Another reviews website is threatened with legal action

As someone who gauges the quality of a blog post by the number of comments it receives, the number of irate complaints and emails it is responsible for and, when it’s really successful, the number of phone calls and solicitors letters it precedes, it’s with a warm heart that I pay tribute to TripAdvisor.

The hotel and guest house reviews website has, for many years, given power back to the people with regards to complaining about poor service, shoddy accommodation and generally woeful holiday experiences. Now, rather than do something about their service, the hotels that came in for a bashing are instead ‘threatening’ legal action against the website for defamation of character.

It has been my experience on many, many occasions that those who ‘threaten’ legal action, don’t. Just the same as those who threaten to punch you in the face don’t. When a smack, or legal action, is forthcoming it just happens – without the hissy fit threats beforehand.

However, even if in this case the companies involved do make good on their threats I wouldn’t worry if I were in TripAdvisor’s shoes, or rather server space, as any successful case against them would open the door for every reviews website to be sued – and there are millions, including the very successful (and my personal favourites) blagger.com and ciao.co.uk – the latter owned by Microsoft – so TripAdvisor is in good company and won’t have anything to worry about.

If your hotel’s shit, do something about it – don’t complain when someone spreads the word.

Darren Jamieson, aka MrDaz, is the Technical Director and co-founder of Engage Web and has been working online in a career spanning two decades. His first website was built in 1998 and is still live today.

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