Fake restaurant on TripAdvisor sends diners to alley - KMSP-TV

Fake restaurant on TripAdvisor sends diners to alley filled with garbage cans

Posted: Updated:
Trip Advisor screenshot Trip Advisor screenshot
  • Must Read HeadlinesMore>>

  • Chandler company creates 3D printed automobiles

    Chandler company creates 3D printed automobiles

    The auto industry may soon be shifting gears. Imagine walking into a dealership, finding your dream car, and having it printed out.One Chandler company is hoping to do just that.
    The auto industry may soon be shifting gears. Imagine walking into a dealership, finding your dream car, and having it printed out.One Chandler company is hoping to do just that.
  • Stickers and books are okay; cupcakes are out for birthdays at school

    Stickers and books are okay; cupcakes are out for birthdays at school

    Many of you can remember as a kid the excitement of taking cupcakes or other treats to school for your birthday, but times are changing and it looks like the end of a tradition for one school district.
    Many of you can remember as a kid the excitement of taking cupcakes or other treats to school for your birthday, but times are changing and it looks like the end of a tradition for one school district.
  • Soccer fans wear rival player's mug shot on T-shirt

    Soccer fans wear rival player's mug shot on T-shirt

    Friday, September 12 2014 10:39 AM EDT2014-09-12 14:39:44 GMT
    Relatives of an Indiana high school student whose mug shot appeared on T-shirts at a soccer game between rival schools reportedly claim spirited fans went a bit too far.
    Relatives of an Indiana high school student whose mug shot appeared on T-shirts at a soccer game between rival schools reportedly claim spirited fans went a bit too far.

Fake reviews of a restaurant named Oscar's, billed as having "Michelin-starred food," reportedly had diners looking for the eatery in an alley filled with garbage cans.

The U.K.s Telegraph reports that the restaurant, listed on the TripAdvisor website as a floating restaurant built in the hull of an old fishing boat located in England's coastal town Brixham in Devon.  Diner reviews praised it for its "mind-blowing," "simply divine" "perfect" and "amazing" food that "bordered on sorcery." Some reviews even suggesting it ought to be awarded a Michelin star.

But in actual fact, the restaurant was didn't exist and hungry travelers were sent on a wild goose chase looking for the place in the town's alleyway.

According to the Telegraph, Oscar's reportedly first appeared on TripAdvisor in May, climbed 29th place in a ratings list of 64 eateries in the area.

A disgruntled businessman, who uses the name Oscar Parrot, is reportedly behind the hoax, saying he did it because he was fed up with TripAdvisor and its inability to sufficiently police the site and to prevent people from posting malicious reviews.  Parrot, who admitted he posted all the reviews and even provided an email address for them, said his friend's hotel got a list of bad reviews on the site that he suspected was from a rival hotelier.  The restaurant and its reviews have now been removed.

"The listing featured over-the-top reviews for a fake business, but it went undetected for more than two months," Chris Emmins, co-founder of the online reputation management firm KwikChex, told the Telegraph. "It's difficult to see how TripAdvisor's system can detect elaborate fraud, if they can't detect one like this." 

But in a statement to FoxNews.com, TripAdvisor said it was committed to ensuring that the content on the site remains accurate and provides a trusted and useful source of information for those planning a trip anywhere in the world."

"With over 70 pieces of content coming in every minute covering more than 2.7 million properties around the world, occasionally a review or business that does not meet TripAdvisor's guidelines may slip through the cracks, and in these rare cases, our members can report the material to us, helping maintain the high quality content of our site." 

TripAdvisor reportedly developed a new algorithm based on techniques pioneered to combat credit card and insurance fraud that will check every review posted every minute by visitors.

Powered by WorldNow

KMSP-TV
11358 Viking Drive
Eden Prairie, MN 55344

Phone: (952) 944-9999
Fax: (952) 942-0455

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices