The Bridge Inn in Middleton-in-Teesdale, England, has not only been closed since 2011, it's been demolished and replaced by housing. So who was giving it bad reviews on TripAdvisor?
"We were looking for old photos of the pub on Google and the reviews came up. We found it quite funny," Mr Goodall, managing director of New Era Regeneration, told the BBC.
"I did contact TripAdvisor on their website and advised them that the reviews were impossible as the pub wasn't trading and they were slow to respond."
The reviews are still on the TripAdvisor website
It's easy and cheap to be cynical, but armies of accounts with names like 634JimJones and Charl3s, stock art avatars and brief positive or negative remarks that could apply to anything? TripAdvisor is a derelict mannequin factory.
The travel website TripAdvisor is failing to stop fake reviews boosting the rankings of top-rated hotels, Which? has claimed.
The consumer organisation analysed almost 250,000 reviews for the 10 top-ranked hotels in 10 popular tourist destinations around the world, finding one in seven had “blatant hallmarks” of fake reviews.
Which? Travel reported 15 cases to TripAdvisor and claimed that the site admitted 14 of the hotels had already been caught with fake positive reviews in the last year.
User-generated content sites with frictionless signup and a paragraph-long content model are an easy target for fakery. The rot spreads faster than the pain, so when it gets so bad they have to clean it up, it's already too late. However many fakes are removed, the fakeness is everywhere. And new text generation software is making the fakery cheap and fast.
Very disappointed in the Bridge Inn in Middleton-in-Teesdale. The entire team was incredibly friendly and helpful. The staff was also very helpful during my visit. It was very clean and the rooms were clean and comfortable. Only downside was that the reception would not open up when I went to the washroom so I had to wait for the person who comes to take me to the washroom to open the door then wait again as the reception was closed. The staff were also extremely rude to my husband after he walked in the front door and they would not let us in. As soon as we entered the room, the receptionist immediately began to yell at him for being out of his room and would not let us speak to him. After talking with our friend who also came with us, we went back to the house where the manager apologized for my problems with the reception. If I had a negative experience I guess it is nothing, they are all so nice and friendly. Overall, I would recommend this establishment.