According to sources, the FTC may launch a new investigation into the travel site, TripAdvisor after allegations of misconduct were registered against the website.
The controversy began after an article published by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in November. The article accused TripAdvisor of deleting multiple posts that users had written for the site.
The posts contained warnings against certain resorts in Mexico. The users stated that many customers at the resorts had reported incidents of assault and rape.
Surprisingly enough TripAdvisor was quick to delete the posts, leading to great angst amongst online communities. Since the article was published, dozens more have come forwards stating similar experiences with the website.
The growing voice of complaint has also brought the issue to the notice of the FTC.
Springing into action, the FTC sent a letter to Senator Tammy Baldwin last week highlighting the issue. The letter stated that the FTC had a “strong interest in protecting consumer confidence in the online marketplace”. It also pointed out that when users were unable to post honest reviews, it tainted the quality of information being circulated to other consumers.
Thus, the FTC showed that it intended to fight for the consumer’s right to receive honest, unadulterated information.
However, the letter did not specify if the FTC intended to investigate TripAdvisor in particular. While it certainly pointed out a number of issues that have been aimed at the website, it failed to state it the website itself was under investigation.
That being said, the online community is hopeful that the FTC will take action into the matter. It has pinned its hopes on a statement made by FTC Chairwoman Maureen Olhausen which promised that the Commission would “consider the information…carefully” and take action accordingly.