It's a good thing most people know not to trust every online review you read about a local business. Recently, there have been some elaborate, yet oddly non-specific, extremely negative reviews for some reputable Bozeman area restaurants.

Photo by Elisa Ventur on Unsplash
Photo by Elisa Ventur on Unsplash

These are the kind of businesses that have been around for a very long time with stellar reputations - you probably know the owners on a first name basis. Nobody's perfect all the time, but there's just no way that incredibly rage-written bad reviews are true. Something stinks here and it isn't right.

The hard part? It's nearly impossible to prove that a horrible review is false and was written by a rival or competitor just to make a business look bad. It's too easy to create a fresh user login with a fresh email...that's all it takes to leave a review. But it looks like it's happening in the Bozeman area.

IMPORTANT NOTES: We decided not to name the businesses that received questionable negative reviews. We certainly didn't want to pile onto the problem that they're now attempting to remedy with online review sites. Also, we didn't want to prompt anyone into retaliating against the fake review writer, if somehow they figured out who they were. It's messy, and quite frankly hard to prove...but it's weird enough to bring up and discuss here.

But take a look at these recent negative reviews and decide for yourself. They're oddly non-specific, strangely written, and don't 'read' like 99% of other negative reviews. They're not bad critiques, they're attacks. Nobody writes like that, even when they're a legit angry customer. The reviewers don't give any specifics about their issuues.

"I was in ___________ last Wednesday night for dinner and have decided I'll never go back. Ever. After being a loyal customer for many years, there are plenty of other newer pizza places to spend my money. They have lost their touch and no longer care about their best customers. It might be age, laziness, they're just over it I don't know. Nicer, brand new places are easier to get to. Maybe they should just retire or sell the business. They don't care about their customers and they don't deserve your money. ________ has turned into one of the worst pizza places in the state."

My take on this pizza place review...and it's JUST MY OPINION: It's obviously negative but there's NOT ONE specific complaint. Not one. Was the wait time unacceptable? Was there a problem with the food? What there a cleanliness issue? If someone was rude to you, HOW were they rude? This reviewer just continually says "they don't care" and there are better, newer options several times with no details about issues they had. That's not how reviews work. We want to to know why your experience was good or bad. Almost everyone gives a reason or is more specific.

"___________ is terrible now that _____________ has taken over. Don't bother spending money there because they employees are all just rude now. There are better options with nicer employees. Everyone is in a bad mood and it shows. It sucks now."

My take on this odd, negative review...and it's JUST MY EDUCATED OPINION: This one was easy for me to bust as pretty bogus. I don't know who actually wrote is but here's why I know it's BS. I shop at the businesses they were trashing and it's simply not true. Plus, this is another example of a strongly negative review with ZERO SPECIFICS about what made you mad.

What did an employee say to you? Did this happen more than once? Every employee you encountered was angry? I don't buy it for a second. There's nothing specific and nothing to back up the crappy review. Not cool. (The business in question is doing better than ever, with pleasant improvements and tons of the same happy employees that were there before it changed hands. I know, because I go there all the time.)

Crazy Bozeman Hotel Prices Might be Prompting “Revenge Reviews”

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