Although my main project these days is focused on linguistic creativity and humor in social media, I’m still very interested in all things review-related. My friend Michael just sent me this great link about how a VICE reporter “gamed” TripAdvisor by creating a fake restaurant profile on their website. Although this was not exactly his intention going into it, in just over 6 months, his fake restaurant (“The Shed at Dulwich” = literally, the garden shed that he lives in) became the highest-ranked restaurant in London!
The article is a highly entertaining read. Or, if you prefer, you can watch the 18 minute video version available from the same link. To me, the most clever parts were the restaurant’s “mood”-themed menu, as well his unexpected food-styling reveals (“whipped cream quenelles” made from shaving cream & “scallops” that were actually round white bleach tablets). As a consumer, I know that I am totally a sucker for exactly these kinds of conceits: sexy food pics and a conceptual menu. I was especially interested to learn about how TripAdvisor responded (at the end of the article).
And on a different topic, I just remembered a recent conversation I had with business writer, Tara Ramroop. We talked about how language shapes workplace culture: a very relevant topic, but something that not all businesses think about, or approach very systematically. You can read more here.