Can You Trust Angie's List?

A couple of years ago we published this piece questioning whether Angie’s List co-founder and CEO Bill Oesterle’s authenticity could be trusted. It turns out, Bill Oesterle may have been the most authentic part of Angie’s List.

Can You Trust Angie’s List?

would you rather listen?

The answer, as with so many things in Internetville, turns out to be “maybe, but we doubt it”. Like the folks at Yelp, it’s looking as though Angie’s List is playing fast and loose with the rules of information availability. Speaking to whether you can trust Angie’s list, Angie herself has come out and stated that if an Angie’s List provider fixes an issue he’s accused of messing up, the accusation itself will—by design—disappear.

That’s right. At Angie’s List, fixing your errors means they never happened. It’s sort of an American equivalent of the right to be forgotten.

There’s some interesting stuff here. If you start with the supposition that perception not only is but should be reality, then there’s no reason for negative reviews to exist once they’ve been adequately addressed. On the other hand, with the word “adequately” in play as well as the not-always-in-anyone-else’s-interests business goals of corporations under consideration that’s nonsense.

And we haven’t even touched on the impossibility of making something disappear from the Internet.

Who’s the best arbiter of what you need to see? Why, you, of course. But with that question answered—and I am The Answer Guy, after all—we move on to who’s best to decide what your customers and prospective customers should see.

And that, of course, is you, too.

So, trust Angie’s List? That’s the point; in all aspects of marketing your job is to engender trust, so if you trust Angie’s List then Angie and company are doing their job. Go ahead; pit Google against reviewers, or better still, try to figure out which reviews are real and which are fake.

Bill Oesterle is no longer the CEO at Angie’s List, and it turns out that his authenticity—which was way greater than we thought—is the reason why.

The only question that leaves is how you’re addressing your company’s authenticity.

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