Friday, May 22, 2009

Starbucks, Social Media and Unions

Peter Mitchell, a public relations and adverti...Image by AFP/Getty Images via Daylife

Social Media : A Doubled Edged Sword

Boing Boing featured a post about how the new social media campaign at Starbucks was hijacked. A company called Brave New Films that produces videos on behalf of many activist and grassroots groups deftly stepped in took advantage of Starbucks intiative to gain press and momentum for their own campaign, both on twitter and in other media.

A three minute film produced by Brave New Films that focuses on Starbucks and offers a union perspective of the labor problems facing the large coffee producer is a major component of their social media campaign.

It also shares information on how to link to the web site Stop Starbucks which illustrates a great example of how social media is being utilized against businesses by those who have an issue with a particluar company.

Another example of a site that is using social media to push negative information about a company is a site called Cure CVS which purports to be a consumer driven effort to protect people from bad practices at CVS.

Human resources people in any business sector should aware of these type of sites. It doesn't take a lot to start one. Any company can become the focus of such campaigns.

Here are a few examples from twitter and then the video if you care to watch!

  1. Max_normal zedomaxnet RT @oneclimate RT @oneworldtv - What do Starbucks and Wal-Mart have in common? (Brave New Films) -... about 10 hours ago from web
  2. Default_profile_normal maineBNN Turn Maine Blue: What do Starbucks and Wal-Mart have in common?: From Brave New Films [...] about 16 hours ago from twitterfeed
  3. Sitehoppin_normal sitehoppin RT @oneclimate RT @oneworldtv - What do Starbucks and Wal-Mart have in common? (Brave New Films) -... about 20 hours ago from web
  4. Photo_24_normal annaalmendrala Oh, the things I do for Brave New Films: 1 day ago from OutTwit

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