Black Mirror’s 2016 episode, “Nosedive” explores a dystopian future in which the protagonist’s life is ruined as she accidentally lowers her overall personal rating over the course of a very bad day. The idea of a personal rating is already starting to take shape in the form of China’s social credit system, but even in the U.S., we have an analogous system of rating and ranking, even if it hasn’t been centralized in one consolidated place.

The effects of starred ratings and reviews for consumer products have been heralded as a way to create an objective, quantifiable method for assessing the quality of a product or service (Gunasekaran, 2019). On the surface, this seems to be true, a way to summarize a consumer experience using a simple five starred approach, ranging from five stars meaning you loved it,  to one star being “disappointed.” More often than not, however, these ratings are not about the particular good or service, but more about the mismanagement of expectations by the consumer (Peak Performance Digital, n.d.). Furthermore, negative ratings are often unaccompanied by any sort of relevant commentary or a way for a company or individual seller to improve. As more women enter the space of e-commerce and business, the reviews have taken on more sexist and harmful tones as well as the introduction of AI or automated bots that crawl sites and take down a seller’s listings without warning or an effective way to counter the decision that didn’t involve a human’s judgment at all.