Matt Forney
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Fake Amazon Review Beatdown: R.J. Patton (Painter) Strikes Back!


Last week’s influx of haters leaving fake Amazon reviews of my books just got way more supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. Let me explain.

A couple weeks back, I wrote a negative review of The Red Pill by R.J. Patton, who posts as “Painter” at Roosh’s forum. While I’ve tempered my criticism of below-average books like The Manosphere and A Generation of Men by highlighting their positive qualities, Painter’s book was so awful that I needed three ibuprofens to cure the headache it gave me. Even still, I tried to refrain from personal insults when I reviewed the book. I think I have a reputation as a trustworthy critic—of the books I’ve posted about so far, the only ones I truly hated were Killing Yourself to Live and The New York Trilogy—so I think I was being more than fair in my assessment of The Red Pill.

Apparently, hell hath no fury like a bad novelist scorned.

After I posted my review of The Red Pill to Amazon, Painter retaliated by pulling his four-star reviews of Trolling for a Living and The Hitchhiking Crash Course, left under the username “KNS.” That’s fair play by my estimation, and given that the reviews weren’t that great (about three sentences long each and saying nothing specific about the books in question, posted solely to head off my haters), they weren’t a terribly big loss. But last Saturday, Painter posted a fake one-star review of Crash Course and followed that up with a fake review of Confessions of an Online Hustler yesterday.

Because The Red Pill isn’t a big deal to me, I contacted Painter after he posted the fake Crash Course review, amicably offering to delete my review of his book if he removed his review of mine. (I BCC’ed our correspondence to several third parties, all of whom can attest to my offer being in good faith.) Given that my negative review of The Red Pill is hurting him more than his fake reviews are hurting me (since his book has only two reviews on Amazon including mine, my review is currently the highest rated one, and unlike his fake reviews, actually has the “Amazon Verified Purchase” tag), and given that I have even more credibility in the form of the numerous bloggers who’ve reviewed my books on their sites, Painter has far more to lose from the current situation then I do. The deal I gave him is more than generous.

Painter’s response was to slap the olive branch out of my hand and call me a big meanie.

I’ll give Painter credit in that he seems to have actually read my books, unlike my other haters. Since I harbor no ill-will against the guy, my offer still stands: if Painter/Patton removes his fake reviews of my books, I will remove my review of the Red Pill from Amazon and delete this post as well. Otherwise, the review stays, and things will only get worse from here.

If you’ve read my books and enjoy them, I’d appreciate it if you left an Amazon review. The more authentic reviews I get, the less effective these junior high pipe bomber tactics become.

  • Click here for Confessions of an Online Hustler’s Amazon page.
  • Click here for The Hitchhiking Crash Course’s page.
  • Click here for Trolling for a Living’s page.
  • Podsnap

    How do you know he wrote the reviews ?

  • Because he told me he did.

  • Anaphylactic

    “he seems to have actually read my books” vs “removes his fake reviews of my books” – his reviews can’t be fake if he actually read it. Even if he changed his formerly positive reviews to negative after you’ve scorned him, it’s still natural to judge author alongside the book, because he’s the part of the context in which reader evaluates the book.

    And as everyone who knows the basics in economy, there is no objective value, but every person assign value to things himself – which means that appealing to “it hurts you more than me” is bullshit

    And lastly, he would be idiot to back down now, when you took it out to public

  • Apollo

    Petulant and passive agressive move on his part – those reviews clearly seem to be personal attacks in retribution for your review. I never got the impression that your review of his book was personal though. Negative certainly, but it did seem to be your honest opinion not swayed by any emnity towards the author. You were being more generous than he deserved with your offer to remove the review – and the offer of the olive branch certainly makes you come off as the more mature one in this interaction.

    Do yourself a favor though and dont let this escalate further into some sort of petty war – it wont do either of your reputations any good. Ive seen personal vendettas start from things like this in professional forums before, and it reflects very poorly on those involved.

  • Roosh

    He just shot himself in the foot. Who in the manosphere will review his book now?