Antoinette Faja 
Member since Sep 6, 2012


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Re: “Yelp and the Business of Extortion 2.0

Hi all, I went through similar things that you all explain here: the 1 first bad review, the whole filtering of all good ones thereafter, and the call from Yelp's advertisers.

But for my terror I also found this thread where Yelp users gang-flag reviews:…

Maybe this explains it all: First negative review from Elite Yelper, all good reviews filtered thereafter (as maybe flagged by friends of), and so on thereafter if you challenge with a reply (actual).

We should add this to the BBB form, which I'm filling right away. Thanks for posting.

Another issue to raise, is that Yelp, does not have a check for purchase so to guarantee that the reviewer was ever an actual client. Knowing that their filtering algorithms are biased by their users who not only are allowed to gang-flag, but most importantly can trash us or flag us without being our clients is outrageous.

Regarding, Yelp's filtering manipulation, let's raise awareness that the fact that in hiding 80-90% of our reviews or any percentage above 50%, what Yelp is actually doing is using the information provided by 3rd parties (their users) and twisting in a way that it creates a fake image of our business, that would otherwise not exist. In so doing they inflict financial damage to our company.

Even though a business is public, this matter should be treated as seriously as those that protect us against any other damage (moral or otherwise). In this case, it's Yelp's promotion of DEFAMATION that leads to our Financial damage. Starting by the point that Yelp's reviewers are not verified customers, and thus none of the information they provide can be taken as based on truth. We shouldn't have to sue the reviewer, instead, Yelp should be held accountable for promoting such habits, by way of excluding needed terms and checks from their system.

And second and most importantly, Yelp should be banned from intervening between the reviewers and us, unless until they come forth and provide a transparent system that can ensure accountability as the least. In the end, they are the "hosts" but don't own the rights to the content of the information provided by and for others.

Here is what I thought we could propose in our next claim based on all the above:

* Limit Yelp's ability to filter reviews to 20% of them at most on a given period.
* For yelp to provide a report to businesses on the reasons that caused each filtering out. Similar to the "explanation of benefits".
* Use a transparent scale system that determines their filtering factors, such as the ones used by more businesses (zagat,etc).
* That Yelp ads a) a client verification system, b) A prompt if the "reviewer has contacted the business prior to the "claim"", and c) post mark the date of purchase. (so to have some defense against those who phonily come back to trash us with feedback that no longer applies (after years).

I'll follow this threat and fill every form. Is there anyway that we can in the meantime we can all together help make another review site popular ? ( I saw the one on facebook above, I'll check it out now)

21 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Antoinette Faja on 09/06/2012 at 9:09 PM

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