Perspectives on positive equipment reviews

There is some heated debate among book reviewers / book critics about whether there are way too many positive reviews in comparison with critical reviews. Sound familiar?

Here is a summary of some of the points of view of various people:

book reviews debate

I found most of it to be quite relevant and an interesting perspective on equipment reviews, except that high-end audio reviewers, and high-end audio magazines, have MUCH more financial incentive to publish positive reviews than do book critics [even though our reviewers do not get quoted in the New York Times… ever :-)].

It may just go to show that to a large extent the culture of a niche – whether books or high-end audio or movies or computers or whatever – dictates the percentage of positive reviews versus negative reviews. That even if we, in high-end audio, held reviewers and magazines to a higher standard, so that they had absolutely no financial incentive to publish a positive review – we would still most likely end up with near the same percentage [what is it? 95%+?] of positive reviews.