Originally Posted by crich70
I grant that bias does exist. As long as reviewers are human that will be the case, but if an author has a conflict of interest isn't it more likely that said bias would lead to them writing negative rather than positive reviews?
You've obviously never seen the cozy little "you write me a positive review and I'll write you one" cliques that are common on writing forums. These have nothing to do with the quality of the work involved - it's pure advertising.