Ellory Finally Puts His Hands Up Something Other Than Puppets

Author Talk: R J Ellory - Saints of New York @...
Author Talk: R J Ellory – Saints of New York @ Dunedin City Library (Photo credit: Dunedin Public Libraries)
The US may be enjoying its long Labour Day bank holiday this weekend over barbecues, but the controversy surrounding British author RJ Ellory writing fake reviews for his books and slating the books of fellow authors with poor reviews certainly heated up and came to a head yesterday when Ellory made a public apology through the Telegraph UK newspaper. Crime-writing novelist Ellory finally decided to call time on his sock-pupperty  when he admitted to faking five-star Amazon reviews on his books while awarding poor reviews to rival authors’ books. The Ellory Sock-Puppet Amazon scandal was exposed by author Jeremy Duns through his Twitter account recently. Ellory finally withered and issued the apology under intense criticism which has been building up over the past week of social media exchanges.

“The recent reviews—both positive and negative—that have been posted on my Amazon accounts are my responsibility and my responsibility alone. I wholeheartedly regret the lapse of judgement that allowed personal opinions to be disseminated in this way and I would like to apologise to my readers and the writing community.”
Jeremy Duns insisted over the past week that his research and investigative work was never intended as a personal attack on Ellory and he believes the practice of fake reviews is widespread, and added, ‘I’ve suspected, it’s rife for years. But think it needs exposing whenever possible.’ Dun also had his Twitter account suspended for a period of time last week during the heated exchanges online.

“Like others in publishing, we became aware recently of the practice of authors assuming fake identities on blogs, Twitter or Amazon to promote their own work, and in some cases, allegedly give bad reviews to that of other writers. The CWA feels this practice is unfair to authors and also to the readers who are so supportive of the crime genre. It does not fit with our ethos of supporting all published crime authors and promoting the crime genre. At present we don’t know how widespread the practice is. However we will be taking steps to set up a membership code of ethics, and considering if other steps may be necessary from us as an authors’ organisation.”
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