Ed Sheeran Moonlighting As A Starbucks Barista Is Ruffling Feathers

On Friday, August 25, pop star Ed Sheeran joined employees in serving coffee at a Seattle Starbucks store. At first, it seemed like another Lana Del Rey situation — the singer recently spent the day working a shift at Waffle House with no explanation. However, this wasn't the case, as the "Shape of You" star was actually filling in to promote his September 29 release, "Autumn Variations." Unfortunately, what was meant as a marketing tactic ended up yielding a lot of scrutiny.

The same day Sheeran was spotted working, @SBWorkersUnited, the Twitter account representing the Starbucks workers union, publically slammed him online. "Ed Sheeran working a shift at a Starbucks store in Seattle that faced massive union-busting is straight up embarrassing," read the first Tweet of a long thread. In a large way, the post's commenters shared this sentiment. "If he doesn't care about workers we don't wanna listen to his music," someone wrote. An additional Twitter user deemed it "another great reason to hate him." The Worker's United account made its unhappiness clear; meanwhile, Starbucks customers were upset for another reason.

His visit served as a promotional tactic for his new album

For many employees of the coffee brand, Ed Sheeran's choice of store was a red flag indicating his lack of regard for the working class. Customers, though, were less concerned about the location's union issues and more upset about what they perceived as mockery. "Celebrities always have so much fun cosplaying as indentured slaves," a Twitter user wrote about the event. "Do those poor Starbucks baristas not have to deal with enough as it is?" another comment read, also implying that Sheeran is slowing down business during "one of the busiest times of the year."

In actuality, Sheeran likely had no bad intentions, as evidenced by his gleeful Instagram post documenting his Starbucks journey. The singer revealed that he chose the date to promote his "Autumn Variations" album due to it being the same day the Starbucks pumpkin spice latte was making its return. "If you gave me your name I gave you a new one, for I am the barista of joy," he wrote, leaving no reply for the masses who don't agree with his actions.