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TripAdvisor pulls plug on controversial ratings system

02 March 2012 by
TripAdvisor pulls plug on controversial ratings system

A deluge of negative responses to its new ratings system has prompted TripAdvisor to remove displaying scores on its website from today.

TripAdvisor introduced the feature, which allowed users of the website to give hotels and restaurants a score out of five earlier this week.

But it soon prompted indignant responses from business owners around the world, who complained that the profile information of the people leaving the ratings was not visible in some cases, that the absence of a review made it hard to diagnose or verify any problems, and that they were unable to respond to their ratings.

The site has so far received 225 responses since the thread, hosted on TripAdvisor's own website and entitled "Help us make TripAdvisor better! Forum: Let TA know what you think about the new rating system!" went live.

In a response, TripAdvisor said: "We're always trying to make TripAdvisor even better for both travellers and businesses, and as an innovative tech company we constantly test new features to make the site even more useful.

"We are always open to the results of these tests and have listened to the valuable feedback we have had over the past few days. From this feedback, we recognise we have some work to do to ensure that ratings are as useful as they can be and so we have decided to remove displaying ratings from a business's listing page today.

"We believe that the TripAdvisor community is seeking many ways to provide feedback, whether via ratings, photos, room tips or other opinions, and we will continue to look at ways to gather these opinions to help travelers plan and have the perfect trip. Importantly, businesses should note that during the test phase, we did not include ratings in the Popularity Index, so their ranking on the site has been unaffected during this test."

By Neil Gerrard

E-mail your comments to Neil Gerrard here.

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