All you readers probably realize that the 'parent' of this blog is our ratings site, RateVegas.com. We allow readers to rate and review hundreds of Las Vegas hotels, restaurants, nightclubs and more. It's been running since 1999 and has a huge database of worthwhile data.
Over the years, I've added several features designed to protect against malicious uses of an open system - I was getting a ton of submissions that were nothing but spam links to gambling sites. I track the IP address of each submission for the purposes of comparison (no personal info is tracked or stored unless you submit your email address).
Well, over the past few months I've noticed quite a few glowing reviews for Tao Nightclub at The Venetian. At first they looked legit but the wording from week to week was QUITE similar. I checked and of course they are all coming from the same IP - one that is registered to Cox Communications in Las Vegas, NV, the region's cable modem provider.
So, it appears that Tao, or someone working for them, is attempting to defraud the public with fake reviews posted through my service. I assume they're doing this elsewhere as well.
I mention this just because it is interesting. I'll do nothing more but delete the incoming fake reviews and continue on my day.
Any other site operators notice anything like this? Fake comments? Planted submissions? Are Vegas casinos, clubs and PR operations *finally* getting smarter about using the 'Net?
Also, a note to Vegas businesses that want to get their word out - I'm happy to listen to your pitch and I love sharing interesting stories and info with my readers. Just don't try to come in the back door.