San Francisco
– Yelp, the community business reviews site, has been hit with a class action
lawsuit that claims it has engaged in unfair business practices, such as looking
to "extort" ad deals from companies seeking to have negative reviews
of their businesses removed, TechCrunch reported.

The suit was filed in federal
court in Los Angeles on behalf of a veterinary
hospital in Long Beach, Calif. that alleges Yelp demanded payments
of around $300 per month in exchange for removing a negative review on the

"The allegations are demonstrably false, since many businesses that
advertise on Yelp have both negative and positive reviews," a Yelp
spokesperson told TechCrunch.

"These businesses realize that both kinds of
feedback provide authenticity and value. Running a good business is hard;
filing a lawsuit is easy. While we haven’t seen the suit in question, we will
dispute it aggressively."


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