Start off the new year right!
Not even two days into the new uear Dystopian State Brewing company of Tacoma, WA finds themselves deep underwater in the sound for homophobic remarks made by the owner himself! Now, this story has been covered by Seattle Magazine and a couple other beer bloggers in Washington. Having Brew Coven centered in Tacoma it is our duty to report these happenings to you, our viewers because it is necessary! Fill up your glasses full of your favorite winter warmer and let boyscout take you on this harrowing journey of drama that started the new year off with a bang!
So, to cover all bases I will give you a little 101 in how handle critics in the beer industry if you so happen to work in or own a brewery. Very quickly you will discover that the internet can be a positive or negative breeding ground for the perception of your business. Owners/employees should develop the skills of thick skin and education early on to handle future problems that will arise through social media. Maybe somebody wants your pilsner to have more butter characteristic, sometimes people will say your porter could use coffee and vanilla with a dash of cinnamon to make it better. These types of critics can incite a quick and passionate response detailing to the reviewer that what they are saying is preposterous, it is YOUR duty to in a respectful and polite manner to educate and approach them in a kind and learning aspect as opposed to a feeling of berating and making them feel uneducated.
The long story short of what transpired between an owner of Dystopian State and a customer goes as follows. A customer was dissatisfied with their beer and on a social medium told Dystopian State that, “The only place I have spit beer back into a glass.” to which an owner of Dystopian State made a very aggressive and verbal attack to said customer belittling them and make homophobic remarks towards their comment. To make matters worse this isn’t the first time this has happened with the owners at Dystopian State which brings me to say that, as an owner if you can’t deal with criticism you need to hire someone to do so. If you, as an owner represent your company in a negative, aggressive, and idiotic manner you essentially lump the rest of your employees under your belief whether they agree with you or not because YOU ARE A OWNER!
You have probably guzzeld your stein of winter warmer so fill up, cause I am bringing this story to a close. In what followed after the owner made these negative and stupid comments social media quickly followed up by broadcasting to the whole beer community about what an asshole this guy was. That sounds judgemental and I don’t care to post the screen shots of what he said to this customer, but you can surely find them online and he blatantly acted like an asshole. In turn he took the brewery, all his staff, and the possibility of his business thriving in 2018 down the drain with his homophobic remarks and now Dystopian State is left sputtering for air wondering if they will even be in operation this year.
The reason this story made me want to write is that it’s crucial for us to be educators, not haters in this industry. We thrive on community and the people who come through our door to not only sustain our business but to provide an education for our customers because it is what OUR business and OUR community is about. We are about inclusion to all, not discrimination. We are about having a positive and growing atmosphere, not a suffocating, negative pool of routine ideals. Be stewards in your community in all sense of the word and learn that sometimes a little patience and understanding will bring you greater gains in the long run then being petty and small for the short time being.
So hopefully this is a lesson learned for up and coming breweries on being smart, educating, safe and respectful for the people that walk through your door and support you.