Posts Tagged ‘Filter’

Groove on Trippy Presidio Terrace, As Seen by Google Maps

Friday, July 19th, 2013

Google is now careful about revealing too much about tony Presidio Terrace, as it’s a private street.

Google didn’t know that back in 2007.

Check here and here.

Good times:

It might look like a public street but it’s not, so the people that live on this small loop just north of Clement are free to hire a guard to keep out whomever they want. And not too long ago, the houses here all had restrictive covenants that prevented people of the “non Caucasian race” from buying or leasing on this street. An ad from the latter part of 1906:There is only one spot in San Francisco where only Caucasians are permitted to buy or lease real estate or where they may reside. That place is Presidio Terrace.”

But now Google does know, so no Street Maps for you – it’s terra incogniter. See?

It looks like Instagram or something.

Anyway, the data from the Google Maps Car visit of 2006 is gone.

Long gone.

And the residents like things that way, I suppose.

How the Falun Gong Defeated Google – The Shen Yun 2013 “Extravaganza” Plays San Francisco’s Orpheum Theatre

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

All right, let’s say you’ve heard about the big Shen Yun 2013 show at our Orpheum Theatre and you want to find out a little about it, m’kay?

So you type into Google and this what you get:

What you won’t get is something like this:

The Falun Gong Show

Or Yelp reviews neither, like these:

The Yelp

And you certainly won’t find the official Chinese Communist Party (“Socialism, with Chinese Characteristics!”) website on Shen Yun all that easily, oh no:

Cult Studies [Uh, FYI, CCP, your agitprop website looks a little crude, like it's from your little buddy North Korea, just saying.]

So I guess the lesson to be learned is that if a small group of people want to game Google so that you’ll buy tickets to this show without knowing, in a general way, what it’s about first, then they can.

Things I now know:

SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE;

THE BOLD ITALIC IS GANNETT COMPANY, INCORPORATED; and

SHEN YUN 2013 IS FALUN GONG 

That’s something to consider when you’re getting the hard sell at San Francisco Costco #144, as seen last week on 10th  Street:

Just saying,…

Yelp Throws Down: Starts Up a Shame Campaign Against Businesses That Pay For Positive Reviews

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

So basically Yelp is now announcing a new shame campaign against businesses what break the rules to get an inflated Yelp rating.

(I’ll tell you, I’ve never seen footnotes in a press release before, but that’s how area Yelp flack Stephanie Ichinose rolls, I guess)

Check it:

“Yelp Rolls Out Consumer Alerts to Educate and Inform Consumers

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 18, 2012  – Yelp Inc. (NYSE: YELP), the company that connects people with great local businesses, announced today that it will be taking additional steps to protect consumers from biased reviews. The company will place a consumer alert message on a business’s profile page when it determines that there have been significant efforts to purchase fake reviews to mislead consumers.

“Yelp has become so influential in the consumer decision making process that some businesses will go to extreme lengths to bolster their reviews,” said Eric Singley, vice president of consumer products and mobile, Yelp. “While our filter already does a great job of highlighting the most useful content, we think consumers have a right to know when someone is going to great lengths to mislead them.”

The consumer alert will call attention to attempts to purchase reviews for a business profiled on Yelp. When consumers click on the alert, we will show them screenshots exposing the effort to mislead our users.

The alert will be removed from the business’s Yelp page after 90 days, unless evidence of ongoing efforts is discovered, which may renew the warning period. Initially, nine businesses will have the consumer alert message posted on their profile page, but the company will be posting alerts like these on an ongoing basis as warranted.

Beyond alerting consumers to attempts to purchase reviews, the next step in Yelp’s Consumer Alert program will be to let consumers know if a business has had a large number of reviews submitted from the same Internet Protocol (IP) address, which can be a helpful indicator that they lack authenticity. While the review filter already takes this type of information into account, we believe that consumers also have a right to know if this activity is going on.

Consumer trust is essential to the utility of a user-generated review service. Since early 2005, Yelp has taken an aggressive stance to protect the quality of the content on its site, namely in the form of its review filter which aims to highlight reviews that are helpful and reliable. This automated program is applied continually and equally to all reviews submitted to Yelp. Reviews that have been flagged by the filter can be viewed by users if desired. Yelp has become a trusted source for more than 78 million monthly visitors in large part because of this focused quality-over-quantity approach.

An independent Businessweek(i) report confirmed the success of Yelp’s efforts to protect consumers. The article details the efforts of a Texan business owner who purchased 200 online reviews in an attempt to artificially bolster his business’s online reputation. The report found that Yelp’s review filter returned “impressive results” catching every purchased review, while the shill reviews remained up on seven other review sites.

Academic studies from Harvard Business School(ii )and UC Berkeley(iii), have demonstrated the impact a business’s Yelp reviews can have on its success. These findings indicate a strong incentive for some businesses to try to game the system, and explain why Yelp must continue to innovate in the steps it takes to protect consumers.

Yelp exists to help consumers find and support local businesses. In its ongoing efforts to help local business owners make the most of their presence on Yelp, the company has built a robust online resource (biz.yelp.com) and offers regular workshops for business owners, both via webinars and locally in more than a dozen cities across the US.

About Yelp

Yelp Inc. connects people with great local businesses. Yelp was founded in San Francisco in July 2004. Since then, Yelp communities have taken root in major metros across the US, Canada, UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, The Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Belgium, Australia, Sweden Denmark, Norway, Finland, Singapore and Poland. Yelp had a monthly average of approximately 78 million unique visitors in Q2 2012(iv). By the end of the same quarter, Yelpers had written more than 30 million rich, local reviews, making Yelp the leading local guide for everything from boutiques and mechanics to restaurants and dentists. Yelp’s mobile applications were used on approximately 7.2 million unique mobile devices on a monthly average basis during Q2 2012. For more information please email press@yelp.com.

(i) Source: BusinessWeek “A Lie Detector Test for Online Reviewers”, Karen Weise (September 29, 2011)

(ii) Source: Harvard Business School, Michael Luca (October 2011)

(iii) Source: The Economic Journal, Michael Anderson and Jeremy Magruder (March 2012)

(iv) Source: Google Analytics”

I’ll tell you, shame works. Just look what my local bodega did to me after I passed a whole bunch of bad checks, you know, to get delicious Flamin’ Hot Cheetos and the occasional Cheetos Natural Puffs White Cheddar. They posted them for tout le monde to see:

Via Big Rye

All the shame is making me consider not defrauding area business, you know, someday.

Anyway, Yelp is disciplining a total of nine bidnesses in all of Yelp-land, for sdtarters anyway.

Is that enough to stop Yelp Fraud?

YelpWar! Fans vs. Foes of Falun Gong-ish “Shen Yun” – Opens Today at Our Opera House

Tuesday, December 28th, 2010

This “Falun Gong Show” bit here from SFist Rita and Civic Center Mike* from back in ought-seven probably tells you all what you need to know about the Shen Yun Performing Arts Spectacular at the War Memorial Opera House in Civic Center starting tonight. The whole shebang runs all the way to December 30th, 2010. Here’s what it looks like:

So here are the update for 2010.

The minimum ticket price is $100 per. Ouch. And the one-star vs. five-star YelpWar rages on.

Most of the five-star reviews at Yelp.com come from members of Falun GongFalun Dafa and some of the one-star reviews come directly from the unelected Red Chinese government** – so there’s your universe of people who care strongly enough about this show to take the trouble to register their opinion on the Yelp but then Yelp nevermore.

Here’s a taste of the action:

Mind you, this tit for tat above made it through Yelp’s patented Fraud Filter no problem. Now, here’s Yelp’s purgatory for a whopping 53 comments on the Shen Yun. See? It’s chock-a block-full of the vitryole.

So that’s how it sits in the 415. The Falun Gong are banned from the San Francisco Chinese New Year Parade in Chinatown by Rose Pak but they’ll always have the veteran’s parade and the FGS, so that’s some consolation.

Anyway, choose or lose.

* A Chinese character tattoo!? Hasn’t that become a kind of cliche the past ten years? Do young people still do that?

**That one-party state that is the current Chinese government goes absolutely bonkers over the FG.