Some interesting points in it. But I’m not sure it’s a balanced article and I’m starting to question its premises. To start with, the thing about information asymmetry:
By providing more information for hosts — they can see both the reviews about the guest and the reviews the guest has written — AirBnB’s rating system actually provides less information for guests!
I’m not sure this is the case. Guests can equally see both reviews about the host and the reviews the host has written? If anything more easily as reviews of guests tend to be fewer in number than of hosts? What am I missing here?
I didn’t agree with the article, whose basic premise was endless loop review inflation. I don’t think it’s really true.
I agree it’s just an angle for the writer yet it made me think of many posts here where hosts did not want to leave a bad review and thought of not leaving one at all. That can skew the system. I think sometimes people follow the old adage if you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all.
I am certainly guilty of that in the past, did not know quite what to say and said nothing. Some Guests are easy to review, others well they came they went and there are a few who just seem somewhat odd. Takes all types of folks to make the world go around.
On my recent trip to Tuscany I stayed in 4 AirBnbs, all with 5 star reviews. Two properties where 5 star experiences. However the other two to my surprise left a lot to be desired. One was very dirty, I went through the reviews several times as I was puzzled by all the 5 star reviews and not one mention about cleanliness. The other property was also not as clean and felt as if the host was more interested in making a quick buck rather than offering a great guest experience. Despite these shortcomings these properties had 5 stars, one I wouldn’t rate higher than 2 stars the other maybe a 4.