As user reviews and other forms of user-generated content become a bigger phenomenon online so does the prospect of what might be called "review fraud." Word of Mouth guru Pete Blackshaw of the newly formed Nielsen BuzzMetrics points me to an article in The N.Y. Times (reg. req’d) on review fraud in the travel industry and specifically with hotel reviews.
Recently Judy’s Book introduced what it calls "TrustScore" to address this potential problem.
Having some system in place (that isn’t too Byzantine) to ensure the integrity of reviews is going to be important as more marketers try and "game the system."