The ABC is reporting that staff at Meriton Serviced Apartments have been gaming TripAdvisor by actively discouraging negative comments while offering guests inducements to post positive reviews or upgrade existing ones.

So entrenched was the practice of “masking” it was a priority on management’s to-do list, according to an ex-employee who also leaked emails to support his claims.

TripAdvisor is quoted as saying the allegations are under investigation.

Meriton’s National Manager Matthew Thomas told staff in an email the claims were those of “one disgruntled ex-employee.

“In the past 12 months we have received over 52,000 online reviews with a reputation index of over 20%.

“TA itself makes up only 20% of our total online reviews.”

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