By Paul Pannone
After a week of being bruised and bashed, vendors responding in defense of Wedding Wire say they’re not perfect but the best they’re wedding industry has to offer for now.
Bailey Judith Rieglhaupt, owner of The Bridal secret in Quincy, MA, defended Wedding Wire saying,
“Hello, I have followed your story about Weddingwire and although many vendors have some issues with the rating system, I for one think its one of the best out their. I personally think when a bride of mine reviews me after her wedding, she can write and consider thoughtfully. I feel its more genuine.
What I would really like to see you write about is Yelp, that is an entirely different animal and not anything positive for a business. Just read about their filtering system. Everytime I get a 5 star review it immediately (within hours) gets filtered and a consumer has to go through the entire foolish procedure to see positive reviews. There is a wealth of information about Yelp and how they extorted money from businesses to have negative reviews removed and even past employees have given depositions about posting negative reviews in order to get a business to pay to advertise and have their negative reviews removed. I hope you write about Yelp.”
The Bridal Secret’s reviews on Yelp are not as positive as the ones on Wedding Wire.
“Yelp has been criticized over the fairness of both negative and positive reviews on the site. A competitor can easily write an anonymous review with either extreme in mind. Yelp states that it will not censor reviews, but will remove suspicious reviews. The Oakland, California based East Bay Express published a 2009 story highlighting businesses that said that Yelp salespeople offered “to hide negative customer reviews of their businesses” by paying for advertising sponsorship contracts. The story claims that positive reviews appeared to be removed when the business declined to become an advertiser, a practice Yelp denies. In February, 2010, two law firms filed a class action lawsuit accusing Yelp of “extortion” on behalf of a veterinary hospital in Long Beach, California that made similar claims. Partially in response to these allegations[not in citation given] and in a move to increase transparency, Yelp now shows which reviews get filtered by its filtering algorithm.” according to Wikipedia.
eWedNewz discussed the comparison of Wedding Wire and Yelp with experts in the wedding and Social Media business and concludes it’s easier to post an in the moment opinion on Yelp, as it’s happening.
“On Yelp someone sitting at the bar can post a bad review, as it’s happening. The guy sitting at a bar can express dissatisfaction over getting three ice cubes in his drink and not the usual two they expected. The harshness of the review may also depend on whether it’s the first scotch or the fifth. On Wedding Wire there is as process to go to post a review. The process requires the consumer to really think about what’s being written,” according to Christine Boulton.
More defenders of Wedding Wire agree; posts are of greater impact than a quick reaction on Yelp. A bride has to follow a process that usually includes a honeymoon or cooling off period. Yelp was mentioned often enough through discussions and reader replies to prompt this follow-up story.
Backlash to our coverage included criticism of giving Samantha Goldberg too much attention and the latitude she’s received. But no one criticizing Goldberg was willing to be quoted in this story. One reader posted a reply but rescinded the post feeling it wasn’t worth the follow-up calls she was receiving.
So far a small part of reaction to this story favors Wedding Wire. Most of the remarks are negative against them.
What do you say?
We reached out to Sonny Ganguly of Wedding Wire and to Catalyst, the owners of Wedding Wire to comment. No response was given at the time of this story release.
eWedNewz welcomes your thoughts.
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