Viewers are agreeing that “tipping culture” has gotten out of hand after a TikToker recounted how her recent visit to Ben & Jerry’s for a single waffle cone went.
TikToker @poorandhungry’s video received more than 1 million views on the platform in just a few days since it went up on Monday.
“So, I go to Ben & Jerry’s yesterday,” the creator started, “and I just wanted a cone. I just wanted a nice, fresh, warm cone. So I walk over the counter and I was like, ‘Hi, can I just have a waffle cone?'”
Enter the person at the counter. According to the creator, “She was like, ‘Yes, sure. Here you go. That’d be $2.'”
@poorandhungry Those tip screens are OUT OF CONTROL #tip #tipping #cringe #customerservice ♬ original sound – $yd
But the creator said she encountered a tipping screen when she put her card in the machine, and, as she noted: “I didn’t say it out loud, but In my head, I was like, ‘I’m not tipping you on a cone. You literally just handed me a cone.’ And I’m also, like, the percentages were insane. I was like, ‘I’m not tipping you $1 on a $2 cone that you just handed me.'”
So, the creator said she opted not to give a tip on the cone, which she claimed sent the Ben and Jerry’s employee into a reaction that the creator entertainingly demonstrated in the video. She then said the clearly frustrated cashier did this “to my face, to my actual face. Like on no planet is that ever appropriate, even if I got $100 worth of ice cream, and I don’t tip you.”
She then argued, “There wasn’t even a service being exchanged. There was an exchange as a transaction. It wasn’t even an act of service.”
Even those who advocate for tipping felt the worker’s alleged reaction was a bridge too far. “Anyone that’s seen my videos knows I’m a huge advocate for tipping,” said one creator who weighed in in the comments section. “However, I’m on your side with this one.”
Another person pointed out an instance where the tipping prompt seemed inappropriate. “I purchased a gift card from Starbucks and the tip screen came up,” prompting a “really?” and an “lol” in reaction.
“Yes for making someone’s drink,” that person continued, “but to buy a gift card?!”
While tipping on a gift card transaction may sound extreme, the tipping screen shown to Starbucks customers is probably a default feature and can’t be taken away on a case-by-case basis.
Tipping is always a contentious subject on TikTok. Usually, the consensus among TikTokers is that the system—the state or companies—should be fixed so that the onus to pay workers a livable wage no longer falls on consumers.
The Daily Dot has reached out to the creator via TikTok comment.