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When you write an online review (for instance, of a restaurant) is it appropriate to include information about the hosts that isn't directly related to the service provided?

Recently I bought a dinner with a social eating app. It was a pleasant experience, and as usual I would like to write a review about it. Here's the problem: Should I include the fact that the hosts have light physical disabilities?

Probably there's no need to mention it, and I shouldn't be protecting anyone from anyone, but still... Could it happen that someone doesn't feel like they have the sensitivity to deal with these hosts? And should I warn them? For example, imagine someone who has never seen a hand that is missing a finger, and this person keeps looking at it, which is kind of rude.

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    "This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful" I have no idea how to even search for it, it's not something that happens commonly – lunadir Jan 30 at 13:50
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Let's consider this from three different perspectives:

1) What is the purpose of a review? To provide information about a service or product. From that point of view, I would not include information about the host or provider that isn't relevant to your experience of the service or product.

2) What do you owe the hosts? As you mentioned, it isn't your job to protect them. If they have chosen to provide this service, and if they elected not to mention their disabilities in the service description, it means they don't have any expectation that the people they host need to know that fact ahead of time.

3) What do you owe potential guests? You owe potential guests a fair, honest, and useful depiction of the service or product. It isn't your job to protect them from their own potential prejudices.

So, in my opinion, the conclusion is clear. Review the meal, and leave the hosts' personal characteristics out of it, unless those either negatively or positively impacted your experience in some significant and relevant way.

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  • "they elected not to mention their disabilities in the service description" is what i thought too, but still, the service is composed of two parts: social eating, so socializing and eating, would we agree? and the socializing part includes their character, do we agree on this too? the review in question has a section for the food, a section for the company, and the hosts can also write a review/comment of the guest – lunadir Jan 30 at 16:14
  • You didn't say anything about their "character," you were talking about their physical disabilities. Nor did you indicate that those impacted your meal or enjoyment. Is the real issue here that YOU were distressed by their disabilities? – Chris Sunami supports Monica Jan 30 at 16:46
  • The reason i mention their disabilites is because the review theoretically includes the social part too, that's all. I had no issues with their disabilities, bot some else could. Disability affects your psychology; I'm not saying it's a disaster if one happens to book there without knowing it, just that it's useful to have had some experiences with this reality before. I guess in the end I guess I'll just ignore it, I can't find a way to approach this. – lunadir Jan 31 at 7:37
  • Would you say "in case you're a racist, please be aware the host is black"? Or "in case you're anti-Semitic, please be aware the host is Jewish"? I hope not. I don't see any difference between that and this case. – Chris Sunami supports Monica Feb 6 at 21:27
  • Yes, I know it's easy to fall in the discimination category, but I'm not talking this, I'm talking about the human relationship between a person who is disabled and one who is not, and if this situation requires enough sensibility to be explicitly told. – lunadir Feb 7 at 13:26
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I don't want to call it a gimmick, but I feel unless the restaurant is marketing this as something they do (hiring people with disabilities as part of the wait staff) I would avoid this. A lot of disabled people don't want attention drawn and don't want to be "charity cases" but rather treated as if they were no different than anyone else without the disability (And I feel I should re-iterate what it is I mean by gimmick. Lots of restaurant hire attractive waitresses, but the Hooters Chain restaurant hires them exclusively for wait service staff positions and markets this fact in advertising. Is this a restaurant that has some staff that just so happen to be attractive women(sub disabled) or does the restaurant actively promote itself as hiring these people. And yes, there is something different between giving pretty girls jobs and giving disabled people jobs, but the idea is it's part of the resturant's promoted image. Another idea is the Mission BBQ chain, which runs a lot of promotions that support U.S. Military and Veterans groups and local First Responders Like Police, Fire, and EMS services.)

If this is not the case, I recommend getting in contact with the Host and asking if it's okay to bring the topic up first, especially if you are going to praise him or ask people to politely not stare (they maybe don't care or maybe feel like they can fend for themselves... some may even be prone to poking fun at themselves (I'm aware of an Australian Comedian who is missing a leg and will wear a false leg, but a major part of his show is going to be a series of jokes about how he likes freaking people out with his false leg).

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  • Yeah, I thought of asking them about mentioning the topic, but as Chris said the hosts didn't write it in the description of the event, so there's that. It's not a restaurant, with this service you go to eat at people's house. Taking from what you said, paradoxically I found myself less comfortable at the previous event where the hosts were a very beautiful brother and a sister. – lunadir Jan 31 at 7:41
  • @lunadir: If it was something that you think enhanced your experience (or really detracted from it) I would say it's worth mentioning since all reviews are opinion in nature. Especially if you want to praise them, make sure you ask if they would want the compliment printed as it's easier to be insensitive by accident because everyone handles disabilities differently. If it detracted, I would say make sure they understand why, but know that readers are going to see you as an asshole even if you weren't trying to be offensive. – hszmv Jan 31 at 14:11
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    @lunadir: Just explain why you think the information should be included to them before you put it into public print, so they know you don't want to print something they see as offensive. – hszmv Jan 31 at 14:13
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So after thinking about it for sometime I think the issue boils down to two factors: first I don't have time to spend hours thinking about it, second if I do this for them should I do this for everyone? Should I say something in the review for everytime I met someone that "deviates from the norm"? No, as of now I don't feel like it, also I'm not the police, so I should probably just write my experience, if it went well or not.

I stil maintain that since the platform I'm writing the review on is about socialization there should be a way to tell the guest-to-be the details about the experience they are going to buy.

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