The Nanfang / Blog

Cam MacMurchy
Haohao

One for the Road threatens Nanfang with legal action over our review

Posted: 10/24/2012 9:15 am

It’s not everyday our humble website is threatened with legal action, but that is what has transpired over The Nanfang’s review of a fabled Dongguan bar and restaurant.

One for the Road has contacted us regarding our review, in which one of our staff visited One for the Road and wrote about their experience. In our view, the review was fair and based on the writer’s impressions of the food quality, ambiance, price, and service. The review attracted several comments, with some explicitly disagreeing with the review’s conclusions. Those comments all remain on the site and can be reviewed here.

The owner of One for the Road, Jason Cakebread, contacted us to dispute the review and requested us remove the bar’s listing and event information from The Nanfang.  The email chain below is in chronological order (all typos, spelling mistakes, etc have been retained):

Dear Madam/Sir,

You are entitled to write any form of review you wish about what ever establishment you wish.

However, I never gave you idiots permission to place One for the Road or her events in your website.

We do not want our good name associated with your sorry excuse of a website/magazine.

As I said, write any review you wish as the people who have gone to One for the Road know it’s full of shit.

But remove us from your crappy, out of date listings! (you had no permission from us to use our name)

Take our events off your sorry excuse of a website! (as I said you had no permission from us to use our name)

If this is not done we will pursue the matter further as we have consulted our lawyer who says we have grounds to sue.

Jason

One for the Road Traditional English Pub

whatsup@onefortheroad.cn

www.onefortheroaddg.com

I personally replied on behalf of The Nanfang:

Hi Jason,

Thanks for your email. We’re sorry you feel so strongly about the review. Just as some background information, we’re quite big fans of One for the Road and have visited several times. In fact, I personally recommend visitors to Dongguan to try OFTR and we did a Nanfang TV video promoting the restaurant – totally free of charge – here.

We have a team of writers in the PRD that occasionally review venues. Of them, we ask a couple of things: 1) they do not inform the bar/restaurant that they are conducting a review for Nanfang to ensure as authentic of an experience as possible; and b) be clear about their experiences, both positive and negative, specifically with regard to food quality, service, price, and ambiance.

We edited the review for One for the Road but generally find it to be fair. In the review, the writer noted the mac & cheese was “tasty”, that good things were said of the ribs, that the portions of the crab cakes were “generous”, and so on. On the negative side, comments were made about service and time waiting for the food, which is a factual representation of what that writer experienced on the day they were at the bar.

Our primary responsibility is to our readers, and we want to do the best we can to provide them with the latest information pertaining to bars and restaurants across the PRD. We have comment sections open on all of our articles and venues for people to leave their own feedback, and we are pleased that people have used this forum to respond to our review of OFTR.

We hope to work cooperatively with One for the Road going forward. We receive substantial traffic from overseas and Hong Kong, specifically from people who are unfamiliar with Dongguan and are looking for a place to eat, have a beer, and relax. Many of these people stumble upon your bar’s listing page, and I have no doubt that many have visited your bar as a result. We have the legal right to list your bar’s information on our website, however would regretfully remove it as a courtesy should you restate your request to do so.

Kind regards,
Cam MacMurchy
Editor in Chief
The Nanfang
Jason followed-up with another email:

Your review was absolute shod, we are not just here for hangovers greasy food burgers and mash!

You will have quite a few comments from customers as they were as offended by what said as I am.

I challenge you to allow those comments to remain on the review.

You will have no cooperation with us and you WILL remove us from your events and listings from today otherwise I will pursue this matter. As stated by our lawyer, you do not have the legal right to add us on your listings and events without our permission and I will test this in court.

PLEASE BELIEVE ME I HAVE ALREADY CONSULTED OUR LAWYER AND ANYONE THAT KNOWS ME WILL TELL YOU I WILL FOLLOW THROUGH!

We do not need you to help with visitors from anywhere as our reputation is far greater internationally and domestically than your website and is the main reason you are desperate to keep our name on your site.

To which we replied:

Dear Jason,

We run an open platform that encourages an exchange of opinions. As such, the comments under our review (and any other comments posted in the future) will remain posted as long as they adhere to our terms of conduct. So far, all of them do.

I’d like to reiterate that we have a legal right to list public venues in a database of bars and restaurants. We do this as a service to both our readership and our bar and restaurant partners. As of today, we have over 1,000 venues – many of which are in Dongguan – comprising the largest English-language bar and restaurant database in the Pearl River Delta. Our readers have found us to be a very useful resource, and we will continue to be so with or without One for the Road in our listings. As a courtesy and according to your request, will will remove One for the Road listings and event information within the next 24 hours.

Best of luck with the restaurant.
Regards,
Cam.

One for the Road’s listing and event information have been removed as of now, in accordance with Cakebread’s request.  We also contacted Cakebread to inform him of our intention to publish the email correspondence, and he had no objections.

This is a good opportunity to elaborate on what we do at The Nanfang. Our staff has been based in the Pearl River Delta for many years. I have lived in Beijing and Shanghai as well, while my other co-founder has spent years in Taiwan. We believe the PRD is the best place to live and work in all of China, and we launched the Nanfang to celebrate South China by providing information not found anywhere else. This includes the largest collection of bar and restaurant listings in English anywhere in the PRD as well as news and translations from the Chinese press.

However, we are not perfect. We are a very young site and there are still many things we need to do to make it better for our readers. Several of you have left us comments in our stories, left reviews of venues, or emailed us to disagree with how we do things, offer praise (thank you!) or suggestions. We deeply appreciate it, and have a lot of exciting things in the pipeline to share with you in the months ahead.

Our staff pour countless hours into their contributions to the site, and that includes restaurant and bar reviews. Most do it for no compensation at all, other than their love of the PRD. All reviews are edited by our team to ensure accuracy before they are posted to the site. We stand by every word of our reviews. However, we don’t expect everyone to agree with our conclusions, which is why we have a vibrant comments section that is open to everyone.

Also, we will not remove any review under threat from anyone. Our reviews are not done haphazardly and are based on the reviewer’s impressions of a venue based on price, quality, service and ambiance. In terms of service quality, things like food delivery times are factual representations and are not subjective in any way. By publishing this, we are passing along valuable information to our readers. Issues pertaining to food quality and ambiance are all subjective, which again is why we encourage dissenting opinions in our comments section.

We are publishing this email exchange so our readers understand why One for the Road’s listing and event information are no longer listed on The Nanfang. Although no longer found on our dining and nightlife pages, we still have over 1,000 venues in our database and that list grows everyday.  We will work closely with our bar and restaurant partners across the PRD to get the most relevant information to you in the best way we can.

Haohao
  • Dennis and Angie Watts

    Not really done yourself any favours there Mr Cakebread. Not really the attitude I would expect from a traditional British pub landlord. If I ever find myself unfortunate enough to be in Dongguan I will most likely drink a beer in my hotel, close my eyes and think of some of the pubs in the East end of London and pretend my crappy Tsingtao is a pint of Harveys instead of visiting your “Traditional British Pub”.

    The review was a bit unimaginative though.

    • Gee

      You see Nanfang, all you have done is fuel the fire. Dennis and Angie Watts, why would you be unfortuenate to be here in Dongguan, I was born and rasied in Kingsmead Estate Hackney, East London, and living here in Dongguan is a hell of a lot nicer I can tell you.

      • Dennis and Angie Watts

        I’ve never been to Dongguan and may well be missing something special.

        Also it depends how you define “nice”. Personally the fear of crime which was probably the most disturbing “not nice” factor of living in Hackney [I lived next to the Frampton Park Estate] does not for me outweigh the “nice” benefits of having the whole rest of London in its entirety 20 minutes bike ride away as well as access to nature, the coast, canal side pubs, clean air, parks and a good pint and newspaper etc.

        I’ve been in China long enough and visited enough off the beaten track destinations to know that as an outsider in China, while I can roam free from the feral youths of London the other irritations and dangers do not make these places “nicer”. Unless I wear my deluded laowai glasses and then it’s obviously great.

        Reviews should be written freely without the fear of a bar owner coming back and threatening legal action, that suggests a real insecurity from the owner to me. I think the review was pretty crappy and I think that it’s very hard to create a bar, restaurant or pub in China that reaches the expectations brought from home and good luck to anyone trying, but you respond to a bad review by acknowledging the issues and raising your game not blah blah blahing the critic.

        • Gee

          Dennis and Angie Watts, you are right in all you have said, however let me ask you a question, If you read a review and a large amount of it was not correct, such as saying that there should be a NON-smoking section, when in fact there is a whole floor dedicated to Non -smoking but the reviewer didnt bother to do their reseach, wouldnt you speak out? That is just one point of many …

          • Dennis and Angie Watts

            Yeah but… They could have jumped in to the comments and said something like the following.

            Hey Nanfang, thanks for the review of our Pub, I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’d just liket to point out that in fact we do have a no smoking section – it’s upstairs, perhaps we need to make sure our staff make customers more aware of this.

            Also sorry about the wait for your food, but all our meals are prepared fresh and this means that some dishes such as Lasagne might take a little bit longer than your average fast food meal!

            We will certainly make an effort to make sure we inform our customers of waiting time in the future.

            We constantly welcome monitor the feedback we receive and address issues raised such as smoking and menu related things but because our clients are mainly, fat unhealthy, smokers, until they change their filthy habits we will continue to run our bar in accordance to their wishes.

            Or something.

        • Gee

          My goodness, you are starting to do it as well now … Look how hard is this for people to get their head round.

          1: The review says that OFTR is all smoking.

          2: IT IS NOT, there is a whole second floor which is toatly NON-SMOKING.

          3: There are many untrue comments in the review the same as this.

          4: That is why people are attacking the review.

          Of course a review should be based on an experienced visit, BUT a lot of this review is completly UNTRUE. so there for it is not a REVIEW more of a slanderous smere.
          End of story.

          • Dennis and Angie Watts

            My goodness, you are starting to do it as well now … Look how hard is this for people to get their head round.

            1: The review says that OFTR is all smoking.

            2: IT IS NOT, there is a whole second floor which is toatly NON-SMOKING.

            3: There are many untrue comments in the review the same as this.

            4: That is why people are attacking the review.

            Of course a review should be based on an experienced visit, BUT a lot of this review is completly UNTRUE. so there for it is not a REVIEW more of a slanderous smere.
            End of story.

            I’m no legal eagle but I don’t think there is anything slanderous in the review.

            It’s the responsibility of the pub to advertise it’s facilities and if a client is not made aware of non smoking sections then the pub probably needs to address that, right?

            I’d suggest Mr Cakebread employs someone else to deal with PR and cuntstomer service ,he clearly has no clue.

    • Gee

      You say its the pubs responsiblity to advertise it’s facilities, and yes of course it is, so let me ask you a question …

      The pub has signs up all over the place and in every magazine advert it states that the pub offers a intimante NON-Smoking second floor. What do you do when a review completely MISSES all of that ???? and writes stuff to the complete contary.

      would you not get a liitle PeeDed off too ?

      • Dennis and Angie Watts

        But it would be easy to correct them in the comments and ask for an amendment. It’s no big deal. No need for legal action. He could have easily addressed the negatives and used all the positives of the review to make his bar look pretty good. He failed.

        He could probably still dig himself out of it but it seems from his comment here that his digging only goes in one direction.

  • Gee

    OMG Nanfang, truly what is wrong with you?

    1: You publish a very bias and untrue review.

    2: At least half a dozen independent readers completely dispute your review and offer proof to the fact.

    3: Jason was of course very angry at the review, as any negative review for any business is damaging and when a review is negative but mostly unfounded it makes it even worst, so of course he would ask for it to be removed.

    4: Rather than taking it like a man and stating “yes! We now see that many of the facts in the review were not correct “we will remove it and forget the whole matter.

    5: You now want to start a whole new ugly issue by publishing every little sordid detail of the affair and posting it as your head line topic.

    You finish your article by saying

    “”We are publishing this email exchange so our readers understand why One for the Road’s listing and event information are no longer listed on The Nanfang””

    Utter horse crap, you are publishing this so you can fuel the fire. At least have the balls to admit that fact.

    Give me a break

  • Lewis

    You’re all a bunch of assholes.

    I hope that restaurant goes out of business and your website gets no hits.

    Thanks for making foreigners look just a bit shittier.

    • Gee

      Now Lewis, the reason this issue has started is because someone has wriiten a lot of untrue comments and many people feel strongly about it.

      All you have to contribute is a few lines of childish insults, all I can say is heres a nice ice-cream for you little boy, go and sit in the corner and play with your toy bricks and let the adults have our discussion.

      • Steve

        “All you have to contribute is a few lines of childish insults”

        “all I can say is heres a nice ice-cream for you little boy, go and sit in the corner and play with your toy bricks and let the adults have our discussion.”

        I don’t see a contradiction here, nosiree.

  • Jason Cakebread

    All I demanded was not to be associated to this website as much as possible. I said they are entitled to review us as they like, however they may not use our name without permission in events or reviews as we do not approve of websites that act on their paying advertisers best interest. If this is posted then great however I no longer care of any comments made.

    • kodabar

      Sounds like you need a better lawyer. You accept that a reviewer may write what they please, but just as long as they don’t use your name. No, they can use your name without requesting permission. Your events details are in the public domain, so they can use those too. You don’t have rights to demand those things be taken down, not in China, England nor in South Africa; I can’t imagine why you think you do or why your lawyer would think so either.

      You’ve really handled this very badly indeed. Your pub may or may not be as good as you and your regular customers say, but I’ll never find out. Aggression and empty legal threats sour even the best of food.

  • Charles Dashwood

    Time to inject some objective levity in here, I feel.

    Perhaps Dongguaners are very easily pleased or Herr Cakebread has sent the three-line whip cracking along the barstools of his whey-faced, red-eyed clientele to rally them to his aid via the interwebs. However, I have travelled fairly widely and – with perhaps the except of Guangzhou hospice-pub The Tavern – the One For the Road is probably the most depressing Chinese venue I have ever supped a pint in (and I have been to Maggie’s in Beijing, gents).

    Firstly, the clientele: roughly 80 percent scarlet-faced, overweight British and Western European businessmen of the sort to normally be found propping up a Pattayan sports bar at 11am, croaking for more beer with a local hostess (slightly younger, face like a Mexican breakfast) wondering how she’s going to get paid for the evening. The only hard-on any of them is likely to get is one about how much China sucks etc (they will invariably have next to fuck-all insight into the country). They mostly just sit on their stools all night, piss and moan and drink, and eat the carb-stuffed nuke burgers that the obliging and long-suffering waitresses set before them. It’s such a shame, because most of them could be appearing on ‘Bullseye’ in 1983 and be having a much better time.

    The food is par, nothing more (but perhaps a little bit less) than you’d expect. The entire place feels like it has been removed brick-by-brick out of some council estate in East London and choppered overseas as an anthropological experiment to see if the regulars would notice. The owner, Mr Cakebread, has a great name: is he the one who looks like a giant, moving loaf of Hovis? If so, bravo on your legal acumen, sir: Precisely what “law” are you presuming the Nanfang to have broken: the one about making public information publically available? That regulation about listings magazines not being able to, you know, list stuff? Since when did people require permission or legal blessing to disclose the address of a bar or pub? Of course, your customers were offended by the review: they spend their lives there, and wish to block out the sound of the person gently suggesting that it is, perhaps, a bleak, nihilistic experience. In that sense, you have, indeed, successfully recreated the atmosphere of an East London council estate pub and therefore should be congratulated upon your veracity and have the public informed of its uncanny verisimilitude.

    • Gee

      WOW you should be a restuarant reviewer for the nanfang.

    • Gee

      You know you refference East London council estates twice in your commenst so I can only think you are pointing your finger in my direction, well, if you read my comment regarding my former home, then you would see that I say living in Dongguan is much nicer than where I was from, so what on earth would make you think that I would want to spend my time in an East London Pub? If I wanted to I would still live in East London. I was making a postive statment that Dongguan is a nice place to live. That had nothing to with One For The Road at all. And in fact for all readers that keep thinking that we are OFTR regulars, most of us that are defending the bar are long term expats living in Dg and to be honest, do not that offen go into the pub, we just do not like to see a review that is non-bias and A LOT OF THE REVIEW is UNTRUE. Not all, but a lot.

      • Charles Dashwood

        @Gee Actually, no. Didn’t see your comment I’m afraid. Just happened to have been to a few pubs in that part of London, eg Bethnal Green, Shadwell, and they’re mildly terrifying. Which OFTR is not, admittedly. But the OFTR landlord still thinks nothing of writing “All I demanded was…” without apparent irony

    • LBShangers

      Pfft haha awesome. Love the description of the clientele. If I feel the urge to mumble into my beer with a bunch of drunken pensioners I prefer to go to Pattaya. At least the weather is better.

  • Hot water and loud noises

    Wow what a bunch of butthurt here. If this is the clientele then I rather not refresh among this kind of expats. How was that review even negative? I for one was intrigued to go try their food next time I visit Dongguan but the answers from supporters and owners tells me not to do it. The only bad publicity for OFTR here is the ones from the owner and supporters, that tells something. I imagine bigbellied expats sitting in the counter with their tigers cursing that damn nanfang.

    And this owner guy Jason, is he foreigner or just another Jason Wang? He is sporting this great attitude chinese business guys have. They don’t like something they start shouting while drawing breath in the middle with a chunghwa. Friggin hilarious. Too much time in China does not mean you have to be like them, Mr. 老板.

  • Jason Cakebread

    I have to explain myself as this is getting somewhat stupid:

    1. I have no objection to the review. We will never please everyone!
    2. I am proud of my staff and the service they give and would always apologise if they have not served a table properly no matter how many customers are in the pub.
    3. On the occasion mentioned we encountered technical problems with the live Grand Prix feed.
    We have 5 different satellite companies from various continents with a total of 8 boxes to display on 13 tv’s or projectors. On that day our primary feed which is commercial free was pixelated so we went to the backup STAR ESPN which had no commentary just engine noise, So we went back to the pixelated live feed with commentary.
    4. Was I annoyed with the opinion of being summarised as a place for hangover food….. yes! however it is a review with someones opinion and as I said we cannot please everyone.

    I demanded to be removed from the website because on the listings we were place at the very back (second to last)! Even establishments that have been closed for 4,5 or 6 years were place above us (China Groove for one) are placed above us. I believe if you do something then you do it to the best you possibly can (even if it is not to everyone’s satisfaction).

    The Nanfang show themselves to be amateurs by having so many out of date listings hence we don’t want any association hence forth.

    To Charles, Dennis and Angie and others, I apologise for not meeting your expectations and hope you find somewhere that does satisfy you.

    To Nanfang…… Don’t be proud of your 1,000 listing. Half in Dongguan are closed and that is why we don’t want you using our name!

    • Dennis and Angie Watts

      Actually I have incredibly low expectations when it comes to bars/pubs in second-tier factory towns like Dongguan and it sounds like you have actually met them. Well done.

    • OFTR

      1. Really? REALLY? No objections?

      2. Breaking fucking news, stop the presses – a service industry business does what a service industry business is expected to do. When did you realize this, and what award would you like for this revelation?

      3. I couldn’t care less but thanks for the explanation.

      4. Why in the flying fuck would you be annoyed by this? As a normal human being who enjoys getting wasted on the weekends, I can tell you about a couple things that normal human beings crave during hangovers – very fucking little. So it should be an absolute honor that your shittyass joint is the first thing on people’s minds while hungover. You should be glad that people are willing to drag their asses out of bed just to eat your greasy garbage.

      You are not Jean George’s, you aren’t expected to serve everyone, no fucking shit. But please be realistic about your clientele – you are situated in Dongguan, after all.

      As a business owner, you need to figure out how the internet works in this day and age. A ho-hum, average review of your joint might affect you on a very personal level, but this isn’t about you, nor will it affect your business in any consequential or substantial way.

      Firing off a scathing e-mails like the ones you fired off will reap in nothing but consequences. You should thank your lucky fucking stars that no one really reads this website, and about 1.3 billion Chinese can’t read English, nor do they like shitty hangover food the way fat Americans do.

      BUT, do realize this – I was, and I’m sure many other readers were as well, linked here from Reddit, and that could pose a huge problem for you. It’s up to you to figure out why this seemingly inconsequential matter is so important. As a small business owner, internet backlash is something you want to avoid at all costs, even if it means bending over ass-backwards for something that you feel strongly against.

      Good day to you, sir.

      • Mario

        “nor do they like shitty hangover food the way fat Americans do.” Not sure when you last been to the USA or where you hung out when you were in the USA but not all Americans like greasy food. I eat mostly vegetables though a slight servings of meat mostly lean. Pretty bad to generalise a nation when you know that the USA has different nationalities and different eating habits. Not saying we do not have obese people but to say that ALL of us are is just faulty generalization at the very least.

        Now about this review about this place One For The Road. I wil say that yes the ower could have handled it better than threatening to sue this website. Yes he could have been a more tactful and could have put a rebuttal that was not threatening or looking angry.

        At the sametime the same people saying that Mr. Cakebread being butthurt and a shithead just shows that those comments are no better than what Mr. Cakebread is being accused of. Its one thing to disagree the review or the rebuttal but when it becomes juvenile in the name calling, this seems to me the pot calling the kettle black.

        Maybe the food and service is not one’s liking but thats any own choice to eat there or not. Having eaten western restuarants here in Chongqing, I can say none come close to what I have at home but its not terrible either. Just like in the USA, I have not tried REAL sichuan and especially authentic Chongqing hot pot until I arrived here in Chongqing.

        Now about the legality of being to sue this website, that matter I leave it to the lawyers that are versed in Chinese law.

  • Susan J.

    I second the motion: Charles Dashwood needs to be promptly hired as your new staff writer! His review of your review was far more entertaining than the original.

    Dennis and Angie Watts also make a very good point: a polite acknowledgement of the restaurant’s shortcomings by One For The Road, and promises to improve, would have saved everyone some face – especially Jason Butthurt, who comes across as a complete arse.

  • JasontheKid

    Let’s see Jason.

    We got documented

    insult: calling thenanfang guys idiots

    and you outed yourself as an opponent of freedom of speech

    libel: accusing thenanfang of blackmailing those business that don’t advertise with them

    There are different ways to deal with unfavorable reviews:

    1. Ignore

    2. Accept and trying on improving the service quality and consistency

    3. Bitch about it for the day

    4. Threaten to sue a customer who wrote about his experience

    It speaks for itself if you choose no. 4

  • Raul Duke

    While I have never had the pleasure of darkening the doorway of an authentic London pub, I did have the unfortunate experience of being treated to lunch at OFTR once as part of a recruiting enticement for a job in Dongguan.
    My host told me with a straight face that OFTR was “Dongguan’s primary expat social hub.”
    I have eaten in USA interstate bus stations, however and the experience was disturbingly similar. Suffice to say that I turned down the job.

  • OFTR

    Wow, Jason Cakebread sounds like a total shithead of a restaurant/bar owner. Something must’ve rustled his jimmies.

  • Pingback: » An Expat Meltdown For The Ages: Dongguan Bar Owner Tees Off On The Nanfang After Tepid Review Beijing Cream

  • Jake

    Mr. Cakebread,

    I can understand your frustration as you have probably worked very hard to set up your pub/restaurant, however I think the issue is how you handled the review and went about in communicating with Nanfang. You as a business owner/manager should know that feedback and critiquing your place would happen on the internet. It happens with restaurants all over the world. Why you chose to piss off the website owners of a popular expat website might not have been the best way to handle the situation. Next review on any website, I suggest you ask the sites owners to give you a second chance in a follow up review. If your establishment is as good as you say it is, then a second review might resolve the problem. Best of Luck……

  • Gilman Grundy (AKA FOARP)

    @Cam – Count me as someone who now will never go to One For The Road precisely because they try to exert this kind of disgraceful influence on reviewers. You are absolutely correct to say that you have every right to list whoever you like on your database and that Cakebread has absolutely zero right to demand that you remove the listing. You are also correct to say that removing the listing will only have negative consequences for OFTR.

  • Shanghai Meimi

    Well if I’m ever in Dongguan, I know what to read, and where not to go.

    Venues reacting unbecoming to a mixed or negative review happens everywhere, to be sure, but seems to be a lot more common in less mature media markets. I’ve seen it happen a few times here in Shanghai, although it’s becoming a rarer occurrance of late. Oddly it seems to usually come from foreigners — who I’d expect to know better, when it comes to media law. Maybe something about being a foreigner in China emboldens the bloviators?

  • Douglas Miller

    Hahahahaha, sounds like Mr Bread should lay off the cakes a bit…

  • Jim

    This Jason Cakebread character sounds like a complete loser. So he got a bad review – big deal. And the the threat of legal action? Come on… I am curious – what exactly was he planning to do?

    Maybe he will sue me now for my mean blog comment…. Shall we get our lawyers together to discuss court dates…?

  • hiddenjelly

    I have been a fan of the Nanfang for quite some time, enjoying hearing local stories as they unfold. However, I have to say this was completely fueling the fire as others have said.

    If someone asks you to remove their business details you comply immediately, Jason never asked for the review to be removed, he asked that the comments from loyal patrons remain.

    I was the one who informed Jason of this review and having seen the way that this website has dealt with it I will now be no longer visiting, I will also “unlike/unfollow” on Facebook and make sure others follow suit.

    Like Jason said, this is a sorry excuse for a site and for the record, if your restaurant takes a long time to serve the food please take a quick look around and see how busy it is…OFTR = ALWAYS FULL!!!

  • pemolloy

    I would just like to say I agree this is not a fair and balanced review, I really like OFTR and have since it opened. I dont like being called “died-in-the-wool pub-going expats” since I am one of those regulars that go there weekly. I think the food is good the portions are a little large but better more then still feeling hungry when you finish. I think the price is fair for the size of the portion and the service is always good to me. I think Jason has done a great job and one question you have to ask is if it is not so good why is it always full?

  • Vince

    It seems OFTR sent a private email to Nan Feng and regardless of its content, Nan Feng published that email communication and made it public.

    If you recorded or videoed a conversation and then posted it on-line you would be breaking privacy laws. Isn’t an email classified as a private document between the sender and the receiver …..?? And wouldn’t any publications of those communications be a breach of privacy laws.

    Given we are in China, our laws may mean jack shit but these are western comments and opinions, posted by a western run web-site, targeted at westerners on both sides of the fence…so Western rules apply

    This to me, is a breach of any publications Standard Code Of Ethics …. and of course it makes question of the morals (and true motives) Nan Fang must have to allow such a breach to occur..

    These “Gutter Tactics” tactics that Nan Fang has chosen to use by posting OFTR’s email’s can only make you wonder just what the editors real problem is….

    Shame on Nan Fang for your lack of Editorial Professionalism….!!!

  • John

    Can’t blame Jason for being a bit pissed. The reviewer complaining about smoking, in a pub, in China…. wtf? But the best bit is all he had to do was go up-stairs where there is an entire floor for non-smokers, there’s even a nice alcove up-stairs which is perfect for “a romantic night out, or a quiet glass of wine,”. If he didn’t like the food then that’s the reviewers personal opinion and he’s entitled to it but the fact that the place is usually heaving with expats and locals suggests most feel otherwise.

  • Mario

    I for once am willing to give this place a try. Ignoring the juvenile behavior from some of the commentators, I will not immediately deny myself to this place just because the owner or manager of this place did not like the review. Just like movie reviews by professional critics, I do not soley depend on their opinion if I want to see a a movie or not. Now after eating at this place, and I do experience horrible service and/or food, then I can say that I experienced it and may not return.

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