World famous travel review website, TripAdvisor has stirred controversy after they deleted a traveler’s rape story from the platform. According to the reports published in a leading journal, TripAdvisor blocked Traveler’s rape report where they warned other users about the rape and assault they have experienced. It is said that the famous website is doing this for many years in order to improve the user experience.
Recently, TripAdvisor apologized for deleting Kristie Love’s multiple attempts to post about an incident in 2010. In this post, Kristie had mentioned about an incident where she was raped by a security guard at Iberostar Paraiso near Playa del Carmen. Kristie told that her rape report was deleted by TripAdvisor because they thought it was not family friendly. The report was blocked because they violated the website’s “family friendly” guidelines.
According to Kristie, she headed out with friends and when she returned she found that her access card was not working. Love later went to the hotel reception to have it reactivated. On the way, she asked the security guard to show her the direction towards her room. The guard asked the young woman to follow him. He soon empowered the woman and raped her in between the bushes of the resort’s garden. The woman went to reception to address the same but they refused to call the police.
The same thing happened to another woman in 2015 when she was raped in the hotel. She too tried to share her experience with the website but they declined to publish the reviews on the website. Later it was also known that a 19-year-old girl was raped by a guard inside the bathroom.
Sharing an official statement in reference to this, here is what TripAdvisor wrote,
“We apologize to the s*xual assault victim reported on in the article, who had her forum post removed seven years ago on TripAdvisor. At the time, we had a policy whereby we judged content to be in breach of our guidelines if it did not adhere to family-friendly language. More than seven years ago that meant all language needed to be G-rated. A few years ago, we changed that policy to allow more descriptive reviews on the site about first-hand accounts of serious incidents like rape or assault. We recognized then that our previous guidelines went too far in preventing information like this from being shared.
Over the last several years, this policy change has yielded many first-hand accounts of serious incidents being published on the platform. A simple search of TripAdvisor will show numerous reviews from travelers over the last several years who wrote about their first-hand experiences that include matters of robbery or theft, assault and rape…
We will continue to work to improve and evolve our moderation and publishing guidelines as we work to provide the most accurate information in the travel industry available online.”
Last month when a girl wanted to narrate a story about how she was drugged and raped by the massage therapist in the hotel, her reviews were blocked by the website. “We are unable to publish your review,” an email from TripAdvisor read.