Nick and Eddie’s Evil Twitter Twin

A Twitter account called NickandEddie would clearly seem to be for the restaurant of the same name. But the bio reads: “Worst Resturant [sic] in Minneapolis,” and the URL directs to a dead page. Is this libel or commercially damaging to the point of being illegal? Free speech? The gray area of the law?


  1. Geoff

    can’t be any more commercially damaging than the service I’ve received at Nick & Eddie over the years.

  2. James Norton

    Someday — and if is directly redundant with a book that’s already written, someone let me know — I’d love to write a book that is 100 percent about the concept of service and hospitality in American restaurants. The “culture” of service is seen as a universally shared concept, but the actual values and practices vary from city to city, and sometimes from nationality to nationality… and always from restaurant to restaurant. Some places you’re guaranteed a great service experience. Some places, it’s almost always a disaster. And in many, it feels like a random roll of the dice.

  3. Adam Platt

    I think the hospitality ethos in our local restaurant business is lacking, and often it is the restaurants (not N&E) that are the most community and movement-minded (local, organic, farmer friendly, etc., etc.) that are the least welcoming. Many diners use their eating-out choices as a way to display their social values and don’t necessarily demand great food or a sense of welcome. And being “of service” is not something that comes naturally to a lot of the smart, educated people who tend to work in these places.

    I would maintain that there is also a difference between hospitality and good service. They can both show up in the same place, or not, but they are not the same thing.

  4. Amy

    Have you read Danny Meyer’s book Setting the Table? I think he covers a bit of this. Haven’t read it myself, just read of it.

  5. Laura W.

    I second reading “Setting the Table”. It made me feel better about everything that made me mad when I was a server.

  6. ryanol

    Not in the least.

    Its simply a person using the internet/twitter for what it is… a communication vehicle.

    Also I think “would clearly seem to be for the restaurant of the same name.” is a bit of a stretch.

  7. James Norton

    Ryanol, just as a sample question: Is it kosher if I set up a Twitter account called “Ed’s Restaurant Gave Me Hepatitis”? Hey, it’s just a communication vehicle!

    By the “communication vehicle” argument, I can set up fake sites for my competitors and then dump people onto pages hosting hardcore porn, claim that my competitors secretly grind up babies to spice up their burgers, etc. — at a certain point, communication becomes materially damaging, and if it’s false, that’s a real issue. My take on the fake Nick and Eddie’s Twitter is that it’s in a gray zone … mischievous and mean-spirited, but probably protected speech.

  8. David Anderson

    Hey – what about the Internet Truth Filter?!? I know everything I read online is The Truth thanks to my government. OR – was that just another Apple app I downloaded?…

  9. Wade Wiestling

    Being both a huge fan of Danny Meyer, and socially driven restaurants, to Adam’s point…true hospitality and great service are two entirely different things. Having worked in restuarants my whole life and made a living at it, I will say…
    Service, is a tangible you can teach. You can teach the points of service to the right individuals.
    Hospitality, is an intangible you walk through the door with. You either have it in you, or you don’t. It has more to do with your attitude and your make-up as a person.
    However, neither of these things will stop people from using main stream “communication vehicles” irresponsibly.

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