A café got a one-star review for its food but its response was five stars.
via Trip Advisor

For business owners, reviews on social media platforms such as Yelp!, Google or TripAdvisor are both a blessing and a curse.

They provide amazing social proof for prospective customers that show you're providing a great service, tasty food or manufacture high-quality products.

However, online reviewers can be picky or downright dishonest. Getting a negative review taken down on most of these social media platforms is difficult and in some instances impossible. One bad review can turn off countless potential customers costing business owners countless dollars.

A cafe owner in Stockport, England, a city just south of Manchester, fought back against a one-star review with a dash of humor and self-deprecation and it brought his business a ton of attention.

It all started with a TripAdvisor review knocking the Nook Neighbourhood Café for its "tepid" and "undercooked" porridge. The customer claims to have asked for three servings before eventually giving up.

(For the uninitiated, porridge is a hot breakfast cereal made from starchy grains similar to oatmeal.)



via Trip Advisor

"The lady's comment was quite disappointing because we try to provide the best service at all times," Arlo Calderbank, the café's manager, told Manchester Evening News. "Seeing the comment pop up on TripAdvisor was a bit of a shame."

He was also miffed because the review was dishonest.

"I was working when the lady complained," he continued. "I remember her face. She wasn't particularly happy, she had a bit of a grumble and we gave her a refund. The next thing there was a nasty comment left on TripAdvisor."

So Calderbank decided to turn cold porridge into gold by creating a funny street sign that references the review in a tongue-and-cheek manner. "Come in & try the worst porridge that one woman on TripAdvisor had in her life."

A passersby took a photo of the sign and posted it to Instagram and it quickly went viral. Calderbank and his fellow employees were shocked by the public's reaction.

"I'm gobsmacked about the amount of shares and reaction the sign has had on social media," he said. "I do like the little quirky drawings the staff sometimes do, but so far this one has beaten them all for reaction. All the staff are gobsmacked about it too."

The post got some funny responses as well.

via Justinmoorhouse / Instagram

Even though his café got slammed on TripAdvisor, Calderbank still belives that online feedback is valuable for the business. "I check what's being said on there every day," he said. "We do genuinely take all comments seriously. It's really useful to see what the customers have been saying and to take on board feedback."

Running a business means dealing with the public, which can be tricky, especially in the age of social media. But great customer service is all about knowing that bad things are bound to happen and knowing how to handle them the best way possible.

And for that, Calderbank deserves "5 stars — will recommend."

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If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

Ready for the weekend? Of course, you are. Here's our weekly dose of good vibes to help you shed the stresses of the workweek and put yourself in a great frame of mind.

These 10 stories made us happy this week because they feature amazing creativity, generosity, and one super-cute fish.

1. Diver befriends a fish with the cutest smile

Hawaiian underwater photographer Yuki Nakano befriended a friendly porcupine fish and now they hang out regularly.

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