TripAdvisor hopes we are all idiots including YOU


TripAdvisor has a 3rd party respond to critics { they are too obnoxious to respond themselves } –

In short what it boils down to, is that critics rightfully claim TripAdvisor is useless, full of lies, unreliable and outdated, and it owns the bragging rights to the worlds largest blackmail platform.  TripAdvisor being as arrogant as they are felt they are too good to have to respond to the critics, so they got someone else to do it for them.

We being open and transparent as we are feel we have to respond to TripAdvisor’s feeble response   

We read with interest an article in this week’s the article about our client TripAdvisor.

There are a number of inaccuracies in the article we wish to respond to:

TripAdvisor democratised the travel industry. The company was built on three key principles: to give travellers a voice and place to share their experiences, to promote transparency in the travel industry, and to create a level playing field for travel businesses to reach travellers, regardless of size. These principles continue to be the lifeblood of our company.

Nothing is more important to us than the authenticity of our reviews.Rubbish TripAdvisor doesn’t care about authenticity, if that were the case they would validate reviewers and / or the reviews to make sure the reviews are genuine. The ONLY important thing for TripAdvisor is the Quantity of email accounts / users they can put on paper to show advertisers, this is why anyone can join TripAdvisor and have as many accounts as they wish.  We have a world-class international team of specialists who spend 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, making sure our reviews are real. We rest our case, if you believe this, then you are exactly what TripAdvisor wants you to be.. an idiot!!   TripAdvisor is the world’s largest travel site. We have more than 60 million visitors to the site monthly and more than 32 million registered members globally. People continue to join and visit TripAdvisor in increasing numbers because of the usefulness that the traveller reviews and opinions provide. 

According to a recent PhoCusWright study commissioned by TripAdvisor*, 98% of respondents have found TripAdvisor hotel reviews to be accurate of the actual experience. 92% of respondents agree that TripAdvisor hotel reviews “Help me pick the right hotel for my travel needs”. Hahaha, so TripAdvisor pays someone to ask someone randomly on TripAdvisor ( not in the street or other websites ) Lets see what the * means – *According to a September 2012 PhoCusWright survey of 2,739 respondents. Participants for the study were solicited at random through a pop-up invitation link on DUH!! thats like doing a survey on and claiming 98% don’t like their Steak rare!!.. 

As demonstrated by this article, a common misconception is that reviewers only post on TripAdvisor to complain. This couldn’t be less true. The majority of reviews submitted on TripAdvisor are in fact positive with the average rating for Australian hotels on TripAdvisor currently just under 4 (out of 5). Also, according to a PhoCusWright study* the top three reasons why consumers write hotel reviews on TripAdvisor are: ‘I feel good about sharing useful information with other travellers’ (78%), ‘I wanted to share a good experience with other travellers’ (74%), ‘I feel that I am part of TripAdvisor’s travel social community’ (53%). Can you see the pattern here? surely you are starting to feel insulted by TripAdvisor..  78% + 74% +53% = 205%  We did a study and found the following to be true – I’m a miserable bastard and like to whinge 50% – I’m just a bastard and like to get freebies 48% – Who the fuck is TripAdvisor 2% = 100%

Fake TripAdvisor ReviewWe understand the importance that the reviews and opinions on TripAdvisor have to properties and businesses listed on the site. TripAdvisor has been monitoring tens of millions of reviews submitted over the past decade, and as a result, we can identify patterns of suspicious activity by utilising sophisticated filters and behavioural modelling to scan reviews. Yeah and elephants fly!!  We monitor and evaluate hundreds of different attributes associated with electronic correspondence, such as IP address, the type of browser being used Oooh better not use IE, FireFox, Chrome or Opera then like 99.9% of EVERYONE does and even screen resolution of the reviewer’s device. Yep the screen resolution is a definite give away, no wonder they are so smart, they have found a way to detect a fake review by the users screen resolution. Suspicious activity is then flagged to our investigations team of dedicated agents who use a variety of additional confidential investigative methods designed to identify potential fraud. Yeah, a thumb and an asshole – one shoves the thumb up the asshole, then holds the thumb in the air, and depending on which way the wind blows, and of course your screen resolution and if you are using Internet Explorer, the specialist knows if it’s a fake review..

We have a world-class international team of nearly 100 content specialists. This team is able to work in all 21 languages that we support on our global sites. The team has a wide range of fraud detection backgrounds, from a range of industries, and utilise sophisticated data mining, visualization and analytic tools to uncover trends and patterns of abuse. Like we said in the title.. TripAdvisor hopes we are all idiots including you

As well as our automated tools, we encourage our community of travellers and businesses alike to report any content they feel is suspicious or inappropriate. Every single report is investigated by the team above and any review found to be in breach of our policies will be taken down immediately. So, after ALL the above sophistication and drug induced futuristic crap, you really think a review can slip through??.. WOW!!

We take our responsibility as the world’s largest travel site extremely seriously and fully appreciate that TripAdvisor has a significant impact on the travel industry. For the last 12 years we have been empowering business owners and brands by giving them a powerful, free platform to promote their business to millions of travellers. TripAdvisor also plays a significant and positive role in improving customer service standards across the travel industry. We conducted a sophisticated survey on our site, and randomly loaded 3 pop ups asking our users if they would remove their listing from TripAdvisor is possible –  a shocking 100% said they would, so there you have it TripAdvisor, add that statistic to your list!! 

Of the 1.8 million businesses listed on the site, the vast majority are extremely happy, in fact, we are contacted every day from businesses around the world and we are told that favourable reviews on TripAdvisor directly and dramatically improve bookings. By following basic principles, businesses can – and do – use such sites such as TripAdvisor to enormous advantage. We to are contacted every day from businesses around the world, and they would ALL just love to drop a bomb on you. It’s true, they admit they get more bookings, but  they get blackmailed into almost giving away the rooms, along with free wine and meals..

Allegations of blackmail or threatening behaviour by guests against property owners are taken very seriously by TripAdvisor. Yes, and that is where it ends, they take it serious, but do NOTHING to stop it.  Not only is it strictly against our guidelines, but it may also be illegal in many jurisdictions. Have you noticed that TripAdvisor really believes that people give a shit about their guidelines?.  If an owner experiences this, we urge them to contact us immediately and our content integrity team will investigate. Is this by any chance the same highly trained team that can tell a fake review by the screen resolution and browser someone uses?  We recommend that owners contact us via the Management Centre, on the TripAdvisor site (, using the links provided to ensure that their queries are channelled to the teams that are best equipped to deal with their enquiry as quickly and efficiently as possible. And TripAdvisor has the balls to talk about quickly and efficiently… need we say more? 

For all published reviews, we also strongly encourage owners to give their side of the story by posting a management response to reviews on their property. This gives the business the last word and allows users to read both sides of the story before making a decision on whether a property is right for them. We strongly encourage business owners to take advantage of this feature, so their voice can be heard as well. [ we don’t have to say anything to this comment – we know exactly what you are thinking ]

Ooohhh, here we have another famous TripAdvisor Commisioned research – According to a recent research by PhoCusWright, commissioned by TripAdvisor*, 84% of users agree that an appropriate management response to a bad review “improves my impression of the hotel” and 78% of users agree that seeing a hotel management response to reviews “makes me believe that it cares more about its guests”. Disappointed, seeing as an owner can only respond by kissing ass, we would have  thought it to be at least 153%

We have received a lot of feedback from business owners listed on the site. We agreed we could do better at some things, at SOME things!!! – so we are in the process of developing our global customer care team so that businesses can reach us more easily. WOW, if it’s gonna be as cool and SciFi’ ish as your lab of Review Detectives, we can’t wait!  We will continue to engage with associations like the Accommodation Association of Australia on how we may improve the site or better engage with Australian hospitality businesses. How about pulling the plug, that would be a great start..

*According to a September 2012 PhoCusWright survey of 2,739 respondents. Participants for the study were solicited at random through a pop-up invitation link on Wow, really sophisticated and reliable.


Now you have read all of that, lets see what REAL people have to say about TripAdvisor, and not some survey TripAdvisor paid for [ these real responses can be found at ]


I had a guest stay who complained about my business on Trip Advisor, even though I had gone out of my way to help him. He complained about my Business on Trip Advisor in a foreign language.. I converted the complaint into english … I tried to respond on Trip Advisor but was told I couldnt because it wasnt written in English by the Guest… Why can it be allowed to be posted on there if I cant respond? and it cant be removed


We had guests stay recently from NZ for the Bathurst Race Weekend. Their first words upon arrival in Reception to checkout “give us a discount on everything otherwise we will write bad reviews on all the websites about your business” This lady’s threat at blackmail was cautioned with advice I would be happy to call the local police to address her issues of which she declined. And yes she mostly certainly wrote a vicious, defamatory review on Trip Advisor’s website. We had complaints from other guests about these guests behaviour and noise during their stay. A couple who stayed with this group advised they enjoyed their stay with us, apologising for their friends behaviour and thanking us for the service we provided during their stay. Have to agree “what about a global supplier care team”. Definitely not Trip Advisor. 


Why is it that a “client” of Trip Advisor is defending Trip Advisor ? Why can’t someone from the organisation speak for it ? As usual no employee of Trip Advisor is identifiable. Why is it that no guest writing a review is identifiable by their real name, yet when a Mamnager responds his full name is listed ?
It is not true that fake reviews are taken down by Trip Advisor. I formally advised them of one such review applying to my property and they refused to acknowledge it or remove it from the site.
Why is it that you cannot actually speak to any employee of Trip Advisor ? What are they hiding from ?
A “global customer care team” – that’s a good one ! What about a “global supplier care team” ?


I’m sorry but we have had a complaint which was pretty bad and when we contacted Trip Advisor they would not put up our side of the complaint.We could not talk to anybody after about 3-4 attempts I asked them if such a bad complaint was made surely it needed justification as there are always 2 sides. This was ignored with a generic answer. I dont care for all the statistics. I do care about integrity. For which I believe they dont have. trip Advisor have done a lot of damage to a lot of people. They need to realise that there are some revolting guests out there that cannot be trusted.Mind you 99% are quite good. but when you see a really bad review you have wonder! I would like to be clear though that we had no way of getting rid of our bad complaint which was mostly lies. All this stuff you have written here sounds great but in reality does not exist.
So needless to say we are not big advocates of Trip Advisor 


I would like to address some inaccuracies in this propaganda
Untruth 1 Reviews are verified
Guests can write anything they like, truth or lies, slander or praise etc, owners cannot write in response as it is heavily 100% censored
Untruth 2 Reviews are not personal
Guests can use personal names of our staff, yet owners cannot refer by name the guest. We only have one staff and a guest referred to her by name in a review and now guests arrive saying they read about her
Untruth 3 Reviews can be responded to
Owners can respond via the management centre, but nothing is done. There is no way to follow up, no contact numbers it is a big black hole (deliberately)
Untruth 4 Reviews are from guests
Posts are not verified by Tripadvisor. I read a review yesterday and the review started by saying, “I never stayed here” but was all hearsay from their friend who did.
Untruth 5 Tripadvisor is concerned
Tipadvisor is not concerned about blackmail and threatening behaviour. Nothing is done about this 



You see TripAdvisor, these are your REAL users thoughts, not a survey that you paid for.. and YOU talk about transparency !!

PS – Our review challenge is still on the table, have Stevie or Babs call us.. 




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TripAdvisor Warning

We are a small group of 9 people that are tired of the way TripAdvisor chooses to conduct their business, mainly because of the total lack of consideration towards “owners” in the hospitality world. We are based in the USA, Europe and New Zealand.
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  1. I agree with what you say.
    We had a guest stay, who stole towels from our room, and was spoken to about this before he left, he returned the towels, but after checking out, wrote a scathing report, accusing us of being overpriced and having dirty rooms.
    I contacted Tripadvisor about this and asked them to remove this vindictive “report” – they did nothing, so we are left with a bad report against our business from a lier and a thief.
    I will NEVER use them again, in my opinion they are tainted because they make no effort to establish the truth of any accusation.

  2. I use trip advisor all the time and I find it to be a valuable resource. A friend owns and operates a restaurant and she was constantly complaining about bad reviews. I told her that people are always going to complain about one thing or another so to focus on an individual review is almost meaningless. The question is; in general how well does the establishment score across a large population of reviews and in that regard, her establishment is ranked as one of the best in her area. So if establishments are complaining about a lot of bad reviews maybe they should consider that the problem isn’t with trip advisor, it’s with them. As for astro-turfing the reviews or trying to destroy a competitors reputation, again, a large number of reviews will overwhelm those attempts but even so, tearing down an establishment is liable and there are good laws to manage that in most jurisdictions.

  3. I agree with what you are saying, but what do you expect from a big business i ask. As a very well travelled world traveller who’s roughed the world alone on a tight budget i can say that Tripadvisor is a money making machine that appeals to the general masses, but that does not necessarily mean that they tell the truth they should. On the travel forums, there are some real resident bullies who are so called ‘destination experts’. They are no more than regular posters on some kinda bigotted platform, who despite insulting well meaning honest posters like me, are permitted to ‘get away with it’.
    I would advise people to be very wary of reviews as well, it’s a business that is making its money from advertising, so go figure.

  4. Our business information on the tripadvisor website has been changed by some unknown people to another competitor near us. We contacted the tripadvisor at the first point when this was realized. It actuarially took them 6 days to get back to us saying they could not correct this error but suggested us to create a new profile. That is correct, you have not heard wrong, THEY ASKED US TO CREATE A NEW PROFILE!!! But in fact I created the old profile myself 1.5 years ago and this did not belong to me anymore, just because some unknowns changed our profile. No explanation, no apology for inaccuracies, nothing more. They even do not have a valid contact. The only valid contact is a NONE-REPLY email address.

    Will a review website has be recognized as ‘High credibility’ even if then do not have any contact?

  5. It’s also used against guests who post a review the property doesn’t like. I booked at a property on the basis of good Trip Advisor reviews and what I found to be (on arrival at the property) a deceptive website. I posted a review containing what I would have liked to know before booking, so future guests could decide whether those things would bother them or not. I used neutral words and took great care as I was mindful that people’s livelihoods depended on this property. I posted positive comments as well, left out any experiences that were mine only and limited the number of observations.
    The property responded defensively, and used my name. Other guests have used their reviews to mock and deride, both my review and me personally. To me this is highly inappropriate and offensive, and smelled of guests being discussed in their absence and possibly the solicitation of positive reviews. I contacted Trip Advisor and apart from a brief initial response to my ‘where do I send feedback’ have had no response. I thought they would want to be aware of this, especially as it would mean ultimately the website and reviews would deteriorate from information to make choices, to no unsolicited reviews and a forum for venting. This would surely limit its validity and then use of the site, so I thought they would have a commercial interest in authenticity.
    Thanks for this site, it lets me know I was incorrect in that belief. While it is ugly to be attacked as an individual, I can walk away. I feel for property owners who are at the mercy of this system. One can only hope it becomes more widely known for what it is. Travel agents must be breathing a sigh of relief! From my end vilifying me and what I posted could only draw interest to it, so perhaps not such a loyal thing to do.

  6. As a recent Trip advisor property I was shocked to find that they are wanting to charge the consumer %30 booking fee. This is unbelieveable.
    Not very impressed on this end. Doubt I will be using the service.

  7. Stephen Kurtz says:

    I have written about 5 reviews for TripAdvisor and they respond with flattering remarks and urge me to write more for points and badges. So I called to see what all these points and badges mean….concretely. Nothing. You don’t get a free anything for taking the trouble. Better write to your old aunt who hasn’t heard from you in years.

  8. W Ridsdale says:

    Reading a book by Bill Bryson, recently, I was disappointed to note that he endeavoured to have you print a review which you declined to do as he was reporting second hand advice even though that advice was backed up by a conviction in the courts. This has troubled me greatly and I shall never believe a Tripadvisor review again, nor I suspect will he or anyone else reading that book (The Road To Little Dribbling).
    When I tried to contact Tripadvisor with my complaint I found it to be impossible for me to do so. What rubbish they are.

    Yours W H Ridsdale


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