Grubhub goes to great lengths to extract tolls from its restaurants. Until last year, the company listed phantom restaurant phone numbers on its networks of fake Grubhub sites, which would route callers to the restaurant’s real number while enabling Grubhub to charge the restaurant a commission for the “lead.” A class action lawsuit detailing the practice revealed that Grubhub had charged one small chain thousands of dollars for phone calls that had never led to transactions; Grubhub was simply charging restaurants for every call lasting longer than 45 seconds. The lawsuit was thrown out for violating the arbitration clause of the contract in which Grubhub claimed it had obtained the restaurant’s permission to charge for the phone calls, but not before numerous other restaurants discovered thousands of dollars in dubious phone charges on their invoices.
Over and over again, Grubhub has justified its practices by characterizing them as “marketing services” provided to restaurant partners with their explicit permission to “help” them navigate the internet. This seems unlikely; no user Googling a restaurant by name needs that restaurant to be “marketed” to them. To the contrary, what Grubhub actually achieves by proliferating all these Grubhub-owned restaurant internet properties is simply the ability to take a cut out of every transaction a restaurant completes over the internet, charging that restaurant over and over again to access its own customers. These marketing services regularly drive commissions as high as 65%.
The company also uses its dominance in search to retaliate against restaurant owners who cancel, downgrade, or refuse to sign contracts with Grubhub. A Grubhub client restaurant in New York told TheCounter.org that her order volume fell off whenever she attempted to opt out of the premium services that had led her Grubhub bill to exceed her rent. A Miami pizzeria that had cancelled its Grubhub contract and built its own online ordering platform told one journalist that Grubhub had adjusted all its websites to tell users, inaccurately, that their restaurant was not taking orders. Economic Liberties spoke to another restaurant owner in Portland, Oregon who said she was terrified to close her account precisely for this reason. Similar to the deliberate proliferation of fake restaurant websites and fake restaurant phone numbers, it may also violate federal laws barring unfair and deceptive practices.
nu word dit uitgelegd als Riooljournalistiek , ik noem dit oplichting !!