From Wikimedia Commons by Yelp, Inc.
Yelp announced a new initiative that allows AAPI businesses to self-identify as “Asian-owned” for free to make it easier for consumers to identify and support local AAPI businesses. The project was a collaboration between Yelp and the nonprofit Gold House, which hopes to promote AAPI unity, representation and success.
The creation of this attribution is a result of Yelp’s Economic Impact Report on diverse businesses, which found that the rate of searches for Asian-owned businesses increased by 130% in February 2021 as compared to in 2020. Yelp clarified that its definition of “Asian-owned” included search terms specific to ethnicity such as: “Japanese-owned,” “Indian-owned” and “Korean-owned.”
The “Asian-owned” business attribute is the newest of three other attributes highlighting minority-owned businesses: “Women-owned,” “Black-owned” and “Latinx-owned,” all of which saw significant increases in consumer interest after the attribute’s implementation.
In order to protect businesses that choose to adopt the “Asian-owned” attribute, Yelp said that it would be “proactively monitoring business pages for hate speech against the Asian community to mitigate and remove any hateful, racist or harmful content that violates our content guidelines.”
“We hope Yelp’s new business attribute for AAPI business owners helps drive safe foot traffic into each enclave, benefits local communities economically, and provides community-driven oversight and action into the safety of our neighbors and elders for years to come,” Program Directors Mikkoh Chen and Megan Ruan said in a statement.
This project announcement arrived alongside a statement in support of the AAPI community. Yelp also pledged to match employee donations to select anti-AAPI hate organizations and nonprofits including Stop AAPI Hate, Asian American Legal Defense & Education Fund and National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance.
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