Tuesday, March 06, 2007

More By The Way Of Scam

It was back in November that I talked about the scam whereby restaurant or hotel (or other) owners post glowing reports on - inter alia - the likes of TripAdvisor, masquerading as a happy and contented punter. It’s taken me a while to get up to speed with this, but from the end of this year - in the UK - anyone doing so can be named and shamed by trading standards or taken to court. This is all part of a move to prevent consumers from being misled.

As back in November, I confess to a vested interest in this as on the websites associated with this blog, reviews can be posted. These are subject to vetting before they are approved, though I could never be 100% sure as to the origin. Nevertheless, this move to criminalise such glowing statements using false identities is almost certainly welcome.

The reliance that the tourist places on personal recommendation cannot be under-estimated.

It is a facet of our information society that so much information is so readily available and - more importantly - we have all become ever more reliant on this information to direct and, yes, inform, our decision-making. The trouble is a potential over-reliance and a lack of discernment. What one person considers to be the dog’s bollocks doesn’t necessarily mean that those same bollocks will be hung for another - as it were.

Still, I shall continue to vet the comments that come to the websites, on which the establishments which have thus far attracted the most comment are all part of the same business. Just coincidence, of that I’m sure. But for the record they are - in Puerto Alcúdia and on www.thealcudiaguide.com - Bells Disco, Kaos Bar and El Toro Restaurant.

January seems to have been a good month for Balearic tourism (all things being relative of course). Anyway, the numbers were up by some 20%, though of this number 50% were mainland Spanish. Maybe it was the good weather.

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