Tata Starbuck’s latest ad campaign - titled #ItStartsWithYourName – is facing the wrath of netizens just hours after its release for unnecessarily including the angle of gender change and its societal acceptance.
Conceptualised by Edelman India, the ad campaign features an elderly couple at a Tata Starbucks store, waiting for their son Arpit to arrive, with his father seemingly upset and the mother urging the father to remain composed.
In the frame after, a nervous young girl approaches the couple and sits next to them. Later it was revealed that the parents were actually meeting their transgender daughter for the first time after she had come out in the open.
Cut to the awkward tension between them, the father then goes on to order coffee for the family. As a surprise, the transgender girl is taken aback as the Starbucks barista calls out loud ‘Three cold coffees for Arpita.’
The family then shares an emotional moment of the father actually accepting his child and reuniting the three of them by saying that he would always hold his child close to him, even if there is an extra alphabet to the child’s name.
Wit this, the ad film comes to an end with a simple line telling a thousand words- It all starts with Arpita.
It is to be noted that the timing of this ad coincides with that of the Supreme Court’s five-judge bench, headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, hearing arguments on a batch of pleas seeking legal sanction for same-sex marriage.
In the same proceedings, it was emphasised that legalising same-sex marriage will defeat the very objective of the Hindu Marriage Act and depict how liberal thoughts of other religions and western countries are "overpowering" India and affecting the "nature of Hinduism".
The netizens also seem to be discontented with the Starbuck’s ad for similar reasons.
Moreover, some of the Twitteratis who took to the platform highlighted that discrimination is prevalent in the company itself and that a leading American publication had earlier released an article about the US Barista’s not really accepting people for who they are.
“Who designs such campaigns to guilt trip people which don’t appeal/apply to even 0.1 % Indians. Perhaps I should (pledge) my allegiance to Thirdwave coffee which has better coffee and equally good service and interiors like #Starbucks,” a user wrote on Twitter.
I used to like @Starbucks coffee. Not anymore. My family will never come to your woke joint. I ask every Indian to #BoycottStarbucks in India and globally and I wish @StarbucksIndia goes bankrupt.— Satyanveshi, A Truth Seeker for #Dharma (@TruthCantHid) May 11, 2023
When you attack my country and culture, no question of forgiving. #ItEndsYourBiz
In a business with no real product differentiator, these guys have guts to push such a pathological agenda in India. #BoycottStarbucks— Dr. A and 408 others (@iamAbhinavKumar) May 11, 2023
Literally anyone can make comparable coffee. https://t.co/WCWWsP1OzH
#BoycottStarbucks @TataCompanies and @RNTata2000 would do good to take off this ad at once and save your @StarbucksIndia brand from certain collapse.— Pushyamitra Returns 🚩🇮🇳🇮🇳🚩 (@Pushyamitra_108) May 11, 2023
This is Bharat and not some woke land. Pls remember this. https://t.co/KDpY4r9ZR8
Another Twitterati mentioned, “Is it @Starbucks policy to allow violence against non-trans men and women? There is no safety for your customers from your violent employees? Better we take our business somewhere else. #BoycottStarbucks #GoWokeGoBroke #QuitIndiaStarbucks #wokoharam”