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Corporations weighing in on politics: Starbucks asks customers to help end the shutdown October 19, 2013

Posted by rmshepard in Uncategorized.
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Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz has made it no secret that he’s fairly liberal. Occasionally, though, he uses the giant coffee company to try to influence political disputes in Washington, DC. During the government shutdown, for instance, Schultz took to Instagram and asked Starbucks fans to sign a petition to pressure Republicans and Democrats to come together to end the shutdown. The petition read:

“To our leaders in Washington, D.C., now’s the time to come together to:

1. Reopen our government to serve the people.

2. Pay our debts on time to avoid another financial crisis.

3. Pass a bipartisan and comprehensive long-term budget deal by the end of the year.”

Schultz’s campaign was on Facebook and Twitter, and the CEO even took out full page ads in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and The Washington Post.

For more on Schultz’s campaign, see the following video:

Discussion Questions:

1.  Do campaign’s like Schultz’s really work? Why, or why not?

2.  How do campaigns like Schultz’s create fans for a brand?

3.  What are some of the ways that rhetoric like Schultz’s could create a backlash?

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