On 10th May, Starbucks India’s official Twitter account posted an over 2 minute ad campaign video. With the caption “Your name defines who you are – whether it’s Arpit or Arpita. At Starbucks, we love and accept you for who you are. Because being yourself means everything to us. #ItStartsWithYourName.”


The video starts with an older couple sitting at a Starbucks outlet and the father calling someone called ‘Arpit’. However, it turns out that Arpit was Arpita, a transgender woman who was meeting her father after many years as an attempt of reconciliation probably arranged by the mother with whom the daughter is shown to be on good terms with.

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The mother tries to calm down the father by saying “Please don’t get angry this time, listen.” While talking with her father, Arpita says that ‘I know it’s been years, but you still mean the world to me,’ after which her father asks if she wants coffee and gets up with a determined look.

When her dad comes back after having placed their order, their order announcement is made at ‘3 cold coffees for Aprita!’ Arpita on her end is shocked to hear her new name and realises that her father has finally accepted her and her identity since it was him who placed the order and gave the new name.

The father then adds that “Beta, you are still by kid. Only a letter has got added to your name” signifying that the father still considers her as his child and has now opened his mind to her new reality.

The ad is obviously a take at the struggles an Indian transgender has to go through and how conservative the people still are when it comes to matters of the LGBTQ but at the same time there might be hope with love for family and strong bonds not changing no matter what.

Of course, Starbucks is promoting itself as a brand that loves and accepts individuals who embrace their true selves. But it seems that some people found this to be offensive and carried out a, as is usual at this point, a boycott campaign.

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Many approved of the message, even if it is promoting a brand, but liked how it promoted inclusivity and LGBTQ identities in the changing social climate of the country. Communications strategy consultant Karthik Srinivasan tweeted that “…to see something inclusive and non-judgemental in these days of polarizing communications and weaponized hate… is genuinely welcome.”

While Twitter user @sanjeevve wrote that “Deep or Deepa. Paul or Paula. Arpit or Arpita. It does not matter. Initiatives like this that will help rid our heavily prejudiced world of transphobia. Bravo.”

But of course, as is usual now, something good can’t be promoted without people making hundreds of criticisms about it and how wrong it is.

Twitter user @dhume, apparently an Indian-American writer wrote that “Starbucks does a great job here of ensuring that the vast majority of Indians will never step into its premises. Only thing worse than overpriced, tasteless coffee is overpriced, tasteless coffee with a large dose of extremist American gender ideology.”

These and many others tweeted about boycotting Starbucks India for the advertisement.

There were also a few who mocked the boycott trend and trolled those who were participating.

What do you think about this boycott, is this the correct thing to do?

Image Credits: Google Images

Feature Image designed by Saudamini Seth

SourcesIndia TodayMoneycontrolLivemint

Find the blogger: @chirali_08

This post is tagged under: Boycott Starbucks, Starbucks, Starbucks india, boycott Starbucks india, Starbucks india transgender, Starbucks india ad, Starbucks india ad transgender, Starbucks ad viral, #BoycottStarbucks

Disclaimer: We do not hold any right, copyright over any of the images used, these have been taken from Google. In case of credits or removal, the owner may kindly mail us.

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