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Mr. Eric, if you deem the following inappropriate you know what to do. But I feel people should know what I know and, of course, I'm expressing my knowledge-based opinion.

Last night I posted a review on Yelp about a new business that I recently visited with my wife and daughter. https://www.yelp.com/biz/clarks-home-cooking-lutz

I checked it out on Yelp and Google before we went there to get a feel for people's opinions on it. At Google, all the reviews were outstanding. With Yelp, I couldn't help but notice that the reviews were dismal. Usually in these websites, businesses have mixed reviews, it is incumbent upon the reader to discriminate and sort-out the chaff from the wheat. Then I notice that with Yelp, you can click on a "unrecommended reviews" section So we go to eat.  Everything's fine. I've always liked hole-in-the-wall eateries.

Then I asked the owner what he "did to the folks" at Yelp. And I get the story. Yelp operates with a "pay to play" scheme. Unless the owner pays its fees, the business will not get good reviews published. This is how Yelp "explains" it:

"Hundreds of millions of reviews are posted on Yelp, and our automated recommendation software works in the background to showcase the reviews that it determines are most helpful. These are typically written by active members of the Yelp community who are self-motivated to share their personal, detailed experiences about local businesses. It applies the same objective rules to reviews of every business and treats reviews of advertisers and non-advertisers exactly the same.

The software does something no human can—regularly analyze billions of data points from all reviews, reviewers and businesses to evaluate the usefulness and reliability of each review. It’s engineered to provide a level playing field for all businesses on Yelp. Having a great reputation on Yelp shouldn't be about who has the time and resources to ask the most people to write reviews. Great Yelp reviews and ratings should come from consumers who had a great experience that they’re inspired to tell others about."

Needless to say, my review got relegated to the "untrustworthy" section. As I said in my review, "Algorithms my eye".

Thought you'd like to know.



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Yelp is a shakedown. Period. “Influencers” also use it to try to get free products and services  

So is the BBB. I went from an A- to a D because I wouldn’t buy some premium package from them. This is nothing new.

Newspapers used to extort payment for glowing articles about new business but would turn you over to the health department or fire department for bogus violations if you didn’t buy the reviews. Then run a story about your company being investigated for violations they made up. They would fail to mention that you had passed the inspection with flying colors. Just make a big deal about a new company being investigated.

Same crap. New technology. 

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Bingo, Batesmotel.

Here's the uncanny thing about Google reviews, at least from that perspective. I don't trust Google or any and all of it's "alphabet" affiliates. So it struck me that they seem not to play that game. Perhaps I'm wrong, but at least the owner of that business has nothing bad to say about them.

Btw, the home fries are A+. And the hamburger patty was very well seasoned.

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1 hour ago, Ricordo said:

The software does something no human can—regularly analyze billions of data points from all reviews, reviewers and businesses to evaluate the usefulness and reliability of each review. It’s engineered to provide a level playing field for all businesses on Yelp.

1) You're not smart enough to understand what we do. It's complicated.

2) It would be unfair to rate businesses based on the reviews from peasants. We are more interested in virtue-signaling about equity than what we actually claim to provide. 


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Back when I worked in politics, and held a very low level elected position of no consequence, a political opponent complained about my company to the BBB. She had never done business with me, never even talked to me at political functions, but I endorsed someone she hated for a party position. 

The BBB hounded me for three years trying to get a payment so they could "settle the complaint against my company". 

At first I didn't know what to make of it, so I contacted every single one of my current and former customers. Even a couple that I knew were not happy with me, every one of them denied making the complaint. So I thought maybe it was just a scam.

About a week later a friend called and said that she was facing an investigation with the agency that licensed her business and this nasty woman had made the complaint. She warned me that I would probably get a complaint too. I held multiple licenses with the state and started checking with those agencies, turns out they all had complaints, but at least with my type of licenses they had to be a customer I had worked for to file a complaint. Initially this nasty woman had lied to at least one agency and said she was a customer to get a complaint started, but then withdrew it a few days later and so the agency never made it formal.

I finally got confirmation that the nasty woman started the trouble with the BBB. I had to threaten legal action before they would stop hounding me. They are a straight up shakedown scam. I go out of my way to tell businesses that display the BBB logo that I won't do business with them.

Same with Angieslist

And Yelp

And a host of other leeches that pretend to be "protecting".  They are no different than mafia that charge "protection" money so a business doesn't get ransacked.

Oh yeah, the nasty lady? Well, when we were done with her she had lost every political position and connection she had, her husband filed for bankruptcy, and her friends that were helping her wouldn't talk to her, they claimed to "know nothing" about her illegal activity. All of her allies were voted out of all party and government positions within three years.


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