Some reports have surfaced from local media about complaints from local merchants that Yelp is willing to remove negative reviews for a fee. I do not know whether these reports are accurate and reflect an overall Yelp strategy or whether there are rogue Yelp! sales reps offering this service to boost their own volumes. It should be noted that Yelp denies these allegation and states that their reps don’t even have the ability to edit reviews.
There is a challenge at any Web 2.0 site to balance the open submission of user reviews with the need to police the reviews to avoid companies from trashing their competitors. As user feedback volumes increase and become more instantaneous with consumers s reading or leaving reviews through their mobile devices, managing review contact will become even more challenging. Location based services will continue to expand and promoting discounts at local restaurants is a key service desired by frequent travelers per our recent PhoCusWright research: