Starbucks offering a coupon exclusively for African-American customers – “We’ re Sorry” coupon was fake that was not released by Starbucks and was not redeemable at any of the chain’s locations — it was a race-based hoax that was likely created (and certainly spread) by users of the 4Chan internet forum. A spokesperson for Starbucks told Business Insider that “This [coupon] is completely false and [is] in no way associated with Starbucks.”
The fake meme about a free Starbucks coffee reads: “The best dialogue starts over a cup of coffee and we’d like to buy you one,” reads one fake flyer, with the coupon stating it is limited “to persons of African American heritage and/or identity at time of exchange.”
4Chan users also implored each other to share this fake coupon with the hashtag #FreeBlackCoffee in threads filled with racial slurs. In fact, the QR code in the above-displayed coupon spells out the word “n**ger” when scanned.
4Chan has a history of creating fake coupons with the intent of mocking Starbucks’ “liberal” positions. When the company announced their support for Dreamers and the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, trolls on the forum created mock-ups for a fake Starbucks “Dreamer Day” coupon.
The counterfeit coupons appeared a day after Starbucks announced it would close more than 8,000 locations on May 29 for a day of “racial-bias education geared toward preventing discrimination in our stores” after an incident that ended with two black men being arrested at a Philadelphia location