Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

The American GeniusThe American Genius

Business News

Restaurant revels in bad Yelp reviews, plays audio versions to diners

Social media cuts both ways, as proven again by a San Diego restaurant who now plays bad Yelp reviews about their establishment over the loud speakers.

bad yelp reviews

Company turns bad Yelp reviews into a mockery

While there is currently a lot of attention on web reviews, particularly bad Yelp reviews, in light of a current lawsuit between a contractor and a dissatisfied consumer who now faces a $750k defamation suit, not for leaving a bad review on Yelp, but for allegedly lying about details the police say don’t check out.

There is a lot of fear from businesses, particularly those who rely on good Yelp scores like restaurants and retailers, and there is a growing fear from consumers who don’t understand that they can leave bad reviews, just not inaccuracies. Additionally, fake reviews are under scrutiny, with Yelp launching an enforcement effort, penalizing companies found to be buying illegitimate reviews.

Meanwhile, Craft and Commerce, a lone restaurant in San Diego has made a mockery of their bad Yelp reviews by recording audio versions of the complaints and piping them into the speakers of the bathrooms to entertain diners, according to Yahoo!. This restaurant obviously has a sense of humor though, here is some of the decor in their interior:

craft and commerce

The owner told The San Diego Bugle, “We just thought that some of the reviews on Yelp were so melodramatic. The way these reviews are written, it’s like people are appalled at something we’ve done. So we thought this was a funny way to respond.”

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Reviews currently being played for diners include:

  • “I have never been in a place that tries soo hard. This place is the epicenter of those assholes with the mustaches….Next, the place is jammed with hipsters eating corn dogs….” — Adam I.
  • “The food doesn’t live up to the hype. Biscuits that taste like the ones from Red Lobster but half the size. Average fried chicken. We’ve had better mussels at Bleu Boheme. And the bacon ice cream sandwich? Re: bacon — just because it’s trendy, doesn’t mean you have to do it.” — April L.
  • “There really is no vodka here. But the bartender who helped us had big muscles and suspenders, so I guess that makes up for the lack of my alcohol of choice. Settled for a Mule and was content. It’s like a mojito, but the dominant flavor being ginger instead of mint. Me loves me some ginger.” – Azure I.
  • “FRIES — Too chewy and hard. In my opinion, not ideal. If I came back, I’d substitute the fries for something else. You know, like replacing one American puppet dictator with another. You know, to eventually promote democracy or something like that….ATTIRE – To blend in, dress up with hipster tones and flaunt a New York accent.” – Brian K.

Perhaps the restaurant felt confident enough in their product to be ironic about bad reviews, especially since they’ve been named one of the 50 best bars in America by Food & Wine Magazine, so how other businesses follow suit should depend heavily on their confidence that most diners will find the complaints ridiculous and melodramatic.

More proof that social media cuts both ways

Years ago, a New York pizza company began getting bad Yelp reviews and mocked them by having the reviews printed on their employees’ shirts (“this place sucks,” and “their pizza tastes like crap”) which skyrocketed their positive reviews of loyal consumers who otherwise wouldn’t have been moved to defend them.

Alamo Drafthouse in Austin launched a video PSA that went viral which was nothing more than an audio recording of a real complaint left on the company’s voicemail. The video actually played in all of their theaters for some time and without editing, made a mockery of the particular review, and like most nasty reviews, the caller didn’t help herself by using words like “Magnited States of America.”

“Social media cuts both ways and businesses are starting to stand up rather than cower in fear,” we opined in 2011. “A change is coming, we feel it. In the era of social media, consumers have been empowered, and businesses have been made to feel powerless and now go so far out of the way, even changing their entire business models because a pissed off consumer didn’t get a $500 rebate and left a bad review on an obscure site. Alamo’s standing up should help you as a business to realize that social media opens you up for criticism and leaves you vulnerable, but [businesses] are not powerless.”

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.
Written By

Marti Trewe reports on business and technology news, chasing his passion for helping entrepreneurs and small businesses to stay well informed in the fast paced 140-character world. Marti rarely sleeps and thrives on reader news tips, especially about startups and big moves in leadership.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Bloomin' brands no longer blooming, restaurants closing quickly - The American Genius

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


American Genius
news neatly in your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list for news sent straight to your email inbox.



Business Marketing

Google and Meta have dominated the US's ad revenue since 2014, but in 2022, that started to fade. Will it continue?

Business Marketing

Google adds a redesign quietly to its search engine, adding filters that will change what we know about SEO Marketing.

Business Marketing

Airtable presents the drawbacks of your current marketing strategy and what changes need to be made to make it work efficiently.

Business Marketing

As a small business owner or non-tech-savvy person dipping into marketing, getting free models is a dream. This tool makes it possible.

The American Genius is a strong news voice in the entrepreneur and tech world, offering meaningful, concise insight into emerging technologies, the digital economy, best practices, and a shifting business culture. We refuse to publish fluff, and our readers rely on us for inspiring action. Copyright © 2005-2022, The American Genius, LLC.