After leaving a review for a cell phone unlocking service based outside the UK with all facts and correspondance to back up my review they removed my review at the request of the company stating ( THE COMPANY HAD STATED I WAS NOT A REAL CUSTOMER) ? rather bizare to say the least as i had at least six emails back and forth from this company and a Paypal transaction id. The review centre asked me if i had proof that was indeed a genuine customer i had to email proof of my transaction .Talk about desperate measures it seems if a company does not like a review it can ask for the review to be removed, so what is the point . I now use Trust pilot reviews.
I have started to write a few reviews www.reviewcentre.com because I thought it would be a new interesting place where I can express my opinion about products and services I have experienced.
For me it's not all about writing review for rewords, I believe in supporting good businesses and most importantly things I believe in. I do love discovering new things and chat to people about what they think so this is what attracted me to join the website.
I first spent a while browsing trough the website reading what other people had to say about things that interested me, sadly I was a bit naïve thinking this is a good website as I was soon about to discover.
When I started to write a few reviews it seemed things are going very well however after a while I realised my negative review has been suddenly deleted and my positive one left. To be honest I don't know why they deleted it because it was not hateful at all, I just simply stated that the company can improve so much and left them a low rating.
They really went out of their way to stop me saying something bad about a certain company. They sent me some email full of mumbo jumbo saying someone has expressed concerns about my review and what crazy steps I can do to keep the review as it is back on the site. One of the requirement being that I have to send them my full contact details like name, address and telephone number. Whatever!
I would like to copy and paste the review but I am not sure if I am allowed to do that here, I don't want to get in trouble.
I personally do not wish to participate or even read reviews on reviewcenetr.com because I believe they censor freedom of speech by removing negative reviews. I simply can't trust anything that is written on their website.
I must say, I did actually rely on the reviewcentre website, untill now.I made a really bad experience with a local car hire company and unfortunately read the reviews after. There are 6 reviews of which the first 4 are really bad. The last two are great, allthough they are not reviews, they are one sentence. So I wrote a longer review explaining what happened. It was shown up immediately.Three days later starting at 7:30 am I received several calls on my mobile from this car hire company, threatening to sue me for £6000 and even doing so on my voicemail calling me a silly man and a coward.The same day my reviews on reviewcentre.com disappeared. I have had no explanaition why allthough I sent several emails.After reading here I now know that I can not rely on the reviewcentre website.
I chose a mobile unlocking website because it had high reviews on reviewcentre.com. Boy was I wrong! They service was terrible!!!! So I wrote my own review. Only to have reviewcentre.com remove in on the request of the owner of the business.
My review was 100% factual. They were a terrible company who never answered phones or emails. But Review Centre removed it. I can't imagine that the scores companies recieve are fair and impartial if Review Centre removes any that are not to the liking of the company.
I mean what company is going to like that they're getting bad reviews? But if they get bad reviews, they need to change their services. Not with Review Centre. They just need to write in a letter saying that they're unhappy with the review and it is immediately removed.
You then as the reviewer have to provide Review Centre with proof that the company was actually as bad as you said it was. And then have to provide your name and telephone number.
I have been on ciao for what seems like ages, and I have been an active member on here for quite a while, too. As an active member on both sites (probably more active on ciao, though), I have grown to love writing and reading reviews. But I have to admit it - my favourite part is getting paid at the end of it. I doubt very much there would be the same amount of members on here if they didn't pay us for our work.
Review Centre is just that, really. It is a review site exactly like dooyoo except for one big difference - it doesn't pay members for the reviews that they post on the site.
OK, so its a nice idea to write and share reviews on products so that other people can read about what they're like and decide whether to buy them or not. But dooyoo and ciao will pay us for doing that - so why would anyone want to do it for free when they have the chance of being paid.
I made the mistake today of thinking this site did pay members, so I joined up. I have to say signing up is very easy and simple to do. It only takes a couple of minutes, which is good. But why would you want to bother if you aren't going to get paid for it?
I also really like the clean layout of the site. It is a lovely light blue colour scheme and nothing too in your face or annoying about it. But again - they don't pay you. I really think they ought to start paying as it would improve the site by miles.
If you want to use the site to read reviews, rather than join up to write them, it still isn't much good for this purpose either. This is because it doesn't have any members, meaning it has hardly any reviews written so you're likely to find no reviews about the product you want to read about, or a very limited amount.
Overall I don't recommend this site. Nice idea, but sorry not for me.
When I became a member of Ciao and later Dooyoo, it was the start of a torrid love affair of reading product reviews, finding advice about products and services and learning to make virtual friends with like minded shoppers and then trying out the art of review writing for myself. Although not instantly, but for a slow change in my financial status I began to reap little savings here and there instead of fully believing the stats of products I was interested in whilst having the bonus of some money offered for the experience I shared. Sorry peeps but this is a long review!
Although pertaining to be an American company possibly by its dot.com associations rather than a separate European entity, I was delighted to find that Reviewcentre has been British even though some of its members may not be shoppers and consumers from within in the UK itself. In fact as it turned out to be Reviewcentre was an European owned outfit and more recently has just been taken over to the tune of £2.8 million*, which for a small company like Reviewcentre whose main profit making appears to be product reviews and a large quantity of product sponsoring adverts, it is only a matter of time before the company either completely change their viewpoint on consumer reviews or turn to blogging; their current site offers members to delve further into reviews by going onto Twitter and other forms of shareware. Signing up is very easy to do, all you need is a current email address, make up your username and they will send you the confirmation email before your registration is finally recorded.
Reviewcentre from 2003 and onwards had a few similarities to Dooyoo on the basis that reviewers could submit product opinions on what they have bought or owned. Nothing difficult there. Even reading through the guidelines show that Reviewcentre never had a payout scheme for reviewers except a rather daft competition policy to win £150 in Amazon vouchers and instead of the more positive coloured dots (from Ciao) on each member's profile, up until late in 2008 Reviewcentre used a military style pegging system siting names such as "Corporal,' to "Colonel," and even "Lance." Quite why they do this is really unclear as it doesn't make much sense even though it does show the longevity of certain members who have been there possibly from the infancy of this website; even as a "newbie" from 2009 onwards you can submit a balanced review and suddenly receive "Expert," status per reviews submitted - a sub-heading that appears on your review and alerts other members if not shoppers of the general feeling that your review casts balanced but well developed content. Although the names have gone, the badge icons are still there. Certainly if Reviewcentre are trying to get the message across that their site is stalwart, conservative and ordinary then a Military style of level pegging starts to make perfect sense. But run to a tight ship? Think again!
It would appear that more recently with the takeover that Reviewcentre has lost all interest in members posting detailed reviews and this is certainly evident from the current lists of new reviews popping up on the site. I get a strange feeling that with this lack of detailed reviews and general updating to the site including maintenance that it won't be too long before Reviewcentre ceases to exist. Presently for example reviews that have been cross posted from elsewhere will not be approved by the Reviewcentre team, and unlike Dooyoo, Ciao, Helium or Epinions where reviews can be added instantly to the database on the same day not just on the basis of gaining incentives financially, Reviewcentre will take your review and you'll have to wait 24 hours for it to be approved...
...Which in this day and age given the speed of the Internet is frankly a lot of old nonsense.
There are a lot of other nonsensical put offs too. Some products or services don't have images; the info from established writers in some reviews have been condensed and shortened by Reviewcentre themselves (they did that with me and a few others I know of without our permission) and forget speed of delivery if you need to submit a product to their database. Unlike Dooyoo there isn't a systematic approach of suggesting a product even though the database on Reviewcentre seems to be large enough to accommodate most services and products that the UK market offer; some products and services such as Laptops and mobile phones are also badly out of date; yet contact to both Reviewcentre's technical department and customer services seems to be badly run with many suggestions or concerns being met with deaf ears.
The categories on Reviewcentre consist of similarities to Dooyoo but over the two sites Dooyoo is bigger and so much better! There are 15 categories in total ranging from Electronics, Home & Garden, Finance, Motoring, Computers, Mobile Phones to name but a few. Certainly if you have more interest you'd be better to have a look yourself! However the website was recently designed to make it more appealing and it does have a familiar Dooyoo air about it in terms of the layout and the features. All of the categories are laid out reasonably well and easy to find on the site. But amidst all this happiness there are a few problems.
Reviews currently appearing at Reviewcentre are for the majority between 40 to 800 words long at most and half of the time you may well find abusive reviews that have been posted, reviews of little actual content and silly half arsed attempts from new members who don't take the site seriously. This is what happens when you get paid hee-haw for your time! This was not the case in 2003 where some members from Ciao and Dooyoo did exist and resulted in good quality written reviews that made consumers like me feel the need to research further or indeed consider a purchase. Reviewcentre may well have painted new and bright colours on their site to make the site appear more engaging but for most members who were here the stay hasn't been long and fruitful.
Forget the idea too that any message system actually exists on Review Centre. Unlike Ciao or Dooyoo, there is no "guestbook," or free messaging system. Instead previously, Reviewcentre members just attacked other writers' reviews using the free but short comment box after the review, resulting in the Reviewcentre company to form an outside forum channel for members to voice their opinions, ask advice and so on. This also means you're left floundering if you have questions as there's no one around. Like Dooyoo (and Ciao) there are however a set of rates of which members can give each review they read, ranging from Very Helpful, Helpful, Somewhat Helpful and Not Helpful. I wonder where they got that idea from? If you view the site from an outsider point of view you can leave a rating but you'll find that you'll need to sign up to have that rating and compulsory comment added permanently. Whilst Dooyoo may have covered this in their recent "Thank the Author," in my opinion the whole reason d'etre of review sites isn't about leaving comments or supporting how good or bad a review is, but at the end of the day involved and valued contributions from consumers that will make other consumers think twice before they're ripped off at the seller's enjoyment.
The view isn't overly impressive either; even if the main page has outsized letters of different fonts and sizes advertising the kinds of products and services the review site has; too many sponsor windows take up an already busy page and it can be annoying to the eye if you are looking for a specific category but can't find it for all the different colours and shades going on. This doesn't just occur on the products or services you are looking for but on actual reviews there are too many bright colours that can confuse with matching adverts and an ASK search engine giving you other results of the same review category you've just read. Despite the update in my opinion, I still find it messy and unorganized.
By the time you have selected which product or service you are looking for, you won't for example be shown the best of the reviews online for the specific category you are looking for, or who the last reviewer was that submitted a review. These are the basic things that are taken for granted on sites such as Ciao, Epinions or Dooyoo and the lack of them points to a lack of care for Reviewcentre members.
Time has taken its toll with Reviewcentre however; even after it's large take over sum by global companies and a fancy new design it doesn't make any sense for any budding writer to make some money. If you are into being ripped off, winning no money at all for your written work and reviews, then perhaps Reviewcentre will just be right up your street. But for anyone else who may be interested in joining a small company of writers who just like sharing information, there are better places to visit and sign up to if you're cutting your first teeth on review writing. Frankly I've seen other sites that are better organised and engaging; perhaps then the company concerned should centre their concentration on the site itself instead of which they are offering very little incentives for their present members. At the end of the day to offer reviews on the very services and products that Reviewcentre pay license to advertise it doesn't really add up when the member gets nothing for it. Thanks for reading. ©Nar2 2009
* The BBC News/Financial Times initially published info regarding Reviewcentre's price take over but it seems to have been removed off the Internet. Until now however!
Dooyoo and ciao are currently the two major opinion and review sites. Others have come and gone, but there is a relative newcomer on the scene the snappily-named review centre.
RC is relatively similar to the other two in its choice of categories. The main subject headings include Books, Cameras, Cars, Computers, Electricals, Entertainment, Finance, Food & Drink, Home & Garden, Lifestyle, Mobile Phones, Music (i.e. album reviews), Musical Instruments (including music software), Parenting, Pets, Services, Shopping, Sports, Toys & Games, Website Reviews, and Weddings & Brides. In other words, more or less the same subjects as on the other sites, under slightly different headings.
In order to add reviews, you need to register. Click on the registration link, choose a username and answer a few questions. Within moments you will receive an e-mail with a link to activate your account, and you are a member. You can then start contributing at once.
Submission of reviews is more akin to the system on the now-defunct BigRag. Once submitted, your work is screened by the RC panel, and when accepted you will be sent an email which includes the link to read it. If it is judged particularly good it will be awarded Expert beside it in red letters, which indicates to other users that its a cut above the norm. You do not award the items between one and five stars, but instead give them a rating between 1 and 10.
Waiting to see your review on-site may tax the patience of some, but they undertake to upload it within 48 hours everything I have submitted has appeared within 12 to 24 hours or else email you telling why they could not accept it. So far the latter has never happened to me, so I cant say any more than that. This also has the advantage of making sure that anything uploaded is of reasonable quality. Which will come as bad news to the sad gits who join up these sites simply to unleash a 200-word load of sweary gibberish or the word frog 95 times.
If you want to review something which is not already listed, there is a link to create the listing for an item and you can submit your review at once. This will be added to the site just as quickly as for items already on-site again, very similar to BigRag and the similarly departed u-rate-it.
The guidelines ask you to check spellings, and refrain from using all upper case letters (cue sardonic grins from those of us who remember the dooyoo days of capital punishment). Offensive or obscene language is a no-no, and you cannot create topics or categories on anything to do with politics, sex, pornography or religion. Any material considered inappropriate or offensive will be removed or amended. So the more contentious items to be found in this parish under Speakers Corner will be out, then.
There's also a warning not to plug yourself by reviewing a product or service that promotes you or your employer's business, or hinders your competitor's business. RC reserves the right to publish anything which they consider contravenes this rule.
One little piece of music to your ears. The site is a pop-up-free-zone, though since the advent of pop-up killers thats probably less of an issue than it was formerly.
Thats the good news. Now the ho-hum bit comes in the lack of community. You can rate other members' contributions Somewhat Helpful, Helpful, or Not Helpful. But as there is no system of miles or points, there is no incentive to rate. You can comment on a review, but comments are screened before they go on-site. This cuts out anything of a Fancy seeing you here mate lol nature. None of this see how many smilies or Hellos I can spray around the comment boxes before I get a different colour dot nonsense.
Basically, its a site for people who want to read reviews, and.or contribute to help other people which is probably how and why dooyoo and ciao originally started out. There is no community as such, which might be a disincentive to some. Especially anyone thinking of doing a Lazarus - sorry, where was I?
Ah, yes, probably the biggest disincentive of all. No payment for reviews or reads, not even if you are awarded an Expert for your contribution. Instead, you are entered into a monthly draw with one prize of a £150 Amazon voucher. If more than two people contribute in a month, at least one person will go away empty-handed. BUT they undertake to give 50p to charity for every review accepted, and a banner on the homepage tells you the tally so far. So far, the only benefiting charity nominated so far is Oxfam, but they are open to suggestions from users for others which might be considered.
I only have one gripe, or gripette, about reviews. Surfing around a few categories, I found a few very short reviews only one or two sentences each, in some cases credited to uk guest or us guest. These, in the books and records sections, were dated February 2004 (which I think was the launch month) and had been lifted directly from Amazon. I can vouch for that, as I recognised a few for one book, one of which I had written and another of which was by a friend. Hmmmm. If I've blown their big secret, smack my wrist.
To sum up, how long it will survive remains to be seen. Lack of payment is clearly unlikely to entice existing dooyooers and ciaoers to shift their loyalties, especially as most opinions about new review sites generally bring a raft of comments from those who say Looks interesting but dont have the time for another site. But spending a few minutes on cut and paste in order to benefit charity might not be a bad thing.
I recently joined this site in a hope that it would be somewhat similar to Ciao or Dooyoo in the fact that you get money for writing reviews... how wrong was I!??!
reviewcentre.com is exactly the same as DooYoo in the fact that you have a lot of topics to choose from and can write about all the products that are there (or ask for them to be added so you can write about them). You have the same sort of criteria ratings as you do when writing a review on DooYoo (the choices at the bottom of a review).
You get to give things ratings when you write a review - 1 star = low rating, 10 stars = high rating. As I said, very similar to DooYoo
So what is the incentive? Forget the coloured Ciao dots, ratings, comments, let a lone the pay-per-rates!! On this site, you do not earn anything but there is a draw ever month for £150 worth of Amazon vouchers (began Feb 2004). Considering the amount of people who may decide to write reviews, the chance of you actually winning is going to be about 10million:1. Certainly not a big incentive!!
I know that a lot of the reviews on Ciao are not going to pay you anything, but even still the members here still do manage to rake up a few quid either writing reviews or filling in surveys. No chance of that at reviewcentre!
Reviews normally take about 24 hours to appear on the site. Because there is no actual points like they have here at DooYoo, there is no incentive to read or rate peoples reviews. At DooYoo you also have the choice of Not Helpful, Helpful, and Very Helpful. At reviewcentre, you only have the choice of Somewhat Helpful, Helpful or Not helpful - in other words, someone could write a minimalist review that could be SH or H on DooYoo but would be given the same rating as one that is VH or even Exceptional on Ciao!! OMG, In the hope that reviewcentre was a bit like DooYoo, I added a comment to someones review just as I would here on DooYoo and your comments even have to be approved!!!!! Ratings do go on straight away though. If you have used a product yourself, then you can also rate if you found the review to 'agree' or 'disagree' with what you found.
Once your review had been posted, you are given a category for the review, for most this is just a normal review but for others that are seen as a very high quality and helpful review, you are given an expert category.
So, now that we have the basics of the site down, and most of you have probably thought this wasn't for you, i'll let you know about the site...
This site is very well laid out but does seem a little bit crammed full of information since they have a lot of products to be reviewed. The header is orange and green but the background is white and although that might seem a bit shocking, it is actually a really good colour scheme.
You have a lot of little tabs at the top to decide which of the categories you would like to enter - e.g. entertainment or electronics. It can be quite hard to find e.g. a CD because it might be in a different category depending on what type of music you think it is. You also don't have a choice of all the different artists under a heading - it will list them ALL alphabetically in a huge long list!
Choice of topics include: Books, Cameras, Cars, Computers, Electricals, Entertainment, Finance, Food & Drink, Home & Garden, Lifestyle, Mobile Phones, Services, Shopping, Sports, Toys & Games, Travel and finally, Web.
This site is basically designed just for people writing reviews and for consumers to read them. I suppose that is just what DooYoo is but Ciao/DooYoo offers so much more to its members - a whole community! As with Ciao, you have ads for eBay, Littlewoods etc. but i've not noticed any pop-ups which I do sometimes get on Ciao. You get a choice of flags - i'm guessing this will change it from £'s to $'s or will take you to the Amercian site, but this is the only choice you have.
Whats the registration process like? It is very easy and very quick. I suppose if it had been harder and taken longer, people would have given up, but they don't want to make you suffer! Just fill in your details and the activation e-mail arrives very quickly. As with DooYoo, you get a Review Centre ID i.e. mine is Sirg0508's Review Centre which would be 'My Ciao' on Ciao or 'sirg0508's account' here at DooYoo.
So, why did I join? Basically, so I can copy and paste my reviews from Ciao/DooYoo in a distant hope of actually having some chance in winning all those £150 worth of vouchers.........
Ah well, maybe one day!
So would I recommend this site? If you are in it just to be part of a community then... no. If you are in it for the money then... no. If you are in it just to give you opinions and not get any feedback or comments then.. yes! If you are in it for the hope of winning £150 worth of Amazon vouchers then... you may have to wait a long time!
I'm pretty sure that the fact you are logged onto dooyoo and reading this you are interested in product review sites, so I thought I'd share with you a new one i've found at reviewcentre.com. The site is aimed at giving consumers the chance to pass on knowledge to fellow consumers in order to aid them in their purchasing decisions. The big question though is whether the appeal is strong enough as the only incentive to join is a prize draw for one prize of £150 a month, but more about that later. To register simply log onto the site and click on the registration link, you?ll then be asked a few minutes worth of profile questions, nothing unusual though. As soon as this is done your account will be activated and you can start using the site. The site itself is well laid out and although green and orange doesn?t sound like a great colour combination, the fact that the background is white makes it look clean and crisp. At the top of the page is a set of tab links that include links to all the main product and service areas. These are very much like the ones on ciao and dooyoo and they seem to cover all product areas that you are likely to want to write in. If you are unsure then there is a search facility on this page where you simply type in the name of the product that you are looking for. I must add that the search facility really puts ciao and, especially, dooyoo in the shade as it always seems to bring the correct product to the top of the search listing if it is already on the site. Once you have found your product or service then you click on the ?write review? link and you are taken to the review submission page. The page always consists of a section for good points, a section for bad points and a section for the main body of the review. Underneath these are several pull down menus depending on the product in question. With the internet as temperamental as ever I would always recommend writing your review in word first
and then copying and pasting. When you have completed all the sections you confirm your review but the next part is where I really like the site. Rather than simply submit your review straight onto the site it actually has to be approved by the reviewcentre.com team. I don?t think they are looking for unbeatable quality, just good honest reviews that will be helpful to the consumer. However this does stop the types of reviews we usually see on opinion sites claiming such and such product is rubbish (or words to that effect!) and then copy and pasted twenty times to make up the word count. When you submit your review you are told that it will be checked within forty-eight hours although I have always received the confirmation email and had it posted within twenty-four. The email you receive simply gives you a link to where the review has been placed on the site, unless it has not been accepted and although I?ve not received one yet I am lead to believe they outline the reasons why is has not been approved. Also at this point your review might be awarded ?Expert? status. If the team feels the review is of exceptional quality then your review will appear with the word expert next to it. This doesn?t gain the writer anything except self satisfaction but does help the consumer when they are searching for products as they know the review has been well written and should help them in their purchasing decision. Once you?ve posted don?t sit back and wait for the reads and rates to flow in. The reading and rating is optional and is hardly used. In fact it is mainly there for consumers who come to the site and find a review helpful to let the next person know. This adds value to the site and the opinions because it doesn?t open the door to revenge rating as the rater has nothing to gain and the writer nothing to lose. The only person who would lose out would be the potential consumer looking up products to see whether they should buy them or not. At this
point you can also comment on the review, but again bear in mind who this is aimed at. If I write a comment I do it to help the potential consumer. For example if I don?t agree with a review I will state this so that the potential customer can read the review and then see that it might not be accurate or that not everyone has had the same experience. The last thing that can be done is to rate the review with respect. Again this aimed at helping the consumer and I think it is something other sites need. For example how many times, under the rating guidelines, have you had to rate an excellently written review ?Very Helpful/Useful? on ciao or dooyoo, yet you totally disagree with what has been written!? It makes no sense at all and is not helpful to the consumer, even if you leave a comment saying so it will simply be lost amongst the tens of others. Another area that this site wins points for is its products suggestion system. Rather than wait weeks for a product to be added you can add one as you submit your review. To do this you simply go through the usual search process but when the product is not found a button will appear at the bottom of the screen to ?add new category? or ?add new product?. If you click on this then the same screen for writing reviews will appear except for two additional boxes at the top. These boxes are for you to input the category and name of this new product. Once all sections have been completed you simply submit and when the review is approved the new category/name will be entered into the system. This takes the same amount of time as a normal review submission. Whilst the approval of reviews has been quick and painless I?ve also received excellent customer service via email. Twice I?ve emailed with queries and both times I?ve received a detailed reply within twenty-four hours ? again something our friends at ciao and dooyoo should take a look at. Overall I?m very impressed with most things on t
he site. The layout is absolutely superb and the functions for adding new products puts other opinion sites to shame, and for a fairly new site the database of products and services is extensive. Obviously the biggest flaw is the lack of incentive. At present I?d say the site isn?t that busy but the chances of winning the £150 Amazon vouchers is very low. At present they offer an entry for every review that you submit, but even the really prolific writers don?t get too much of a head start. Therefore I think it comes down to two things. I?ve often heard members on ciao/dooyoo say that they are not in it for the money, fair enough, but what about the feedback too? Is anyone really content to spend time and effort on a review to help other people make a purchasing decision? If not then you might use the site how I do. All I do is simply copy and paste my review from ciao/dooyoo over there. I might still have little chance of winning the prize but for a few minutes of my time after I?ve submitted on my usual sites it is worth it ? plus I might help a few people along the way. I?m even inclined to think that as the site builds up they might even raise the awards, which would be better than many sites who seem to drop them every few months. Therefore I recommend all review writers to go and take a look, maybe copy and paste a few reviews, just to get a feel for the place. I very much doubt under the current incentive scheme that I?ll be writing any new reviews for there but definitely keeping an eye on how it develops.