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phoney hotel reviews

Liverpool, UK
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10 posts
6 reviews
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phoney hotel reviews

Just like the proverbial sore thumb, there is at least one hotel proprietor in Llandudno who persists in masquerading as numerous different reviewers. Not surprisingly, all these "reviewers" write glowing reports about the hotel and seem to write in the same fashion. I suppose they all could have had the same English teacher but this is difficult to say with your tongue in your cheek! Another dead giveaway is the number of reviews this hotel generates from so few rooms! There's no need to even mention names; the prime culprit is obvious although I daresay there are more such people in Llandudno and indeed in other resorts and cities both here and worldwide.

I know this area is a difficult area for Tripadvisor.com to police but if only they would make an occasional example of one or two of these hotel proprietors who are apparently abusing our good faith.

Scotland, United...
Destination Expert
for South Ayrshire, Glasgow
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14,895 posts
311 reviews
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1. Re: phoney hotel reviews

Alec they most certainly do take this issue seriously and have dealt promptly with similar circumstances in the past. I feel sure that if you advise them of your concerns they will be looked into.

Its usually easy to spot fake reviews, though its possible that some might be taken in, which is why the forums are so invaluable. Before booking any hotel its always worth running your options by the forum first to see what the helpful regulars (and newbies) have to say. No system is perfect but being able to chat to someone who may know the best places is a brilliant idea!

Carmarthen Wales
Destination Expert
for Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire
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3,225 posts
162 reviews
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2. Re: phoney hotel reviews

Alec,

yes it is a problem that crops up now and again on a number of forums,sometimes a dead give away is people writing in with a glowing report that is their one and only report ever, as celtic said , have a look at reviews, and then i knock off the very good and the very bad, and the middle of the road reviews are left, seems to work for me(touch wood)

dave

Liverpool, UK
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10 posts
6 reviews
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3. Re: phoney hotel reviews

One or two other points about these pnoney reviews I've just realized which gives the proprietor's game away: up until today (12 March 2007), none of these so-called reviewers have commented on any other hotel on Tripadvisor. I find that very suspicious! Also the reviewers' photos are not like others that people upload onto the site; these are like publicity shots!

No doubt if the proprietor reads this he'll quickly stomp up other reviews under these apparent bogus names in order to cancel out the obviousness of his mistake. Assuming of course he can remember the passwords for each one!

For God's sake Tripadvisor, do something! The evidence is overwhelming!

UK
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49,560 posts
91 reviews
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4. Re: phoney hotel reviews

Got to agree, first nearly all of the reviews I read seems to recall the name of the owners and says the same things (very little about the surrounding area for example, its always about being met in the car park etc), and second, with very few exceptions (I only read the fist 10 or so), they have all only ever posted one review. Look at the other hotels nearly all of the reviewers have reviewed several hotels over a longish period of time.

I'll be reporting this to TA, I think others should as well.

I also wonder if the people doing this are aware its going to be illegal soon?

The Moon
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39 posts
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5. Re: phoney hotel reviews

well, nothing will happen with it. i mean, at most a few examples will be made of people. a few fines here and there, nothing will stop them.

its illegal to download free music but that doesnt stop anyone. its just something that will have to be dealt with.

the only way i can see to fix it is by implementing some kind of user rating/points system for number of posts/reviews/helpful reviews/ratings on accurate reviews of hotels/ratings on forums posts etc etc. then the higher rated poster is placed first in the list of hotel reviews.

a few bad reviews can soon be fixed by someone posting "i stayed just after rennovation.....it was lovely" then a few more and people will think theyve fixed the error of their ways

Scotland, United...
Destination Expert
for South Ayrshire, Glasgow
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14,895 posts
311 reviews
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6. Re: phoney hotel reviews

If it is reported and found to be a rogue review it will be removed. Are you going to report it or them? Which reviews are they?

Devizes, United...
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40,216 posts
339 reviews
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7. Re: phoney hotel reviews

Hi Alec

There is new legislation coming into effect shortly which although will not necessarily prevent all these bogus so-called reviews, will outlaw it with a hefty fine for the perpetrators. I don't recall the official wording but to all intents and purposes it's along the lines of "knowingly writing a review of accommodation/facilities/service that you know to be false, incorrect or totally fabricated or to gain a pecuniary advantage for your own business by doing so", i.e. by the hotel owner themselves when fobbing themselves off as a bona fide traveller who has stayed in their premises OR by a rival hotelier who knowingly posts incorrect information with a view to discrediting the accommodation in question. About time too I reckon....

UK
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49,560 posts
91 reviews
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8. Re: phoney hotel reviews

just go to the llandudno reviews section and take a look

Scotland, United...
Destination Expert
for South Ayrshire, Glasgow
Level Contributor
14,895 posts
311 reviews
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9. Re: phoney hotel reviews

I don't have time to wade through all the hotel and b&b reviews sadly, so any links would be appreciated, from those in-the-know. Thanks:-)

UK
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49,560 posts
91 reviews
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10. Re: phoney hotel reviews

Wading isnt needed!

Put it this way, if someone did a good job with fake reviews, roughly what position in the list of top hotels do you think they might end up in?

Or as Brian Clough once said, I wouldn't say I was the best football manager, but I think I'm in the top One.

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