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Food truck worker fired for tweet about customers

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#1 Hum

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 17:30

New Yorker Brendan O’Connor lost his job last week.

Normally, this would not make for a particularly newsworthy story, but O’Connor’s tale is different, in part because it all started with a tweet of his, shown below.

Thing is, the @GlassLewis in question above is the San Francisco-based shareholder advisory firm of Glass Lewis & Co., which didn’t take too kindly to the public tip-shaming. The company called O’Connor’s boss at Milk Truck, a food truck business specializing in grilled cheese sandwiches, to complain about the accusatory tweet. Two days later, O’Connor’s brief career in food service was over. Milk Truck publicly apologized and the episode was put to rest.

Except that it wasn’t.

Turns out, O’Connor moonlights as a reporter for the New York City culture blog The Awl, and he wrote a lengthy article on the firing, including lurid details about Glass Lewis’s tip-snubbing employees, that ran it on Tuesday. It read, in part:

    "This group placed a huge order: three of this sandwich, four of another, three of the one that takes forever on the grill, two of the one that takes forever to assemble. Five or six milkshakes. The order came to just under $170.

    "I was making sandwiches, another worker took the order and a third made the milkshakes and watched the grills. A line grew while we worked, and we had to tell other customers that their lunch orders would take longer than usual. They paid; I asked my co-worker who was dealing with the money how much of a tip they’d left. They had left actually no tip at all. (They had paid with a card so we checked the cash tips to see if there’d been a bump. There hadn’t.)

    "I asked some of the group as they were picking up their orders if they had intended to not tip. They hemmed and hawed and walked away."

The reaction was swift and impassioned. Readers swarmed social media to berate Milk Truck and Glass Lewis over the incident with expletive-riddled rants, in an effort that at times seemed to suggest Americans had found a new reason to distrust the financial services industry. O'Connor quickly became a folk hero among service workers.

And all this for a proxy advisory firm that, until this week, was not well known to the general public. O’Connor has since pulled back from his story, telling Yahoo! Finance that he does not want to “fan the flames” and is hoping that the whole thing dies down soon. The Awl on Tuesday asked its readers to take it easy, at least on Milk Truck.

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#2 Soldiers33

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 17:38

why do people think they expect a tip? lol you get paid for your job already the rest is extra.



#3 ILikeTobacco

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 17:42

why do people think they expect a tip? lol you get paid for your job already the rest is extra.

Because you don't and its not extra, it's your main source of income.



#4 Grinch

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 17:46

Because you don't and its not extra, it's your main source of income.

 

This. So many people think for example delivery drivers get paid what the "Delivery Fee" is. While it may be true for some companies it isn't for most. Usually that just handles insurance and the only real income they get is from tips. I never realized that until I made a friend that worked for Pizza Hut, Dominos is the same way. Now I always try to tip when I can.



#5 OP Hum

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 17:51

I think it is sheer arrogance to expect and demand tips.



#6 +Bryan R.

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 17:54

I think it is sheer arrogance to expect and demand tips.

It's not the fault of the employee who's income is expected to come from tips.



#7 ILikeTobacco

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 17:56

I think it is sheer arrogance to expect and demand tips.

Maybe in another country where people don't rely on tips as their main paycheck which is a well known fact. I think it is arrogance for someone to expect to have someone to serve them but expect to not have to pay them for it.



#8 spacer

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 18:00

why do people think they expect a tip? lol you get paid for your job already the rest is extra.

Tipping food service people is the norm here in the US. Most of these people get paid less than minimum wage because of the tips they are supposed to get from customers. True, it's not required for customers to tip, but it's an accepted/expected social behavior here. To not tip someone in this context, especially after ordering a large amount of food, is just down-right obnoxious.



#9 OP Hum

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 22:22

Employers should pay legal/decent wages -- not rely on customer tips.

 

And I'd go to the grocery store and cook up my own food, before shelling out $170. :wacko:



#10 +warwagon

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 22:26



#11 astropheed

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 22:34

As I've said before and will say again, if you're unhappy with your financial position the best course of action it to seek new employment or education. Berating people for not tipping is not acceptable. It's not required, and to be honest it's usually not merited. Considering O'Connor's little twitter tantrum I'm doubtful his services merited a tip as well.

 

I'm tired of people blaming other people. Don't like your job? Not paid enough? Stop blaming other people and go do something with yourself. If you want to be lazy and work in an industry that 'relies' on tips to make ends meet then you need to deal with the fact not everyone cares about your situation, man up and move on. No one put you there but you.



#12 Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 23:08

So quit. I'd be willing to place a bet of hundreds, if not thousands, that there are many other unemployed people out there who would be grateful just to have a job. And would snap that job up in a heartbeat. As for the order, $170 is still an expensive order of food, tip or no tip. I don't disagree with the customer's decision not to leave a tip, but do think the employee(s) have a problem if they expect tips.
They're called tips for a reason.

As I've said before and will say again, if you're unhappy with your financial position the best course of action it to seek new employment or education. Berating people for not tipping is not acceptable. It's not required, and to be honest it's usually not merited. Considering O'Connor's little twitter tantrum I'm doubtful his services merited a tip as well.

I'm tired of people blaming other people. Don't like your job? Not paid enough? Stop blaming other people and go do something with yourself. If you want to be lazy and work in an industry that 'relies' on tips to make ends meet then you need to deal with the fact not everyone cares about your situation, man up and move on. No one put you there but you.

lol better put than mine.

I know there are some really cr*ppy jobs out there, but hello, you're working.

#13 Tha Bloo Monkee

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 23:19

Am I the only one who thinks it's a stupid move in the first place to be Tweeting about things you hate about your job?  I see this sometimes in my Facebook news feed where someone complains about customers or their job and just wonder how one of these days there's a chance they'll get canned for it.

 

As for the article, I'm aware that some states pay something like $2 or $3 but if they don't get enough in tips the employer is required to pay the difference so they make minimum wage.  To be expecting tips (especially large tips which I'm sure this guy was expecting, when he stresses the fact that it was a $170 order) is self-entitlement.



#14 fusi0n

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 23:32

why do people think they expect a tip? lol you get paid for your job already the rest is extra.

In America, most workers that are employed by a restaurant only get paid about $2.50/hour and rely on tips..

 

I can go both ways.. I wouldn't call someone out about something business related on the internet.. That person represents the company and when they start running their mouth.. it looks bad for the company..

 

With that said.. Yeah, he could be stressed the ###### out and had enough..  



#15 +techbeck

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Posted 01 August 2013 - 23:38

why do people think they expect a tip? lol you get paid for your job already the rest is extra.

 

Not sure how it works where you are at, but in America...it is common knowledge to tip many places.  Some people only make a few bucks an hour as well and the rest is tips.