Six Hotel Reviewer Openings, 1,500 Applications

That discouraging ratio is the actual number of applicants to openings startup received recently. Oyster, which aims to bring unbiased, journalistic reviews to the hotel industry, has a staff of 20—most of them former journalists—reporting undercover on hotels in Vegas, New York, Miami and Jamaica. Oyster reporters follow a 65-page manual asking them to check out everything from the minibar to the brand of mattress.

The Star-Ledger reports that the staff are paid in the “mid-to-high double digits” with bonuses, and that morale is high.

The site will burn through $40 million before it breaks even in 2011, with money coming in from ads (some from hotels, though advertising won’t affect reviews, Elie Seidman, the site’s co-founder and chief executive says.

Well, perhaps consumer reporting is what we really want.

Publish date: October 6, 2009 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT