When it comes to the Yelp empire, the San Francisco site is undoubtedly its crown jewel. There's no disputing that Yelp has plenty of positives; in fact, there's nothing else really like it. Regardless, a lot of people have some issues with Yelp. We're among the ranks that believe there's more than meets the eye with the Yelp world. Hence, Yelp Wanted. Enjoy the show as we pull back the curtain in this on-going Eater investigation. As always, feel free to share your thoughts.
Suffice to say, yesterday's edition of Yelp Wanted provoked quite a number of readers, both on in our comments field and on the Yelp conversations boards, which quickly evolved into a bit of a rallying zone for those, um, fierce Yelpers. Here are some of the notable comments from around the horn:
1) From Yelper Aaron V: "Yelp absolutely does not remove negative reviews for money. Ever. One thing you can do if you're an advertiser is pick a review that you like (most likely a 5 star) to display at the top of your profile. The guy that wrote this article must be drinking some Haterade." [Yelp Convo]
2) From one JR Hubbard: "You guys have Yelp wrong from what I can tell. I own an auto body shop, and I do pay for a Yelp sponsored ad. I have no control over what shows up under my shops name and I have no way to remove negative ads. What paying for a sponsored ad gives me is better access to people that do Google searches for “San Francisco Auto Body.” When you pay for an ad you will appear on top of the Yelp site and it says sponsored ad, but the exposure you get is a GREAT deal more." [Eater Inbox]
3) From Emma: "I am not a big fan of Yelp myself. However, I've visited the page for my favorite restaurant--and others--numerous times and noticed that the first review is often different. I am skeptical about your claims so far, but would love to see if you can find better evidence to prove it. " [Eater Comments]
4) From Jeremy Stoppelman, Yelp CEO: "Controversy with a popular local community, publicity stunt for Eater? Sure why not :)..."[Eater Comments]
5) And finally, Yelper Jim S: "Jeremy is sooooo cute, especially when he gets angry...." [Yelp Convo]
So what do we conclude? There's more investigating to be done here. And, good God, the people love their yelp.
· Yelp Wanted: The Curious Case of the Magically-Appearing Five-Star Review [~ESF~]
Have issues with Yelp? We (most certainly) still want them.