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Local Marketing Blog

How to Stop Fake Reviews on Yelp

In a word…. sue.   One important caveat, this only works ( for now) if you live in Virginia.

Yelp logo

Earlier this month, the Virginia Court of Appeals found that a Yelp review was not protected First Amendment speech if the reviewer was not a customer and was making false statements.  The result of the lawsuit was that Yelp was required to turn over to the company (Hadeed Carpet Cleaning) the names of 7 anonymous reviewers.  Armed with the true identity of the reviewers, Hadeed Carpet Cleaning can then consider suing the individuals for libel.

So far, this decision is only relevant for Virginia-based companies.   But, look for courts around the U.S. to tackle this issue as the sting of anonymous reviews are felt by more businesses.

No Anonymous Reviews on Customer Lobby

Since the founding of Customer Lobby, we have refused to publish anonymous reviews.   On Customer Lobby, all valid reviews are published.  However, businesses have access to the name and contact information of those that review their business.

If a businesses questions a review that they believe was written by a non-customer of theirs, we reach out to the reviewer directly to ask for proof of a transaction or we remove the review.  We believe that this level of transparency levels the playing field for businesses and consumers.

In addition, Customer Lobby offers a range of tools to help businesses communicate with their customers to help the “silent happy majority” of most businesses’ customer base tell their story.

What do you think?  Does eliminating anonymous reviews make sense?

 

Comments

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  1. Yes, this will help. I had 2 ex employees and a wife of theirs talk very negatively about me, my salon and certain employees of mine that they did not like. I tried to get them removed, and it has been unsuccessful. It really made my happy customers question me.

    1. @Veronica,
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. You have great reviews which clearly shows that your customers love you. In situations like yours, the best defense is a strong offense: keep asking customers to write a review for you. By the way, if you claim/fix the address of your business in CitySearch and Kudzu, your Customer Lobby reviews will be syndicated to those sites as well. Call our member services team if you are not sure how to do that (510-230-0588 x3).

  • veronica stone www.veronicastonesalon.com

    Yes, this will help. I had 2 ex employees and a wife of theirs talk very negatively about me, my salon and certain employees of mine that they did not like. I tried to get them removed, and it has been unsuccessful. It really made my happy customers question me.
    UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
    • Ted Paff

      @Veronica, Thanks for stopping by and commenting. You have great reviews which clearly shows that your customers love you. In situations like yours, the best defense is a strong offense: keep asking customers to write a review for you. By the way, if you claim/fix the address of your business in CitySearch and Kudzu, your Customer Lobby reviews will be syndicated to those sites as well. Call our member services team if you are not sure how to do that (510-230-0588 x3).
      UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes