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Fine Imposed For A Negative Review?


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It is featured in the news that a couple have been fined by a hotel in Blackpool £100.00 for posting a negative review on TripAdvisor.  The hotel in question claimed it is part of their small print that this charge will be levied if a discriminatory post is made?  Trading Standards are now involved in this particular case, but it does beg certain questions.

Many of us doing research on hotels, holiday destinations will refer to the infamous TripAdvisor, and a majority of the time the reviews are honest, an individual’s genuine perspective and can highlight areas for improvement.  But the site has its faults as malicious, incorrect reviews can also be posted.  Very few fully understand the damage this can do to a business.  So do these businesses, companies have the right to fight back and prevent this?  Surly if the grievance was great enough you would of approached them first before becoming a keyboard warrior?

I have always taken most things on these sites with a pinch of salt and done further research if unsure, people are very quick to complain less so to praise.

But what is your take on this situation in general, do you take other peoples reviews as gospel?

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Hi  I don't take other people's opinion as gospel but unless you have experience of a particular hotel/cruise etc. then if you bother to read a review you have to take some guidance from the contributors, but each have their own ideas so I usually read around five articles and take the consensus viewpoint.   However, I do take into account the cost of the product, I believe the hotel mentioned above only charged 18 pounds per night including breakfast and so I wouldn't expect it to be that great.  I always take in a value for money aspect into any review.  I assume others do the same, I would expect a hotel charging 200 pound per night to be significantly better but I may not think it's worth the extra cost in value for money terms

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The hotel have now agreed to refund the £100.00.   What I didn’t realise was how cheap the rooms are at £18.00 unfortunately you will get what you pay for, and if the persons in question were quick enough to wright a review why didn’t they read the others before booking?  We all want value for money, they offer a cheap basic product common sense would indicate what you will receive. 

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I don't know what the criticism was, but there are certain things that are baselines requirements for a hotel - cleanliness being one.  If those aren't met then I don't see the problem with a negative review regardless of how much was paid.

 

I use TripAdvisor a lot and have written many reviews.  One thing I try to do is keep reviews objective.  If a hotel met my expectations that doesn't mean it gets a 5* review.  As such, even if I got what I paid for from an £18/night hotel (not that I'd ever stay in one), I'd still be unlikely to rate it any more than 3* because that's the standard the hotel is trying to achieve - 3* may be generous, but you get the idea.

 

Should establishments be able to fine people for leaving honest negative feedback?  No.  Should I be entitled to leave a negative review even if I didn't raise the issue at the time?  Yes!  The difficulty is where malicious reviews are concerned, but generally you can spot these a mile off.

 

TripAdvisor also lets establishments respond to feedback, and this is one way a business can show how excellent it's customer service is... or show the owners true colours.  It make make for entertaining reading!

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I have reviewed quite a few hotels and restaurants on Trip Advisor and I have always been honest and fair. My less complimentary comments are outnumbered by my good ones and everyone can look at a members past reviews to see if they are just being nasty for the sake if it.

One restaurant who chose to answer my negative comments just made a fool of themselves by writing self praise but addressed none of the issues I raised. The best response from a restaurant was one in a Gran Canaria, they accepted the issues I raised about one dish and asked for us to give them another try on our next visit. The most surprising thing though was about four months later they sent me a private message to say they had totally changed how they prepared that dish and thanked me for my constructive feedback!

If I'm looking for advice I always look where that person has been before, if they rave about somewhere but have only been two star in Benidorm or if they slate a place but only go to the likes of the Four Seasons I always do more research.

One think that does annoy me are people who put comments on queries on the forums who have obviously never been to the place in question. There is one person who constantly gives people false information about locations, hotels and restaurants in Meloneras ( a very nice resort) and when you look at their vast catalogue of reviews there isn't a single one for anywhere on Gran Canaria so they obviously have never been, I'm not sure what can be done about people like that.

GiGi

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Guest Solent Richard

It is featured in the news that a couple have been fined by a hotel in Blackpool £100.00 for posting a negative review on TripAdvisor.  The hotel in question claimed it is part of their small print that this charge will be levied if a discriminatory post is made?  Trading Standards are now involved in this particular case, but it does beg certain questions.

Many of us doing research on hotels, holiday destinations will refer to the infamous TripAdvisor, and a majority of the time the reviews are honest, an individual’s genuine perspective and can highlight areas for improvement.  But the site has its faults as malicious, incorrect reviews can also be posted.  Very few fully understand the damage this can do to a business.  So do these businesses, companies have the right to fight back and prevent this?  Surly if the grievance was great enough you would of approached them first before becoming a keyboard warrior?

I have always taken most things on these sites with a pinch of salt and done further research if unsure, people are very quick to complain less so to praise.

But what is your take on this situation in general, do you take other peoples reviews as gospel?

 

Good morning Riversong.

 

As someone who has owned such a business I would say yes, they do have the right to fight back.

 

The problem often is that occasionally some guests can't accept that what they pay for isn't what their perception dictates.

 

Bit like cruising really.wink.png wink.png

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So do these businesses, companies have the right to fight back and prevent this?

 

 

Yes on Trip Advisor they have a right of reply, but do they have a right to remove money from you account without you knowledge? NO I would expect them to be charged with theft. The hotel should not have held the customers credit card details after the purchase of the room had been completed.

It does not matter the price you pay the room should still be clean if basic I would expect at that price for it to be very basic but I would still expect it to be clean.

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