Wetherspoons have announced its decision to close its Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts this morning and ironically has now gone viral with the news trending in the UK. The statement was announced in a tweet which is now no longer available due to the closure of the account.
Personal data concerns and addiction to social media platforms a big factor to their decision.
They plan to remove both head office and individual pub social platforms. The decision was taken to shutdown the highly popular social platforms, due to the amount of negative publicity surrounding social media. With concerns around personal data being a hot topic within the media and the addictive nature of social platforms, the chain decided to make the decision to stop all social activity.
Wetherspoons Chairman Tim Martin said:
"It's becoming increasingly obvious that people spend too much time of Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, and struggle to control the compulsion."
But is it all just a publicity stunt?
Whilst many customers have praised the move away from social media, many are skeptical of the decision and suspect that it might be a publicity stunt by the chain.
In previous years, Wetherspoons has had to deal with a significant amount of hoax posts on their social platforms, alongside various posts naming and shaming their pubs for customer service on their individual review pages.
This was echoed on their social platforms when customer service complaints sometimes took weeks to gage a response. Wetherspoons has over 44,000 Twitter followers and over 100,000 followers on Facebook and hosts a variety of engaging and interactive posts daily.
Wetherspoons operates more than 900 pubs in the UK and Ireland and has thousands of customers passing through their doors weekly.
"We are going against conventional wisdom that these platforms are a vital component of a successful business. I don't believe that closing these accounts will affect our business whatsoever, and this is the overwhelming view of our pub managers.
"With many of their customers using the social platforms as a place to raise their customer complaints and issues regarding individual pubs, Wetherspoons aim to keep their customer service to top level through their Wetherspoon News magazine, their Wetherspoon App and are encouraging people to get in touch via their website, or face to face communication."
The company has also confirmed that no jobs will be lost or affected by this move.
With this giant step being taken by such a large company, will others follow suit?