Over the past week or so it appeared that TripAdvisor was blocking Google from putting its reviews and content on Google Places. I wrote about it at SEL:
First there was the Google-Yelp dispute over reviews in Places (which was resolved). Now TripAdvisor appears to be preventing Google from showing its reviews on Place Pages. The first to report this yesterday was Tnooz. According to the article:
Google is no longer able to stream in reviews from TripAdvisor to Places pages after the user review giant blocked it. TripAdvisor confirmed the move today in an email, stating that while it continues to evaluate recent changes to Google Places it believes the user does not benefit with the “experience of selecting the right hotel”. “As a result, we have currently limited TripAdvisor content available on those pages,” an official says.Google had previously said the absence of TripAdvisor reviews was related to a technical issue.
TripAdvisor content obviously remains in general Google SERPs but not among the Places-related review snippets or on Places Pages themselves
This weekend I started noticing TripAdvisor content on Google Places again:
This suggests resolution of whatever problem or dispute existed between the companies. However TripAdvisor’s CEO expressed public displeasure with Google in a high-profile piece in the Wall Street Journal this weekend:
TripAdvisor LLC Chief Executive Stephen Kaufer said the traffic his site gets from Google’s search engine dropped by more than 10%, on a seasonally adjusted basis, since mid-October—just before Google announced the latest change to the way its search engine shows information about local businesses. TripAdvisor.com, whose top source of traffic is Google, reviews hotels and other businesses frequented by travelers.
“Google does seem to be chasing us and I don’t like it one bit,” said Mr. Kaufer, adding that he has been negotiating with Google for about two months to try to improve his situation.
Update: The argument is being made that the “return” of these reviews is merely a failure by TripAdvisor to successfully block all of Google’s crawling, and that the dispute isn’t in fact over. This doesn’t completely explain the “before and after” experience I had with several hotels (gone and then returned). But after some checking this morning it does appear that TripAdvisor’s reviews aren’t uniformly available.