Wanted - online review makes customer an outlaw

Social recommendations are all the rage and have been for years - Amazon have built their business on them (even if they haven't figured out that spamming customers isn't a good thing) and plenty of web 2.0 companies are creating networks based on our opinions of the servies we use. Two of the biggest sites of this type are Qype and Yelp - users submit reviews of restaurants, shops and bars which create a reasonably comprehensive overview of a neighbourhood and what it has to offer, for better or worse.

Not everyone likes social recommendations, however - in particular the businesses that are being reviewed. One such business - an antique store in San Francisco - took a so-so write-up rather badly. One customer reviewed the shop called Perish Trust last December, pointing out that while the shop was very inviting, one of the pieces purchased took a substantial amount of effort to clean, and given the significant mark-up this probably shouldn't have been the case. Fair enough.

The reviewer didn't go into the shop again until a fortnight ago - eight months later - at which point the infuriated owner produced a Wanted poster of the individual featuring their Yelp profile picture, and warned that all the other stores in the neighbourhood knew of her antics, making it clear she was no longer welcome there. Since the story reached the press however, the shop owner has had an attack of the humble pie and offered to make amends. Odd that.


What do you think?

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