Restaurant Owner Proves Yelper Lied With Surveillance Footage | NBC 7 San Diego

Restaurant Owner Proves Yelper Lied With Surveillance Footage

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    Millbrae's wonderful, a Chinese restaurant, has video footage that disputes one Yelper's written complaint. Ian Cull reports. (Published Thursday, March 26, 2015)

    A Chinese restaurant in Millbrae got a bad review on Yelp, and the restaurant owner's son fought back with surveillance video, proving the "reviewer" had only been inside the bustling eatery for 22 seconds.

     Yelp member named "Dan W." from San Bruno wrote that the restaurant, named Millbrae's wonderful (lower case w), would not seat him on March 18 and awarded the restaurant one star - the lowest review possible. The review, since removed by Yelp, said, "It's not that classy of a place, but they wouldn't seat me."

    But the restaurant owner's son, You You Xue, who is studying abroad in England but still manages the finances and website, didn't believe it. And he set out to prove that the reviewer was wrong. "People think that business owners are not adversely affected," he told NBC Bay Area by Skype on Thursday evening. "But we are, both personally and professionally."

    So he carefully pored over the restaurant surveillance video, and tracked Dan W. down based on what he said he wore and the time he entered the restaurant. Xue said he wanted to watch the video to see if Dan W.'s claims were true, and revise any policies, if need be.

    Instead, the video he posted on the restaurant's website showed that the man in question entered the front door, lingering for just less than 30 seconds, talking to no one, and leaving. "I realized none of what he said was true," Xue said.

    So, he posted a response to Dan W. on the restaurant's website with additional video footage showing the customer didn't even sign the waiting list at the door. It concludes with a stern warning: "You are prohibited from returning to wonderful. If we catch you, you will be arrested for trespassing."

    The story was first reported on Ratter.com and has since been covered by dozens of news outlets from Oklahoma to London.

    Restaurant owner Junsong Xue, doesn't share his son's feelings toward Dan W. He said he'd love to have Dan W. back. "I don't care about a star," he said. "I care about how they feel about my restaurant."

    His son added: "I personally wouldn't do this, but my father said if he does return, we will give him a free meal, a free drink and a warm handshake."

    Yelp confirmed that Dan W. has since removed his account.

    NBC Bay Area's Tamara Palmer, Eric Rich and Lisa Fernandez contributed to this report.