Wendy’s photo of a Wendy’s employee eating streaming vanilla ice cream right from Wendy’s soft serve Frosty machine has gone viral at the same time that Wendy’s is promoting its Frosty products for a Father’s Day charity drive for the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption which was named after Wendy’s founder, reported ABC News on June 13, 2013.
“The photo, posted Wednesday on the content-sharing site Reddit, came with this note from a customer: ‘I was going to buy a Frosty from Wendy’s until I saw the employee do this’.”
If the Wendy’s photo has the same effect on other potential Wendy’s customers, “I was going to buy …,” then Wendy’s Father’s Day charity drive will be directly impacted by one Wendy’s employee’s gross action.
Judging from ABC’s article “Wendy’s Frosty Photo Leads Top 8 Grossest Fast-Food Moments,” the Wendy’s photo is not taken lightly by fast food customers or by the company.
“The photo isn’t funny to us. The incident was totally inappropriate, and we’re taking it very seriously. We’ve contacted the franchisee who is taking swift action,” said a Wendy’s spokesperson.
Wendy’s photo is going viral this week. Last week it was Taco Bell’s photo of a Taco Bell employee licking a stack of about 30 taco shells while in a Taco Bell uniform. The Taco Bell employee was fired.
Here are six more additional fast food incidents that made it on the “Top 8 Grossest Fast-Food Moments” list:
- Earlier this year a KFC employee was fired after posting a photo on Facebook in which she appeared to lick a bucket filled with KFC mashed potatoes. The KFC photo employee, like the Taco Bell employee and the Wendy’s photo employee, was also fired.
- Last summer’s Taco Bell’s photo of a Taco Bell employee showing “himself urinating on a plate of nachos” and tagged on Twitter with “’#pissolympics,’ ‘#nacobellgrande,’ and ‘guess where I work’,” resulted in the same fate as the Wendy’s photo employee.
- Also last summer, a Burger King employee’s photo went viral and resulted in the firing of three Burger King employees. This time the firing was not due to eating soft Frosty ice cream as in the Wendy’s photo but for standing in two containers of lettuce at a Burger King franchise restaurant; not quite what Burger King calls “stringent food handling procedures.”
- In April of 2012, a South Carolina McDonald’s employee was arrested after he was caught by a surveillance video spitting in two customer’s cups of iced tea after the customers had complained that the drinks were not sweet enough. While the charges were eventually dropped, the employee, like the Wendy’s photo employee, was out of a job.
In 2008, a Burger King employee in Xenia, Ohio, was captured in an online video taking a bath at a Burger King’s utility sink. He and one other Burger King employee were fire, according to a 2008 Associated Press report.
- In April of 2009, a Domino’s pizza employee “shared a video online of another worker putting cheese up his nose, blowing mucous on a sandwich and putting a sponge intended to wash dishes between his buttocks. The worker said none of the food was delivered and the video was a hoax, but the employees involved were fired.”
Today, a Domino’s pizza spokesperson describes the incident four years ago as “a flash in the pan; a well-publicized annoyance more than it was a global reputation crisis.”
Despite the gross Wendy’s photo, Wendy’s is holding its Father’s Day charity promotion on Saturday and Sunday at participating Wendy’s restaurants. “Wendy’s will donate 50 cents from the sale of every Frosty product to support efforts to match foster children with prospective adoptive parents.”
Will the Wendy’s photo ruin the Wendy’s Father’s Day charity drive or will it, as the Domino’s pizza spokesperson described it, just be “a well-publicized annoyance”?