Glowing online reviews boost a dealership's reputation and move it up the ranks on Google search results. But Edmunds.com, alleging some of that anonymous exuberance is just puffery for pay, is claiming in court that a Texas company is attempting to bombard the Edmunds site with fake reviews.
Edmunds sued Humankind Design Ltd., an online reputation management company, last week in a Texas court, alleging the company attempted to post fraudulent reviews on the Edmunds site. Edmunds says the Houston-area company tried to register almost 2,200 fake members.
Edmunds, which is seeking damages and a cease-and-desist order, said it identified 25 dealers who hired Humankind to fill out reviews. It didn't give those dealers' names or locations.
Justin Anderson, owner of Humankind, denied the allegations: "We completely disagree with the assertion that we are posting fraudulent reviews online."