When we issue a Consumer Alert, a warning message pops up over the review section of that business’s Yelp Page informing consumers about the violation of our policies with a link to view the evidence we collected when available.
Here are examples of Consumer Alerts we may place on Yelp business pages:
- We place a Compensated Activity Alert on business pages when we receive evidence that someone is purchasing reviews. This alert will generally be removed from the business page after 90 days if the offending behavior stops.
- We place a Suspicious Review Activity Alert on business pages when our recommendation software catches a disproportionate number of reviews coming from the same IP address (a helpful indicator that they may all be coming from a single source and therefore lack authenticity), or if our team discovers a possible connection to a deceptive review ring. This alert will generally be removed from the business page after 90 days if the offending behavior stops.
- We may place a Questionable Legal Threats Alert on a business page when we receive evidence that the business may be making a dubious legal threat against a reviewer or using a contractual gag clause to prevent critical reviews. This alert is removed on a case-by-case basis.
- We place an Unusual Activity Alert when a business receives an influx of Yelp reviews that were motivated by a recent news event rather than actual consumer experiences with the business. This will temporarily disable the ability to post reviews on the page. This alert is removed on a case-by-case basis when activity on the page has dramatically decreased or stopped.
- We place a Public Attention Alert to inform consumers if someone associated with the business was accused of, or the target of, racist behavior. We take a firm stance against racism and will temporarily disable the ability to post as we confirm that all content reflects first-hand consumer experiences. When a business gains public attention for reports of overtly racist conduct, we'll place a Business Accused of Racist Behavior Alert which will include a news article where people can learn more. These alerts are removed on a case-by-case basis when activity on the page has dramatically decreased or stopped.
Before issuing one of these alerts, we do a thorough investigation to confirm that it is warranted. You can read more about Consumer Alerts and other ways Yelp protects the integrity of information on our site in the Consumer Protection Initiative section of our blog.