I believe that Yelp actually started out as a useful resource. It gave people the address and number of businesses, with a quick explanation of what they are about, and a casual review by patrons who either liked or disliked their experience at the place. But that quickly dissolved as Yelp welcomed people to create profiles and openly bash and berate businesses, and rewarded these so-called "reviewers" with an "elite" status on the their Yelp profile. Which is basically nothing more than a fancy badge to put on your profile page, and you're invited to the "Elite Yelp Squad" events that are held in your city. Which means that if you are a nasty person and are looking to hang out with people with common interests as your nasty self; there's a place for you. But of course, nobody would show up at these events, because they fear talking to people face-to-face.
But of course, my interest lies more with the Yelp reviews of the service industry. Wouldn't it be just as useful to write "the food was good, but not great," or, "the service probably would have been faster had they not been so busy," or whatever. As opposed to,
"Firstly, for a slow Monday night, our service was lack luster, but that was just par for the course. We started with the oysters with red pepper stuffing. It tasted fine, however, the stuffing was way too much for the oysters and I ended up eating the last few sans stuffing so I could actually taste the shellfish. The salmon was good. A tad over cooked for my taste, but the flavors matched well with the barley and it was a good portion. Nothing too impressive. Finally, dessert consisted of a trio of creme brulee...not bad, not fantastic...which describes my entire evening."
Maybe it's just me, but the details in this review are not needed. And believe it or not, that was one of the shorter examples I could find on Yelp. Also, they have boxes at the bottom of the reviews for you to click if you thought the review was "useful" "funny" or "cool." So even Yelp acknowledges the stupidity of these reviews. But interestingly enough, Yelp may have screwed the pooch because they have been brought up on many class action lawsuits, and have been accused of extortion on many accounts. Yelp Being Sued. But I will be nice and throw them a bone and say, allegedly accused.
Also, these "Yelpers" have even specifically named servers and bartenders in their moronic essays. Would good does that do? Other than jeopardize that individuals job, which they probably were already reprimanded for, and now they have been slandered. All because you--the Yelper--feel like you know everything about service and cuisine ever since you started watching shows like "Kitchen Nightmares," and "Top Chef."
I know I've said this before, and it's not in our culture, but if you are that unhappy with your food or service, you should say something to the server or the manager. You are paying for it for Pete's sake. Get what you want!
It's sad, because long gone are the days of Vidal Sassoon's mantra, "and they'll tell two friends... and they'll tell two friends... and so on." Word of mouth is no more. And if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all has changed to if you can't say something nice, just write about it on Yelp. Aw, the humanity!!!
Until next time... Server's don't pay their rent with compliments.
"Bitter. Party of 1? Your table is ready."
The Bitter Bistro
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