Don’t believe everything you read on Medium.
Over the weekend a Medium post appeared online under the headline “Dropbox Cafeteria Awarded A Michelin Star.”
“The 2016 Michelin Guide stars have been released, and among the many big names on the list is one unlikely winner: The Tuck Shop, Dropbox’s office cafeteria, was one of 51 restaurants in San Francisco to be recognised for its exceptional food quality,” the post began.
On two occasions the post got some traction on Hacker News, and the London Evening Standard newspaper picked up the story.
But the information is simply not true.
“You are correct that this isn’t real — more like ‘amuse-bouche’ haha,” a Dropbox spokesperson told VentureBeat in an email.
Sure enough, the Evening Standard article has been taken offline, but you can find a cached version of the story here.
Even if we hadn’t gotten the official verdict from the San Francisco-based cloud sync and share service provider, though, we could have figured this out on our own.
Foodies will tell you each year the Michelin Guide doles out highly sought-after Michelin stars to the best restaurants in a few cities around the world. There are no provisions about corporate cafeterias. And the guide typically comes out in October, not December.
The Medium post goes on to say the guide recommends the cafeterias of San Francisco startups Asana (confirmed: great food) and Stripe (haven’t been there, cannot independently confirm, sorry). Then it says payments company Square isn’t in this year’s guide “due to budget cutbacks after a disappointing IPO” despite its “smoothie bar, healthy food options, and internal hipster coffee bar.” Uhhhh. (My colleague Ken Yeung tells me the food at Square is “pretty good from my recollection.”)
But the following paragraph is where it really becomes apparent that this whole thing is a joke.
“In light of Dropbox’s struggles with growing its revenue and after shutting down two of its flagship apps that were slow to gain users,” the post said, “rumors suggest that executives have discussed pivoting Dropbox from a cloud storage technology company into either a high-end restaurant or a t-shirt printing company.”
Right. OK. Dropbox the restaurant.
The Medium post comes from one Halting Problem. This account has previously published posts with the titles “Tent On SoMA Sidewalk Rents For $1000 A Month” and “toilet.ly Raises $10M To Disrupt The Bathroom Space.”
This is clearly a parody account, and maybe I am the one getting punked for wasting my time on this, but there is a real problem here. Fake information shows up on the Internet, and even though there can be clear indications of falsity, some people fall for it anyway, because they’re too lazy or rushed.
So for at least this one ridiculous assertion, you now know, once and for all: Dropbox did not earn itself a Michelin star.