A hearty discount at Origin India … but at what price?
My ethical dilemma over Yelping for cheap food
Wed, Sep 30, 2009 (2:13 p.m.)
- Origin India
- 4480 Paradise Road
How delighted I was to find out that one of my favorite restaurants was offering discounts for posting on restaurant-review websites. Origin India (4480 Paradise Road), which makes a scrumptious boneless chicken tandoori cooked in an aromatic creamy tomato blend, sent out word to Facebook friends last month: “We’d like to encourage you to share your great comments with the rest of the world ... Now throughout the end of the year, bring in a printed copy of a review you posted about Origin India Restaurant and Bar to Yelp, Urbanspoon or Zagat, and we’ll offer you a 20 percent discount off your entire check!”
Slowly, my mouthwatering delight gave way to a bitter thought: Is this ethical? Surely friends load such sites with favorable reviews all the time. But that’s not really the spirit of review sites, is it? And to paper-trail the deal by asking for a printout in exchange for 20 percent off surely violates the under-the-table spirit of review stuffing. But there’s a recession, and 20 percent could add up, and ...
Oh, the ethical dilemmas involved in eating—to say nothing of killing the poor but delicious, tender, juicy chicken. Apparently Yelp has been accused of offering to get rid of negative reviews for a fee, which they deny, and who knows who’s behind all the reviews on various websites?
Still, I can’t do it. Can’t post and print a Yelp review for a discount, no matter how sweet and smooth the aromatic creamy tomato blend.
And I sure hope nobody gives me a discount for writing this, which is printed 70,000 times.