Over its two decades in business, TripAdvisor has turned an initial investment of $3m into a $7bn business by figuring out how to provide a service that no other tech company has quite mastered: constantly updated information about every imaginable element of travel, courtesy of an ever-growing army of contributors who provide their services for free. Browsing through TripAdvisor’s 660m reviews is a study in extremes. As a kind of mirror of the world and all its wonders, the site can transport you to the most spectacular landmarks, the finest restaurants, the most “adrenaline-pumping” water parks, the greatest “Hop-On Hop-Off Experiences” that mankind has ever devised. Yet TripAdvisor reviews are also a ruthless audit of the earth’s many flaws. For every effusive review of the Eiffel Tower (“Worth the hype at night,” “Perfect Backdrop!”), there is another that suggests it is a blight on the face of the earth (“sad, ugly, don’t bother”; “similar to the lobby of a big Vegas casino, but outside”.) Get the full story at The Guardian