A skanky mannequin has been discovered in the San Francisco headquarters of Yelp. The doll is supposed to represent a Yelp user, but she also makes the perfect mascot for the self-consciously trashy local ratings site itself.
All Things D editor Kara Swisher took video of the doll during a recent trip to Yelp HQ, where her minder groaned at mention of the figure and revealed the staff has nicknamed her "Darwina" (see video excerpt above, full video here). Her sequined belt reads "Yelper," and her bunny ears and revealing attire would fit right in at one of the social network's notoriously fleshy user parties.
She's as good a mascot as any for a site where users have no choice but to remain anonymous, are encouraged to be promiscuous in accepting freebies and churning out opinions, and function chiefly as the mute, unpaid workers who generate Yelp's profits. Actually, scratch that; Yelp's CEO Jeremy Stoppelman told Swisher that Yelp continues to be unprofitable. But he does have a plan to distill the most interesting keyword patterns from user write-ups. How humanizing.