Reviews website Trustpilot has hit back after being attacked by property website allAgents.
allAgents chief Martin McKenzie is calling for Trustpilot chief executive Peter Muhlmann to stand down because his pledge to stamp on erroneous reviews is too little, too late.
However, now Trustpilot says that previous allegations by allAgents about allegedly fake reviews have proven to be inaccurate and any suggestion that Trustpilot ‘turned a blind eye’ to manipulating or misusing of reviews is simply untrue.
A spokesman says: “The success and scale of Trustpilot shows that consumers want an open platform on which to share their experiences with both businesses and other community members. This without having to be invited to leave a review, and without their feedback being selectively displayed.”
He says some 2.2m reviews - 5.7 per cent of the total number on the platform - were removed in 2020 and data to be published next month will update that figure.
The spokesman continues: “Trustpilot constantly strives to improve trust online through our platform. In the past couple of years, we have banned the use of incentives, improved our invitation processes, prevented review information being shared with search engines should companies receive our public warning for guidelines breaches and have continued to provide further ‘Business Transparency’ across all company review pages, allowing everyone to see how individual businesses use their reviews.
“Given the importance of reviews to consumers, there will always be a minority of people that try to manipulate the system to mislead others — in the same way as credit card fraud continues. However, our continual investments in improvement and new initiatives are fundamental to helping both consumers and businesses trust each other. It is a credit to the technology, systems and information we have available to us that we can confidently take legal action to clamp down on misbehaving businesses further.”