Staff at the firm’s Reading HQ were encouraged to write reviews for the company’s website Trusted Places – a site boasting user-generated recommendations of places to visit – by the offer of prizes such as an iPad and Amazon vouchers, according to the Sunday Times.
The article and information are presented as something of an expose or scandal. However I don’t necessarily agree. If the reviews are real and authentic they’re not illegitimate in my mind. But it’s a close call.
Sokratis Papafloratos, who runs social media for Yell was quoted in the article saying, “We view our people as ambassadors, and it’s essential that they use and understand our products and services.”
I agree. The question is the contest part. If Yelp employees were discovered to have written such a large number of reviews in an orchestrated way it would be critically received.
What do you think?