This weekend, the New York Times published an article named A Bully Finds a Pulpit on the Web. The article basically goes through how Google's search results can lead someone to a horrible customer experience, but at the same time, the poor customer experience will help that site that ranks well in Google keep those top rankings.
In short, the article covers how one company treats their customers like dirt because they feel bad reviews only help them rank well in Google. The more customers they get, the more bad reviews they get, the more customers they get - because Google loves the attention they are getting and thus ranks them well.
Danny Sullivan does an excellent job explaining the implications of this on many fronts. He wrote Google's "Gold Standard" Search Results Take Big Hit In New York Times Story.
In Danny's piece, he describes why this site does what they are doing. He says why SEOs and webmasters and site owners shouldn't follow suit. He then stands up and calls Google and Bing out to add reviews to all merchant listings, even if they are organic results.
I recommend reading both the NY Times and Search Engine Land write ups. It will give new SEOs a great kick start and old SEOs a refresher that they need.
Forum discussion at Sphinn.