Gee Whiz! The Starbucks "Cheer Chain Phenomenon" Might Be A Lame PR Stunt

Some cynical people, (not us, mind you) are starting to suspect that the news stories popping up all over the U.S. about Starbucks “cheer chains” might be planted by Starbuck’s PR team.

What is a “cheer chain?” You mean, you don’t already know? Why, it’s when someone randomly decides to pay for the coffee of the stranger behind them in line. Said stranger then, so moved by this completely altruistic gesture that was in no way motivated by Starbucks’ PR team, pays for the coffee of the person behind them! And so on! And it just keeps going until it the news of this remarkable show of human kindness reaches a reporter whose name is, (swear to god) Mary Pickels.

Starbucks denies feeding the stories to news outlets, claiming that the “Cheer Chain” stories just prove that there is “holiday cheer going around” and that the folks at Starbucks “are simply encouraging folks to pass on what comes around.”

Starbucks “Cheer Chain” Website

Cheer chain spreads goodwill in Starbucks drive-through
[Pittsburgh Tribune]
Man pays for coffee of customer behind him, starts chain [WIS10]
Latte it Forward? [Metafilter]
Is Savvy Marketing the Missing Link in Starbucks’ ‘Cheer Chains’? [RADAR]