San Francisco
– Yelp, the provider of local restaurant and business reviews, is now the
target of a third class action lawsuit related to charges it altered the reviews
of businesses who declined to purchase advertising on

The new suit,
filed by the owner of Renaissance Furniture Restoration in San Francisco, charges
that Yelp’s reviews are not "unbiased" as the company claims, since several
positive reviews were allegedly removed after it declined an ad sales pitch from

The two previous class action suits filed against Yelp make largely
similar claims, and today nine small businesses joined the list of plaintiffs
in one of the other suits.

Yelp co-founder and CEO wrote on the company’s blog that the lawsuits "are
borne from a lack of understanding of how Yelp works to provide customers with
useful information about local businesses and protect users from fake, or
shill, reviews."

He adds that the company "will fight [the lawsuits]
aggressively and we believe we will win."


Related Links:

(Yelp blog)
(DMW previous coverage)