldn't have it any other way. I would rather deal with a diffficult reality than not know the truth and live in bliss.

ANARIE Posts: 13,200
5/9/13 12:09 A

But you could say that a bad review of ANY book or product hurts the author, publishing house or company. If somebody makes a movie out of a television show that you and I both love, and I write a review saying that they didn't take advantage of the big-screen format and it's just like the TV show I watch for free, is that hurting the TV network? Would I be a bad, ungrateful person for writing that? What if an apartment complex has some parkland that they leave open to tenants, and they also let the general public join their gym, and I write that it's not necessary to join the gym because you can just rent an apartment there and jog in the park for free? Is that bad? is a company. It's more altruistic than most, and there's a lot to love about it, but like any company, some of its products will be more successful than others, and some customers won't like all of its products. That's okay. Even though the website is "free," the company still makes money from it through advertising, just like an on-air TV network does. In fact, they probably make more money from the "free" site than they will from the book-- publishing is a VERY low profit industry.

If it makes you feel any better, I'm pretty sure she doesn't get to keep the freebies. Amazon generally makes you return everything exactly the way it was packaged. She'll get to keep her SparkPoints, but all that will do is keep her coming back to collect more and generate more ad revenue!

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,433
5/9/13 12:03 A

I think you're missing the point of a "review."

If you want to dilute the "negativity" of the review - write your own positive review. Then it will be only 1/4 that are negative. If the book is good/worthwhile, as the reviews accumulate, it will be 1/5, 1/6, 1/10, 1/20.........

And here's another thought - let's just suppose hypothetically... what if the book sucks???? How would it "HELP SALES" to pretend that it is great when it's not - thus people will buy it and their first impression of Spark will be... a book that sucks? Wouldn't it be better to say "you're better off to just try the site before committing to buy this book"...?

If the book is a good product, the majority of the reviews will reflect it, over time.

LAST20FORME SparkPoints: (4,152)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 158
5/8/13 11:15 P

Rebcca, to answer your question I did not write a review as I haven't received the book yet. I don't know if I'll write one or not but I just know that I wouldn't write a negative one and damage sales. With only three reviews people will look at hers and give it some weight which I think is unfortunate. As I said, if she didn't like the book that much, just don't write a review.

Some say she is entitled to her opinion but when it could damage others one should not be that selfish. Not everything has to be verbalized. A filter shows maturity. My opinion. Damaging sales is hurting Sparkpeople.

5/8/13 10:52 P

I love and adore Spark and will always be loyal. However....when I read book reviews on sites like Amazon I never trust the ones that were written by people who are obviously fans and have that "I will support this book/artist/actor/actress/etc no matter what" mentality when reviewing products and books.

Those honest and critical reviews are actually the most helpful.

JO88BAKO SparkPoints: (319,539)
Fitness Minutes: (174,617)
Posts: 17,163
5/8/13 10:51 P


5/8/13 10:26 P

emoticon I bought the book and I am waiting for it to arrive. and everyone has the right to their own opinion.

5/8/13 10:22 P

I haven't bought any of the books, because I figured it would be more of what I get here for free.

The reviewer owes nothing to nobody. She told the truth. Last I checked, telling the truth was virtuous.

REBCCA SparkPoints: (416,921)
Fitness Minutes: (218,210)
Posts: 22,841
5/8/13 10:21 P

LAST20FORME, Did you write a review?

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,433
5/8/13 10:16 P

People are entitled to their opinions. If she didn't like the book, she didn't like the book - she's not obligated to pretend-to-like-it. She was reviewing the book, she wasn't contracted to advertise or sell it.

And let's think about this. She has given her opinion that "people should just come join the free site" - well a suggestion like that could possibly drive new traffic to the (free) site, creating more (free) users, who will then be exposed to offers like Spark Coach and the recipe book... as well as build the traffic on the site which helps the site generate higher returns from advertisers.

Honest feedback is valuable.

I_HEART_MY_FAM Posts: 1,809
5/8/13 10:01 P

It is her opinion and if the book had a money back guarantee then no that is not stealing. Reviews are suppose to be an honest opinion of a product and she put her truthful opinion out there. She did nothing wrong and that doesn't mean she is ungrateful, in today's world money is hard to come by so we need to spend it on how we see fit individually not how others think it should be spent. I think you got way too hot over a review. emoticon Here is a glass of water to cool you down. Plus I might add you say she disrespected sparkpeople well you are also being disrespectful to the site and the people by using a curse word cheat , if you spelled it out it would have popped up a window saying no profanity allowed, I know that by experience ;).

JUDYAMK SparkPoints: (30,946)
Fitness Minutes: (9,921)
Posts: 2,249
5/8/13 9:58 P

Oh my stars I think that is very low of someone that YIPS about the book.just because he/she has heard it before. Like you say what about all the others that have not heard.I hear many things over & over in sparks & you know I never complained because I needed to hear some things over & over again because I finally GOT IT!!!!

DIANITAH SparkPoints: (72,662)
Fitness Minutes: (7,365)
Posts: 3,083
5/8/13 9:39 P

It's a little shady. Of course this person has a right to their opinion and it may be repetitive to him/her. Still you are right. It's a bit hypocritical to enjoy all the free benefits here and then go out to publicly pan the book. I mean, you have to make the effort to log-on to Amazon to write a bad review.

I found parts of the first Spark book slightly repetitive but overall it was an excellent read. I've re-read it twice when I've struggled. Unless that member is at goal weight, maybe they need the repetition!

LAST20FORME SparkPoints: (4,152)
Fitness Minutes: (0)
Posts: 158
5/8/13 9:34 P

This is bothering me. I went to Amazon to see when Spark's new book will be delivered to me. While there I clicked on the book to see reviews. Remember it just came out. There were three reviews. Two good and one bad. The bad one was from someone who said she is a longtime Spark member and gave it a bad review as she said some of it was repetitive on what she gets for free here. My answer to this is that the book is not only written for members but for the general public who do not have all the FREE information we get here and probable finds the information very helpful . BIG F_IN deal that she has heard a few things before. She then said she returned her book and encourages people just to join the site for free.

I could not believe what I was reading. She pre-ordered, got 45 dollars worth of services and free DVD's already and now returns book for a refund. Isn't that stealing in a way. The part that bothers me the most is that she is a member. She obviously gets a lot here or would not be here. Don't you think all that FREE stuff she gets here daily could result in a little gratefulness, like in not giving bad reviews. I am not saying she should write glowing reviews but she could just not write anything at all. Be gracious.

Does she have a problem with this company making some money. The founder made millions before he started Sparkpeople and then spent some of those millions starting this.
I hope he gets his money back and then some. I have benefited greatly being here and wished this was available a long time ago.

I think Sparkpeople giving so much has resulted in some spoiled children. Please tell me your opinion about writing bad book reviews if you are a member.

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