AAAI Publications, Twenty-Third International FLAIRS Conference

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The Readability of Helpful Product Reviews
Michael P. O'Mahony, Barry Smyth

Last modified: 2010-05-06


Consumers frequently rely on user-generated product reviews to guide purchasing decisions. Given the ever-increasing volume of such reviews and variations in review quality, consumers require assistance to effectively leverage this vast information source. In this paper, we examine to what extent the readability of reviews is a predictor of review helpfulness. Using a supervised classification approach, our findings indicate that readability is a useful predictor for Amazon product reviews but less so for TripAdvisor hotel reviews.


user-generated reviews; classification; helpfulness; readability tests

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