The Guardian and WAE, round 3

The Guardian is running an article about WAE+’s dubious reviews and mentions me. The TL;DR is that about six months ago, I accidentally found out the name of a freelancer who was likely writing fake reviews for an online shop called WAE+ when I noticed the reviewers’ credentials were a bit suspicious, and this freelancer happily wrote a comment on the post, leaving his real email address. The Guardian found my blog, tracked him down, and he apparently happily admitted that WAE+ had paid for him to write fake reviews.

They also contacted WAE+, who offered an alternate set of events, in which I register an online account pretending to be WAE+ so I can pay the freelancer to write positive reviews about WAE+. Yes, really:

“Laeknishendr [the URL behind the DNZA blog] came for a job interview with us and did not succeed. We have reason to believe that somebody hired a freelance person, in the guise of WAE+, to write some fake reviews for the purpose of the mentioned blogpost.”

Within an hour of the Guardian asking WAE+ about the allegations, the record of Kamal’s job on Freelancer.com was deleted, and the user f0rtkn0x changed the location given on his profile from the UK to the US and his display name to “jimneycard”. Either way, Kamal has confirmed that he was commissioned to write fake reviews about WAE+.

I think the second paragraph speaks for itself. Thank you to Mike Deri Smith (the author) for picking up on and noting this; it’s hilarious.

I must object to “did not succeed”, as it implies that working for The Guardian’s “most complained about company” could be regarded as “success”!

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