This is because government agencies are monopolies by design, meaning they do not have to worry about losing customers to another company. Their customers are essentially forced to do business with them because it is illegal for people to offer alternatives.
Nothing has changed about that arrangement at all, except now you can complain about it on Yelp! That’s right, the popular app that allows people to rate the service they receive from private businesses is now allowing users to make comments about federal agencies.
Apparently, this move is actually being welcomed by politicians, but it is highly possible they have no clue what they are in for. Yelp released an official statement this week on its blog:
“We are excited to announce that Yelp has concluded an agreement with the federal government that will allow federal agencies and offices to claim their Yelp pages, read and respond to reviews, and incorporate that feedback into service improvements.
We encourage Yelpers to review any of the thousands of agency field offices, TSA checkpoints,national parks, Social Security Administration offices, landmarks and other places already listed on Yelp if you have good or bad feedback to share about your experiences. Not only is it helpful to others who are looking for information on these services, but you can actually make an impact by sharing your feedback directly with the source.
It’s clear Washington is eager to engage with people directly through social media. Earlier this year a group of 46 lawmakers called for the creation of a ‘Yelp for Government’ in order to boost transparency and accountability, and Representative Ron Kind reiterated this call in a letter to the General Services Administration (GSA). Luckily for them, there’s no need to create a new platform now that government agencies can engage directly on Yelp.
As this agreement is fully implemented in the weeks and months ahead, we’re excited to help the federal government more directly interact with and respond to the needs of citizens and to further empower the millions of Americans who use Yelp every day.”
The blog post was titled, “How Many Stars Would You Give the TSA? Review Federal Agencies on Yelp…and Maybe Get a Response.”
Though until now they haven’t responded to reviews, many DMVs across the country have already been racking up plenty of one-star ratings, with many more critical (and hilarious) reviews likely to come following this new announcement from Yelp.