STATEN ISLAND, NY – A TikTok user who posted a guest check at New Dorp Applebee’s stirred a hornet’s nest this week.
He was demonizing a longtime waiter for employer Apple-Metro Inc. as commentators crammed into viscous chatter based on the misconception that the bill was posted by the server to demonize the customer.
At the heart of the controversy was the tip, in that it was not enough. The waitress at the heart of the matter is now terrified of going to work and says she is defamed by the Internet.
A TikTok article from “KingJ24” on Tuesday featured a receipt of $ 73.45, indicating a tip of $ 6.55, although there were suggested tips starting at $ 12.14. The amount came with a few words that noted with a sad face: “You were awesome. The holidays are just tough right now.
The waiter, Dana G., didn’t think much about it at the time.
“Your thoughts?” KingJ24 has grown into the clip caption.
After more than 713,000 views and more than 5,000 comments that followed, phone calls poured into the restaurant, an Apple-Metro representative said.
The server at the center of the angry virtual crowd, an emotional Dana G., contacted Advance on Thursday morning.
At that point, the media that had brought the story together pointed to the ambiguity of the original poster – the uncertainty of how KingJ24 had access to the bill, the assumption that the author of the note was a man, whether the person was a boss or a worker at the restaurant.
One report described TikToker’s tone as a disapproval of the board based on KingJ24’s backing music choice, Capone-N-Noreaga’s “Oh No”.
Dana G. pointed out in advance that it was the client – not her, a working middle-aged mother of two – who created TikTok.
She said, “I’m afraid to go to work. I checked in at the end of the night and went home. Two days later I went shopping with my kids and my manager called and said, “Do you know anything about a receipt? It’s on TikTok and there are a lot of views and people think it’s you.
She added: “And I would never shame anyone for anything they gave me.”
After an investigation by management and Apple-Metro Inc., the company determined that the employee was not at fault. On the contrary, Apple-Metro CEO and Chairman Zane Tankel said Dana G. appeared to be the victim of a cyber prank.
“It’s a joke they’re playing on – not us at Applebee – but this poor girl Dana who’s been with us for a while,” Tankel said.
Tankel said, “She’s not a child. She has two children. She is a mother – a hard working mother – and she remembers the guest well. We talked to him about it. She remembers him well and she took no offense or offense at this comment on the check.
He empathized: “Can you imagine – oh, my God. I don’t know why he would want to demonize her. Imagine … imagine … a mom. She protects her children and it is a few days before Christmas. It’s crazy. Just crazy. “
The CEO assured: “She is certainly not going to lose her job. We are protecting our people. They are our most important asset. And I will always remember it. “
Yet, to her horror and grief, Dana G. personally continues to resent public outrage, as other posts have already shared the incident and, when links are shared to Facebook pages, other opinions. pejoratives accumulate. She pointed out that other journalists have used social media as their primary source without taking the time to find out her side of the story.
“It’s sad that everyone just rang the bell. People curse me, say I should get a better job, have no education, and if I’m not fired they won’t come. eat at Applebee, ”she said. .
Dana G. said: “I collapsed crying to my manager. . . I’m even afraid to tell someone my name when I go to a table now, because if that was one of the more than 5,000 commented angry people on TikTok. People want to spit in my face or throw something at me or hang out.
On the positive side, Dana G. was supported by the sentiment of her managers and colleagues.
She said, “They have supported me so much. And then I spoke to them today and I know their lawyers are involved and they are trying to get to the bottom of it and stop them. They told me not to worry. And if I need anything, they’re there for me – and, you know, stay off the internet and just try and enjoy Christmas with your kids.
Pamela Silvestri is Editor-in-Chief of Advance Food. She can be reached at silvestri @ silvestri @ siadvance.com.