If you travel for business often, then you know how important it is to stay in a good hotel. A clean room and a good quiet night’s sleep can make all the difference when you make that big presentation the next day.
Many people turn to online reviews from sites such as Expedia and TripAdvisor to help select the best hotels. Typically the first concern is location, and after that you want to find the best experience for your money. The hotels know this, and that’s why these review sites are so important to them. Many will post responses to poor reviews to show that they truly care and are trying to improve and to meet their guests’ needs. Other less scrupulous hotels will post (or pay others to post) glowing reviews to both counteract negative ones, and also to trick unsuspecting potential guests.
So how do you know whether to believe what you read? Common sense is always your best defense. But if you’re in doubt, try the new Review Skeptic site. Simply copy a review and paste it into the text area. Click the submit button to analyze the review text, and get an opinion as to whether the review is truthful or deceptive. You’ll also see typically truthful words and phrases highlighted in blue, and typically deceptive words and phrases highlighted in red—so you can see how the opinion was formed. It isn’t magic, it is actually based on real research conducted on identifying “opinion spam.” Read the research report here.
The beta site is currently designed for hotel reviews written in English. Hopefully it won’t be long until they expand into other areas like product reviews. But for now, before you book your next stay based on an online review, vet the review first at Review Skeptic.