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Direct Communications and the Review System

Direct Communications in Eagle Mountain, Utah, offers drawings to win prizes to people in exchange for reviews. A while ago, (Dec 2013) on their Google Places page, Direct Communications had roughly 20 or so reviews. A majority of them negative and their score was well around a 2 on the “Google Scale”. Now all of the sudden it’s a 4.3 with over 155 reviews?

What!?

Let’s take a look… Apparently Direct Communications is ignoring Google’s policy regarding offering incentives to people for posting positive reviews. This causes the review to be biased and dishonest. Here is the policy:

Conflict of interest: Reviews are only valuable when they are honest and unbiased. For instance, as a business owner or employee you should not review your own business or place of work. Don’t offer money or product to others to write reviews for your business or write negative reviews about a competitor. We also discourage specialized review stations or kiosks set up at your place of business for the sole purpose of soliciting reviews. As a reviewer, you should not accept money or product from a business to write a review about them. Additionally, don’t feel compelled to review a certain way just because an employee of that business asked you to do so. Finally, don’t post reviews on behalf of others or misrepresent your identity or affiliation with the place you are reviewing.” There was a version of this policy that included the words “Positive Reviews” and has since been changed to just “Reviews” excluding the word “Positive”. Source: https://support.google.com/places/answer/2622994?hl=en

Bribing Customers for Reviews:

Direct Communications bribes for Reviews

Direct Communications bribes current customers for positive Reviews

Direct Communications Review Response


 

The Google review system should not be manipulated and misused like this. It is there so real people can give REAL feedback about a company. Not so you can win an iPad Mini.

 


 

Has Direct Communications Review Contest gone too far?

This is a problem because if you are mistreated by a company, you now have no where to go to express your frustration. There is no repercussion or consequence for the company for mistreating you. It’s about power and control. Companies should be afraid of their customers and should have consequences if they mistreat them. Direct Communications is a company about power. They are the only wired internet service provider in Eagle Mountain, Utah. Somehow they have managed to keep Comcast, and Century Link out of the city for good. Of course this creates a monopoly. Direct Communications charges $70 per month for DSL and speeds of around 10 megabits per second even though the advertise 20 mbps very few people get those speeds. Per megabit that’s some of the most expensive internet in the country.

Let’s take a look at all the REAL reviews BEFORE the iPad Mini giveaway:

Real Direct Communications Reviews


In case you were wanting to know what people really thought of this company, here’s a review system they haven’t manipulated yet:

Facebook Reviews

Facebook Direct Communications Reviews     Real Direct Communications Reviews on Facebook


UPDATE 6/12/14 : Direct Communications has abused the Facebook review system now. They now have 185 reviews with a majority of them being positive.

Updated Direct Communications Reviews on Facebook

Shame on you Direct Communications for manipulating reviews like this. There are way more people unhappy with the internet options in this city than these fake reviews suggest. Hopefully Google will do something about this.

What can we do?

If you want to take a look at all the posts I’ve gathered them and compiled a single image here: http://www.eaglemountainisp.com/wp-content/uploads/Full-Post-of-Fake-Reviews.png
The image is VERY large and depending on your internet connection, it might take a few moments to load. Once it’s loaded put your mouse over the image and click to make it full size. Then start reading.

If you want to say anything to the company you can do that on their Facebook Page here:  https://www.facebook.com/directcom.eaglemtn
Or their Google Review page here: https://plus.google.com/111817855610630569736/about?hl=en&gl=us

Call me disgruntled, but this is creates distrust and it’s clearly against these companies review policies. I’m just also upset that Google and Facebook don’t care… Perhaps I’m the only one that does?