News Yelp ‘Extremely Concerned’ About What Investigative Documentary Will Reveal

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  1. HS Cult Leader

    HS Cult Leader Elite Member Gold

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    Yelp ‘Extremely Concerned’ About What Investigative Documentary Will Reveal

    The company is "aggressively denying" all allegations but refuses to sit for an interview, according to the film's producer

    By Sage Lazzaro | 03/26/15 11:13am

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    Shannon Els of Yelp (left) discussing the film with its producer and director Kailey Milliken (right) on CNBC. (Screengrab: Youtube)

    When the campaign for a film called Billion Dollar Bully hit Kickstarter last week, support began pouring in. The investigative documentary—which will probe allegations of manipulation and fabrication of reviews, extortion and other questionable business tactics by marketing giant Yelp—is quickly approaching its $60,000 goal, but not without one big adversary.

    According to the film’s producer and director Kaylie Milliken, Yelp “seems very threatened” and is “extremely concerned” about her small, two-person production. This is no surprise, considering the company’s shares were down four percent in trading the day after the project was announced—a dip that many are attributing to the documentary, according to Business insider.

    “I have gotten a huge reaction from [Yelp], which I have to admit, I was not expecting,” Ms. Milliken told the Observer, adding that they’re only halfway done filming. “They’ve been aggressively denying it and trying to discredit my character and the film itself.”

    Even at its worst, Yelp can do some good—like showing us how hipsters are ruining our cities.
    In a statement to Business Insider regarding the film, a Yelp spokesperson said “there is no merit to the claims they appear to highlight” and that “the director has a conflict of interest, as she has a history of trying to mislead consumers on Yelp.” The spokesperson is referring to Ms. Milliken’s use of several profiles on the site, which she claims she created just for the sake of her investigation.

    In a CNBC interview that pitted Ms. Milliken against Yelp’s vice president of corporate communications on Monday, Shannon Els of Yelp questioned both the film’s claims and Ms. Milliken herself, adding that it’s “weird” that Ms. Milliken continues to look into these claims that have been dismissed by federal judges and the FTC. She also said that by being there, she is part of Ms. Milliken’s fundraising effort.

    “They sent in this person to discredit me, and I’m just so surprised. I mean, we’re raising money on Kickstarter to do this indie documentary,” said Ms. Milliken, emphasizing that it’s a two-person production company that this billion dollar corporation has come after.

    On CNBC Ms. Els says they (Yelp) are not there in fear, yet according to Ms. Milliken, the company refuses to sit for an interview with her.

    “I have a lot of questions for them, and if they don’t have anything to hide, they should be open to having an open discussion about each point” she said.

    Although she will no longer use Yelp, Ms. Milliken says she is not out to sway consumers from the site, but to have them examine their business practices.

    Ms. Milliken says she is simply going to present facts. She interviewed attorneys of those who have brought cases against Yelp and business owners with items to back their claims. She’ll examine the claims, the rulings of the court in which Yelp won, and why they won those cases.

    With 25 days remaining to raise the last $12,000 of the $60,000 goal, the Kickstarter campaign is on track to succeed. Ms. Milliken said the film will be completed by fall and that she will enter the finished production in various film festivals.
     
  2. SouthernListen

    SouthernListen I don't follow the crowd. Sorry about that. VIP

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    Halfway through, and calling it "billion dollar bully". Like most modern documentaries, it seems they start with a conclusion, then do "research" to back that up.

    Not that they aren't crooks. But you're supposed to at least pretend to be objective.
     
  3. MyLazyHand

    MyLazyHand Russia and France Know What to Do

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    I have to admit that I have absolutely no idea what "Yelp" is.

    Yellow pages?
    Taxi service?
    Cheat on your wife?
    Food delivery service?
     
  4. Thikken Vaney

    Thikken Vaney What's everyone looking at?

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    WTF?

    Your Honor, my client is here to demonstrate that 'Worlds Best Hoagies' are indeed NOT the worlds best hoagies as reported on Yelp.
     
  5. newcastlefan

    newcastlefan גֵּרְשֹׁם VIP

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    I would accept her premise. I've seen many reviews there that seem way too positive, as though the reviewers are compensated.
     
  6. wigtropolis

    wigtropolis Well-Known Member

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    I would imagine it is pretty hard to remain objective after all the shit they pull. I only hear horror stories, and my wife's business has gone through it directly
     
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  7. Thikken Vaney

    Thikken Vaney What's everyone looking at?

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    Like 'Yoda the cat' on Amazon reviews?

    As always, buyer or patron beware.

    I've used Yelp and imo, their reviews are pretty accurate.
     
  8. Alisonsbankacct

    Alisonsbankacct Out to lunch.

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    Exactly. When I go to networking functions, I hear tale after tale of people saying Yelp (and Angie's List to a lesser extent) shake them down in order to get false bad reviews taken off their biz listing.

    Restaurants in particular are susceptible to bad Yelp claims.
     
  9. Thikken Vaney

    Thikken Vaney What's everyone looking at?

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    It's usually not real difficult to tell the real reviews from the plants though.
     
  10. newcastlefan

    newcastlefan גֵּרְשֹׁם VIP

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    i've seen reviews for places on Amsterdam that made the bar sound like it has a 4 star Michelin rating and when i went there it was a roach motel. then there are the reviews for a known grocery that insist their foods are actually what they are labeled, even after the place was charged for labeling a salad made with sea legs as containing real lobster.
     
  11. aerostern

    aerostern Well-Known Member

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    Even if the reviews are bs, it would only get someone I'm the door once, if it sucked they would not go again.
     
    Scarlett Ohara likes this.
  12. newcastlefan

    newcastlefan גֵּרְשֹׁם VIP

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    in a city like NY you have a constant flow of 8 million potential customers. you can get pretty rich on a no return customer business.
     
    Droog likes this.
  13. Mlaw

    Mlaw Quite Contrarian Gold

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    Yelp is fucked up. I posted a positive review of the florist who did my nephew's wedding, put up pictures. Yelp said it wasn't "reliable" or recommended
     
    unclefreddy likes this.
  14. newcastlefan

    newcastlefan גֵּרְשֹׁם VIP

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    cause he didn't pay
     
  15. FishySausage

    FishySausage Original Nuttah VIP Gold

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    I've found them to be good as well, but have heard some horror stories from some business owners
     
  16. SouthernListen

    SouthernListen I don't follow the crowd. Sorry about that. VIP

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    I don't use those review services for the reason that they're by nature compromised. First, most people don't bother to post a positive experience. Second, the potential for shills is obvious. And third, competitors wouldn't have much trouble trashing a business.

    The internet addicted sheeple love these "apps" though.
     
  17. Bristol Chicken

    Bristol Chicken Free Range and Loving It Gold

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    Trip Advisor - I find this site to be seemingly the most straightforward with reviews.
    A lot of bullshit on Yelp.
     
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  18. Mr Sinister

    Mr Sinister Gold

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    yelp is total bullshit they show like 5 shitty reviews for are company and hide all the other good ones because "there not useful" or some shit
     
    Shamrock12 likes this.
  19. HS Cult Leader

    HS Cult Leader Elite Member Gold

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    Could it be that they figured out that you were Mlaw from DawgShed? :bigthink














    :p
     
  20. EmperorsNewCaps

    EmperorsNewCaps Member

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    Zagat.

    For millenials, by millenals.