Need to rant? Sites where you can complain - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Need to rant? Sites where you can complain

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By Zaneta Lowe  - bio | email 

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - From restaurants to retailers, digging up details about a company isn't very difficult these days.  "More than 60% of us go online before we buy or hire," says Angie's List Director of Communications Cheryl Reed.

The site started 16 years ago with reviews on home improvement companies, but now has more than 500 categories.

"You know, people for years have googled themselves. Well now, they're googling companies, they're googling people that they hire, and looking at all the online reviews they can find because they want to make sure they spend their dollars well," adds Reed.

Whether you're looking for someone else's opinion, or planning to voice your own, there are plenty of places to go.  At epinions.com, you can search by categories ranging from cars to computers.

Some sites focus mainly on complaints like Pissed Consumer and Rip Off Report.

Others offer reviews on specific industries like airlinecomplaints.org, and avvo.com which rates doctors and lawyers.

Trip Advisor now includes more than 45 million reviews and ratings, but as more consumers share their stories, are companies listening?  Reed says yes.

"They know that their business in some cases can be drastically affected by what somebody posts about them."

Speaking of, be careful of what you put out there.

Consumer Reports recently wrote about how companies will sue critics, despite the minimal chance of overcoming a free speech defense.  Some say the suits are designed to discourage negative rants.

There are some states that have enacted laws to protect consumers.

Regardless, you may want to think twice before clicking submit, after all, your words live on in cyber space.

"We believe if you are willing to submit a report, positive, mediocre or bad, you should stand behind what you're saying," Reed says.

Some other places to go:

www.consumeraffairs.com

www.complaints.com

www.charitynavigator.org

www.yelp.com

Additional tips:

  • Companies often monitor their own sites and Facebook pages for complaints and concerns, so posting there could get you a response.
  • Try emailing or calling someone directly
  • Follow companies you do business with, or plan to on Twitter

 

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