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Why Starbucks Baristas Are Writing 'Black Lives Matter' on Coffee Cups

It's about raising awareness


Starbucks has never shied away from politics, and its customers don't either: A number of the coffee shop's patrons have taken to giving their name as "Black Lives Matter" for orders so baristas will call out the phrase when their drink comes up, according to the Huffington Post.

Customers have documented their experiences on social media, including one person who posted a photo of a cup with a fist drawn underneath "Black Lives Matter."

Another person posted a video of a barista calling out the phrase.

Acknowledge us ! #BlackLivesMatter ! Thank you @theshaderoom for posting me & @vanilla_bean22 post ☺️

A video posted by Schacle ( Sah-Shell ) (@schacle) on

The trend is catching on, with people even making shirts with a symbol resembling the Starbucks logo that say "Black Lives Matter" and "#thatsmyname."

The tactic reportedly didn't play out so well for one customer at a Starbucks location in New York City, however; according to Mic she was told she could not be served under that name because "Starbucks does not take a stance on racial matters" — which would seem to contrast with some of Starbucks' previous efforts, including the much-criticized #RaceTogether cup-writing campaign. (Eater has reached out to Starbucks for comment.)

This isn't the first time people have used Starbucks cups to voice their political concerns: Last winter, some customers took to giving their names as "Merry Christmas" in order to force baristas to call out the phrase, arguing that the lack of holiday imagery on Starbucks' seasonal cups was evidence of a so-called "war on Christmas." More recently, actor Scott Baio gave his name as "Trump" but says a Starbucks barista refused to call it out.