The video, which is sparking a conversation about what baristas should and shouldn’t be asked to do, comes from a user named @dahgari. In the clip, the TikToker shared what happened when they asked for a customized note on their drink.
It’s just the latest Starbucks-related video to go viral on TikTok, where baristas’ jobs have always been a hot topic. On the one hand, current and former baristas have used the app to share their wildest workplace mishaps and their biggest money-saving hacks. Meanwhile, others have used the platform to explore how the TikTok “secret menu” trend has led to some near-impossible drink orders.
In @dahgari’s video, she started by showing the custom request she placed with her order.
“I’m studying for a hard exam,” she wrote. “Can you please write something that makes me happy?”
Then, she showed the barista’s response — which was no response at all.
The TikTok ended with @dahgari showing her cup, which featured no special note of any kind. Her disappointment immediately spawned a massive debate.
Many users criticized the TikTok user, claiming that she was asking for way too much.
“Can we not make service workers do emotional labor on top of how hard they work [and] how relatively poorly they’re paid? Not cool,” one user wrote.
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“They don’t get paid enough for that,” another added.
“They’re a barista, not a therapist,” another wrote.
While many agreed with that criticism, some users also thought TikTokers were being too hard on @dahgari.
“Y’all are taking this so seriously,” one user wrote.
Others pointed out that the average barista simply doesn’t have time to write a custom message — especially right now. As Forbes reported in 2017, the holiday season is almost always Starbucks’ busiest time of year. December is typically the most popular month, with November and October following closely behind.
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