Tacos can be Messy and so can Social Media

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The Incident


These employees really took the company’s old slogan, “Think Outside the Bun,” to a whole new level! Recently, two Taco Bell employees thought it was humorous to post a photo of one of them licking a stack of taco shells and posted it on Facebook, via username “Jj O’Brian Nolan” and Reddit.


That’s the Way the Taco Crumbles


The general public response was not as hilarious as these employees expected. Instead, social media users began to question the cleanliness of Taco Bell’s food and facilities, well if they weren’t already. However, some social media users did enjoy the photo so much that it was continuously reposted and “tagged” as Taco Bell. Digg users created a list of the “Top Five Reasons Taco Bell Might Actually Be More Dangerous Than MTV’s Skins.”


Picking Up the Mess


Taco Bell responded with an official statement mentioning, along with all the standard company regulations and policies, “Our first question was, were the taco shells served to customers?  In short, absolutely not.” The company has extended its aggressive public relations fight back, responding via Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. The Facebook photo received over 900 “Likes”, however the comments were not so positive.


It has been suggested that Taco Bell’s error was in hiring the type of employees that would find humor in doing something like this. According to USA Today, “Unhappy fast-food employees will do disgusting things to the food they sell.” Only time will tell the ideal methods by which to navigate the complexities of social media from a brand image perspective.

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