I have often wondered the same thing, why not provide a way to comment. Come on Andy NathalieF find a way to let us respond in the review.
I too am eager to hear the Marriott response, because I believe this can be a significant 'point of differentiation' for the Insiders forum, and an opportunity to not only add significant value to our travel experience, but also increase interaction among Insiders.
Validity is always going to be an issue with or without a date, a reader essentially has to distinguish evaluative criterion on their own, whether it's Trip Advisor, Yelp, Hotel.com etc etc. A feedback loop among Marriott Insiders, if anything, strengthens both the validity and the reliability of the review, by flushing out the issues, which makes the Insider review a more useful tool than the other review forums (drawing even more interaction, hopefully creating a virtuous circle).
It would seem to me that these thousands of reviews that has now been submitted would be enhanced in value with A) interaction among others who have stayed there and B) a more useful More Like This column over to the right that attaches write ups about the specific property rather than accumulating reviews that have the same title "A Great Stay" from all over the world.
We have seen from the CNBC profile on Marriott that Marriott has the technological capability of having every price of every competitor for every night, so I don't believe it's a tech issue (but I haven't ruled that out, since I don't know squat about this stuff). If it is a cost or an administrative nightmare issue, I will certainly respect and abide by that, but just say so Andy, no sweat. Just don't tell us we prefer reviews without comments (like the Courtyard coffee), unless you want to have an iahflyr 30 day poll , but then like psudad writes, validity does become an issue.
Here we have a meaty topic that has been tossed about ever since the first segment of reviews began, even prior to the contest, it would be terrific if somehow at least some of the significant potential could be captured.
You're absolutely right, there's a ton of great information throughout the community that when combined with a hotel review can really provide fantastic insights and recommendations. On each hotel page, there's a section in the right column labeled "Related Content" which links to content elsewhere in the community that's tagged with the same location as the hotel page you're looking at. We're currently showing 3 links and we can look to expand the number of links if that would useful.
Right, so commenting would be one way to validate reviews, and to erc's point encourage engagement. But the best way to currently quantify how helpful a particular review is for you and help elevate those really helpful reviews is to "like" it. Think of a "like" in this case as a vote of agreement or validation. On each hotel page (Residence Inn Milwaukee Brookfield), you'll notice the option to filter reviews for that specific hotel by "Most liked".
Being able to comment on a review or ask for clarification or ask a question would be great, but I do understand why that feature is not available. I do think, however, that the ability of a property manager to respond to a review would be helpful. Case in point: I gave a really terrible review on the Hollywood Beach Marriott in FL, only to receive an email from the new property manager addressing each point and explaining how they had improved or made changes so this did not happen again. As it stands, my review remains terrible on the Insiders page, but those items have since been addressed by the property. Just thinking it would be beneficial to those reviewing comments to know that issues have been addressed.
I posted a not too flattering review once that also received a quick response from the management which included a free night offer. When I took them up on their offer, I posted another updated review referencing my previous post. If one has a comment on a reviewed hotel, you must have stayed at the property so write a review of your stay and mention the review you're commenting on.