Travel giant TripAdvisor has removed the well-known “reviews you can trust” tagline from its website, following an investigation by the independent UK advertising regulatory firm, the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA). The investigation was prompted by allegations by online brand watchdog KwikChex that up to 10 million hotel and restaurant reviews on the site were fake. Hotel and restaurant owners approached KwikChex amid a brouhaha worldwide claiming defamatory and paid positive reviews appear on the website. KwikChex has also lodged a complaint with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
The UK’s Daily Mail reported that the slogan was replaced with “reviews from your community”, but our visit today to TripAdvisor’s US and UK sites, www.tripadvisor.com and www.tripadvisor.co.uk, found no slogan at all. On the other hand, slogans on TripAdvisor.ca and TripAdvisor.au read, respectively, “World’s most trusted travel advice” and “Get the truth. Then go.” TripAdvisor claims that changes to its slogans are unrelated to the investigation and are rather part of ongoing evolution at the company.