Sometimes, when I looking at restaurants or businesses on Yelp, the glowing five-star reviews left by users with very little history makes me a bit suspicious. A piece in The New York Times addressed the issue of people hiring themselves out as Amazon and Yelp reviewers to make some extra bucks. There are actually review factories that hire writers and other individuals to churn out positive pieces for their clients. “We were not asked to provide a five-star review, but would be asked to turn down an assignment if we could not give one,” says freelance writer Sarah Parker, who was hired to write reviews on Amazon.
Although there are researchers who are working on algorithms that may do a better job of getting rid of these spam reviews, there is still a long way to go. Apparently, one of the signs of a fake review is using "I" and "me" too much, and having a vague description as if they haven't actually used the product or been to the establishment. What do you think — have you come across a lot of dubious Yelp reviews?