Nokia Says Glowing Review of Its Own Phone Wasn’t Really a Review

Mocked by bloggers, brand recasts writeup as a 'hands-on'

Nokia became a bit of a laughingstock among tech bloggers yesterday, when the brand published a glowing review of its own phone, the Nokia Lumia 620, on its own blog, “Conversations by Nokia.” “It's like Coke saying Coke Zero is a really good soda, or communism getting five stars from Mao,” noted Gizmodo’s Mario Aguilar. The praise-slathered writeup by Nokia staff writer Adam Fraser, who closed by calling the phone “an affordable, attractive, fully functional package,” generated dozens of comments mocking Nokia for what appeared to be a desperate attempt at positive early buzz for the device. But instead of pulling the piece, Nokia chose to surgically remove the part that started all the trouble: the word “review” in the headline. The post’s title was changed late Monday from “Compact, vibrant, and lots of fun: Our Nokia Lumia 620 review," to “Compact, vibrant, and lots of fun: our Nokia Lumia 620 hands-on.” A note was also added to the end of the Nokia post, saying, “This article was first headlined as a ‘review’; obviously, it’s more of a hands-on account of Adam’s experiences and the headline has been changed to reflect that.” So here’s the real question: Is this kind of self-congratulatory corporate blogging kosher as long as you don’t call it a review? Would the post and all its puffery have gotten any notice at all if it had been called a “hands-on” from the beginning?