it’s a tough life on board for seamen, especially when port stays get hectic. If the all-important air condition fails, it’s making things even worse and a high priority has to be set to get the plant repaired.

So one MTP-member reported that several repair attempts under guidance from their Technical Managers and manufaturers failed. A Service Company – recommended by the local port agents – in the next port was ordered to make a quotation for repairs. The Service Company came on board, sighted the air condition plant and made a quotation to repair the plant by replacing the two compressors. The Technical Manager agreed, made the requested pre-payment and upon next call only few days later they landed the compressors and started repairs – so it was thought! Not soon thereafter the Technical Managers received a phone call from the Master that the Service Company went home and were not coming back. Asking via the agents, they claimed the Technical Managers didn’t order an electrician as the Voltage would not fit and the phasing was wrong. It turned out that the ship’s electrical supply wasn’t checked by the Service Company and the compressors didn’t suit.

Technical Managers argued back and forth to get the pre-payment back. However the Service Company did not see the fault at their side and stated “come and sue us”.

Instead of wasting enormous money on lawyers for a relitively small claim, the Technical Managers rated the Service Company on the Maritime Trust Platform (MTP) and gave them an appropriate “Operational Rating” on the attributes: “Legal Attitude”, “After Sales / Operation”, “Communication”, “Technical Reliability”, “Financial Reliability” and “Environmental Attitude”.

The Service Company received an invitation (together with login details) to join the MTP in order to see the detailed outcome of the rating and to counter-rate the Technical Managers.

Thereafter the Technical Manager initiated a “Claim” and stated the particulars of this case in the backend of the MTP (not visible by other users yet) on a form (claim to particular division of a company, narrative of claim limted to 1.000 words, upload of documents, value of claim).

The form requires compulsorily to enter a resolution porposal

The Service Company got an e-mail to join this settlement proposal procedure and a time limit is set. They realised the enormous risk to their business within the maritime industry, as this poor performance rating could possilby harm their public appearance on the internet.

Within two rounds no settlement was reached. The negotiation was not fruitful and the initiator sent the Claim to a Polling amongst the members. After a review of the Admins – where primarily the anonymity of both parties was checked – the Polling amongst the members was started.

The MTP-members got an invitation to participate in the polling via e-mail. Here the MTP-members were able to see the uploaded (anonymised) documents and the claim negotiation.

The result of the Polling was binding for the Claimant as the quorum of 25% of all MTP-members was reached and the simple majority votes for one party’s resolution proposal was reached.

The MTP Platform reminded the Service Company of the terms and conditions: If the Service Company chose not to follow this “mini arbitration award”, their Trust Rating is being set to 3.

In fear of the negative appearance on the Internet, the Service Company followed accordingly and settled the dispute, hence they do not have a negative entry on the MTP.

The Service Company realised the importance of keeping a good public track record on the internet: 88% trust online ratings as well as personal references! Therefore they commenced to get their customers to rate them on the MTP, in order to dillute the poor Operational Rating already received from the aforesaid Technical Managers. Today they keep a good track record on the MTP and even use the vast reach of the platform for their direct marketing.