A story that made a splash in the software world this week was Andy Brice’s revelation of spoof software awards. In a story reminiscent of good ol’ investigative journalism techniques, the UK based developer create a fake program, aptly named “awardmestars” and consisting of a text file with the description “this program does nothing at all”, and made it available on the net. Andy received 16 awards and a good number of congratulatory emails for awardmestars. He also says that the program is “now listed on 218 sites, pending on 394 sites and has been rejected by 421 sites.”
We’d like to take this opportunity to remind to our readers that at Softonic, we download and test every program. For every new addition you’ll see a review from one of our editors, a small list of pros and cons and a star rating. While we rarely give a score of less than 3 stars, corresponding to a pretty basic application, we also seldom give out full 5 star ratings, reserved for clearly outstanding or innovative programs. You can check out our rating guide for more information.
This story serves as a timely reminder that the internet is a jungle where you’ll find a bit of everything, a lot of great content but also a lot of junk. It’s great that somebody like Andy has taken the time to reveal this and will hopefully make users more critical of software ratings. We on Softonic personally encourage users to be critical of our reviews and post their comments, particularly if they don’t agree with what we say. After all, who better to review software than users themselves?