The story of Barnes’s feud with the resort first came to the attention of the outside world when the travel blogger Richard Barrow posted about it on Twitter over the weekend. Several outlets have since confirmed the account, and the Times reports that the resort immediately found itself getting review-bombed by users angered by the controversy. Reviews posted on Google in the last 24 hours accuse the resort of being “absolutely disgusting” and directly warn travelers that criticism of the destination could result in jail time.


The good news for Barnes is that the Streisand Effect is a powerful force and the resort does seem open to working out a compromise. “We simply want to ensure that these untrue reviews are stopped, and we had no way of negotiating the matter with the guest until after our filing the complaint with authorities,” a spokesperson told the Times.

Last year, Suchanee Cloitre, a television journalist, was convicted of libel in Thailand after she reported on migrant worker’s accusations of inhumane working conditions at the Thammakaset chicken farm. She was ultimately sentenced to the maximum of two years in prison. Speaking with Reuters, the reporter said that she was “shocked” and “did not think the sentence would be so harsh.”