It seems there are always lawsuits about something. After being in Europe for a year, I had forgotten already how often people can and do sue over things that you would never have thought about otherwise. I had asked my friends in Greece about suing people for this and that (not that I wanted to but was curious about people suing) and they looked at me like I was crazy for even thinking that. 🙂
Lawsuit Against A TripAdvisor Reviewer?
Here is one that strikes me as curious – a lawsuit against a TripAdvisor reviewer for defamation. It has been filed by the property that the reviewer had commented against, the Ashley Inn in Lincoln City, Oregon. The reviewer had some very harsh words about the property and its staff. I am not making a statement for or against either party (because I do not know enough to comment knowledgeably and who really cares what my opinion is? 🙂 ) Some of the comments made in the review accused hotel staff of being high or drunk and that the food and rooms were nasty. The lawsuit is for $74,500 for defamation damages and is being filed against the anonymus TripAdvisor user with the intent of putting the real person behind the username on the suit when they are found.
Obviously, these review sites can and should be used to provide accurate information and perspective about the quality of the rooms, service, and the treatment by the staff. I love referring to TripAdvisor to get a sense of what to expect at a property before booking or visiting. At the same time, I know that there are some reviews that are entirely puff pieces for the property and some that are written in a total negative light because they may not be used to staying at that particular level of hotel and have misguided expectations. In other words, I know to take everything I read there with more than a few grains of salt. But it is still a helpful forum to use to get an accurate barometer of the worthwhile nature of a property. But, if properties are allowed to start filing suit when they feel a review is too negative (or, in this case, they feel it is full of lies), will that prevent some reviewers from sharing an honest review of their experience when it was really negative? I am not a lawyer, but it should be interesting to see how this case turns out. Apparently, Oregon courts have already sided with business against internet reviewer, so who knows how it will work out.
Would a successful suit of this nature make you less likely to write a negative review of a property? Or would you simply use more generic words to describe your experience?