E-Racing together: How starbucks reshaped and deflected racial conversations on social media

Alison N. Novak, Julia C. Richmond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

In March 2015, Starbucks introduced its #RaceTogether campaign to encourage patrons to discuss race and ethnicity in global culture. Public reaction to #RaceTogether was largely critical and resulted in Starbucks' abandoning the campaign within a year. Through an analysis of 5000 #RaceTogether tweets, this study examines how users engaged the campaign and each other. This study draws three conclusions. First, most #RaceTogether posts featured extremist and racist positions. Second, #RaceTogether posts deflected race conversations and critiqued the organizations role in national racial discourses. Finally, posts in the digital space critiqued Starbucks as a location for inter-racial dialogue because of brand perception. This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101773
JournalPublic Relations Review
Volume45
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Communication
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Marketing

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