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Maya Ish Shalom

Good evening.

Team Trump in trouble

Trump's tax returns will become public if the Supreme Court follows precedent. The high court must decide whether to grant the president's new petition for review. If it does, that won't necessarily bode well for Trump.

If the Supreme Court follows precedent, Trump’s tax returns will become public

It’s a weird one... on the one hand, the long history of state vs federal reach and powers is a struggle that shaped the constitution by the framers. And on the other hand US presidents have also traditionally voluntarily disclosed their tax returns...

Sitting president aside, this is one to watch

It’s a weird one... on the one hand, the long history of state vs federal reach and powers is a struggle that shaped the constitution by the framers. And on the other hand US presidents have also traditionally voluntarily disclosed their tax returns...

Sitting president aside, this is one to watch: it’s far reaching in the implications towards the ever expanding executive powers...

Yesterday Trump filed a petition to the US Supreme Court seeking to block a subpoena that will force his accountants to turn over his financials. The prior cases on related matters didn't turn out well for presidents Richard Nixon or Bill Clinton. But Trump is making much of the distinctions here and

Yesterday Trump filed a petition to the US Supreme Court seeking to block a subpoena that will force his accountants to turn over his financials. The prior cases on related matters didn't turn out well for presidents Richard Nixon or Bill Clinton. But Trump is making much of the distinctions here and hoping the justices will agree that this case, arising from a state grand jury investigation, is unconstitutional.

The mind of the millennial

Psychologically speaking

What the health?

Inside Apple

Judicial affairs

Building a sustainable future

Flooding is difficult to predict and prepare for. A hydrologist in the UK wants the government to be more aware of the risks of building homes and businesses in floodplains—or at least improve design standards. There have been devastating floods in the north of England this week.

Why flooding is so difficult to predict and prepare for

Flooding is a tragic reality for many parts of the UK today – and flooding will also become more common and more extreme with climate change. The Met Office believes that intense rainfall associated with flash flooding could become almost 5 x more frequent by the end of the century.

In the UK, greater

Flooding is a tragic reality for many parts of the UK today – and flooding will also become more common and more extreme with climate change. The Met Office believes that intense rainfall associated with flash flooding could become almost 5 x more frequent by the end of the century.

In the UK, greater investment needs to be made in developing more innovative water management systems and new, more radical, forms of flood defence. There are some fascinating infrastructure innovations in this area, particularly from Asia, which is home to some of the world’s wettest countries.

In Tokyo, a massive “underground cathedral” is part of the Metropolitan Area Outer Underground Discharge Channel – a system of dams, levees and tunnels defending Tokyo. In extreme flood cases, the system takes in water from the 5 rivers crossing Tokyo, holds it temporarily, and then discharges it into the largest river when it’s safe to do so. The pumps in this system can push 200 tons of water per second (which equates to emptying a 25m swimming pool in 2-3 seconds)

Another example is the work led by Professor Kongjian Yu, developing the concept of “sponge cities” – a city designed (or retrofitted) to passively absorb, clean and use flood water. There are now hundreds of sites around the globe that use sponge city concepts, including permeable pavements, wetlands, and rain gardens all with the aim of absorbing excessive rainfall through soil infiltration and/or retaining it in underground tunnels and storage tanks until flooding recedes or it can be safely channelled.

It will be interesting to see whether the UK looks to greenlighting more ambitious approaches to flood management over time. Projects of this scale will of course come with a significant price tag.

No business like showbusiness

Food under threat

That's it, time for bed.

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How Companies Secretly Boost Their Glassdoor Ratings

How Companies Secretly Boost Their Glassdoor Ratings

Read more on The Wall Street Journal

From Our Members

  • Influencing ratings and reviews, while not illegal, is fraudulent. Brands actively report their Glassdoor ratings as a means to attract high quality talent and influenced ratings are likely increasing HR costs, sabotaging internal KPIs, and diverting much needed investment into staff and related supports.

  • When you give people the ability to anonymously rate services or offerings they will often do so without the due care and attention required. Recruiting in 21st century workplace is hard. Although it should, Glassdoor doesn’t necessarily encourage honesty. It allows for extreme views on both ends of the spectrum.

  • The issue with reviews in general is people tend to write when they are pissed off, not when they are happy. I met someone once who had an ax to grind with a former employer, and made it his life work to screw said employer through Glassdoor. I’d be more worried about those people. If anything, I would

    The issue with reviews in general is people tend to write when they are pissed off, not when they are happy. I met someone once who had an ax to grind with a former employer, and made it his life work to screw said employer through Glassdoor. I’d be more worried about those people. If anything, I would imagine some companies don’t write fraudulent reviews but encourage employees who are having a more positive experience to write something to balance things out, much like Amazon asks for a review after a purchase.

    As a small business owner I had to deal with fraudulent Glassdoor reviews that were written on the same day for a position that never existed, and was full of defamatory and libelous claims. I don’t know how Glassdoor determines what is real and what is not, but thankfully these reviews were taken down after a bit of back and forth. So my point is if anonymity lead to honesty I’d have no problem with it. Unfortunately it often doesn’t.

  • Seems to me, the option for anonymity in reviews helps balance the accuracy of them. You can't tell me 90% of businesses (or movies or restaurants or products) out there are 4 and 5 stars... If that were true, fix the bell curve.

  • I would discourage anyone from solely relying on Glassdoor as job searching tool, even without the fake (or company encouraged) reviews. Like widely observed with Yelp, all review aggregators are going to be influenced by those with extreme experiences - good or bad. While the net impact may average

    I would discourage anyone from solely relying on Glassdoor as job searching tool, even without the fake (or company encouraged) reviews. Like widely observed with Yelp, all review aggregators are going to be influenced by those with extreme experiences - good or bad. While the net impact may average out, it won't always be the most useful tool for evaluating companies.

  • Two comments.

    One thing that’s neglected in spiking of ratings is other factors. The author notes: “While it isn’t possible to determine from the data alone what caused each spike, a statistical test shows the likelihood that so many would skew positive by chance is highly improbable.” But note that

    Two comments.

    One thing that’s neglected in spiking of ratings is other factors. The author notes: “While it isn’t possible to determine from the data alone what caused each spike, a statistical test shows the likelihood that so many would skew positive by chance is highly improbable.” But note that another influence, other than manipulation, is likewise not “chance”. For example, an organization may see a huge spike in positive ratings upon rolling out an extended family leave policy. Not chance, not manipulation either. Most are probably blatant manipulation, but the possibility of other influences should have been mentioned.

    Encouraging employees to leave reviews isn’t really any different than encouraging employees to vote. In both cases it’s only ethical if you encourage participation without encouraging a specific direction. But, as always, some are more personally inclined towards unethical behavior.

  • Only problem with the headline is the word "secretly". Anyone who believes this is a big secret is delusional.

  • While this is definitely concerning, it begs the question, “Are people really only using ONE source when job hunting?”

    If a company has five stars on Glassdoor, but one or two stars on other recruiting platforms it seems to me that’s a huge red flag and personally, I would not apply for a position at that company.

  • I always imagined that the people who are willing to leave Glassdoor reviews are the people with the extreme views you should avoid.

    I spent 7 years at my last job and had up experiences and down experiences, it would be misleading to try to encompass that whole experience into 200 words or less

  • In the Journal’s analysis, five-star ratings collectively made up 45% of reviews in the months where the number of reviews jumped, compared with 25% in the six months before and after.

    Some months with high numbers of reviews came after interns were recruited, according to the first person familiar

    In the Journal’s analysis, five-star ratings collectively made up 45% of reviews in the months where the number of reviews jumped, compared with 25% in the six months before and after.

    Some months with high numbers of reviews came after interns were recruited, according to the first person familiar with the effort. They provided more than 84% of five-star reviews in July 2016 and in August 2017.

  • Having just worked very briefly for a company with inflated ratings, I wouldn't change anything except know that companies boost their ratings when they aren't that good. I read the reviews and the negative ones all had a common theme. I was hired as an org dev person to help change things, but the leader

    Having just worked very briefly for a company with inflated ratings, I wouldn't change anything except know that companies boost their ratings when they aren't that good. I read the reviews and the negative ones all had a common theme. I was hired as an org dev person to help change things, but the leader wasn't really interested in changing anything. Within a week of establishing this, I was gone. But, the reviews were there. It was a chance I took. When the HR person hiring you states they have a 97% retention rate in 3 separate conversations you know something is up. Yelp reviews are also inflated for similar reasons. You have to read the bad and good and get a feel for what the real situation is.

  • It is an open secret that many reviews are paid for in kind services. As long as reviews drive commerce, there will always be someone willing to spend goods or money to make even more money.

    I myself when reading reviews tend to take them with a grain of salt.

    But if you take the reviews over a longer

    It is an open secret that many reviews are paid for in kind services. As long as reviews drive commerce, there will always be someone willing to spend goods or money to make even more money.

    I myself when reading reviews tend to take them with a grain of salt.

    But if you take the reviews over a longer period of time they will show a trend.

  • A few suggestions to help improve this model. I apologise that I don't use Glassdoor, apologise if these techniques are already part of the model, and I'm assuming Glassdoor has all the user info for everyone.

    All participants should have to identify their employer when creating an account, maybe by

    A few suggestions to help improve this model. I apologise that I don't use Glassdoor, apologise if these techniques are already part of the model, and I'm assuming Glassdoor has all the user info for everyone.

    All participants should have to identify their employer when creating an account, maybe by LinkedIn reference with a minimum number of endorsements, not visible to other participants, or confirmed by a fellow employee who is previously confirmed. (Chicken-Egg problem not withstanding) Reviewers should then be identified as employees or non-employees, and also rated on a Trust scale by other Glassdoor participants, with the ratings viewable by groupings of employees and non-employees of the company being reviewed. Similarly, employee reviewers should be identified as employees, but also rated on the Trust scale by fellow employees and non-employees, all viewable, but still all anonymous. There should be a Rewards system funded by employers who can show their appreciation for reviewers by giving rewards gifts and company swag. (typical corporate gifts, mugs, travel bags, phones, golf gear, watches, ticket vouchers to Hamilton) That framework should temper the noise, the extremes and the gamesmanship, and also reward and bring out well connected, good reviewers who people trust. How cool would it be to secretly be a 5-Star reviewer in Glassdoor, receiving accolades and thanks, while also raking in Rewards and swag from top employers?

  • Some really hilarious comments here. Glassdoor, like Yelp or Trip Advisor or word of mouth, is essentially just a forum for opinions. Left alone, the only people who will likely leave a review are the most unhappy, thus the results are skewed. Encouraging people to leave reviews is not fraudulent at

    Some really hilarious comments here. Glassdoor, like Yelp or Trip Advisor or word of mouth, is essentially just a forum for opinions. Left alone, the only people who will likely leave a review are the most unhappy, thus the results are skewed. Encouraging people to leave reviews is not fraudulent at all, any more than the constant requests to complete positive surveys after a dining experience are fraudulent. If a company ghost writes reviews, that is clearly fraud. Otherwise, it’s no different than any other consumer feedback mechanism. If any employee is “forced” to write a positive review, that is obviously unethical, but since reviews are almost always anonymous, then that’s hard to do. So, if you read Yelp reviews, do you consider it unethical if the dining establishment encouraged those who had a great experience to leave a review? Of course not.

  • Of course they are. A lot of work places are cut throat and millennials are really hard to work with.

  • After hiring on with a company as a private military contractor in Afghanistan I stumbled on some seriously bad reviews of the company, one star ratings and reviews saying it was a dangerous "lord of the flies" type work environment. Not exactly what you want to hear when you're headed into a war zone

    After hiring on with a company as a private military contractor in Afghanistan I stumbled on some seriously bad reviews of the company, one star ratings and reviews saying it was a dangerous "lord of the flies" type work environment. Not exactly what you want to hear when you're headed into a war zone. If I had seen the reviews before I signed the contract I probably wouldn't have done it, but I did, and it turned out to be two of the best years of my professional life and one of my most favorite jobs of all time. I found out later that most of the bad ratings were due to several disgruntled employees that had been fired. I take ratings into consideration in almost everything I do these days, from buying a 20 dollar charging cable on Amazon to finding reputable contractors to do business with, but I would think it's common knowledge that star ratings aren't completely reliable. If you actually read the reviews it can tell you a lot more than the number of stars, and it's a lot easier to spot a fraud. You just have to use some common sense.