Recently I did a Google search for my company name. It is a good business practice and common sense to check up on these rankings every few weeks. I take pride in knowing all of the results that are associated with my company by heart. Sometimes I’ll see some changes in ranking which is natural but typically all of the pages that come up are ones I was expecting to see, so much so that I usually look at page one, sometimes page two, but seldom do I go to page three and never past that.
As you can imagine this time was a bit different.
It is common for customers who have had a negative experience with a company to let some steam off about their frustrations by telling others about it. There is no better place to do this than the internet, where chances are the customer originally found the company to begin with.
Is it really a customer letting out steam? How do i know if this review can be trusted?
Writing a review can be very helpful for discerning shoppers, making up their mind with what company they should go with. Who shall I trust to perform the best service and who will not abuse me and take advantage of the goodness of my heart? Many websites offer real and helpful tips from other users to help find the right company, how the service went and what to expect when the final bill is put on the table. Sites like Yelp, Angie’s list, and Home Advisers have filters and complex algorithms to grade a contractor, company or restaurant as well as to determine if the review written by the user is a valid and a truthful account of what happened. Things like user profiles, past reviews, real check-ins and other factors help determine – yes this user is a real user who had a true experience and has useful insights on the service, or this user is fake and the review will not post.
Review posted by jealous competitor.
Unfortunately ComplaintBoard does not have a complex system like these sites. This can end up being very harmful tool against a company or place of business causing harm and frustration, damaging a well kept reputation for no good reason other than your competitor is jealous of your hard work and success.
Ask the user to remove the negative posting
ComplaintBoard’s editor recommends that you contact the user and ask him to remove the posting. You can do this by clicking on the user’s user name and sending a message.
User did not respond to your contact attempts.
So you send the user a message and he did not respond, this might come as a shock to you, because you check your emails 5 times an hour so how didn’t he see your message? Well, if the user is “fake” he might have set up an email account the same day he posted the posting and forgot to forward the emails to his own email address, or he just doesn’t care?
Why is this happening on ComplaintBoard.com?
If the user would have to provide some information backing up his or hers complaint, like a copy of the emails showing that he contacted the company in question and that they did not own up to their service or a paid invoice showing that he really did receive service from the company in question, this issues would probably be of none existence. But this is not the case and not much is out there to prevent a jealous competitor or a pissed off customer from tarnishing your company name in a single blow.
Complaintboard.com is not helping me with this issue.
In their defense they did respond to the emails I sent them. But you need to read the corespondents to understand why I think that something foul is going on. Each email that i send is getting the same response, even though i am asking questions and providing details of my research. It’s like i am dealing with an automated email response. Or maybe this is just and old fashion scam we are dealing with.
Before I get started here is the posting on Complaint boards site.
This is my original email.
Simple request, Here is the response i got.
This sounds legit. you have an issues with one of our users, please contact him directly.
You can see that i emailed the user and asked him to remove the posting, I tried to stay polite even though I would not want to see this person face to face. I ended with a question, how does ComplaintBoard deal with cases like this?
Here is the response i got.
Why would you say this? can you not see that i send the user a message? My guess is not and that this is a automated response and that ComplaintBoard doesnt care, maybe they even enjoy this? why would they? well..
This is what I got back.
I basically got the same email three times! each time i respond with more information and questions.
This is what they send back.
Here is where it all starts to clear up. So the next natural question i have is..
How does Complaintboard.com get paid customers?
Lets try to put this together. After reading the emails this is what anyone can clearly see. first someone does a search and finds a compliant agents him., He then tries to contact the “user” who wrote the complaint and gets no response, he then continues to contact the websites where the review is posted but they say says sorry we cant help unless you are a paying user.
Is there is a possibility that this site is playing the public? Is there a chance that Complaintboard.com is adding its own reviews? once the content is ranking to its relative page which normally is a none competitive key word so they get high search results ranking and just might get some traffic to the page or someone like me who cares about his name and gets upset when seeing negative content related to them, and offering their paid service to remove the content?
would you pay to remove this comment?
What if i tell you that strangely after I send Complaintboard.com the first email I received this email.
I did not contact any service or company to remove this posting. what you see is what i did. I email them to remove the posting, and later that same day I got this email offering me a paid service to remove this negative content off the internet.
Here is a summery of the corresponding between me and Complaint Board. Notice that the last email here says Do you wish to become a paying customer - referring to the fact that the only way to get rid of this comment is by paying us.