Friday, February 09, 2007

Don't bother with reviews any more

I can't imagine why a newspaper would bother with reviews - movies, music, books, plays, restaurants, whatever - after yesterday's court ruling.

The Irish News lost a libel action taken by a restaurant owner who sued for libel after getting 1 star out of 5. What? Maybe there's more to this story than RTE offers here, but if this is all there is then the whole notion of reviews is dead.
The reviewer criticised the quality of the food and drink, the staff and the smokey atmosphere, and gave the restaurant one mark out of a possible five.

The owner of Goodfellas, Ciarnan Convery, took a libel action against the Irish News with his lawyers claiming the review was defamatory and damaging, and said the paper had failed to apologise or print a retraction.
Maybe newspaper reviews could be like modern youth sports events where everyone gets a medal? Everyone gets 5 stars no matter how awful the food, play, movie, book, whatever.