Can YOU imagine putting your life on the line for your country, to make it a better place?. Can YOU imagine getting dropped in the middle of a war zone? Can YOU imagine seeing your friends and fellow soldiers getting killed in front of you? Can YOU imagine coming home missing a limb?.. NO of course not, unless YOU have experienced the above, there is no way we can even come close to imagining the hell our soldiers go through to make this a better place…
On Veterans Day we offered Veterans that owned or managed an establishment FREE reviews to boost their listing on TripAdvisor. We were saddened that 32 Veterans had to take us up on our offer, but were very happy to help them.
Yesterday we received the following email, that we would like to share with YOU.
FYI, we asked for permission to post this email. We were asked to remove any personal bits that would link it to their restaurant, afraid that TripAdvisor will make things worse for his wife, because of contacting us. This in itself is a VERY sad issue. Here we have a disabled Vet. that put his own life on the line, spent 2 tours in Afghanistan, and he is worried about TripAdvisor destroying his wife’s restaurant… He was quick to say that TripAdvisor has already destroyed his wife’s zest and her restaurant, but was still hoping they would remove the reviews.
Can we help him he asked us?.. hell yeah we can help him, WE will do what TripAdvisor SHOULD have done and be doing.. Helping people like this. It would take TripAdvisor just 5 MINUTES to see a mile away this couple is being destroyed by ONE person.. Problem is, TripAdvisor doesn’t care, never has done.. and probably never will.
We will be offering ALL Veterans that own or manage an establishment listed on TripAdvisor FREE ongoing reviews for unlimited time, just contact us with your details, and we will start boosting your listing. Unlike TripAdvisor, we REALLY appreciate what you have done or are still doing for our country.
We ( wife and myself ) have been following your website and twitter posts very closely. I have been tempted to make use of your services and try and improve our standing on Trip Advisor, but I was taught by my parents to be honest. A few days ago you offered free reviews to veterans, and this is the reason for me sending you this note.
I am 27 year old disabled vet, I spent 2 tours in Stan and had to have my right leg amputated just 4 months before heading home ( I will spare you the details).
I was engaged for almost 2 years. My now wife is of South American decent and has been very patient with me. My physical condition turned out to be a lot better than my mental condition, I spiraled into depression and withdrew from everyone that really cared about me, including my wife.
A year ago we “leased to buy” a small restaurant (max 20 people) for my wife. A small but very nice Argentinean Grill Restaurant. It was quickly determined that I would take a back seat, and have my wife manage the restaurant, and I would do the chores around our home. She lasted just 3 months managing the restaurant by herself so we hired a part time chef or that is what he called himself.
In the fist 9 months we had 2 excellent reviews on Trip Advisor. Then my wife caught our chef smoking a joint, not a huge problem, ( I indulge occasionally myself ) except you could smell it in the restaurant, my wife fired him immediately.
Before leaving the premise, he threatened my wife to destroy the restaurant using all means possible.
My wife was putting up with my depression, and working 16+ hours a day, 6 days a week, and she still managed to serve the guests with a smile on her face.
The trouble started about 3 months ago, and just a week after the chef was fired. We received a terrible review on Trip Advisor, complaining about the service, food and worst of all my wife, mentioning her name. The reviewer claimed the steak was old and probably passed it’s sell by date, he also complained that the waitress ( my wife ) was very rude and spoke hardly any English ( my wife is not fluent, but she speaks and understands it very well ) the reviewer then went on to say that the chef which is also my wife could not even boil water without burning it!.. To say my wife was / is devastated is an understatement.
We both know who posted this review, but seeing as there was no evidence to submit, we had no choice but to move on..
5 days later another horrible review appeared, followed by another, 2 days later, 3 terrible reviews in just 7 days. Now we had 2 excellent reviews below 3 terrible reviews. My wife was being named and disgraced on Trip Advisor
After a 16+ hour work day she found the time to write (seeing the circumstances) a very polite email to Trip Advisor, explaining what had happened, along with the reasons we knew that these reviews were all written by the same person. All 3 reviews contained among other the exact same spelling mistakes, also my wife was named, and she never shares her name with the customers., but the chef knew it.
We waited for 5 days for a reply, which we did not get, however we did get another horrible review, we were also listed as 7 of 7 restaurants in *************** [ removed by TAW ]
My wife cannot handle this, and she is a mess, she can not stop crying, and has lost all interest in everything, even life itself.
I vowed to my wife that I would sort it out once and for all.
I sent Trip Advisor an email along with the email my wife had sent almost a week ago, asking them to please look into the matter, seeing as it was destroying our lives and our business.
2 days later I received a ( what I believe to be a generic ) reply claiming they had checked the reviews, and found them to be within their guidelines, and would not be removed.They went further to say that we should post a management response, telling our side of the story.
I was furious, and did not have the heart to tell my wife Trip Advisor was not going to remove the reviews because they were within their guidelines. Did they even look at the evidence we sent them?
I did write a management response, telling the truth, but 2 days later I received an email from them saying they did not approve my response, ( they did not tell me why ) so I wrote a second response, and again 2 days later I got a message telling me they would not approve my response, and again they did not give me a reason.
I then sent Trip Advisor another email asking them why they suggest I write a management response, if they are just going to refuse it.
The reviewer had no problems posting that my wife was rude, arrogant did not speak or understand a word of English, was probably an illegal alien and smelt of B.O, but when I try and write a response, I am not allowed to say anything.
A friend mentioned you guys, and that you and a lot of others were against Trip Advisor, and that you were helping people like us by posting positive reviews. I have since been watching you guys closely, and am shocked but no longer surprised at the way Trip Advisor is being used to destroy hard working people like my wife, and the sheer lack of consideration concerning these issues from Trip Advisor. I spent 2 months trying to get Trip Advisor to at least listen to what we have to say, and to just take 5 min. to look at the reviews, and the evidence we have sent them. All they say is that the Reviews are withing their guidelines, maybe the guidelines are the problem, how about Trip Advisor giving the same guidelines to reviewers that owners have ?
We now have 3 positive reviews, and 7 negative reviews from the same person. Even if what Trip Advisor claims, that people will look at all the reviews and take the average, we are still rated as the worst restaurant in town, all because of ONE PERSON.
I am depressed, my wife is depressed,working 16+ hours and we have, if you believe Trip Advisor the worst restaurant in *********** [ removed by TAW ] To be honest, we do not know the damage Trip Advisor is doing to my wife’s restaurant, we do not know how many people don’t come to the restaurant because of the negative reviews. What we do know, is that the emotional and mental damage Trip Advisor has caused both my wife and myself is devastating.
I noticed you offered free reviews for veterans on veterans day, I know I am too late, but I / we could really need some help, it’s clear Trip Advisor is not willing or wanting to help us. My problem is that we really cannot afford $20 a review, so hopefully I will qualify for the free Veteran review. Here is a link to our restaurant, and a newspaper article about the wife and myself when the restaurant opened, just so you can verify I really am a disabled Vet. [ link removed by TAW ]
I know you must be very busy, but I hope to hear back from you soon.
I also apologize for such a long winded message, I just had to get it off my chest.
GYSgt ****** ******
TripAdvisor, Stephen Kaufer you must feel great after reading the above cry for help, sad that people that get ignored by you have to come to us for help… Nice One, keep up the good work!!
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