Etiquette on reviews

As a developer, I always cringe when I see 1-star app reviews on decent apps - especially when they are reviews given to fellow developers.

Why? Because a large portion of them are irrelevant ("I wanted this app to be free!", "I don't understand what this app does, it must be useless!"). 100% destructive, 0% constructive. To be honest, I kind of had a fatalist approach to this issue, but a recent article WPCentral http://www.wpcentral.com/consumer-reviewing-etiquette-windows-phone-store made me think that maybe, just maybe, it's not completely hopeless. If people discuss this subject more, and the media also talks about it too, like they do for general smartphone etiquette, then we can create some awareness, that will hopefully lead to at least a bit of an improvement.

These reviews are toxic. They either have no relevance to the app itself, mention crashes without any mention of when it occurred, discuss that features are missing without specifying which ones, state that they don't like a design without any details, etc. It is not constructive and does not help the developer improve the app. They can also be very disheartening, which reduces the chances the developer will be motivated to produce more quality apps. In particular, apps made by students are often of average quality, but constructive feedback can steer them in the right direction. However, more often than not, the reviews are completely useless and bring a negative contribution to the world. It is destructive.

What do you think we can do as a society?