From Cheeze Doodles to the new iPad, you can surprisingly find that there are people already bought and reviewed on everything you can think of. In order for a video to be classified as a review video, the producer simply need to include any aspect of information about the product they are trying to introduce. In fact, video reviews have become a prominent genre on media-sharing sites like Youtube and are playing a critical role in prospective consumer choices. But the product review did not always take this form. Its evolution was a slow and long progression from short written 1 to 2 sentence reviews published in newspapers and magazines to longer, elaborate paragraphs with pictures posted on blogs and digital social networks and finally to the video reviews available today that allow the prospective buyers to examine every aspect of the product and even see the product in use.

 Product reviews are quite diverse- some are humorous and biased, others serious and impartial; some are written on amateur forums, others propagated through professional publications. These reviews for the same product- the iPhone 5- demonstrate the variety of just one type of product review (video reviews) uploaded on one popular file-sharing website (Youtube).

Introducing the iPhone 5S


iPhone 5 Review!


Most people couldn’t tell from just the title or the preview picture that the first review was was the ironic and humorous one and the second a detailed and technical review. This is true for most video review- it’s usually hard to tell, even from the first full minute of video whether the video will be serious or flippant. Incidentally, usefulness aside, the parodies are the video “reviews” often most popular on the web.

One way to categorized video reviews is by the consumer’s rating factor. Everyday appliances, personal-use products, and electrical gadgets like cameras, electronic dictionaries, make-up, or shampoo are often rated on performance while non-material merchandise and media like books, musics and movies are more often judged by aesthetics. Movie reviews in particular, often focus on sentiments and personal reflections as shown in the first he talk-show styled review of Thor: The Dark World below.

Thor: The Dark World movie review


We can also divide review videos into commercial and noncommercial ones. Usually commercial review videos are made professionally by corporations and contain an efficient breakdown of important product information. They are also often biased, misleadingly presenting a disproportionate amount of benefits.

Introducing the World’s first interchangeable lens HD consumer camcorder


This commercial review for example, gives the initial impression that the product is very technologically advanced. The title alone is meant to captivate the consumer with expectant wonder. For unbiased and sound advice on product selection, consumers should view a large selection of both commercial and noncommercial reviews.

In this digital age, with video filming and sharing becoming increasingly easy, several distinct types of private product reviewers have emerged:

1. Those who are paid to do so (as per the recent case of Belkin hiring people to rate their products five star)

2. Those who are forced to do so in order to gain some other incentive (TopTable requires you to rate restaurants you have been to in order to gain points for their loyalty scheme)

3. Those who write reviews to increase their standing in a community (where, perhaps more reviews give them more credibility or access to more features in the online community)

4. Those who write reviews because they want to look good / impressive / intelligent amongst their peers

5. Those who write reviews because they had benefit from some and they want others to benefit in the same way from their advice

6. Those who write reviews because they have something to say whether good, bad or irritated

Most video reviews are targeted at the prospective buyer audience, to either persuade or dissuade people from buying the product. Others are used by fellow buyers as a second opinion or means of comparison. The general age of audience spans from those who have just learned to used a computer to mid-aged consumers familiar with the internet (age 8-30), and consist primarily of people seeking advice on their purchase.

Taylor 114ce vs 214ce – Can you hear the difference?


The reviews above, about two different but similar Taylor guitars are among the type of  specific and more professionally review videos which targets toward a relatively big amount of audience within that specific area.

Either way, the genre of online review videos often served as more practical uses unlike other genres may be seeing as individual works of art. Consequently, the prerequisite of making a review video for video addicts and fans of certain brands or product  is relatively easier, in other words, everyone can be a video reviewer if you have something to say.