#PRFail: Fining Customers for Bad Reviews

sad wedding

Here’s why Airbnb is here to stay: PageSix reports that the Union Street Guest House in Hudson, New York, fines the recently wedded $500 for any and every negative review posted online by their wedding guests.

No, this is not a joke.

Per the Union Street Guest House policy on their website:

Please know that despite the fact that wedding couples love Hudson and our Inn, your friends and families may not. This is due to the fact that your guests may not understand what we offer – therefore we expect you to explain that to them. USGH & Hudson are historic. The buildings here are old (but restored). Our bathrooms and kitchens are designed to look old in an artistic “vintage” way. Our furniture is mostly hip, period furniture that you would see in many design magazines. (although comfortable and functional – obviously all beds are brand new) If your guests are looking for a Marriott type hotel they may not like it here.

And what’s NOW missing, but was previously recorded by PageSix (emphasis ours):

If you have booked the inn for a wedding or other type of event . . . and given us a deposit of any kind . . . there will be a $500 fine that will be deducted from your deposit for every negative review . . . placed on any internet site by anyone in your party.

Given the business’s current one-star rating on Yelp, perhaps management should consider an opposite yet equally odious approach: close down their old profile and knock off $500 for any and every positive review posted online (consider launching this new marketing campaign in conjunction with a new and improved Yelp profile!).

That shady move worked for Expert Dental, which suckered this PRNewser into paying $$$ for a painful and un-necessary gum lengthening surgery that would have been avoided if the numerous warnings on a now-defunct Yelp account were heeded.

But hey, the joke’s on them—bad reviews are still being written! The big lesson still stands as well: work with the Internet, not against.

You can try to resist its power…but you will fail every time.

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