Yelp To Flag Businesses Accused Of Racism

Yelp To Flag Businesses Accused Of Racism

Yelp To Flag Businesses Accused Of Racism

Yelp has decided to take a new stance on fighting racism. In this case, the online review company will put alert reviewers that a business has been accused of racism.

“Yelp, the local search and review site, said it would post alerts on the pages of businesses where customers or employees have reported incidents of racism, the latest attempt by a U.S. company to introduce a tougher response system to confront discrimination after the police killing of George Floyd in May.”

Keep in mind that Yelp has had multiple problems with reviews over the years. Those problems include reviews by disgruntled employees, scam reviews, and reviews from people who were not customers of the business. Now, however, over the summer there has been a push to identify Black-owned businesses and promote them. Which has evidently led to other problems according to Yelp. 

“Over the summer, Yelp rolled out a number of initiatives to help users find and support Black-owned businesses. We partnered with My Black Receipt on the launch of a Black-owned business attribute and joined the 15 Percent Pledge to further amplify Black-owned businesses. While searches for Black-owned businesses surged on Yelp, so did the volume of reviews warning users of racist behavior at businesses. Today, in response to this, we will now place a distinct Consumer Alert on business pages to caution people about businesses that may be associated with overtly racist actions.”

Yelp has been engaged in doing this in response to the “mostly peaceful riots” that have been taking place across the country for the last six months in response to George Floyd’s death. Now, however, Yelp has decided to fight allegations of racism by flagging the business and posting this warning. 

Photo Credit: Yelp blog post

 

What could possibly go wrong here? Read the headline and the first sentence again. Yelp will be flagging a business based upon someone accusing somebody AT THE BUSINESS of racist behavior. Yelp will flag the business and THEN will investigate. 

Unbelievably a publication called Restaurant Dive thinks this is a grand idea. 

“This latest iteration is likely to be well-received by diners, as a solid majority of consumers — 81% of Black consumers and 54% of White consumers — want companies to speak out against racial injustice. Further, 77% of U.S. consumers said it is “deeply important that companies respond to racial injustice to earn or keep their trust.” This trend isn’t likely to go away, as younger consumers especially (47% of millennials) believe CEOs have a responsibility to take a stand on social issues.

These alerts should influence restaurants to prioritize a non-racist culture through training, as the risk is significant. Sixty percent of the U.S. population say that how a brand responds to racial justice protests will influence whether they buy or boycott the brand in the future. Yelp generates a staggering 28 million mobile app unique users a month, so such an alert can easily trigger a boycott.”

Again, go back and read the Yelp Business Alert. Yelp will be told that someone who works at a restaurant has engaged in racist behavior, and Yelp will immediately flag the business and THEN investigate! I may have missed it, but it also seems that Yelp won’t even notify the business that such a flag will be put in place. 

The negative connotations of such an alert will be immediately harmful to the business. I’d be willing to bet that just the implication that racism is present will drive traffic AWAY from the business. 

And what is Yelp’s plan if the allegations turn out to be false?? Put a new alert on the business that includes the results of the investigation and an apology? I doubt it. 

Again, what could possibly go wrong? These days, there are too many people across this country who are all too thrilled to smash up businesses and attack people they don’t even know for being racist. Not only that, but businesses, specifically restaurants and diners have been targeted by Black Lives Matter extremists.

It’s a fair bet that if a business is flagged, that business could experience more than just a boycott. In today’s climate it is very possible that that business could be vandalized and looted. 

Yelp is trying to fix racism by flagging businesses that are merely ACCUSED of it, whether the accusations are credible or not. 

This is not a business-friendly move whatsoever. Yelp is going to have serious problems on its hands if the company goes through with this. 

Update: Yelp has it’s OWN in-house problems as it is dealing with similar accusations at the Phoenix office. Will Yelp flag itself over this? 

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Feature Photo Credit: Yelp logo via Marco Verch on Flickr, cropped and modified

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12 Comments
  • Robin H says:

    I wonder what would happen if one of the Black owned businesses was accused of racism. Would Yelp put up the alert? Or would they get themselves into a “Do Not Compute” loop? Maybe I should try it.

  • NTSOG says:

    I found this description of YELP in response to my search ‘What is YELP?’:

    “Yelp is a Racist public company headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company develops, hosts, and markets the Yelp.com website and the Yelp mobile app, which publish crowd-sourced reviews about businesses.”

    In essence it appears that YELP is going to set itself up as an extra-judicial ‘court’ to punish people who may or may not exhibit certain patterns of behaviour that might be perceived as anti-social and all on the basis of hearsay.

    If YELP is a private company would it and its directors not be liable under Law for its own actions if it caused damage to individuals and companies by publishing false information?

    • GWB says:

      set itself up as an extra-judicial ‘court’
      Meh. Not really an issue. You’re actually allowed to be judgmental in the US of A.
      However, if it harms the reputation of the business and is false, then we get into a whole new ball of string. Because you’re allowed to be judgmental, but you’re not allowed to defame.

      I see lawyers all over the country tonight, rubbing their taloned hands together in glee and wondering if Yelp will follow this path long enough for them to get in on the action.

  • […] 76 Years Missing In The German Forest, also, Army Achieves New Laser Breakthrough Victory Girls: Yelp To Flag Businesses Accused Of Racism Volokh Conspiracy: Couple Barred From Fostering 1-Year-Old Great-Granddaughter Because They Oppose […]

  • MeeesterPaul says:

    How do I turn my business in? I’d like to avoid clients that think this is valuable?

  • David Longfellow says:

    More accurate title: “enabled by Yelp, consumers can now more easily select and use businesses falsely stigmatized by Yelp who selectively publicizes businesses they don’t like.”

  • GWB says:

    to help users find and support Black-owned businesses
    Which seems kinda racist to me.

    Honestly, if they want to help people find black-owned businesses, why not white-owned? Why not asian-owned? Why not hispanic-owned? Primarily because they only see virtue in one type of discrimination – the progressive one.

    I see lots and lots and LOTS of libel lawsuits in the very near future for Yelp. Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of frauds.

    want companies to speak out against racial injustice
    And the rest of us just want a good product/service at a good price. The rest of us also wish the folks who want everything to be political would move somewhere like Venezuela. Or Peking.

    This is not a business-friendly move whatsoever.
    No. It’s a religious move. It’s about shaming those who are heretics or infidels. It’s about witch hunts and teetotalers and inquisitions.
    You want business-friendly moves? Pfft. What are you, on of those dirty Jews Papists Irish Chinese Japanese capitalists?

  • GWB says:

    BTW, I’ve always said that Yelp is a fraud, because there’s no way to assure that people leaving reviews are legitimate customers, nor that what they say is true. It’s just a giant bulletin board with post-its stuck all over it. Yelp doesn’t want to do the hard work of verification because without it they can just point to section 230 and claim “we’re just a platform” and they have no responsibility for what’s posted.

    With this move, they have now crossed out of that protected arena.

    (Oh, and consumers are stupid. They actually use this service un-skeptically. *smh* )

  • […] Yelp To Flag Businesses Accused Of Racism […]

  • iggy says:

    LOVE IT!

    Would definitely patronize only those businesses marked as racist! What’s not to like – freedom of association, and none of the sjw assholes around!

    • GWB says:

      You’d have to count on them being non-hypocrites and logically consistent to guarantee the SJWs wouldn’t be around. Not sure I’m that confident of their beliefs or their ability to engage in logic.

  • GWB says:

    Business Accused of Racist Behavior Alert
    I think we should give this an acronym: BARBrA.
    We can use it alongside “Karen”.

    “Who was the BARBrA that accused us of racism? Because we’re going to sue.”

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