New York Post Exposes Questionable Grubhub Practice
According to the New York Post, Grubhub has created thousands of websites that masquerade as the sites of restaurants.
Since 2010, Grubhub, or its subsidiaries, have registered or purchased more than 34,000 domains that are similar to restaurants’ own web addresses. In some cases, Grubhub creates a version of an existing restaurant site by changing a dot-com to a dot-net.
According to the Post, many of these “similar” sites use the restaurants’ logos — even as they direct customers to its Grubhub and Seamless sites.
While the duplicate websites typically have the same menu as the restaurants do, the prices can be higher than the prices customers would have paid if they had ordered from these restaurants directly, the data shows.
All of this was done without the original restaurant’s knowledge permission, even though Grubhub says their contacts with the restaurants permit this.
Grubhub said in a statement that it only created domain names for restaurants “as a service” to them — a practice it has since stopped. “It has always been our practice to transfer the domain to the restaurant as soon as they request it,” the company said.
Some restaurant owners dispute that they were able to obtain their “similar” domains back from Grubhub, but the company claims it is no longer continuing these website practices.