YelpFilter, literally
November 6, 2011 11:30 AM   Subscribe

My hairstylist asked me to post a review about her on Yelp. I created an account and posted my (100% genuine and not offered in exchange for any consideration) opinion that she's fabulous. Yelp has filtered (i.e., hidden) the review. Is there anything I can do to convince them of my sincerity?

I recognize that Yelp discourages business owners from soliciting reviews from their customers (something neither of us knew when she asked), and I understand why the fact that my first review was a five-star rave probably set off the spam alert. But I would like to see her business receive positive notice on the site, if for no other reason than that I want to be able to keep going there.

Would reviewing more things (honestly, organically, not just a sudden barrage) signal to Yelp that I can be trusted? Are there other metrics in play?
posted by Horace Rumpole to Computers & Internet (9 answers total)
Yeah, Yelp won't post reviews from people that haven't reviewed a bunch.

Start going wild reviewing anything that you can and your reviews will become unfiltered.
posted by k8t at 11:36 AM on November 6, 2011

You simply need to post additional reviews to be considered legit. I don't think Yelp openly discloses its methodology for which reviews it hides, but having only one review is clearly one of the metrics.
posted by walleeguy at 11:37 AM on November 6, 2011

Yelp has also been accused of hiding positive reviews of places that haven't paid Yelp any money.

In my experience, positive reviews are hidden a lot more often than negative.
posted by inigo2 at 11:48 AM on November 6, 2011 [4 favorites]

This happened to me, too. I reviewed a few more things and some became unfiltered, but it still filtered a couple of them. Don't know why. It's pretty annoying. I think also if people start clicking that your reviews are helpful/useful/funny, that helps too.
posted by wondermouse at 12:15 PM on November 6, 2011

I think it would help to post several reviews, but of differing star ratings - don't post all 5 star ratings. (and of course, be honest & helpful!)
posted by insectosaurus at 12:24 PM on November 6, 2011

It's never hidden anything I've written, and probably half of my reviews are "first to review" entries. I've reviewed probably... ten places? Fifteen? Not a ton. I give mostly three and four stars. Only three or four of my reviews have been marked as anything (useful, funny, whatever) but one of them six such votes (I like to think that I ate at and then reviewed a Golden Corral for the good of mankind.) I try to leave a pretty detailed description of my experience, and I have a tendency to add a lot of details about businesses - operating hours, are they kid-friendly, noise level, etc. Most of my reviews are several paragraphs long.

I have a feeling it might also be about how long you've had the account and how much attention you've paid to it. I'd been a member for probably a month before I posted my first review, I have friends, I filled out my profile, I made lists of places, etc.
posted by SMPA at 1:10 PM on November 6, 2011

Yelp has also been accused of hiding positive reviews of places that haven't paid Yelp any money. -- Not to hijack this thread, but I've heard the similar complaints about Angie's List. Is it true for them as well?
posted by crunchland at 1:14 PM on November 6, 2011

As a Yelp Elite, the way I understand it is that reviews are filtered due to a convoluted and complex series of factors.

If you look like you are doing someone a favor or have a grudge (i.e. write only 1 review and that review is either 5 stars or 1 star, have no friends, proceed to not participate in any Yelp discussions, and fail to review any more businesses), then yes, that review is more likely to be filtered than others.

Usually, this results in businesses having a more evened out and more honest number of reviews, so it's actually a good thing, in my option.

So as others have said, continue to write reviews, friend others, start becoming more active on the site.

Personally, I tend to toss out in my head really high or low reviews because I do think someone is either trying to do a business a favor or really has it out for the business.
posted by HeyAllie at 2:02 PM on November 6, 2011

What HeyAllie said.

However, I do think from experience that the majority of reviews are legit, at least in my city (Austin). Austin Yelpers self-police pretty well - if someone in the community thinks a bunch of reviews have been posted that are bogus (and its usually pretty obvious, anyway) they'll get flagged by humans.
posted by bitterkitten at 4:40 PM on November 7, 2011

« Older apologetic neighborly gift   |   Please help me identify what webmail service this... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.