travAlliancemedia, in conjunction with the Apple Leisure Group (ALG), today announced the launch of a new website, travFACTS.org, that analyzes and corrects erroneous travel media reports that could be damaging to tourist destinations worldwide.
"We’ve seen it happen over and over when it comes to consumer travel reporting”, said Mark Murphy, president and CEO of travAlliancemedia. "There’s a rush to cover what appears to be a ‘breaking news’ story, only to see the story dropped later when the true facts, or lack of any evidence, is apparent.
"Unfortunately, there’s a lot of economic damage caused by these actions, and it’s rare to ever see a retraction, let alone a corrected version or future update from any of these outlets."
travFACTS.org will be devoted to serving the travel industry globally by pointing out what’s false or misleading in the story in question while sharing the known or actual facts surrounding it.
The first featured destination will be the Dominican Republic, which has been the victim of extensive negative media coverage in recent months.
“In the past several months, we have seen how media attention on issues in the Dominican Republic has affected travelers’ confidence in the destination, and we have seen a decrease in bookings to the island,” said Wendy Hoekwater, Apple Leisure Group Vacations’ senior vice president of marketing. “As the number one tour operator to the Dominican Republic, we encourage vacationers and travel agents to separate media speculation from proven facts when picking a destination.”
The long-term vision of the site is to feature all destinations and supplier categories around the globe, such as Mexico, Jamaica and Costa Rica, whenever there is unfair and unprofessional coverage by the media.
travFACTS.org's top priority is pointing out when consumer media outlets either get it wrong or don’t have facts to back up their misleading claims in headlines, captions or the body of the story itself. The site breaks down the exact techniques the author is using to create click-bait material with no regards to the damage it is causing the destination or supplier featured.
"The media holds such a powerful position in influencing travel. When they get it wrong and don’t go back to correct their mistakes, it can devastate a destination’s tourism,” said Eric Bowman, managing editor of TravelPulse.com, a product of travAlliancemedia. “travFACTS will be an important tool for all in the travel industry as it will inform readers of the truth behind a destination’s travel reporting.”
As the site grows, both travel agents and consumers can access this platform to get to the facts about travel to anywhere in the world that is being misreported on.
“travFACTS will help professional travel agents and their clients find the truth amid conjecture and fear when it comes to destinations,” said Theresa Norton, editor-in-chief of travAlliancemedia’s AGENTatHOME magazine. “All too often, the facts get buried when incidents are sensationalized, which can ruin a destination’s tourism economy.”