Shout Out Wales is committed to being a trusted website for visitors to connect with businesses. Key to this trust is Shout Out Wales Reviews, and we are dedicated to ensuring that visitors can trust existing, and post new, reviews.
This is achieved through simple processes and clear policies as outlined below. We ask both reviewers and business owners to share our values and abide by these principles and guidelines and the Reviews Policy.
Reviews content guidelines
Posting a review
Our review service offers visitors the opportunity to rate and review their genuine, first hand, experiences with the businesses, products and services they use. Specifically:
A customer can only review a business with whom they have had a direct, first hand, experience and who have actively engaged in the buying process or delivery of service. Not based on what they heard from friends or relatives.
A customer can only review a business to the extent of their direct experience, for example a customer who obtained a quote from a business but did not accept the service can review their experience with obtaining the quote but cannot review the delivery or ongoing support for the service. In addition, you may not write a review about a business:
- That you or any family member have any financial interest in;
- That you are employed by or otherwise work for;
- That is a competitor to a business that you or any family member have any financial interest in, are employed by or otherwise work for;
- In exchange for a payment; or
- Where your interaction occurred more than 12 months previous to submitting the review
Customers are able to post a review across a range of different devices/channels – desktop, mobile and app.
As a minimum, customer need to provide a rating (1-5 stars) of a business
If they have had a bad experience with a business then try to explain to them why in their review. Genuine negative feedback is fine, but constructive criticism is much more useful to the business and potential customers than an angry rant.
The personal details of users will never be shared with the subject of their review, or 3rd parties, without obtaining permission, unless we are required to share them related to a court or government order.
We encourage free speech and defend everyone’s right to express unpopular points of view. But, we do not permit abusive or offensive behaviour, towards businesses or other users. This includes (but is not limited to) the use of profanities; threats; prejudiced comments; hate speech; and/ or, sexually explicit language. All user generated content material posted on the Shout Out Wales website, must comply with both the guidance in this Reviews Policy.
Anything posted should be a reviewer’s own, unique work. This includes not uploading images/ videos, or using content in videos to which someone else owns the copyright, such as music tracks, snippets of copyrighted programmes or videos made by other users and unattributed quotes. Content may be removed, without notice, if we receive a complaint from the copyright owner.
All reviewers should be aware that the content they submit becomes visible to anyone who visits the Shout Out Wales website, so they need to check what they’re posting meets our Shout Out Wales Conditions of Use.
Responding to a review
- Businesses will proactively be informed whenever any new review is posted against their business, subject to having review notification functionality switched on.
- Anyone, who has registered for a Shout Out Wales account, can respond to a posted review on their business.
- Businesses can do this via the ‘Received reviews’ page within their Shout Out Wales account.
- When the business owner responds to a review they will be highlighted as the business owner to consumers via the ‘Business Response’ flag.
- Any comments should be constructive and written in a non-biased way. They also need to adhere to policies associated with ‘Posting a Review’, other than the need to provide a star rating.
- All comments will be published in real-time and will be visible to all.
Reporting a review
We will review all third party material before it is published on the Shout Out Wales website. We actively encourage any party to report any review, that they believe to contravene our policies by using the ‘report review’ link on the specific review.
In the event of a review being reported, we will assess the review against our policy. If the review is not in breach of the policy but is believed by the reporter to be posted by an individual who is not recognised as someone who has had an experience with the business, we will contact the reviewer within 7 working days, via email, and provide 5 working days for the provision of further information to support a decision being made around the veracity of the review. In the absence of a response, the review will be withdrawn as unsubstantiated.
Where a review is reported as defamatory the person reporting the review will be advised of the outcome within 10 working days of the email being sent to the reviewer.
If the veracity of a reported review is substantiated it will remain in place, irrespective of Shout Out Wales’s relationship with the reviewed business. Substantiation will be based on Shout Out Wales being ‘satisfied’ that the review meets our policies. The only exception to this is if the reviewed business decides to suppress the review functionality from their listing altogether. In this case, all review data both positive and negative is removed and the business can no longer receive any reviews.
Requesting a review
We actively encourage all businesses to proactively manage their online reputation. This includes the ability to request reviews from their own customers (not friends or family). This can be done by sending your review page to them.
How reviews are accessed and reflected in a business’s listing
Star ratings will feature against a business’s listing, and within their business profile
Specific reviews will be accessible via a business’s profile page.
In some cases Shout Out Wales reviews are also published in 3rd party search results e.g. Google.
Getting in touch
If you need help with a Shout Out Wales Listing or information on any of our services please visit our Help and Support Centre.
Alternatively, if you are abe to email Shout Out Wales on firstname.lastname@example.org
We reserve the right to remove a review at any time for any reason. The reviews posted on Shout Out Wales are individual and highly subjective opinions. The opinions expressed in reviews are user opinions and not that of Shout Out Wales.
We do not endorse any of the opinions expressed by reviewers and we are not affiliated with any establishment listed or reviewed on this website.
Notice and Take-Down System – We anticipate to moderate reviews. We provide a passive conduit only for users to post reviews about businesses featured on our website.
Reviewers may not write a review that:
- They have been paid to write by the business or a competitor of the business;
- Does not describe their personal and direct interaction with the business;
- Is not factually correct;
- Violates laws regarding defamation, harassment, discrimination, racial vilification, sedition, blasphemy, bullying or contempt;
- Is abusive, offensive, indecent, pornographic or obscene;
- Advocates illegal activity or discusses illegal activities with the intent to commit them;
- Is intentionally or unintentionally false, misleading, deceptive, inaccurate, incorrect or unreliable;
- Infringes intellectual property rights including copyright of any third party;
- Is inappropriate, off topic, repetitive or vexatious; or
- Compromises the privacy or data protection rights of any person
For Business Owners – Business owners may not do any of the following which could damage your online reputation or be interpreted as misleading consumers:
- Pay for reviews of your own or a competitor’s business;
- Review your own or a competitor’s business; or
- Try to have negative reviews removed leaving only the positive reviews (astroturfing).