In what may turn out to be a critical test case of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s ability to prevent businesses from manipulating review sites, the federal agency has launched legal proceedings against Meriton Serviced Apartments, which manages about 4400 apartments around the country, for preventing negative customer reviews from being posted on TripAdvisor.

Email addresses of customers going through TripAdvisor’s “Review Express” service between November 2014 and October 2015 were allegedly changed where there was a fear of a negative review.

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