Two women have come forward to claim TripAdvisor continued to promote hotels where staff members had allegedly sexually assaulted them despite warnings to the travel company, the Guardian reports.
The women said the company is failing its “duty to public safety” by not acknowledging these reported claims in the hotels’ advertising on TripAdvisor, which has 456 million visitors each month. In emails obtained by the Guardian, one woman called “K” details her rape by a tour guide whose business the site promoted and asked TripAdvisor to warn other tourists in its posting.
In response, TripAdvisor told her sexual assault accusations are not grounds for removing a business from their site. If she wanted to warn tourists, they suggested she recount her sexual assault in a review on the site. For reference, the company shared five such reviews with K.
“I was in disbelief,” K told the Guardian. “Am I seriously being asked to recall the humiliating details of my own sexual assault? Was this global company pushing me to relive my trauma on their forum for everyone to see and comment, or worse of all for the perpetrator who is still out there, to respond to me, troll me?”
The Guardian found 40 additional examples of reviews describing sexual assault by hotel or travel staff. Only one detailed disciplinary action taken against the staff member in question.
TripAdvisor came under similar scrutiny in 2017 after deleting a review detailing a rape in a Mexico hotel. That year, the company added warning tags to hotels where “health, discrimination and safety” issues had been reported. TripAdvisor does not indicate which discretion the business was flagged for, and the tag’s duration is determined case by case.
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H/T the Guardian