Sign up to receive 5 free days of our daily summary for tech news.

Special Offer: Try out The Information today for only $10/month for your first 3 months.

The Downside of Positive Feedback

It is well known that anonymous and pseudo-anonymous feedback forums online, like Yelp and Craigslist, have a negativity problem. In emotionally disconnected and consequence-free environments, users tend towards over-the-top and unhelpful negative feedback, and just plain meanness.

I am starting to believe that apps whose services involve human interaction in the real world, ranging from Uber and Flywheel to Instacart and Postmates, suffer from the opposite problem. Feedback forms on these apps are designed in a way that people have incentives to be too nice, not too mean.  This niceness destroys the value of the feedback and makes it hard for these marketplaces to measure the quality of their service.

What Is The Information?


Exclusive Articles

We broke it first. Receive original reporting you won't read anywhere else from the largest newsroom in tech.


Daily news analysis

Every weeknight, we'll send you our reporters’ views on the day’s top tech news—distilled into one email.

Conference calls

Conference calls

Get access to our reporters and other top executives with monthly deep-dive calls into topics like startups and autonomous vehicles.


Global Events

For no extra fee, get access to more than a dozen events yearly, from intimate dinners to larger gatherings with marquee speakers.

What else is included in my subscription?

Tech Top 10 Mobile App

Our new app featuring summaries of the most important tech news curated by our team, a calendar, breaking news alerts and more.

Slack community

Discuss topics and current events with our subscriber-only Slack group and share news about your company with other subscribers.

Annual Subscriber only benefits:

Org Charts

Access the only collection of tech company org charts. Our expanding database includes companies like Amazon, Snap, and Uber.

Crypto Newsletter

Our experts investigate the latest in the crypto world to keep you in-the-know about the movements of digital currencies.

Stay up to date on Silicon Valley

Sign up for Jessica Lessin’s (The Information’s CEO & Founder) free Saturday newsletter and also receive a complimentary week of our daily afternoon tech commentary email.

Already a subscriber? Log in here