The Great Tipping Debate

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One of my friends who is a bit of a foodie sent me an invite to a Facebook group. What I found quite interesting about this was that, they have a good enough Facebook ettiquette to not usually  indulge in pokes, questionnaires and ‘carcinogenic games’ (games like Zombies or Pirates which are supposed to be ‘viral’ but have a negative effect on trust in a community because they’re crap and violate social norms) and the activist trigger of the group.

An article on The Guardian food blog Tipping the balance by Graeme Allister (April 3, 2008) was the ignition point for restaurant customer outrage about how staff were being short-changed on tips by their employers either through various kinds of ‘administration charges’ or using tips to subsidise restaurant staff’s below minimum wage rate pay.


This resulted in the immediate reflexive response, resulting in the ‘Boycott Strada and Cafe Rouge‘ group invitation that I was sent.

In a society that rails against rail union strikes and voted Margaret Thatcher into power with a licence to smash the organised labour movement, industrial relations are now a key part of the mix  for a company’s reputation. Prior that this it was only the very worst offenders like gangmasters and the very largest global behemoths like Wal-Mart, Nike and Starbucks that have seen their reputation damaged, now everyone is fair game.