Art by Josh Brill
Aug. 11, 2022 12:39 PM PDT

Two years ago, social media sensation TikTok came up with a slogan to prod brands to be more authentic in their advertisements on the app: “Don’t Make Ads. Make TikToks.” But last June that approach went off the rails with a high-profile marketing stunt by Starbucks.

The coffee chain launched an ad campaign with Chance the Rapper that encouraged users to record videos reacting to a clip of the musician playing beats with Starbucks beverages in the background. Many TikTok users hated the awkward clip, though, and instead flooded the app with reaction videos and comments mocking it. Starbucks was not happy with the response and eventually disabled a feature called Duet, which lets users post side-by-side reaction videos, a former TikTok employee told The Information.

The page is no longer visible on Starbucks’ TikTok profile. A Starbucks spokesperson said that was to limit confusion about whether the competition was still open.

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