The fact that most servers have to rely on tips to make a livable wage in the United States is a heavy point of contention. Although there are some eateries that are offering significant pay increases, there are still many employees who work in the foodservice industry who express that the pay they receive isn't commensurate with the workload they take on day in, day out.
It doesn't seem like the gratuity model at sit-down restaurants is going to drastically change in America anytime soon, which means that if you're working as a server you'll probably still need to hope that your customers are leaving you decent tips so you can pay your bills.
The trouble is that there are some folks who highlight their "generosity" when it comes to gratuity for social media clout.
There are plenty of videos on the internet of people showcasing the emotional reactions of servers that they leave fat tips and while these good deeds come off as wholesome, there are those who believe the practice is exploitative. Like this viral TikTok of a couple allowing a server to punch in a 200% tip amount on a bill at a restaurant.
The short clip shows the TikToker telling the waiter to swipe the tip amount as far as it can go on the tablet, resulting in a gratuity amount well above the standard 15-20% of a bill.
"Boom. 200%. Done," the TikTok user can be heard saying in the video. Another person who was seated at the table, presumably the @realkingkhang's partner, says "You get $100 in tip. No, I'm for real.
According to the TikToker, the server received $93.26 in tips, to which the employee stated, "Thank you very much. I appreciate that," while giving a thumbs-up to the camera. The bill for their meal came out to $46.
A text overlay in the video reads, "I love doing this. Feel so good to make someone's day."
However, there were a lot of other TikTokers who commented that the entire exchange didn't sit well with them.
User @TheAmazingKid wrote, "Y’all did not need to post this and you didn’t need to repeat it 4 times at the table like you are gods or something."
Others mentioned that the fact the bill and the gratuity were paid via card isn't exactly great news for the server, who wasn't going to receive the entirety of the tip: "Bad thing is thats going to be taken off his check - a server," Jackie XO wrote.
@I'mBlackWhatsYourName said, "Don’t tip via card, if anything he’s gonna get 10% of that."
But for many of the commenters, it just didn't sit right with them that the video and the server's livelihood was turned into a game for TikTok views and for what appears to be a chance for @therealkingkhang to "flex" and feel good about himself: "why do we make games out of tipping people and film it? just give the money leave it at that."
That's not to say that there weren't others who thought the video was wholesome. @hernandoo writes, "all the comments are hating, but i've doubt any of them have EVER paid over 20% for their tips... smh."
What do you think? Was the fact that they uploaded a video of them leaving a large tip for the server "exploitative?" Or is the only thing that matters is someone who works a job that is known to be pretty thankless received a 200% tip?