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Post Reply Review of GATE removed without notification
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Posted 2/7/16 , edited 2/7/16
Hi. I had a question concerning user reviews. A few months ago I wrote a long, well-reasoned review of GATE after the first half of the season. I am a historian of modern history by profession, and while I my focus is not East Asia, my review of GATE paid particular attention to proliferation of violent right-wing, nationalist ideas in the anime. The manga and anime are notorious in Japan, and most people who pay attention to this sort of thing are aware that the author is a person of self-described fascist political leanings.

My review was removed with no notification. It's gone. Not even in my reviews in my account.

Does crunchyroll remove negative reviews to stack the ratings of popular shows?

If so, I would like to know, as I will refrain from writing further reviews. And I will discourage acquaintances from doing so, as well.

I fully understand that the site has the right to remove my reviews on whim. But in the ToS it's not stated clearly that reviews otherwise well within the ToS will be removed because they are negative.

I want to note that I even received messages from other users thanking me for the review.
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Posted 2/7/16
I do hope you saved a draft of it somewhere, this post makes me interested in reading it...

For future reference, I hope you save a draft or have another kind of backup. Especially for Crunchy as this site's robots-txt makes digging for 'lost' material on various archives a bit hopeless...

This I'm directing toward other reviewers as well who's conclusions might come to be perceived as controversial. Of course it's up to CR what's on here or not. But it would level the playing field a bit should a decision seem arbitrary on behalf of them, giving users a chance to weigh in on the decision by having the material posted elsewhere after the fact.
Dragon
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Posted 2/7/16


I'm not sure when your review was removed, or by whom, so I can't directly answer some of your questions. I'll tackle this part, though:

Does crunchyroll remove negative reviews to stack the ratings of popular shows? - no.

In fact, even if the review is removed, the star ranking you gave the show still counts towards its average, so removing the review wouldn't help towards that goal anyway. Each user's review of each show only counts once, so if you update (say from a 4 star to a 2 star), or if your review is removed and reposted in an updated form, you'll still only count towards the average once, but the update will be your new count towards the average in place of the old (or removed) review.

If the review was seen breaking as something in the forum rules, it would be removed because of that (can't say which it was, since again, I don't know what your review said or when/who removed it) but negative reviews are not removed from popular shows just because the show is popular and the review is negative. Or vice-versa, of course.

Things that often do get reviews taken down - spamming the same thing over and over to fill out the text minimum, swearing up a storm, insulting/attacking other users, things of that nature. But nothing to stack the ratings. Also, wasn't asked but the "was this review helpful" portion is used to determine the order of the reviews when in "most popular" mode, and if a review gets enough downvotes, it'll be hidden by default. But again, not something used to remove a review.
One Punch Mod
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Posted 2/7/16

churuchurupayapa wrote:

Hi. I had a question concerning user reviews. A few months ago I wrote a long, well-reasoned review of GATE after the first half of the season. I am a historian of modern history by profession, and while I my focus is not East Asia, my review of GATE paid particular attention to proliferation of violent right-wing, nationalist ideas in the anime. The manga and anime are notorious in Japan, and most people who pay attention to this sort of thing are aware that the author is a person of self-described fascist political leanings.

My review was removed with no notification. It's gone. Not even in my reviews in my account.

Does crunchyroll remove negative reviews to stack the ratings of popular shows?

If so, I would like to know, as I will refrain from writing further reviews. And I will discourage acquaintances from doing so, as well.

I fully understand that the site has the right to remove my reviews on whim. But in the ToS it's not stated clearly that reviews otherwise well within the ToS will be removed because they are negative.

I want to note that I even received messages from other users thanking me for the review.


I don't have any information about what happened to that review particularly, but I can say that we don't remove reviews just because they are negative. We do get a fair amount reports of reviews just because the review is negative and we clear the reports and leave the reviews.

What I can imagine might have happened is that if the review seemed to be more about history and politics and not very much connected to the show, especially if it was worded in way that it came across as bashing Japan or the creators, it could have been removed for that reason.

I'm sorry to hear you didn't receive a message saying why it was removed. I usually do send messages, especially if it might not be obvious why I've deleted something. Maybe in this case the person who removed it felt it would be obvious.

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Posted 2/7/16 , edited 2/8/16
Thanks for the replies. Having the review removed and only the various messages from users thanking me for putting it up, I want to add two things:

1. The review remained germane to the anime - any historical references were in direct connection to the anime's attempts to belittle critiques of Japan's wartime behavior. I did not digress. Reviewing an anime follows the same principles as reviewing books, articles, and films.

2. There was no content that could be construed as anti-Japanese. As an avid consumer of anime in my spare time, who lives on the west coast USA, among Japanese-Americans and Japanese expats, who has Japanese officemates who are good friends, that would be unprecedented from me.

My main concern is that GATE's message, on the other hand, is racist, fascist, and sexist. If a show is outright those things, and an argument is made that it is a pretty nasty show based on evidence, put forth respectfully and with professionalism, I don't expect it to be removed. It's not an academic review or anything (I like to remain informal and funny if possible), but there's a minimal standard to be followed when dealing with controversial subjects.

But I have no idea why it was removed. It was disappeared, and generally that indicates, in my experience with websites, that it was removed quietly because it did not violate the ToS but it had content moderators considered undesirable. I just want to make sure that this is the case, because unlike some of my off-the-cuff, shorter reviews, my GATE review was something I sat down and wrote with some care. I am surprised the website would remove it, and without notification at that. At least notify me that users complained, or that someone was offended. If it's not okay to review controversial anime properly, and we must remain at generalities in reviews because the site doesn't want overly negative reviews of controversial series, then the site should be up front about it.

This is just stuff I do in my spare time, so it's easy for me not to do it if the reviews are not welcome!
topgee 
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Posted 2/7/16
I know this isn't the point of the thread, but could you post the review somewhere else? I ask because I'm interested in reading it, as there are certain aspects of Gate that I've found troubling too and would like to read your views.
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37 / M / Southern California
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Posted 2/7/16
I find it sad that this review was removed, especially without a reason given to the author. GATE was on my watch list but, after reading churuchurupayapa's post above, it seems like it's a title I wouldn't want to watch. I'd love to read the full post though. Historical context, and current events, can be discussed without it being 'bashing' of a country or its citizens.
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Posted 2/8/16

topgee wrote:

I know this isn't the point of the thread, but could you post the review somewhere else? I ask because I'm interested in reading it, as there are certain aspects of Gate that I've found troubling too and would like to read your views.


I've messaged a friend who works on translation in hentai (his stuff is awesome) who might still have it. If I can get a copy of it, I'll message it to you privately. I don't want to aggravate the site administrators by posting it here, as whatever the reason, it was removed.
Der Zoodirektor
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Posted 2/8/16
We don't remove reviews from the site unless they contain things violating our ToS. I've asked some of my colleagues, but so far they've all said they haven't touched any reviews in a long time.
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Posted 2/8/16 , edited 2/8/16

shinryou wrote:

We don't remove reviews from the site unless they contain things violating our ToS. I've asked some of my colleagues, but so far they've all said they haven't touched any reviews in a long time.


Thanks for the responses, several moderators have already posted in this thread and I thank you for asking your comrades about the review. Is it possible the site or my account was compromised by someone who was against the content of the review? As I mentioned earlier, it is a controversial series written by a known fascist in Japan. It's a bit suspicious that it was taken down - and as I received no notifications, I am have no reason to doubt when you and your fellow mods say you didn't take it down.

And, on that note, lacking notifications, is it possible to post the review again if I find it? I don't want to put up something that was potentially removed by the site itself without asking first that this for sure was not the case.
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Posted 2/8/16 , edited 2/8/16

churuchurupayapa wrote:
Is it possible the site or my account was compromised by someone who was against the content of the review? As I mentioned earlier, it is a controversial series written by a known fascist in Japan. It's a bit suspicious that it was taken down - and as I received no notifications, I am have no reason to doubt when you and your fellow mods say you didn't take it down.

Not possible in the least. The site is so secure that even when there's been a steady stream of compromised accounts for at least a year now, they don't even need to check to know it's always the user's fault. [/sarcasm]

That said, it's probably a coincidence - but still a little weird - that I had two posts on this board disappear four days ago with no notice, one of them critical of Crunchyroll and the other only obliquely so. (Someone commented about a site trying to phish CR info and speculated it could be the reason for all the compromised accounts; I commented that it probably wasn't.) When I posted about it, none of the mods or staff who frequent this board seemed to know (or would say) why they were removed.

~~~~~

p.s. On a side note, I'm curious if you've seen Code Geass. I found myself thinking some pretty cynical thoughts about some of the content with respect to World War II history.
Der Zoodirektor
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Posted 2/8/16
I'm a staff member, not a moderator.
I don't know what the content was, but feel free to post it again.
Posted 2/8/16


If you get your review back I will like to read it. Thou not because I will like to read it before watching GATE. I am More than aware of GATE themes and messages. Since I already watch the first season. I just will like to see what you have to say about the series thou. Regardless of it being Negative or Positive. I still love the story and characters, even if I agree or disagree with it messages and themes. In a side note thou. How many stars did you give it?
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Posted 2/8/16 , edited 2/8/16

shinryou wrote:

I'm a staff member, not a moderator.
I don't know what the content was, but feel free to post it again.


Alright, thanks a lot!

On that note, my brilliant wife found the google cache of the review, which does not allow reloading of the whole review but partially shows the first paragraph plus the rating:

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:0c1gPEF-KzkJ:www.crunchyroll.com/gate/reviews/oldest/page9+&cd=3&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

It's the 2 star review at the bottom. I actually found out about the background of the author after I wrote the review, when my friend who studies the translation of hentai and hentai fandubs (he is a doctoral student in Canada) pointed it out to me. He was in Japan at the time, in Sendai.
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Posted 2/8/16
Update: I took some time to search for the article, and the best I've got so far is that cache. Is it possible to find the review via the website, now that it's established that it existed?
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