(credit: Nick Berardini)

One of the best bits of the modern world is the way that anything you buy online inevitably comes with a bunch of user reviews telling you why your purchase does or doesn't suck. Sometimes the compulsion to leave such a review can strike even in situations that most of us would probably feel are a little inappropriate, with employees of Taser International, maker of the occasionally lethal stun guns, apparently the latest to leave reviews without the kind of disclosure that professional reviews might be expected to contain.

Some one-star reviews posted on Amazon and iTunes for Killing Them Safely, a documentary film looking at the Taser stun guns and the safety issues around them, appear to have been posted by Taser International employees, using their own names. The dangers of Tasers are contested by the manufacturer and law enforcement agencies deploying the weapons, and the employees seem to be taking to the user reviews to express their dissatisfaction with the film.

The film's director, Nick Berardini, spotted one dubious review on iTunes, purporting to come from one Uriel Halioua. The review complains that the film is "poorly narrated"—in true user review form, Halioua appears not to have even watched the film, as Berardini says it has no narration—and concludes that it's "swill." The name Uriel Halioua is an uncommon one, but one person who does appear to be blessed with it just happens to work as a pre-sales systems engineer at Taser International. Peculiarly, that review seems now to have been deleted and reposted by a different user, "BobRossRocks."

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