Google has decided to stop posting review snippets from third party sites on their Places page. Prior to this move, Google would automatically collect reviews, ratings, businesses info from third party websites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, Urban Spoon and CitySearch, as well as their own and then place it all under one web page.
When the service initially launched about a year ago, these third party sites complained that their content was unfairly republished by Google, and that the Places reviews were appearing above their content. Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman had said in March, “We just don’t get any value out of our reviews appearing on Google Places and haven’t been given an option, other than to remove ourselves from search, how to improve this situation”.
The move was made last week by Google. “Based on careful thought about the future direction of Place pages, and feedback we’ve heard over the past few months, review snippets from other Web sources have now been removed from Place pages,” Avni Shah, director of product management at Google, wrote in a Google blog post explaining the move. “Rating and review counts reflect only those that have been written by fellow Google users, and as part of our continued commitment to helping you find what you want on the Web, we’re continuing to provide links to other review sites so you can get a comprehensive view of locations across the globe.”