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BizReport : Research archives : February 19, 2007

Bogus reviews are under travel sites' microscope

Fake blogs, false reviews. With the amazing growth of social media, it seems consumers need to be more wary than ever about how truthful online reviews are. In the U.K. and Europe, fake blogs and reviews will be outlawed in 2008, but until then it is up to the company to ensure that reviews and blogs are true.

by Kristina Knight

Two travel websites are taking that stance, by cracking down on falsified reviews for hotels and transportation."We have certainly seen instances with other properties where insiders have put reviews up for a particular hotel or a particular thing and it's not a legitimate review," said Jeff Boyd,'s Chief Executive (via Reuters).

Websites like and have begun monitoring each review submission to ensure that reviewers have actually stayed at a specific hotel or used specific transportation hubs. They are employing fraud experts to go through the submissions.

Online travel sites saw $70 billion in revenue in 2006, and that number is expected to grow in 2007. More than half of all travel plans are expected to be completed over the Internet this year. In addition to booking their travel, consumers are expected to do the bulk of their travel research online in 2007.

Tags: false reviews, online travel, phony blogs, social media, travel industry, travel spending

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