Thanks Michael O. for the true 5-star review! It certainly helps small businesses like ours stay at the top of page 1 of the Google search when folks are looking for a legal bed and breakfast in Tallahassee.
Nowadays everyone reads reviews on everything. I actually found myself reading a review on a toothbrush and thinking "Hmm, that's interesting .. ... wait now, who writes a review on a toothbrush?"
We are now a nation that will trust the opinion of entire strangers as long as there are enough of them to make it seem true. What we often don't realize is that some "reviews" are written by people who are paid to write them, positive or negative, to help run a competitor out of business. Or someone who has never even eaten at the restaurant, or stayed at the lodging establishment, or experienced the attraction. Sad, but 'tis the world we live in.
Online reviews sites started out as a good thing (I"m old enough to remember when TripAdvisor was just a review site but has now morphed into a third-party travel agent), to help the general public make informed decisions has been hijacked by nefarious people with a hidden agenda.
Why do the minority have to ruin it for the majority?
That's so true in so many situations. I used to be able to arrive at my local airport 15 minutes before the plane took off for Orlando, but now it's a minimum 60 minutes, to give everyone a chance to check for weapons, liquid bombs, things hidden in places only a criminal would think to hide them and so on. How many knee-jerk "policies" have been put in place the day after one person did something bad, and ruined it for the rest of us?
Reviews...they're here to stay, and when honest, like Michael O., serve a great purpose for folks just looking for more information before making a decision. Even about toothbrushes.
So, if there's a local restaurant, or a local attraction, or even a local bed and breakfast that you love, go write a great review. It'll help them stay in business another day so that all our towns don't all start to look alike with franchises. And it may even help outweigh those that are not so great, written by people who just like writing negative things, because they're anonymous online, and they can.
Thanks, Michael O. You were a real guest, a lovely guest and we appreciate your positive review!