British pub chain deletes Facebook and Twitter accounts as customers ‘struggle to control the compulsion’ to use social media

British pub chain deletes Facebook and Twitter accounts as customers ‘struggle to control the compulsion’ to use social media

A prominent pub chain in the U.K. shut down its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts, saying that people are spending too much time on social media. "It's becoming increasingly obvious that people spend too much time on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, and struggle to control the compulsion," Martin said in a statement emailed to CNBC. It says that bad publicity surrounding social media, such as the trolling of politicians and people from ethnic minorities, influenced its decision to delete its accounts. Competitor Sizzling Pubs (owned by Mitchells and Butlers) has a similar number of Facebook fans but fewer outlets at around 220. Martin added that he doubted that social media contributed to commercial success. "We are going against conventional wisdom that these platforms are a vital component of a successful business. I don't believe that closing these accounts will affect our business whatsoever, and this is the overwhelming view of our pub managers." Martin has been outspoken in his views in favor of Brexit. In 2016, he printed 500,000 beer mats in support of leaving the EU, and some on Twitter suggested the closure of social media accounts was connected to the backlash the company experienced. Many businesses use their social accounts to push out promotions or answer customers' queries.

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A prominent pub chain in the U.K. shut down its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts, saying that people are spending too much time on social media.

Tim Martin, the chair of JD Wetherspoon, said that people could not control their urges to spend time on social networks.

“It’s becoming increasingly obvious that people spend too much time on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, and struggle to control the compulsion,” Martin said in a statement emailed to CNBC.

The company has shut down its head office social accounts, as well as those for each of its 900 pubs.

It says that bad publicity surrounding social media, such as the trolling of politicians and people from ethnic minorities, influenced its decision to delete its accounts.

“The move also takes account of recent concerns regarding the misuse of personal data and the addictive nature of social media,” the company said in an emailed statement, likely referring to Facebook’s data scandal that saw information from some 87…

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