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Employee Fired by Starbucks Over Blog

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Private blog wasn’t; man fired for blasting boss

Peter Brieger and Sean O’Shea, National Post and Global News, Friday, September 03, 2004

When does criticizing an employer become a firing offence?

That is the question a former Starbucks employee is asking after the ubiquitous coffee chain terminated him this week for profanity-laced remarks he made about a manager and the company on an Internet journal.

Matthew Brown, a 28-year-old Starbucks supervisor in Toronto, uses the blog, or online journal, to keep in touch with friends and family. The diary contained his thoughts, a place where Mr. Brown vented his frustrations about everything from personal issues to work. When a manager refused to let him go home sick, Mr. Brown sounded off about his boss from home. He said he didn’t use his real name, and gave the journal’s address to a select group of people, so he doesn’t know how the diary ended up in Starbucks’ hands.

”I feel violated,” he told Global News.

The coffee chain, which declined to comment, refused to say where the entries came from and fired its six-year employee on the day he was to begin management training.

“It was ignorant and rude,” Mr. Brown said of his comments. “But it was for nobody except my family and friends. I didn’t give the address to anyone at Starbucks. And I didn’t name the manager.”

Mr. Brown hasn’t decided whether to fight the dismissal. Starbucks employees sign a contract agreeing not to make negative comments about the company, he said.

“There are times when you’re frustrated, some people have treated you terribly that day, so you vent — just like in any job,” Mr. Brown said.”

There are plenty of stories about employees being reprimanded for using company e-mail for non-work purposes, or employers going after people who post Web sites defaming them.

Michael Church, a Toronto labour lawyer, said there is a stronger expectation of privacy when people send online messages outside work.

“It’s like you and I sending an e-mail from our home,” he said. “We wouldn’t expect it to be read by anyone else.”

Another employment lawyer said Mr. Brown may have violated his employment contract, regardless of where he made the remarks.

Rick Broadhead, author of Dear Valued Customer, You are a Loser, a new book about technology mishaps, says there should be little expectation of privacy on the Internet.

“Posting something on the Internet is like going to the corner of Yonge and Bloor in Toronto or Portage and Main in Winnipeg and holding up a big bulletin board,” he said.

Mr. Broadhead conceded the former Starbucks employee’s journal isn’t easy to find, but he added that postings like personal Web sites, are permanently archived on the Internet. He said some companies use corporate monitoring services to scan the Internet for mentions of their name.

This isn’t the first example of a worker getting in trouble over e-mail. An employee of a Web site known for promoting self-expression and online social networking was fired over her personal online journal, while a New York investment banker, who had moved to South Korea for work, was let go for sending an e-mail to former colleagues detailing his sexual exploits abroad.

“People are using the Internet to sound off about all sorts of things with the sense that the Internet is a bit lawless and they can say what they like,” said Michael Geist, a professor who specializes in Internet and e-commerce law at the University of Ottawa. “The challenge is to find the dividing line between what employees can say and what can be considered damaging to employers.”

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About Jason Koulouras

  • Hollywood Refugee

    I have been going to Starbucks everyday for over ten yrs – I always get the same thing: Soy Chai Tea Lattee. Not only does Starbucks have the audacity to charge me 40.cents more simply for Soy Milk…but now they fire an employee for venting on his private blog.
    Its disgusting. Its akin to him having been out in a bar for a drink venting to friends, and some Starbuck employer overhears him, and fire him.
    An online blog should be respected as a place to vent ones thoughts privately.
    He didnt post his thoughts on the myriad of online newspapers or sites that offer public forum to rant. He simply vented in his journal – akin to venting in his diary.
    His employee agreement is certainly in violation of his right to privacy and his right to free speech. That Starbucks would make anyone sign something stating not to bad mouth the company speaks volumes as to HOW BAD the Company really is. Badmouthing to customers..yeah I can see that as grounds for dismal..but NOT venting in a personal diary even if that diary is online.

    Starbucks would be better suited spending their money and time and energy in dealing with manager and HIS attitude toward his employees rather than firing a 6 yr employee who was on the management track. That anyone stays with Starbucks for 6 yrs is a feat worthy of reward…not punishment!

    This article is being posted on my BLOG which attracts over 100 readers, each with their own friends lists that average 50 readers…the feedback against Starbuck’s action in this case is vitrolic.

    That kind Bad PR does and will do more damage to Starbucks then a sole employee venting in his online diary.

  • Since the situation occurred in Canada, American law does not apply. However, if an American employee engaged in the same conduct, he would be legally terminated. I should probably set up a function key to type this sentence with one keystroke: Most workers are employees at will and can be dismissed for almost any reason. Any reason includes a silly reason or no reason at all. I was listening to a hip hop song called ‘Who Runs This?’ on iTunes a moment ago. The answer in the employee-employer context is that 90-something percent of the time, the employer does.

    Brown comes off as whiny and none too bright. If anyone knows he has a blog, common sense should have told him that information would spread. Furthermore, I’ll wager a double latte that Brown has discussed his blog at work or even posted to it from there. Broadhead is on point. Anyone searching for ‘blog’ and ‘Starbucks’ could have happened upon Brown’s blog. Persons doing so would have been treated to a diatribe against the company it did not have an opportunity to respond to. So, the harm Starbucks is attempting to protect itself from is real. To see what I mean, look at the comment above. The person has taken Brown’s remarks to heart without even considering they are one-sided.

  • huh, one of these deals. What was said on the blog? Holy cow. Having been downing Starbucks for over 30 years with no complaints, I imagine it is just a case of Starbucks becoming huge fast and some idiotic isolated incident based on some sort of reactionary situation has created this situation.

    Fire off an e-mail to Howard Schultz (Mr. Starbucks) and ask what he thinks. He might be cool about it, if he ever gets to it… He has to open up a zillion more Starbucks first…


  • Here is my perspective (that I am sure you all have been waiting for). Dude mentions he did not use his own name. However, if he called his boss out by name… then i think the dismissal is pretty fair grounds. I am all for freedom of the press, but I am also in management. If I knew (which I am sure is true) people were posting (anywhere on the web) “lono of parker is such a dick. he is a pervert and should be fired and probably steals money from the company” I would freak. Now, I am not saying dude said that about his boss… but if he used the boss’ real name then it can be googled forever.


  • S Wood

    Firing an employee for muttering unflattering comments about his employer is ridiculous.

    Would you stop buying Starbucks because one of their employees ranted in a blog? Yeah right. Are consumers supposed to believe that everyone who stands behind a fastfood chain’s countertop waiting to serve us, loves their job? Give me a break.

    Everyone has had bad days. Maybe the employee’s supervisor was deserving of the comments. Who knows? Who cares.

    The real concern here is personal freedom. Should corporate entities have the power to control their employees’ thoughts and expression off the job?

    If you answered yes, perhaps you should revisit G Orwell’s 1984. We’re talking about brand loyality not the country’s security issues.

    And if you do trade freedom for “security” you will end up losing both.


  • Thanks for all the comments – has anyone searched for this blog with any luck?


  • Jason, the last time I really criticized something a person had on his weblog, he erased the blog. That could have happened. Not to please me, mind you. The person did it for spite, though he ended up spiting himself.

    BTW, I downloaded the blog before he erased it in case I wanted to use it as an example in a research project or book. Starbucks’ lawyers may have a copy of Brown’s blog, too. People need to learn that covering their tracks on the Internet is not an easy thing.

    Lono, what you are saying about what might have been in the entry is why I am concerned about the one-sidedness of Brown’s story. He is on the defensive. I would want to know what was said about the manager and Starbucks in general.

  • Ex Starbucks’er

    One really cannot understand the problems caused to the employee who was fired unless one understands the nature of the company Starbucks.

    While reviewed in glowing terms from Fortune, etc… for their “pro-partner” stance there are a host of major problems with the company’s supposed commitment to what Howard Shultz calls “not being just a number” (like his father supposedly was treated).

    After experiencing the company from the corporate (not retail) side for four years, I have realized the genius behind the smoke screen that is Starbucks and Howard Shultz

    While using “emotion” and “passion” as key building blocks to fashion a “following” of loyal SBuxer’s, Mr. Shultz has created a cultish environment where – should you disagree with your superiors – good luck and goodbye soon because there is no need for anyone who does not want to “change the world one cup at a time”. While whipping up the troops is not necessarily a bad thing when trying to make a buck – Mr. Shultz seems to do it in a way which is disingenuous (or he REALLY believes what he is saying and dosen’t have his finger on the pulse of the lower Managers in the company).

    For example, Mr. Shultz often cries when speaking to large groups of “partners” about company direction or history – or will send heartfelt messages via voicemail to all partners about a store employee who commited suicide – for example.

    But all this “emotion” and “caring” can seem a little “FAKE” when salaried partners are worked extensive hours, paid below their value, and low level corporate managers are allowed to step thier way up the ladder on the backs of good people as long as they say the right corporate slogans – “respect, dignity, diversity…” Diversity is a joke unless you take the value and experience “diverse” people bring and use the best parts of it and not just the parts that fit your slogans.

    As far as the corporation is concerned, the end justifies the means.
    Sounds like somebody else we knew back in WWII.

    What you have to understand about Starbucks and their success is this: they will make money and appear to be doing above average things int he market because whenever you have a cult-like work force you can do this. The genius is they “cult”ivate people who ONLY think as they do and push out anyone who may actually bring fresh, new, profitable elements to the organization. Many, many of the corporate employees used to work in the retail stores (which in itself is not a bad thing) BUT you essentially have someone who was a bit above a McDonald’s Manager (sorry McD folks)Level trying to manage professional people (at least in the corporate side of things). If the ex retail Manager has an power issue with this because they are now now dealing wth part time retails employees, SBux corporate will let the person wrek havoc as long as they say the mantra. There is no check and balance against a rouge manager for partners. The manager is assumed right and can do what they want – mission statement be dammed.

    As long as they “say” the right thing.

    Howard Shultz has developed a culture of “partners” who value the image and cult the company brings to their life rather their true financial and individual worth. Any company that is trendy or a “cool place to work” can take advantage of the human need to be a part of something – Starbucks does this better than any company around and has the results to show for it – just don’t expose any faults (even if to fix) or you will be GONE (in a way that makes them still think they are very caring about partners).

  • As far as the corporation is concerned, the end justifies the means.
    Sounds like somebody else we knew back in WWII.

    So, Howard Schultz is Hitler?

  • I always thought everyone was a little too cheery at Starbucks – I feel creeped out the odd time I have gone into one.

    Thanks for the additional comments

  • no

    poor mr brown found out what happens when you stratch the gilt on the image…
    starbucks is one of the worst companies on the planet..they SAY that they are all about the employees..(even going so far as to call them “partners”) when the truth is they will do whatever is needed to protect their deceptive corporate image…or personal jobs…
    a big part of the problem is their human resources department (which they call “partner resources” and state that they, “partner resources, are in place to promote and assist their partners in everyway they can, when in fact they spend a great deal of their time covering up the incompetence of their friends and/or coworkers. it is filled with dishonest, unethical, and immoral people…julie root and christine deputy are perfect examples. the company feels that they must keep up the image and uses the hr department to fire anyone that may expose them or the companies truth. the hr department will strive to get rid of excellant employees while covering up, or outright denial of, the actions of the incompetent ones. a favourite tactic is to force someone to quit thereby giving the impression that they left the company of their own valition. i am not in the least surprised that mr brown was fired, that is standard operating practice for starbucks. it happens everyday with them. the image MUST be protected, if that means firing someone because they have stated the truth rather than the corporate image lie thats ok, its just my job as a hr representative. you have to really question ANY company that is so insecure about their actual vs. perceived pratices that they force their employees to sign away their right to express their views and tell the truth. blogs are “public domain” goes the arguement. lets bring it to another point, what if mr brown had a more traditional paper journal. he lets some friends and family read it on occasion. one day he and his friend are sitting in a restaurant and his friend reads a portion out loud…is that very different? is it grounds for termination? yes it would be in the world of starbucks. i don’t know mr brown but i can assure you i know his situation. starbucks will do anything and everything to hide the man behind the curtain. don’t believe the image because the gilt is just that…gilt…stratch the surface and you will find rot beneath.

  • mandey

    who signed the agreement to not criticize the company? who picked up the pen and signed it? did howard pick up matthew’s hand and put a pen in it and sign to paper for him? NO. every starbucks partner signs it, and if they read it and think it’s “cultish” or “eerie” or “weird” then they don’t have to agree to it. matthew may have freedom of speech issues, but he also had freedom of CHOICE when he signed that agreement. and as for poster #1, about the soy milk, um, soy costs more. so you pay more. that’s the nature of BUSINESS. they CHARGE you more because it costs the BUSINESS more. it does not make starbucks a cult. it makes them a business. for god’s sake.

  • I’m not surprised that this guy got fired. He doesn’t sound too bright. There is no right to vent about your employer on the internet.

    If you are going to do that, change every proper noun. If any living person knows your right identity, you’re playing with fire, but you could use code to keep your site from being indexed. You could further protect it with a password. There are also anonymous confession sites and bulletin boards that might be a better bet. On some level, he wanted them to find his site.

    Self-expression is important, but it is best done carefully when your job is involved. If Starbucks or that boss had even the option of believing that that site was not about them, this might have blown over.

  • If you want to criticize your current employer, perhaps the thing to do is to anonymously tell someone else who has a blog. Let them rant for you. I’m thinking of dedicating a post to the frustrations of my former colleagues. Of course – lest I get 500 emails from disgruntled employees – it’s just a thought.

    And, Jason (#6), I found your blog through a web search on “blog and starbucks.”

  • cayenne

    Starbucks doesn’t care enough about the consumer to include the trans fatty acid content in the White Chocolate Mocha drink nutrition guide on the company’s website. It was only after I viewed a label found on the ‘secret’ ingredient white cholocate syrup mix that I discovered the ‘dirty’ truth. No more WCM for me!! Doesn’t the company read the news about this product? Obviously not.

  • Beatrice

    Currently a SBux enployee, i think it’s unfair to look at it “i said something bad on the net and now i’m fired.” I’m not saying what he did was wrong, but since i don’t know what was written i think that’s to the Employer and Employee to hash it out. Termination was drastic, and a little out of line (unless there was a discussion in it.). General disclaimers on, even a Blog, comments can save general hassle. No job is perfect, and we all get upset. It happens. ~~~~Why all the SBux bashing? It’s a drink, and sure it’s expensive, but you spend money for quality. if you just was a hot chocolate go somewhere else. Without sustantial proof there is no need to destroy a good thing. It’s like bashing Timmies for putting MSG in the coffee. (i’ve worked there too). Whether it’s true or not, i don’t know.. people say things, doesn’t mean it has to be taken ot heart. It’s a living, not a way kill people.

  • Looks like nobody gets the message that there is no privacy on the internet. Not only is there no privacy, but until an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) wipes all the computers clean, there is no forgetting or forgiveness either.

    This article was posted 18 months ago.

    This means that I will be held liable for every word that has gone into my e-mails, not to mention my articles forever – or until that EMP arrives…

  • Georde

    This sounds like a supreme court case to me… freedom of speech?

  • An Owner.

    Like it or not businesses exist for their owners
    to MAKE MONEY. Employees are are one means to this end. Their comfort, convenence or for that matter privacy are not an issue. The business owner having put up sometimes millons in capital,
    and obtained all the permits, health inspections,
    insurance, inventory, operating space etc etc etc, now has the responsibility of protecting her property. While many business owners go to great lengths to obtain and retain quality employees, they have a right to object to any kind of slur or threat to what they have taken great risks to create. Is this a good thing for the employee? Probably. Since it insures that people who dont want to be or are incapable of being business owners can make a living. It also
    insures that goods and services are brought to market for the consuming public. This is the foundation of a free market ecomomy. Employees need to understand this and respect what has been created by someone else. If you dont like it, strike out on your own. Nobody is stopping you.

  • Sandy M


  • cantwealljustgetalong

    I realize this is a really old blog….but I have no clue where all this antimosity comes from, I have worked for two seperate stores and both have been amazing expiences for me. It is one of the best working environments I have ever worked for. If you complain about an employer and they found out, I wouldn’t expect much less than for them to fire you… Why would anyone want to keep someone working for them who is going to slur them. private or public if I owned a store or was a manager and found out one of my employees were saying mean things I wouldn’t want to keep them either.Mean coments are hurtful, and who wants to work with people who are going to bring them down? The places I have worked have been positive, they work on building you up not tearing you down. I am sorry for the people who have experienced otehrwise. As for prices that occasionaly go up……When in life has prices not gone up? Did not bread at some point cost a nickel? Can you get that now? NO way. Prices go up, because costs of living goes up. It is just the way things are.

  • I believe employers do have a right to expect that their employees be respectful of the company they work for.

    Needless to say there are a lot of people looking for jobs that can’t find them, and those that have them should be at least thankful enough to speak with pride about the company they work for, or, if they are dissatisfied or disgruntled or dismayed, they are free to quit and then are free to say whatever they want as protected by their first ammendment rights.

    I have a separate gripe…At Christmas time I sent Howard Schultz a gift package to his Main office address at Starbucks. The package contained 5 beautiful Salt Lamps from my company http://www.SaltLampCreations.com

    While I was hopeful he would find them suitable for sale in Starbucks stores I sent no sales letter or any hype. Just a note saying they were a gift from Salt Lamp Creations and my address, jerry-saltlampcreations-com

    It is now nearly 3 months later and I didn’t even receive an acknoledgment from Howard Schultz or any of his Starbuck’s employees of the gift, though UPS tracking shows it as delivered.

    When you get to far removed from your customers, the dream of building a village starts to look morre like building an empire.

  • lola rathke

    I work for starbucks as a supervisor, and i know what this guy must be going through. it’s not an easy job. dealing with the various personalities of customer and coworker can be very stressful. serving the public is usually thankless, and we are often looked down upon as the average, low i.q. fast food employee, despite the fact that most of us are working toward degrees in fields not related to food service. I was forced to work with a 104 degree fever, persistently passing out in the office, because no one could cover my shift. i wound up in the e.r. that night. I could have been the author of the online journal blasting the company for forcing me to continue my shift with a severe fever. No harm would have come to the management staff, but I have no doubt i would have been fired as well.

  • He not what he was doing. People know that the Internet is public. He may not have identified his target, but associations exist that he would know word-of-mouth was get back. It is a clear message to everyone. This isn’t your personal diary or your private telephone call to a friend. It’s etched in stone.

  • Jacked_on_Caffeine

    I don’t give two hoots in hell what he said or where he said it – this is a FREE COUNTRY and if we have gotten to the point where the thought and speech police are reading over our shoulder, let’s all collectively throw a hot cup of steaming black coffee over that shoulder. What we do on our own time, as well as what we SAY on our own time is NO ONE’S BUSINESS!! We WORK for you, you MORONS – you do not own or control us in any way shape or form! Shame on you Starbucks!! George Orwell saw you coming….

  • Terry Whynott


  • Starbucks employee

    Howard Shultz is not Hitler. Howards Shultz is a big business owner. I work at Starbucks, have been for some time now, I signed a contract saying, in large bolded type mind you, that I would try to keep my work environment as good as possible for my fellow partners. Starbucks has never made me work when I was sick even though we had to call every employee to find a sub and sent me home even before we knew we could even get one. One of my fellow employees was fired for sexual harrasment only because Starbucks has a partner complaint hotline to which you can make anonymous complaints. If you don’t like the manager call and they’ll transfer you to another Starbucks, one of the girls I work with transferred to my store because of a situation like that. The internet is not private, if someone can hack into yahoo, they obviously could get to your private blog without breaking a sweat. You pay more for soy milk because you can steam normal soy milk so Starbucks has it specially made so it can be steamed, though it increases the price it allows those who can’t drink normal milk to still enjoy Starbucks coffee, which also costs more only because of it’s high quality. Mouthing off online one a blog that is easily identified as yours is not how you should vent. I have never had any problems working at Starbucks, that managment didn’t/couldn’t fix, that didn’t have to do with customers dumping hot coffee in my face because I forgot the one pump of sugar free mocha in they’re twenty descriptor latte. I don’t expect Howard Shultz to do anything for me personally because he has too much to do already, but with my medical and dental care that many other places don’t offer I tihnk I’m alright with signing the contract saying I can’t say anything bad about the company or my managers because if I did I wouldn’t be working there. By signing the contract I gave up my freedom of speech I did it of my own free will there is no reason to say that Starbucks took it away because the truth is that I gave it to them.

  • J

    Okay. It is completely okay that this company fired their former employee for speaking poorly about them on a publicly viewed blog. First thing to understand is that blogging is a very powerful form of PR. What he did would be the same thing as if he made paper fliers and posted them all over town. It is bad publicity and hurts business. And besides, just because he wasn’t on the clock doesn’t mean he wasn’t on the clock. If he would have gone and robbed a bank in his uniform he would have gotten fired for the SAME thing. Bad publicity. It is a dog eat dog world. Survival of the fittest and this kid just couldn’t hang.

  • If this state recognizes at-will hiring and firing then he doesn’t have a blog to stand on. They have to give no reason at all none, zip.

    But if it is otherwise and he signed a statement not to bitch about his boss, then his gaffe is cooked.


  • Mattie

    When you post your opinions on the internet, it’s not for just you anymore. You lose your privacy. That’s how it goes. Maybe he shouldn’t had been fired, but maybe he should also watch what he says. The Internet is used for all sorts of things these days–from searching for potential hiring candidates to personal pictures. The internet isn’t personal. He should had known that. Private blog? There’s virtually no such thing.

  • silly puddy

    i too had to work a long shift with a fever with no relief in sight. some managers are great about helping partners who are ill, but most don’t care. seriously, it’s not a great company. for the district managers and regional people on up, it’s all about the money money money, but you sign on believing all the hype about being a partner and what a great job it is. i will say that the benefits are pretty good, and it’s not easy to get benefits for 20 hours a week at another company, but they’re not exactly affordable, so if you only work 20 hours a week, your check is devoured by health care costs if you take advantage of the benefits offered. this doesn’t include co-pays and deductibles, which are probably comparable to most health plans, but still not exactly within reach of a $6.50/hour (texas) worker. i think starbucks tries to be “of the people” but it’s definitely a corporation with shareholders to answer to, so you can’t exactly be altruistic when you’re trying to make money for your investors. i like the job, i mean it can be pretty stupid sometimes (the “just say yes” policy means partners often have to take abuse from customers), but it’s easy work, except if you need to find someone to cover your shift because you’re ill or you need a raise. not gonna happen…

  • yvonne

    I think that it was unfair for a six year employee to be fired .He wrote a blog so fucking what,what he wrote was confidential and was for family and friends they jus need to chill

  • Brunelleschi

    No one should ever post comments about work on line that they can not afford to be called out on when the boss finds out.

    You have aright to do so, but you must always expect the boss to react.

  • Brunelleschi is right. There is NO privacy on the internet. And employers may or may not have the “right” to check on a blog site, but it is a public record, not a private one. So all speech on it is public.

    Any comment about an employer can be used as grounds to fire an employee when made in public.


    I worked for SBUX in a roasting plant. After 3 months I left. I got fed up with the constant barefaced lies from management and being around a bunch of mindless sheeple that acted like Zombies. I personally think Howard Shultz is one of the most evil people on the planet and it deeply saddens me to watch so called adults fall prey to what amounts to nickle and dime brainwashing for financial gain.
    Shultz is a sociopath,totally void of any concience at all. He will fabricate layers upon layers of lies to cover his own mishandling of this small time company. The biggest example comes to mind when I go back and look at the cronology of events the past few years..He was on the board of directors. He smiled,patted Jim Donald on the back, and signed off on the dotted line for the building of the SC roasting plant. A few weeks later…Donald was gone and this evil evil man was saying he did not like the idea of building the extre plant……After working in that pig stye of a sweatshop with his looney goon mgt staff….I admit …I don’t like the idea of building the extra plant either. Hopefully his spies will pass this on to him and I do not care what his sheeple and butt kissers have to say about it….

  • The following is a legal brief from Duke Law and Technology Review on Anti-Employer Blogging.

  • The following is also of interest:

    While the majority of blogs are politically oriented,16 an ever-rising number of blogs are dedicated to complaints about work and the boss.17 Specifically, blogs and message boards at sites such as F**kedCompany.com18 are dedicated to expressions of employee frustration about work and the boss.19 Indeed, F**kedCompany.com receives approximately 124,000 visits per week and actively encourages company insiders to out confidential information about their employers.20 These sites, sometimes referred to as “gripe sites,”21 can be very powerful.22

  • phppsmss

    When will people learn that the internet is NOT a private place? As long as people can access to whatever supposingly private things written, it is considered to be a public space.

    It’s like writing a diary entry then leaving it around unlocked for any soul to read it. In what way is that private? If you don’t want to get into trouble, just don’t blog it. Vent frustrations at other avenues that don’t leave evidence lying about.

  • Peter St. John

    Stopped going to Starbucks about 5 months ago…..Bad corporate neighbour..Filthy store inside and out……Outside of store is an ashtray and no one cleans.. Take the money from the public and do nothing to add to our neigbourhood.. Talking about Starbucks in Ottawa on bank and hopewell…

  • Zack

    My situation was similar – except I gave notice and left. My situation was similar – except my ex-supervisor told potential employers everything. I was slandered to potential employers. After months of very bad advice, I finally found a smart attorney who referred me to Bad References. They busted my ex-supervisor for sharing his idiotic, personal opinions to third parties.

    That stupidity cost my former employer a small fortune and my ex-boss was fired. Things can get better.

  • Meghan

    On September 24, 2010 I was at a Starbucks with my mom. We were waiting for her drink to be made and decided to split a piece of pumpkin loaf. I bit into the loaf and felt a crunch, but I assumed it was one of the pumpkin seeds and bit again. I instantly felt a pain and strange feeling in my mouth. I spat the piece out of my mouth to discover a small grey stone. I immediately took the stones to the barista and she profusely apologized while filling out an incident report. I asked if she wanted to keep the stone, but she said no and wrote down all of my information.

    It is now almost December and I have been playing phone tag with the corporation for months. I have spoken to 11 different people and have been given 6 different case numbers to which I have to report and explain this frustrating situation every time I call. Each person tells me something else and tells me to wait for a representative to call. I was asked the best times to be reached, but of course the only time I receive phone calls is to my answering machine while I am at work and they are rare.

    I went to the dentist to discover my teeth were severely damaged to the point of needing filing and porcelain veneers. My teeth were perfect, my parents had already spent over $5000 getting braces, filing and bleaching. Due to the damaged teeth, other teeth are now becoming damaged as the sharp edges chip away at existing teeth. I now need the removal of my brace wire and cement, mouldings for my teeth, porcelain veneers and 8 teeth filed. All because I decided to trust Starbucks and their products that were tainted. I would like to believe that the high prices and friendly people ensure safe food, but clearly they do not.

    How the stones got there I am not sure….was my food dropped on the ground? Were they baked inside? No one knows. All I am aware of is I am an extremely frustrated consumer that has realized clearly Starbucks as a corporation does not care about their products or consumers.

    After writing this message I received a letter from Starbucks (Nov 29, 2010. It states “ It is with my sincere apologies that I must inform you that Starbucks does not feel we are responsible for your damages and therefore must respectfully deny any claim you may file as a result of this incident.” Not responsible? Was the product not sold over your counter, from your store? Did you not take my money? Are you saying you don’t care what is in your products or who eats it? What if I was a small child? What if I was a high power business man? Would you treat this situation any differently?
    All I know is I will never purchase an item from Starbucks again. I will tell every person I know this story as a warning so they know the type of company Starbucks is, and to be careful before biting into any product they sell.

    I never wanted a big pay out or attention, all I wanted was for my teeth: that were damaged eating a Starbucks pumpkin loaf to be fixed and returned back to the way they were. I was passed around for 2 months and now have been told that I don’t matter and my issue although due to their product, is not their responsibility. Thank-you Starbucks for caring about the little people and the products you sell.

  • hen

    I was recently fired from my job. My employer speaks about my termination in open with co-workers and other employees at the company. They have also spoken with individuals outside of the organization, specifically a competitor. This is making it very difficult to find a new job in my field.

  • John

    I was actually just suspended for posting something on a social media website. I waiting for Starbucks to can me.