I've always had a bad feeling about Yelp. Not sure if it was the amateur postings ("It's‚ amazing!!!!" "Worst Meal Ever!!!") or the fact I had heard rumblings about how they determined which posts actually made it up on the site. Now comes word, almost exactly one year after my colleague Monica Eng wrote a story about the questionable tactics they employ in the Tribune, there's been a class-action lawsuit filed against the rating site for allegedly strong-armed sales tactics that border on shaking down retailers.
The suit alleges that the site tried to get a Long Beach veterinary hospital named Cats and Dogs Animal Hospital to pay $300 a month -- for a minimum 12-month commitment -- to suppress or delete reviews that disparaged the hospital.
Interesting that the site's motto is "Real people. Real reviews." A couple of years ago, I had read a piece in the Wall St.