By Isabelle Lee | Bloomberg

Yelp will start flagging businesses accused of “overtly racist actions,” taking a step to address a national movement to recognize racial injustice in the U.S.

“We’ve seen in the last few months that there is a clear need to warn consumers about businesses associated with egregious, racially-charged actions to help people make more informed spending decisions,” said Noorie Malik, vice president of user operations, in a blog post Thursday.

Over the past few months, Yelp rolled out initiatives to help people find and support Black-owned businesses. Searches for such businesses surged, Malik said, but so did the amount of reviews that warned users of racist behavior.

Yelp, which posts customer reviews on restaurants, entertainment and stores, will place a Public Attention Alert on an establishment to let consumers know if someone associated with the business was accused of, or the target of, racist behavior.

If there is “resounding evidence” of egregious, racists actions from a business owner or employee, such as overtly racist slurs or symbols, Yelp will tag it with a “Business Accused of Racist Behavior” alert. Yelp will also warn consumers that the business may be receiving an influx of reviews as a result of increased attention and link to a news article from “a credible media outlet” so people can learn more.

Yelp placed more than 450 alerts between May 26 and Sept. 30 on business pages that were either accused of or the target of racist behavior related to the Black Lives Matter movement.

San Francisco-based Yelp has reacted to social issues in the past. In 2017 it added a feature that allowed users to leave reviews of restaurants with unisex facilities.


By Richard Moran

Richard Moran loves to write about sports with the Golden State Online. Before that, he worked as a senior writer at ESPN. Richard grew up in San Diego and graduated from the University of San Diego in 2004, after which he worked as an editor for five years.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

8 − 7 =