The Starbucks logo is almost as recognizable as the “golden arches” as its coffee draws millions daily with an unmatched fervor. You can barely walk down a street without smelling their variety of brews or hearing the hiss of steam as milk is frothed in preparation to meet coffee. However, Starbucks with all of its customers, who daily walk through the doors all around the country, has been found to have a fatal flaw.
Bryant Simon a history professor at Temple University has finished a study, and a book, on his observations of the coffee giant and the results are troubling. After frequenting a variety of Starbucks for about three hours a day over the last few years. Simon noticed something missing from each Starbucks chain: discussion. Community interaction, lively talks, and even a friendly debate used to draw people everywhere from coffee shops and libraries to park benches. Yet, in the case of Starbucks, Mr. Simon has found that many see the coffeehouses as a fortress of solitude.
With countless people being out of work or unable to afford internet, Starbucks has become a workplace more than a lively community hub. Most patrons, if there are more than one in a group, gather in small cliques and talk among themselves, while others sit quietly sipping coffee with a “you don’t talk to me, I won’t talk to you” demeanor. With Starbuck being so wildly popular and if the findings of Mr. Simon are an accurate representation, one wonders what has happened to the civility and friendliness of America.
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