Shaming by social media comes in a lot of different shapes and sizes. Rarely though is it a good idea to shame someone publicly, even if you are certain that they deserve it.
This school of thought extends to users shaming other users, users shaming brands and organizations and can even includes brands shaming customers or potential customers.
PYT, a popular burger restaurant in Philadelphia, had to learn this lesson the hard way when they posted to Facebook the receipt of Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy showing the $0.20 tip he left on a $60 meal.
The strategy backfired as users on Facebook thought the move by PYT was classless and some even spoke about their own experiences at the restaurant which might have led to the poor tip.
It’s hard to sympathize with the owner of PYT who admitted to posting the receipt. The restaurant left itself open to criticism and negativity by taking this route.
In fairness though the post did generate close to 3000 likes as of Tuesday, but overall the conversation was slanted towards disapproval and overall negativity.
A silver lining to this story is that the receipt is on eBay where bidding was up to $100,000. The owner has promised to share some of the money with his staff in lieu of a tip.
The lesson for all businesses is to respect your customers and think twice before taking any harsh feelings public via social media. You have to really consider if this is the best route to take, because many times it is just a can of worms waiting to be opened.
You also have to be honest with yourself before posting. In this case, did the owner ask the staff what happened? Did they consider that the tip was the result of bad service, food or maybe even something else.
This is an interesting story and an even more notable cautionary tale amongst the many for businesses in social media,