Bad Reviews

John Scalzi often posts some of his more over-the-top one-star Amazon book reviews as a sort of self therapy.  I have done the same think in the past with our online campground and TripAdviser reviews.  Here is a two star review we received the other day for our Juniper Springs facility in Florida.

I have had problems with employees here in the past telling lies about me to other campers & employees, because my extreme good looks are a threat to them somehow. I am an Actor. The amount of jealousy is ridiculous. I won't repeat any of it here, but the defamation & slander has been pretty extreme. I am camped here now for a planned long stay, & if they come off with that crap again I plan to sue them individually & as a company.

As for the campground itself, I love it. The showers are awesome & the best in the forest. They have bear boxes now to store food, but these seem large enough to hide a couple of people. Can be opened from the inside an emergency I'd go for it. There are No Electric sites, which makes things difficult. But it is far enough away from civilization to make sleeping at night quiet & peaceful, with an occasional smooth hum of a tractor trailer going by.

The last part of the review was nice but the first paragraph was a total head-scratch.  I have polled the staff and no one has any idea who this person is or what he is referring to.  I usually respond to negative reviews online but have no idea what to write on this one.  I sent a private message to the customer to please give me a bit more detail so I can investigate.

By the way, one of the reasons I think we are successful is that I have systems in  place where nearly every negative review from a variety of sources, including our own surveys, flow right to my inbox.  I read every one, and respond to most.

As a second by the way, the Juniper Springs canoe run is a very special experience if you are ever in the area and like that sort of thing.  It is not for beginners, but it is one of the most beautiful wild areas in Florida.  When the author of the Unofficial Guide to DisneyWorld was asked in the back of his book what his favorite attraction in Florida was, he did not answer Disney or Universal but said the Juniper Springs canoe run.


  1. jdgalt:

    John Scalzi gets (some) bad reviews for a political reason. He is a major figure in the "snowflake" movement, AKA identity politics, and those reviews are more about him than about his material. He is believed to do the same to his opponents. The only relevance here is, don't take the reviews seriously.

    I don't know whether to blame the same phenomenon for Coyote's bad reviews. Some folks are very anti-privatization, and they might do that if they knew who you were.

  2. mlhouse:

    Sorry to post that review, but I am ever so handsome.

  3. Steve:

    Juniper Springs looks awesome. I pulled it up to see where it's at and it's not far from one of my favorite thrillseeking destinations in Florida, that being Orlando (no, not Disney). Next time I go down there I may have to plan an excursion.

  4. Steven Aldridge:

    When a business owner gets a negative review it is taken more seriously sometimes than it should be. We all read reviews (I do before I buy anything) and with that kind of practice you get to know how to ferret out the problem customers. That being siad, this one is so obvious that it doesn't even require examination, I was done after the first line.

  5. sch:

    Fond memories of Juniper Springs from a visit in the '50s Beautiful place. I recall wanting to do the canoe trip even
    then. Had a nice swimming area and numerous little 'boiler springs' with sand and water mix bubbling up out of 18-30"
    diameter openings.

  6. kidmugsy:

    "I am an Actor ... I am camped": what's he hinting at?

  7. DanSmith:

    "Don't you have a special line for emergencies? Or celebrities? Well I'm a celebrity with an emergency." Bill Murray in "Groundhog Day."

  8. Jason Calley:

    I visited Juniper Springs last summer, and yes, it really is a very nice place. We had a family get-together there and really enjoyed it. The water is beautiful -- but COLD! People who have not experienced Florida springs might expect something warmer, but be advised, a shorty wet suit might be a good idea if you plan on being in the water for long. Oh! one more thing... If you plan on going, make sure you get there early. The park fills up quickly, and once it fills, no more people are allowed in unless someone else leaves.

  9. johnmoore:

    The first paragraph pretty strongly suggests a delusional mental illness. There are a lot of folks out there who have problems that result in this sort of paragraph, while leaving them functional enough to write the second one.

  10. jim jones:

    Whenever I read online reviews I assume that a certain number are from lunatics

  11. ladyhawk:

    I have done a lot of canoeing in my 70 years, but Juniper Springs stands out . Unparalleled beauty, quiet, private, with lovely secret places around every corner. Not to be missed.

  12. Jim Swartwood:

    Total narcissist, like the outgoing prez.

  13. Earl Wertheimer:

    Embed code with Map & Directions seems broken:
    I am using Chrome. I just get a blank space under the Share, Tweet, Like links.
    Campground map seems ok...

  14. Bwawahaha:

    You have a lot of customers. Two to four percent of Americans have Narcissistic Personality Disorder. You will get some reviews where you are "not respecting" enough, or jealous, etc. This person needs psychotherapy, not a better campground staff.

  15. CorkyBoyd:

    Thanks for making me aware of Juniper Springs. I will definitely be visiting it in May.

    About the lady with the extreme good looks, she sounds like a shill for the campsite. Better check your staff. The scenario sounds like the internet video clips touting well dressed or well exposed voluptuous ladies at Walmart. All I can find there are overweight senior ladies who are 3 baggers at a minimum.

  16. kidmugsy:

    Talking of bad reviews:

    a while ago, blogger, you argued that there was a case for Trump not pursuing Hellary and Slick Willie for their crimes. In light of the harassment, amounting almost to a slow-motion attempted coup d'état, that their people have subjected Trump do, do you stand by your original opinion?

  17. marco73:

    Great, great canoeing. We went last summer on a whim and floated right past a really large gator in the first couple hundred yards. Then there were more gators, fish, birds, and we even saw a couple deer on the shoreline.
    Very convenient from anywhere in Central Florida, but get there early or you will be waiting for someone to leave to get a parking space.