I have come out of my cave and will start getting more active on this forum. I’m not one to write on a blog – but I do answer our contact us as I really enjoy the 1-1 dialogue with people. I have to get with program though and jump into the open conversation.
All of us at HomeStars take turns reading reviews before they are posted (ok – Andrew may need a turn ; ) ). It helps ground us in the reason we are working so hard to build this company. People use HomeStars to help them make decisions and it really brings the quality down when there are fake posts and poor quality reviews. Who cares that you bought a new widget at home depot and the staff were not so helpful. We want to know about the guy that started your basement reno, took a deposit for $4,000 for initial materials and then didn’t show up the next day (and it’s 4 weeks and 40 phone calls later). We need to shine the light where there is darkness. Our readers also want to know about the dream contractor you hired, who delivered on time and on budget.
But I’m always amazed at how companies think they can publish fake reviews. We’ve caught many, and yet some companies will try again – hoping we will be asleep at the switch (although we aren’t perfect so we do get your help sometimes).
Should we raise awareness of these flagrant fakers? Should we put them in the penalty box like tripadvisor and ban them from search results for a while? Should we post a “FAKE review removed” button on their company listing in neon? And for how long should they be in the penalty box – a month, a year, for all time?
Your suggestions are welcome.