After six months in beta, the “YouTube for hotels”, Tripr.TV, has officially launched today. The Dutch start-up allows users to post video reviews of the hotels they’ve visited, promising a commission (averaging $10 per booking) when another user books via their video page.
Tripr.tv has recently been funded by Greenhouse Innovation, venture capital firm of Mr. Sander Andreae and Mr. Marc Duijndam. Duijndam is former managing director at Google and now works for eBuddy.
Jan Kooman, Tripr.TV CEO says in the release that his service gives potential guests a better idea of the hotel “Moving images are much more realistic than the, often outdated and glamorized, pictures which hotels themselves show. Our way, potential guests can really trust the hotel. When you’re filming for Tripr.tv, you’re actually walking around your room. Everyone can see the truth.”
I disagreed with Kooman when I first reviewed the site in January, and I still do. Sure, movies give a better idea of how a hotel looks like. But you got to remember that users will shoot mini-commercials, so that more potential guests will book via their video page.
Put those homemade movies in context
That doesn’t mean I consider Tripr.TV to be a failure. Far from that. I think the whole videotaping your hotel room thing is good way to structure user generated content. These hotel rooms movies would otherwise wind up as long forgotten YouTube movies and the creator wouldn’t make a penny from it.
So I say, more initiatives like Tripr.TV please. Put all those homemade movies in context, like YouPorn (Wiki link) did with sex videos and Tripr.TV with hotel videos. But just don’t claim it’s unbiased. There’s no such thing as one definite truth.