Domino's apologizes for booger-sandwich video
Patrick Doyle, president, goes on YouTube to apologize for a video made by two employees in Conover, N.C., featuring them putting pizza cheese up their nose.
In its trial by social media, Domino's Pizza seems to already have been found guilty.
Two employees of the Domino's in Conover, N.C., made a video which featured one of them putting cheese up his nostrils (and then putting it on a sandwich) and passing a salami around his wind-passing backside (and then putting it on a sandwich).
The employees, Kristy Hammonds and Michael Setzer, have been fired and charged with delivering prohibited goods.
Yet this is not the first time employees of fast-food outlets have used YouTube as an emotional outlet from their rewarding work.
Last year, Burger King fired an employee for making a video while bathing in the restaurant's kitchen sink and uploading it to MySpace. Yet the brand seems to march confidently on.
Why is this Domino's video appearing to have such a deleterious effect on the brand? Perhaps it's that it has simply gained a viral life far beyond its makers' expectations.
Or perhaps it's that in recessionary times people are relying far more on fast food to get through their budgetary week and are desperate, despite stories to the contrary, to know that these restaurants are sanitary.
While Ms. Hammonds and Mr. Setzer are at pains to point out that the food was not actually served (and, of course, we all believe them), the blog Good as You seems to have uncovered four videos in total featuring the pair.
And nauseating viewing they really do make. Especially the one showing, presumably, Mr. Setzer wiping a dish sponge on his bare backside.
Domino's first reaction, one of caution, has now been replaced by something that bears a resemblance to panic.
Domino's President Patrick Doyle has posted his own video to YouTube, in which he apologizes for the incident and attempts to reassure. His arguments seem reasonable.
However, as you watch it, you wonder if the video just might make things a little worse in the short term. Mr. Doyle fails to look into the camera. Instead his eyes peer at 45 degrees, presumably in the direction of a script. The effect is not reassuring.
What is even more unfortunate for Domino's is that the posting of the video apology has caused even more YouTube commentary about the company, some of it extremely unflattering.
And to think that just a couple of days ago, Domino's was madly touting its Bailout Package. It's Big Taste Bailout Package, to be precise. Will you be nosing through the Domino's menu tonight?