Has anyone ever been banned from a brewery for what they've posted online?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by fegelFatso, Aug 8, 2019.

  1. brewdawg9

    brewdawg9 Disciple (381) Apr 17, 2008 Oregon

    So about 2 years ago my g/f and I visited 3 Sheets Brewing in Albany, Oregon hoping to find another local brewery other than Deluxe and Calapooia Brewing to occasionally stop and have a beer or 2. As "beer geeks" be have sipped our share of local, national, and international beers, so we are NOT novices to the beer scene, or the characteristics of what a particular beer should taste like in terms of style.
    When visiting a new brewery or brew pub for the first time we take take notice of things like how clean a brewery is (or isn't), the decor, service, ambience, etc..... not just the beers themselves. Although I wasn't "banned", we have never set foot (or even considered doing so) since our visit. I wrote the following HONEST review based on the beers we tasted, and the service we witnessed. It was not well received by the owner / brewer to say the least. Unfortunately he must have deleted his response to me, as I wasn't able to find it on Yelp, where I posted my review.

    At any rate, here is my HONEST assessment of his establishment.

    Nice tastefully decorated taproom, but thats' where the "positive" in my visit stops. Of the 10 beer selections, my g/f and I selected 4, a Black IPA, Scottish Ale, Pumpkin Ale, and a Belgian Wit. Normally, I get a sense of how good a brewery might be by the quality of their Pale Ale, but none were offered at this establishment. The Black IPA was lacking in character, nothing stood out, and if 5 CDAs including this one were compared side by side in a taste test, this example would finish a distant 6th place.
    The Pumpkin Ale was a total "trainwreck". Collaboration was with a "cousin", or "nephew" according to the information available. Brewer would be wise to leave family (especially if they have no, or limited brewing experience) out of the equation. This was nothing more than a poorly constructed brown ale with an overdose of nutmeg and other spices.
    The Scottish Ale was better. An interesting twist where the brewer attempted to create his "beer version" of a favorite rye whiskey that he enjoys. This wasn't bad, a noble experiment, and probably the best of the beers we tried on our visit.
    The Belgian Wit, though it showed some of the characteristics of the style, was in my opinion, "thin", and lacking in taste, and would be a disservice to my palate if I were to choose this on warm summer day.
    Service. Hmmmmm.... I should leave this to the readers of this review to form, should they venture to this establishment. Suffice it to say, that when other patrons were overheard telling the barmaid the selections of their taster tray that they did not enjoy ( 3 beers, I believe they mentioned) her response was "defensive", as if she was offended. This might be due to her "youth", and lack of business experience, but her response was not one where those patrons will probably give this establishment another visit. Unfortunately, as much as I wanted to "like" this brewery....... I can't say I'll return. Suffice it to say if the owner/brewer doesn't concentrate on the quality of the beers, and service, 3 Sheets Brewing will soon be 3 Sheets in the wind.
    Beer_Economicus likes this.
  2. analogman

    analogman Initiate (192) Nov 26, 2016 Pennsylvania

    Don't know how many were banned but a few people were upset at Sole Artisan Ale's beer club. Now called Separatist Beer Project. The owner responded by removing public comment on FB. I would bet a few photo's may remain on the "do not serve list".
  3. thesherrybomber

    thesherrybomber Aspirant (276) Jun 13, 2017 California
    Society Trader

    Sounds like shooting one's self in the foot
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  4. garyrjas

    garyrjas Initiate (46) May 3, 2016 Florida

    Well they should be banned if they did that. Good for the brewery.
  5. Mr_Caviezel

    Mr_Caviezel Initiate (23) Aug 20, 2018 California

    We know of an instance when a brewery contemplated a ban on a patron for writing a scathing review because it was filled with ad hominem attacks against staffers that were known to have never mistreated the patron. The rationale was "if you said these hateful things out loud in the brewery, you'd be banned for unwarranted hateful and hurtful behavior." At the same time, the patron LOVED all the beers and said as much. Although it was posted from an anonymous Yelp account, many factors identified the patron. They never moved forward with the ban, though because the patron died shortly after leaving her destructive review.
  6. Beer_Economicus

    Beer_Economicus Devotee (479) Apr 8, 2017 Indiana



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  7. JrGtr

    JrGtr Disciple (391) Apr 13, 2006 Massachusetts

    I agree completely with this. Not saying The Bruery was right, but judging from the post, they just did what he was threatening to do, and moved it up a few months.
    AZBeerDude72 likes this.
  8. fegelFatso

    fegelFatso Initiate (140) Jun 23, 2013 California

    That’s some NCIS stuff right there!!!
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  9. lucius10

    lucius10 Devotee (457) Aug 1, 2017 California

    Haha! You must be a Cali bro...you said "Lucky's" Haha! Bring's back so many memories!
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  10. Beer_Stan

    Beer_Stan Initiate (114) Mar 15, 2014 California

    Born and raised bud, grew up near one of the original Ranch Markets in LA too on Fairfax.
    lucius10 likes this.
  11. AP13

    AP13 Initiate (27) Jul 8, 2017 California

    If someone goes online and shits all over my blood sweat and tears, yes. I put their photo and name on a 'do not serve' wall. I also reimburse them and personally tell them to never return. TL: DR don't be a dick.
    sharpski and fegelFatso like this.
  12. officerbill

    officerbill Disciple (303) Feb 9, 2019 New York

    Augustus would probably have demanded either an apology or “satisfaction” at noon.
    thesherrybomber likes this.
  13. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (1,824) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    Wait - who is being referred to now?
  14. Uniobrew31

    Uniobrew31 Zealot (514) Jan 16, 2012 Pennsylvania

    Hating a place or management enough to write a profanity laden hate post doesn’t seem like the act of a man who will go back anyway
  15. Beer_Economicus

    Beer_Economicus Devotee (479) Apr 8, 2017 Indiana

    If you just replace post with rant to son, employee, friend, acquaintance, etc... then you’ve never met anyone in my family.

    Joking aside, I am surprised by the people that have said this. I have met very few people that have bitched endlessly about a store, restaurant, etc., and has truly stuck to their “I’m not going back!” comment.
    sharpski, officerbill and fegelFatso like this.
  16. officerbill

    officerbill Disciple (303) Feb 9, 2019 New York

    He certainly wasn't particularly aggressive. The guy made a single post of “fuck you Bruery” in a public forum and demanded a refund. He didn't direct that statement to any individual, nor did he make any type of threat against any person or the company, there was no “or else” or attempt at intimidation. Exactly what part of his post would make anyone feel threatened?
  17. officerbill

    officerbill Disciple (303) Feb 9, 2019 New York

    I don't know if you read the relevant posts: (https://www.beeradvocate.com/community/threads/bruery-2019-rs-hs-allocations.600756/page-45#post-6585540) and Bruery's responses (https://www.beeradvocate.com/community/posts/6585585/ & https://www.beeradvocate.com/community/posts/6588402/ & https://www.beeradvocate.com/community/posts/6588523/) and the OP's final comment (https://www.beeradvocate.com/community/posts/6587372/)

    The “profanity laden” post contained two fucks and a shit and was directed at how Bruery screwed up an allocation for one of their beers. It had nothing to do with the beer itself, in fact, he was angry that he couldn't get the beer (after paying an $800 membership fee that was supposed to guarantee availability).

    Basically it's fallen out into two camps:
    1) the guy was aggressive and threatening and Bruery responded properly
    2) the post was inappropriate and Bruery had every right to cancel his membership, but shouldn't have done so publicly.
  18. fegelFatso

    fegelFatso Initiate (140) Jun 23, 2013 California

    I’m solidly in Camp #2!
    officerbill likes this.
  19. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,942) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Thanks for pulling all those posts into the same place.

    Interestingly some are saying that the guy didn't insult the Bruery staff as part of what he said, but he clearly did use the plural in more than one place, e.g., "You can shove your 2020 renewal letter up your asses..."

    That comment is directed to the people.

    In written communication the reader has only the words to go on. ( I've never heard of one human being literally having two asses. :slight_smile:)

    So it is actually quite reasonable that the manager read what he said as applying to his staff and himself.

    Still think though that he handled it incorrectly and should have used PM to make contact. (And controlled his anger.)
    #219 drtth, Aug 15, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
  20. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,041) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    I have two ass CHEEKS, does that count? :wink:

    I'm with @drtth, which is a third camp.

    If I'm the owner, I'm reaching out to this person directly to try to correct the issue. And I do this publicly, at least the reaching out part. This shows I care about the customer

    Something along the lines of, "While we at the Bruery don't condone the strong language, I am so sorry that you feel this way. I can sympathize with your frustration, and I will do everything I can to correct this issue. Please PM me directly so we can discuss this further."

    And leave it at that.

    If they choose to contact me after that privately, cool. If they don't, and never return, that's cool too, it happens.
  21. surfcaster

    surfcaster Champion (806) Apr 20, 2013 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    Barry Holmes' response just a couple below the rant was direct, polite and seemed measured to me.

    So many people have failed to grasp that threatening and mean spirited posting whether in person or on line --blogging or social media--is being taken seriously. Despite what folks think about "freedom of speech," you can't yell fire in a theater when not true whether in person on line. Some folks take profanity as threatening. His suggestion to refund his money and that the patron was no longer welcomed seem 100% on to me.
  22. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (836) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    I really thought there would be some consensus on this one, but it’s become (yet another) Bernie supporter v Trump supporter type thing where nobody sees where the other side is coming from, and the other side’s opinions are mind blowing to them.

    To me the rant poster was too strong, but he (along with the dozens of other members articulating the same/similar gripes in the thread at the time - he was by no means a lone voice) had a legitimate complaint after repeat issues by the Bruery. And my god we’ve seen tons of profanity-laden blasts of breweries here following various scenarios that have caused butthurt (sometimes warranted sometimes not). I just don’t get why this guy (who posted a very reasonable follow up) is being deemed such a (potential) threat. And to my point earlier - it he is a legitimate threat then why antagonize him by publicly banning him in front of his peers?
  23. surfcaster

    surfcaster Champion (806) Apr 20, 2013 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    I don't think this is Bernie/Trump at all. He offered to refund money, remove from mailing list and asked him not to come back. My optic is this is--had he come in the Bruery and said those things in person, would it be that different? People need to understand that there are repercussions from statements regardless of the perceived anonymity of the internet. Although certainly in no way on this level, just look at all of the things happening on social media these days that were harbingers of violence.

    True story--a person at work was having trouble with he new prescription plan a couple of years ago--imagine that. A family member was having trouble getting an important med --a frustration many could empathize with. He called the HR department and said something to the tune of--"you folks are harming my family--how about if I came down there and blew you up?"

    His things were in a box by lunch and he was fired.
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  24. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (836) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    I meant Bernie/Trump as in this topic is a lot more polarizing than I was expecting. I don't know how someone would disagree with that since we're on page 6 of people disagreeing (often strongly) with each other.

    I get your points, I just don't agree with them. Same as the fact you presumably don't agree with mine.

    Your anecdote isn't really relevant. If the BA poster had threatened to blow the Bruery up then I'm sure many people would be looking at this differently. But he didn't - he said "Well, you can go fuck yourselves real bad Bruery" (I and others have posted the full post multiple times at this point), and ended with "Fuck you". There was a rant between those two statements that I doubt would have caused any issues by itself.

    And for the sake of argument - let's say his post was objectively threatening or he did threaten to blow them up. Do you agree with Barry making a public post banning him from the premises?* Presumably the best way to deal with a threat like that is confidentially/behind the scenes to avoid a worst case scenario. Did your company hang up a banner saying "Joe Schmo has been fired" on the front of the building or were they as discreet as possible?

    I'm not expecting you to agree with me at all. That was sort of the point of my post.

    *Interesting to note he posted that at 8:30pm in the evening on a Sunday evening
  25. surfcaster

    surfcaster Champion (806) Apr 20, 2013 North Carolina
    Society Trader

    Agreed that more behind the scenes may have been the best but I have no issues with the decision and maybe they wanted others to see the position?

    Just amazing to me how rude and generally inconsiderate folks are yet feel there should not be repercussions.
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  26. officerbill

    officerbill Disciple (303) Feb 9, 2019 New York

    :slight_smile: one of the posters in that thread noticed the same thing and suggested that Bruery's CEO might have been doing some product testing prior to responding :beers:
    rozzom likes this.
  27. luisfrancisco

    luisfrancisco Initiate (167) Dec 1, 2009 Mexico

    Some people take this too seriously.

    I found the whole scene funny. While the dude's rant was not what I would call polite, I wouldn't have made such a fuss about it if I were CEO.

    This reminded me of a scene in a novel about a writer who got a negative review of his book. The writer then goes and challenges the critic to a real duel on the beach. With fencing swords and everything. I wish the real world were more chivalrous (and humorous) in this sense. Imagine if the CEO had challenged the ranter to a duel. That would have been the most appropriate response in my book.
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  28. rightcoast7

    rightcoast7 Disciple (324) Apr 2, 2011 Maine

    I agree with this 100%. The guy went a little hard in the paint with his rant, but nothing was remotely threatening about it, and people arguing that come off silly tbh. Even the Bruery owner didn’t take that stance, he just said he didn’t like “abusive” language directed at his staff (which it really wasn’t).

    I agree with those who have said one should expect consequences from online behavior, but there IS a difference between saying certain things online versus in life. An online threat, for example, should be taken seriously. But someone saying “fuck you” online to a company (not even specific people at the company) is basically shouting into the void and best ignored. In no way is it comparable to being in the bar and shouting “fuck you” into the face of an employee. I’m surprised anyone is struggling to see that distinction.
  29. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,041) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

    Shame on me, I never read the owner's posts. They were absolutely polite and measured in my opinion.

    That being said...

    And this is the part I disagree with (and agree with @rozzom). I would have done the banning privately.

    Granted I'm not sure I would have banned the guy. I would have made one statement, offered for him to contact me directly, and go from there. And stop replying online after that one statement. If I'm an owner I would try to reply as little as possible in a public forum. Not a lot of good can come from that.

    I also fully agree with @rozzom. If this was seen as a legitimate threat, I'm not adding anymore fuel to the fire by responding, and I'm certainly not publicly banning the person. I'm likely going to the police.

    How many times have we seen people say "Fuck BMC" on here? I fully admit, not the same thing due to their size, but still...
  30. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (836) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    [wannabe special ops voice] then they too are a threat that needs to be neutralized
    AlcahueteJ likes this.
  31. mynie

    mynie Poo-Bah (4,118) Jun 22, 2004 Maryland
    Society Trader

    Several years ago I got a long, faux-legal DM from someone claiming to be affiliated with Minhas informing me that because of "biased" reviews I was no longer allowed on their premises and also if I bought any more of their beer they'd attempt to take legal action. When I asked how they planned on doing that since they don't know who I am they sent me another message asking me to please give them my name.
  32. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,096) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    Did you give them your (real) name?:flushed:


    P.S. Or maybe you told them your name was Ben Dover?:stuck_out_tongue:
  33. fegelFatso

    fegelFatso Initiate (140) Jun 23, 2013 California

    I would have said Isiah Peter Freely!
    JackHorzempa likes this.
  34. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (4,096) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania

    I wonder if we could keep this going?:thinking_face:

  35. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,311) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

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  36. AlcahueteJ

    AlcahueteJ Meyvn (1,041) Dec 4, 2004 Massachusetts

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  37. BeastOfTheNortheast

    BeastOfTheNortheast Disciple (393) Dec 26, 2009 Pennsylvania

    I would have said Jack Horzempa
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  38. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (1,824) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey

    Well, I realize the Minhas' are based in Canada, so laws may vary :wink:, but, heck, I would have sent them my name and a photo of me buying one of their beers along with a copy of the receipt just to see what sort of "legal action" they'd take. I don't know, I'm no lawyer but can a sixpack of beer really get a restraining order on someone? :grin:

    "First I hear him tell his buddy that I was "the absolute worst swill going", and...and... then, judge," sniffles, blows nose ..."he, he put his index finger and thumb---- right into the slots of my plastic sixpack ring!"

    (Although I gotta say my suspicion is that someone was spoofin' you).
  39. rozzom

    rozzom Champion (836) Jan 22, 2011 New York

    I’m no lawyer but sounds like he may have a case
  40. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,942) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    I'm not trained as a lawyer, but have had occasion to interact closely with a few. I doubt your particular sixpack action would get you sued.

    However, there is this thing called slander/defamation that the legal folks define:

    slander. n. oral defamation, in which someone tells one or more persons an untruth about another, which untruth will harm the reputation of the person defamed. Slanderis a civil wrong (tort) and can be the basis for a lawsuit.

    So it seems there are other circumstances under which it you could be sued for similar actions actions/words, etc.. A basic rule of thumb is: Well, it depends...