Tuesday, September 14, 2010
How are your
has been a lot of attention paid recently to online reviews. Be they in regard to dentists, restaurants,
physicians, travel, or so many other categories, those being reviewed are showing great concern about the impact of negative
word of mouth.
3:05 pm edt
In a New York court a dentist is suing Yelp (an online review site that claims over 30 million unique monthly
visitors) seeking to have a negative review about his practice (that he claims is a fake) removed. Consumer
Reports has gotten into the act with the online publications of a ranking of more than 200 medical groups that perform
heart bypass surgery. Though the evaluations driving those ratings were conducted among the Society of
Thoracic Surgeons, there are qualms from some of its members. In a related study published in the Journal
of General Internal Medicine, a sample of 300 physician names were searched across 31 physician rating websites.
190 reviews rating 81of the physicians were found of which 88% were positive (and 6% were negative).
finding it hard to understand why suddenly there is such focus on what at this point amounts to very few negative online reviews.
Customers have been writing and talking to neighbors, friends, co-workers, relatives and complete strangers about their
experiences with products and services since the beginning of time, and dentists, restaurateurs, travel providers and hospital
administrators have totally ignored them until now. While online reviews certainly can reach more people,
the overall volume and the credibility of private written or spoken comments from a trusted friend carry greater weight, yet
still get little or no attention.