LONDON — The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA), a British advertising watchdog, has asked TripAdvisor to cease claims that its online reviews are genuine.
The travel site’s online advertising campaign came under scrutiny following complaints from two hoteliers and other website visitors. The veracity of the statements such as “reviews you can trust” and “read reviews from real travellers,” were investigated and deemed misleading since the reviews aren’t proven to be authentic traveller comments.
TripAdvisor argues its fraud detection system is highly effective, and claims that screening reviews manually isn’t practical, although it does encourage reviewers to sign a declaration stating their comments are genuine. “The ASA has taken a highly technical view around some marketing copy that was used in a limited capacity,” reads a statement from TripAdvisor. “We have confidence the 50-million users who come to our site every month trust the reviews they read.”