We are aware that the internet hides frauds and that one needs to be careful when leaving personal information but this case is something incredible. The best restaurant in London doesn’t exist! How is that possible?

British journalist Odah Butler often earned money by writing good fake reviews about restaurants on different online platforms and came up with an idea to start a fake restaurant named The Shed at Dulwich on his own address and see where can he get by registration on TripAdvisor. He has come far way…

First comments were from his friends and made the restaurant rise from 18149th place to 1500th place which was a great achievement already.

After that, Odah also made a website on which he published pictures of meals and a menu. It looked so true that it made guests write positive reviews without ever visiting the restaurant and Odah’s mobile phone started ringing more and more. He was wisely answering that the restaurant is booked for weeks ahead and so kept his lie alive. Restaurant was then on the 156th place.  On the picture is a picture of one of meals being prepared in The Shed.

Step by step the The Shed came to number thirty on TripAdvisor and people started to pass by near Odah’s house and even asked him as a passenger if he knows where The Shed is. That weren’t just people from London but from all around the world, he said. He got a call from TripAdvisor and thought: “it’s over, I’m exposed”. But TripAdvisor’s people just called him to say that his restaurant is getting 89000 views per day! The lie continued.

Restaurant eventually reached 1st position on 4th November, 2018 after comments such as “Worthwhile Waiting” and “Absolute Winner”. It kept there for a few days and Odah decided to have some lucky guests there for dinner. They were absolutely surprised and enchanted! Video is a bit long but it is fantastic, take a look at it.

In order to protect themselves, TripAdvisor said that they don’t expect fake restaurants because owners have no use of it but they did also say that they monitored The Shed because of several suspicious acts such as deleting comments.

The conclusion is even though comments give a type of credibility to a restaurant, they can be completely false. How much false it is best described on The Shed example where Odah Butler showed how an imaginary restaurant can become the best in a large city such as London!