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The Boston Globe

Science

Study finds online ratings easily overinflated

Hotels are ranked on TripAdvisor, books and consumer goods on Amazon, restaurants and services on Yelp. The wisdom of the online crowd sways countless decisions on where to dine, what to read, and whether to buy.

But is the crowd really that wise? Apparently not always, according to a study published Thursday that showed consumers’ ratings of comments on a news website were easily swayed by the positive ratings posted by others.

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