Juks med online vurderingar

Juks med brukarvurderingar er eit problem for nettsider som Tripadvisor, Amazon eller Yelp.com. Ein type juks er positive vurderingar lagt inn av bedriftseigaren sjølv. I eit nytt arbeidsnotat (working paper) studerar Luca og medforfattarar kva som fører til slik juks. Dei finn at restaurantar juksar når dei har få vurderingar eller nyleg har fått ei dårleg vurdering. Restaurantar som høyrer til ei kjede juksar mindre. Dei finn også at tøffare konkurranse aukar sjansen for juks med negative vurderingar. Artikkelen er under arbeid, men resultata er likevel interessante. Her er samandraget:

Review sites have become increasingly important sources of information for consumers. Because these reviews aff ect sales, businesses have the incentive to game the system by leaving positive reviews for themselves, or negative reviews for their competitors. Such review fraud undermines the trustworthiness of consumer reviews, and constitutes a major risk factor for review sites. In this paper, we investigate review fraud on the popular consumer review site Yelp. We construct a novel data set to analyze this problem, combining restaurant reviews with Yelp’s algorithmic indicator of fake reviews. Using this imperfect indicator as a proxy, we develop an empirical methodology to identify the points in the life-cycle of a business during which review fraud is most prevalent. We fi nd that a restaurant’s changing reputation affe cts its decision to engage in review fraud. Speci cally, a restaurant is more likely to seek a positive fake review when its reputation is weak, i.e., when it has few reviews, or it has recently received bad reviews. Consistent with theory, we fi nd that chains are less likely than independent restaurants to engage in review fraud. We then turn our attention to negative review fraud, and find that increased competition by similar restaurants the driving force behind it.

Referanse: Luca, Michael, and Georgios Zervas. 2013. “Fake It Till You Make It: Reputation, Competition, and Yelp Review Fraud”. SSRN Scholarly Paper ID 2293164. Rochester, NY: Social Science Research Network. http://papers.ssrn.com/abstract=2293164.

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