Q1. Gripe [grīp] -noun

A. In the Cambridge English Dictionary a "GRIPE" is defined as a "strong complaint" or something that you feel strongly about.

B. GRIPEVINE's definition of the word "GRIPE": A customer service complaint or unresolved issue that one has with a business or organization; a bad experience with a company that hasn't been made right.

The term "Gripe" may be perceived as having a negative connotation. We have combined it with the word "vine" in order to convey a feeling of providing positive outcomes. Yes, gripes are somewhat negative, but Gripevine hopes to provide consumers with a platform to turn their negative experiences into positive ones. Just like a vine can grow in new and positive directions, we hope that our platform will do the same for your customer service experiences with a company.

Q2. What is a gripevine?
A gripevine is a complaint about a company or organization, plus all of the replies, tags, supporting materials, and statistics that go along with it.

Q3. What is planting?
When you publish a gripe on the site, that’s called planting a gripevine.

Q4. Can I plant a gripe without being registered?
If you're new to the site you can actually see and use the gripe form and plant your gripe even before you create a gripevine.com member account. Once you've planted your gripe you'll be taken to a screen where you can register (or sign in if you do already have an account). After you've registered and logged in to the site, your gripe will be published. Until then it's held in an unpublished state.

Q5. How do I edit a gripe?
1. Log in to Gripevine at http://gripevine.com/user/login
2. Click on My Dashboard.
3. Scroll down and click on the title of your Gripe you wish to edit.
4. Click on the text "Edit" which is above the title of the gripe.
5. In 'Step 1," make the changes needed to the gripe. If you want to edit the title or text of your gripe, you can do so in the "So what happened" section. Make sure to scroll down and click the "Update Gripe" button.
6. If you are looking to add or edit private information, please click on "Step 2," then fill in the information as required and make sure to scroll down and click the "Update Gripe" button.
7. To add images or documents, please click on "Step 3." You can upload up to 5 documents, no larger than 2MB each. When you are done adding documents, make sure to scroll down and click the "Update Gripe" button.

Q6. How do I mark my gripe as resolved?
1. Log in to Gripevine at http://gripevine.com/user/login
2. Go to your personal dashboard.
3. Scroll down to your gripe.
4. Click on the "Mark as Resolved" button.
5. Complete the Consumer Satisfaction Survey after marking your gripe as resolved.
6. Please let us know how Gripevine was able to assist you in resolving your complaint.
7. Share with your friends and family your positive experience and please return to Gripevine in the future for any customer service related issue you may have.

Q7. What is helping?
If one or more of your replies on a particular gripevine is helpful to the member who originally planted the gripevine, that member can mark your responses as helpful, which tells the system to automatically assign you points.

Q8. What is cred?
Cred (short for credibility points) is awarded to you for performing various actions on the site. Cred is automatically assigned by the site for certain actions, including registering for an account, adding a picture to your profile, planting and commenting on gripevines, and rating companies and posting follow ups to your gripes.

Q9. Do I have to use my real name on the site?
Not in public, no. If you want to submit a pseudonymous gripe, you're free to do so. If you mistakenly use your real name as your user name, you can login and change this at anytime. You can also enter your real name and contact information privately in your account dashboard. In the course of your interactions with individual companies it will likely be necessary for you to reveal your name and contact information to company representatives in order to get your gripe resolved; but whether or not you choose to do that is entirely up to you. 

Q10. Will my email address be public?
Your email address will not be viewed by the public, other members, or companies on Gripevine. When you create your username, name sure to not use your email address as your username and do not list it in the text of your gripe.

Q11. Are you developing a mobile application?
Yes. It'll be ready later this year and available for iOS and Android devices.

Q12. Is gripevine.com compatible with Internet Explorer 6?
No; no modern websites are. It's time to upgrade your browser. May we suggest Firefox or Chrome?

Q13. Will Gripevine ever be available in other languages?
Si. Multi-lingualism is absolutely on our roadmap. We will eventually make Gripevine available in Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portugese, Japanese, and many other languages.

Q14. How do I delete my account?
A member's account or Gripe cannot be deleted, including comments that may be associated with it, as stated in our Terms of Use. You are able to edit the content of your profile at any time; however please be aware that information that you include in your gripe and your username will appear in Google Search results. Here are the instructions on how to edit your gripe:

1. Login to gripevine: http://gripevine.com/user/login

2. Once logged in, look to the righthand side of your screen for "Adjust password, username, email, photo." Click on it.

3. Edit or change your username & other personal information as required.

4. Click save

Q15. How are company Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI) scores calculated?
Members whose gripes are resolved or definitively not resolved are able to rate companies by answering three questions, all on a scale from 1 (poor) to 10 (excellent). The questions are:

1. How well did the company handle your gripe?

2. How likely are you to use this company's products or services again?

3. Would you recommend this company to your colleagues, friends, or family?

A company's CSI score is the average of all of the ratings members have submitted about them.

Q16. Why has the company NOT responded to my gripe?

  • Not all companies choose to respond and as such, you are still empowered to voice your experience with the company. In addition to what you have already planted on Gripevine, if after an acceptable amount of time, you still have not heard from the company, then you have the option to rate them along with other consumers which ultimately will affect the company’s “Customer Satisfaction Index” (CSI) score.
  • Furthermore, you can leverage your gripe by sharing it on social networks with friends and family. Your compliant combined with others will build and eventually the number of complaints on Gripevine will open the eyes of company decision makers that there are problems that they need to address and they will have no choice but to eventually respond.
  • You may have too high expectations in the resolution you are looking for. We encourage you to be realistic in the resolution you are seeking from the company. If you are fair and realistic about what you are asking, the company may be more inclined to make the situation right.
  • You may have turned the company off responding with the way you addressed them or the problem. If you have been sarcastic or belligerent, is shows a lack of respect and companies may perceive you as difficult to deal with (they may give up trying to reach a resolution with you before they even start). We understand you may be very frustrated and upset when you plant your gripe, but there is no helpful reason to be rude or crude, so lose the 'tude.
  • You have threatened legal action. It is important to note that once you threaten legal action with a company, they can no longer engage with you and have no choice but to refer the issue to their legal department, once you follow through with such a threat. At this point your customer service issue becomes a legal issue and it will rarely solicit a response from the company.
  • Not enough information provided. It is really important for you to include enough information about happened. A one sentence line "Company X sucks," does not provide enough information for even a company who wants to help you, resolve your issue. If you have photos, video, or PDFs that can support your gripe, include them.