Bar Patron Shouldn't Have Gotten the Boot for Drinking and Tweeting

beer cell phoneWhether you like it or not, tweeting, updating your Facebook status, and texting via smartphone while dining out has become ubiquitous social behavior. A Houston woman named Allison Matsu was doing just that at a bar called Down House last weekend. Upon overhearing the bartender's mention of Bobby Heugel, a prominent Houston bartender, she posted a tweet (since deleted) in which she called a bartender a "twerp" and appended her remark with the hashtag "#jackass #jackoff." Apparently, Down House couldn't handle the tweet heat. After she posted her "jackoff" remark, Matsu says the general manager called the bar, told Matsu, "You need to get your ass up and leave the establishment. Your time is done there," and then had her ejected from the bar. The manager says he "was agitated that someone would bully his bartender."

Waaaah! The Down House owner sure sounds like a pathetic, insecure cry baby ... who doesn't really understand bullying or social media at all.

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First of all, why the heck do they have someone patrolling Twitter for tweets about their restaurant? How sad. Second of all, they should realize if a customer tweets her opinions about their place of business and they don't like it, that's just too damn bad!

Tweets and status updates in public or semi-public forums (Yelp, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc.) might as well be the same thing as restaurant reviews that ran in a newspaper 20 years ago. Or, at the very least, they're the same thing as a phone call to a friend. Has anyone ever been kicked out of a restaurant or bar for calling a friend and whispering, "The bartender is being a jackoff right now"? A tweet is no more disruptive than that. In fact, to some extent, it's probably LESS disruptive!

Clearly, this bar just doesn't understand that what Matsu was doing is what just about EVERYONE now does to express themselves. We live our lives through social media, and that includes communicating about our experiences while dining out via Twitter. Smart businesses embrace technology as a way to promote their brand. Only stupid, defensive, insecure ones could see it as "bullying" or a threat. I guess we know exactly which category Down House falls under.

What do you think about what happened to this offending "tweeter"?

 

Image via McD22/Flickr

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