The immediate reaction to the story that claims a waitress received "LOL" on a receipt for a tip on a $112 order is "Why would anyone do that?" But it also calls to mind several other stories of servers claiming that something offensive had been left on the tip area of a receipt. And many of those were later proven to be hoaxes.
According to the story the server has given, she waited on a table of eight that wrote "LOL" in the tip box of their credit card receipt, with a note next to it that said "1 hour for food." She then posted about it on facebook, saying that the kitchen had been busy that night. She also said that she'd rather get no tip than an insulting note, and the hourly wage in New Jersey for servers is only $2.50 an hour, which is supposed to be made up with tips. Sounds pretty terrible, right? And if it's a true story, it is.
But there's been stories in the past that weren't. Some, like the story where a server received a note saying that their service should be enough from a military veteran they had waited on, simply don't have enough information to verify them. Other stories turn out to be hoaxes.
Just like the "LOL" tip story, the story of a waitress not being left a tip because she was gay made news across the world and was spread wide over social media by horrified people. Support poured in for the server (including monetary support) and for the whole restaurant. There was only one problem: the story was a hoax. The customers in question produced their own receipt, which showed both that a tip was left and there was no note. She was fired, and friends stated she was a compulsive liar.
Another story involved a Red Lobster waitress being left a racial slur in lieu of a tip. Sounds even worse than a "LOL" for a tip. Once again, more horrified people raised money for the person with the unfortunate tip. Once again, the story was a hoax. The man who had left the receipt said that he hadn't written that on the tip line at all, and eventually sued the restaurant for over $1 million.
People are often told to not believe everything they hear, but when a particularly horrifying story is being heard, the shock factor often makes someone not think as hard about it. And while it's certainly possible that someone really got "LOL" for a tip while working, at least remember the stories that weren't before sending that person a check.
[Image via Wikipedia/Scott Sanchez]