Yelp is reportedly discriminating against pro-life pregnancy centers on its website and app.
Crisis pregnancy resource centers specifically exist to help pregnant women and their babies, but Yelp appears to have jumped on the bandwagon of labeling them as fake abortion clinics. In an apparent attempt to delegitimize the credibility of pro-life pregnancy centers, the platform censored the centers by imposing context labels on center listings noting the lack of abortion services offered. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued a press release on Thursday announcing a lawsuit and accusing Yelp of violating the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act by adding “inaccurate and misleading language” to crisis pregnancy center listings.
The customer review platform reportedly singled out pro-life pregnancy centers by adding a “Customer Notice” to center pages, according to the press release. The notice claimed that the centers “typically provide limited medical services and may not have licensed medical professionals onsite.”
“The Federal Trade Commission should launch an investigation about whether Yelp is engaged in a deceptive trade practice,” said MRC Free Speech America VP Dan Schneider. “It’s fooling its customers in a way that crosses the line. Yelp should stop substituting its personal views for legitimate service.”
Indeed, the warnings seem to be very one-sided. MRC Free Speech America researchers did not find similar warnings on Yelp pages for abortion giant Planned Parenthood, warning that Planned Parenthood provides limited “medical” services. This is consistent with an article Yelp CEO Jeremy Stoppelman wrote expressing his aim to “take action” following the Dobbs v. Jackson Supreme Court decision that overturned Roe v. Wade and sent the abortion issue back to the states.
Paxton’s lawsuit comes after pregnancy resource centers notified Yelp that its notice was “untrue” as some crisis pregnancy centers do perform medical services and have medical professionals onsite, according to the press release. Therefore, Paxton is suing the tech company. “Yelp cannot mislead and deceive the public simply because the company disagrees with our state’s abortion laws,” he insisted.
As of the publication of this article, Yelp’s listings of pregnancy centers include a “Consumer Notice” that says: “This is a Crisis Pregnancy Center. Crisis Pregnancy Centers do not offer abortions or referrals to abortion providers.”
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