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1. The total pay of servers fluctuates daily because they aren't subjected to the standard federal minimum wage of $7.25 but to the tipped minimum wage of $2.13. In some restaurants tipped workers end up making more than the cooks and the dishwashers in the back. This leads to disparities in pay because the people working in the back tend to be people of color while those working up front are white. Tipping can give customers abusive power over the workers. The most persuasive is that people aren't getting the standard federal minimum wage.
2. The other issues are important in tieing the whole article together. The trump administration tried to change regulations to allow restaurant owners to keep the tips rather than the workers. If there were no tips then this wouldn't happen. White servers are usually tipped more than people of color. They're paid $6.12 more per hour.
3. I don't think they portrayed the people who like to tip so well. They say that the average person tips 15-20% and if the restaurant gets rid of tips but increases the price of food to 15% more it would be the same thing. However, he says that people miss the feeling of control, freedom or generosity they have when tipping so they end up not going to a restaurant that doesn't allow tips. I think most people tip because they know that these waitresses are working hard all day and they can relate to them, whether it is from personal experience or not.
4. I knew the basics about the "true" cost of food but this article explained more about it. How much I tip depends on how much I like the server, but usually, I'll never give lower than $5 because I know that these people might be having a hard day. If I have time, I'll sit down to eat but if I don't the over the counter places are more convenient. My friends and I have regular places we go so we judge the restaurants based on our personal experiences and not how others review it.


This article really stands out to me because I also work in the restaurant business. I understand where the writer is coming from but I also disagree with some of the things stated in the blog. My first point is that I believe tipping workers is a good thing. Many people in the food/restaurant business make most of their money off of tips. I work in an Italian restaurant/pizza place and the delivery drivers would be broke if they did not receive tips. Most positions that receive tips make less money per hour on their wage than the others who do not receive tips. However, at the end of the day the delivery driver could end up with more money than a cook or server. I have done deliveries, served people, cooked food and cleaned tables and in my opinion the easiest job to do was the deliveries and that was the only position I received tips from. I do agree with the statement the writer made about the racial disparities and the differences in their wage. Where I work, the workers are mainly hispanic and older than me. I also know that these workers get paid little to nothing over minimum wage. According to studies, overall white people earn $6.12 more per hour than workers of color. I believe that the removing of voluntary tipping would end up hurting the companies. If people did not receive tips, they would request more money from the business they are working for. If they did not receive these tips and the company ends up charging more for food, they will basically end up breaking even because the extra money that customers are paying for food will basically end up in the paycheck of the other workers who used to get tipped. With myself recently working in the food business, it has changed my outlook on my habits of eating out. I often wonder what procedures are used to make this food, how the workers are treated etc.. After recently seeing how the restaurant I work at conducts their procedures it makes me wonder whether the restaurants I dine at follow the same procedures. Also this job has changed my outlook forever and I will always tip workers good. Even some jobs that do not normally receive tips because I know that they are all working hard and not receiving the pay they deserve.


In the blog post, “Here’s a tip: Spencer Robins on wages and conditions for restaurant workers,” wages and working conditions are discussed. I relate to this article because I work at a hair salon and rely on tips. People who work for tips depend on them. I think tipped workers should be paid more hourly because some customers decide not to tip and tips are not promised every day that your working. Some days may be good for tips while others you can make none at all. People do not want to work for nothing and usually tipped workers do a lot of work. I believe tipped workers deserve a raise in their salary because of how much work they actually do in satisfying the customers. If they took away tips and raised the minimum wage, I think it would be better because workers would make a steady amount of money each week rather than not knowing what they will have. There’s a study shown that when a restaurant took away tipping, they lost customers. Customers like to tip because its a way of thanking someone for their service and the workers deserve their tip. I believe customers should tip workers the right amount because they know that these people don’t get paid much or minimum wage should be increased.


The article " Here’s a tip: Spencer Robins on wages and conditions for restaurant workers" is interesting because it is talking about minimum wage, healthcare, and educating the customer about the food they are eating and what they (the customer) are paying for. This topic in general is controversial due to it being around money and people not wanting to pay more than what they need to. Talking about these topics has allowed the customer as well as the people to know why certain things are being done and why they (the people) should not fight as much as they should in regards to payment. Minimum wage in general is not where it should be and many businesses have found that "Cutting Tips Boost Worker Pay" (Robins). Businesses are cutting tips from the workers pay because it has caused the workers to have a fluctuating worker pay where their income is based on how much money they are able to earn from tips. This means that workers would either be working on minimum wage where the pay is set or they would be working on tips where the pay would depend on the day and how much a person gets tipped that day. This means that workers may not get payed for the work they are doing. Businesses are cutting out tips and increasing the pay for items in order for workers to have healthcare. Doing that would mean the workers would potentially be getting the same pay in exchange for healthcare all the while not earning tips. The customers may not like having the increase in price because it takes away their freedom to tip however much they want in which could lead to the business losing customers. Losing customers would mean that the business is not making enough money and that certain ideas or people are going to be cut off or taken away in order to pay for what is needed. Telling the costumer or the people what they are paying for when they (the customer) are paying their bill allows the customer to know exactly where their money is going. Most customers believe that their money is going into the business that they just ate or bought from, but the money could actually be going to someplace else not related to the business.

Sheng Zhou

I believe the most non-persuasive is federal minimum wage. Since the federal minimum wage is $7.25, but instead to the federal “tipped minimum wage” of $2.13. The servers’ income is not stabilizing. They income connect with the tips. Usually, the front servers will get more tips. The back servers get less. Also, white servers always get more tips than other people. In a restaurant, tips represent customer’s power, so tips determine the servers’ income. Therefore, the most non-persuasive is federal minimum wage. Moreover, I believe that the related issues will rise the essay effectively, and these issues are important to understating the server’s income. First, Robins determines that in the restaurant, the minority group is in an unfair environment because they get less income and insurance. Also, they have a considerable risk of immigration policy and deceptive corporate practices. Then, the writer points out a third party is important for the worker’s rights. Most people of a minority group do not know what right they have, so the third party will point out their right and protect their right. Finally, Robins emphasize that political action and labor movements are the keys to solving an unfair environment. Works’ issues connect with their rights, and their right connect with labor movements. Therefore, these shows the related issues is important for the essay effective. Robins think the tips’ influence make the unfair environment, and he thinks that the unfair environment should be changing, so he supports stopping tips. I never consider about my tips will make an unfair environment. Usually, I get servers tips are around 10-15% because I think that the tips are a part of their income. They give the servers, and I pay to them. However, I read the essay, and I learn the relationship between the worker’s income and tips. I understand they are in an unfair environment. These will influence my opinion about the tips.

Kevin H.

Robin mentions many reasons for eliminating voluntary tipping of servers. This is an attempt to make better pay and working conditions for their employees. Some of these reasons include making the wages of servers stable instead of it fluctuating. This is because some customers decide not to tip at all, also there are times when the restaurant has a down day. With a combination of those two a employee can have a very low pay day. Robin brings in the idea that adding a surcharge to the customers bill instead of a tip will be more effective. This not only will stabilize the waiters paycheck, it will ensure that customers can not discriminate against the employees based on race and ability. As a customer and a employee my opinion is not swayed by the idea of adding a surcharge at the end of the customers meal. As an employee if the wages are concrete there is no possible way for you to make a larger amount by working harder, this will mean there will be weaker work ethic from workers. As a customer it would feel as though you had lost the freedom of deciding how much you want to give based on their service that day. Although it is a good idea, as mentioned in the article it deterred the customers from even entering the store.

Mary Nunez

I myself believe it’s better to be paid without tips rather then having a low minimum wage and receiving tips. My reason for this being so as the article mentions is that customers will give those who aren’t colored a better tip and it isn’t fair for the workers in the back who are putting a lot of work making the food, not being able to revive tips. Also customers might complain and try to argue out of paying for the tip is they have a bad expierence or didn’t like their waiter. If the prices go up and no tips are included then the workers won’t have to worry about their pay and stress out about it. Even though I myself think it’s better to just rise the prices rather then including tips, I can see why some places might want to include it. If waiters are based off tips then they are most likely to care about their job more and put more effort into the business and provide good customer service. If you give great service then people will most likely give you a great tip. I haven’t worked in a restaurant, but I do work retail and I can only imagine that if I could receive tips then I’d try twice as hard at my job in doing well so I can receive more money and I’m sure others would do the same because when it comes to money people will do just about anything.

Ahmad Khamissi Fard

First question is the sanitation and health of the food. No one wants to see a lizard cooked in his plate. The best way trying to avoid such incidents is to educate the kitchen workers; under such education it must be assured that sanitation becomes a natural habit to such a worker. Secondly this course must be designed to train this worker forbearance through psychological effects at the school. Increasing regular inspection is another remedy.
Usually, those come to the cooking challenge who feel weak under the pressure of learning, perhaps because of problems arising at home. A restaurant owner should really encourage the good workers (not only for serious work, but to value the discipline a worker follows at work), and such a restaurant owner must be trained before entering into such a public issue, with less crave for profit, but following the code of serving the country. Most people go to a restaurant not only to eat, but to eat good, healthy food and be served respectfully, never mind a bit of a higher payment.


In Spencer Robin's article "Are Eaters the Key to Better Restaurant Wages and Working Conditions?", The controversial topic of doing away with conventional tipping is discussed. Although the transition has many divided, Robins claims that if restaurants were to do away with tips the fact that unfair tips because of discrimination, unpredictable pay, lower tipped minimum wages, etc would be mostly eliminated. Robins also states that without tips even if the pricing of food at restaurants were to increase by adding a 15%-20% up charge, which is what most people tip anyway, people will not like it because as a customer they may lose a sense of control and generosity when eating out. As a former server, I do agree with doing away with tipping. The stigma around tipping has many variables and I think those variables complicate the experience of eating out at a restaurant and serving customers. I agree with Robins claims of unpredictable tipping stemming from discrimination as well which is something very unjustified. Even though some customers might lose the sense of control or generosity, customers are basically paying the same amount in the restaurant setting with or without tipping, so that loss is traded for a better good towards servers.

Holt Walker

Personally I could relate to this article because I once worked in the Restaurant business as a server at Bubbas 33 in Fayetteville NC. Its a bar that attracts a lot of people during games and what not. I think servers don't get paid enough and should get paid more than what I got paid a hour which is 2.50. Granted tips do help but I don't think changing to minimum wage at 7.25 is much better. Waiters and waitresses don't always give the same effort and do the same amount of work. So for you to taking tipping away, you would be taking something away that that person worked for. After I had enough of making 2.50 a hour I started working at highland country club in Fayetteville NC and I make $9.00 a hour plus tip. Personally I think that's how servers should be paid. What I do and what they do is very similar. I meet the needs of the customers and I do what they ask in a mannerly fashion, and because of that I get some extra money for going out of my way. I do also feel tipping isn't a must. I never get mad or think he or she should have tipped me after I do something because I know it isn't required. Tipping is just there for when you think someone did a good job on something, they went out of there way to do something for you, or for some reason your just in a good mood that day. Regardless you shouldn't take tipping away because that isn't fair for the ones working.

Brian Clifford

I say these issues are very important to the article because it stating that the employees are having problems paying their healthcare without their bosses giving them their paychecks or have been seen to have health problems inside the restaurant when using the surcharge in their restaurant. Also, it seem that the employees aren't given enough credit and money for doing their job. "According to these owners, the reason to add a surcharge, rather than raising prices, is that it allows them to pay for their employees' healthcare without having to count the additional income as revenue for the purposes of determining certain revenue-based expenses, like rent."

Brenden Johnson

Throughout this article they state many reasoning’s for changing restaurants in to tipples restaurants and raising server minimum wages. “There are certainly some good reasons to get rid of tips. In many states, tipped workers are subject not to the standard federal minimum wage of $7.25 but instead to the federal “tipped minimum wage” of $2.13, meaning that servers’ total pay fluctuates daily. This may be true that they might make less money one day than the next but from my personal experience working in a restaurant someone receiving a larger tip or above average tips brings some sense of joy and accomplishment to the person. It makes some servers feel a sense of accomplishment by them enhancing someone dining experience so they feel obligated to tip a higher amount. I don’t believe that tips should be taken away but servers should still receive tips but their daily wage should get increased.

Dan, Zuriel, and Sarah

The article “Are Eaters the Key to Better Redtaurant Wages and Working Conditions?” by Spencer Robbins discusses the relationship between the eater and the staff. Robbins begins by analyzing the problem at hand within these frequented restaurants, closely examining the wages and interactions between staff and management. Robbins uses examples of the minimum wages. He cites that cities like “Seattle and Los Angeles” have a “$15 minimum wage” (Robbins). This concept challenges other states who have enacted lower minimum wages. Consequently, Robins explains different ways to equalize the relationship between management, the staff, and the consumer. One of these ideas are the tips received by servers. He aimed to enact a standard tip in order to standardize the wages, which could ultimately decrease the wide range of wage values between members of the staff. Ultimately, Robins’s plans are a drop of rain in a wide sea of concepts concerning the work relationships of restaurants across the continent.

Eric, Kayla, Kaityln, Danielle

As a group, we agree that tips are beneficial to the working class and the resteruant as a whole, however tips should be accounted for in addition to them being paid the regular minimum wage of $7.25. We agree that tips are a driving force for many to excel at their jobs and present their best foot forward to create an experience that will keep customers coming and everyone happy. If a tips were banned from all resteraunts, it will create a domino effect of customers walking out and businesses shutting down. Additionally, we agree that health insurance should be added as a surcharge run by an unbiased and professional third party to eliminate any type of fraudulent behavior. Continually, we believe that owners should work to incorporate workers from all walks of life into all positions. Overall, we believe allowing a tip to be given gives the patrons a sense of helpfulness, while also having established safety nets in place withl a regular minimum wage and health insurance so the working class can not be taken advantage of.

Austin Carmen Katharyn and Julia

The argument of the $15 minimum wage is definitely created more of a problem than a solution. Jobs that pay minimum wage, such as restaurants, do not and should not serve as a single source of income for families. Tipping restaurant workers is another huge part of their wages. While tips are not required, it’s frowned upon to not leave a tip.

Emily, Hamabily, Amy, and Nasairah

After reading the article, it is clear to us that tips are a necessity in the food industry. Tips are incentives to work harder and better. By giving tips, the workers become more motivated and are more likely to try and “raise their rank” from their current position. Also, when waiters or waitresses have a big party they are more likely to want to perform good for their customers. In return they will get the tip that they deserve. Most people’s main source of income in the food industry is from tips. These tips allow workers to help support their families. These tips are not taxed. If the wage was increased and tips were taken away, their wages would be taxed. This would most likely be lower than the previous one. Tips are very beneficial to the workers and help them build a good work ethic.

Patrice Morris

I totally agree with Kevin H. Kevin H hits the nail on the head with the following and I quote, "This not only will stabilize the waiters paycheck, it will ensure that customers can not discriminate against the employees based on race and ability. As a customer and a employee my opinion is not swayed by the idea of adding a surcharge at the end of the customers meal. As an employee if the wages are concrete there is no possible way for you to make a larger amount by working harder, this will mean there will be weaker work ethic from workers. As a customer it would feel as though you had lost the freedom of deciding how much you want to give based on their service that day. Although it is a good idea, as mentioned in the article it deterred the customers from even entering the store". This could not have been stated any better.

MacKenzie Lockhart

I actually really love this idea of surcharging. I see the concept of it, though many people could disagree. If they get rid of tips these people will no longer be paid the federally tipped wage of $2.13. Many people rely on tips to pay their living expenses because that $2.13 goes straight to taxes. Tipping gives customers a lot of power. I like how they brought up the fact that white servers get tipped more than people of color. Getting rid of tipping can really impact the pay disparities among people. In my opinion, I love the surcharge idea because the money you have normally tipped gets incorporated into the actual price of the meal. This way, it's actually the same overall and shouldn't be that big of a deal. I can see how people could get upset with this, but if they are properly educated I think this could have a huge turnaround. With this in mind, this money cannot be counted as a tip, and therefore they cannot be paid the $2.13. Instead of this, it's going to their healthcare and live-able wages. If they rely solely on tips their is no way of telling how much you are going to bring home. How can you be expected to pay bills without a guarantee of a certain amount? You can't, for the work they do they should be able to go to work knowing they have a job that can take care of them. You can argue with this, but I feel that servers should be paid at least $7.25 an hour, with the option of working enough to have access to healthcare. From experience I know being cut hours to keep you from accessing healthcare is frustrating. So, there is definitely a lot that can be improved here. I don't think that fast food and restaurants should even be compared in pay. It is two completely different settings and job tasks. However, if fast food places are making said $15.00 an hour servers and cooks could have it better. I agree with Tamanna that we should be educated about the people who make and bring our food. There should be a better way of thinking about all of this. We just simply need to be educated. 

Hannah Severson

I agree with raising the regular wage of waiters/waitresses to at least $7.25, and would go as far as saying that we should get rid of the concept of tips completely. I think it should be the job or company's responsibility to pay their workers accordingly, not leave it up to their customers to be responsible for whether or not they might make enough money at work to pay their bills at home. People have complete control over how much or how little they tip, despite wether or not the waiter/waitress "performed well" or not. There will be instances where a server could get a $1-$2 tip, meanwhile the overall bill was over $100. It's completely unfair to servers to have to "guess" what they are going to make while they are at work, and usually get a paycheck after two weeks that might HOPEFULLY be close or over $20. They have things to pay for as well, and are human beings who deserve a regular wage like everyone else for how much they work, and deserve access to healthcare. This is ESPECIALLY important for workers and servers of color, who are possibly not going to make the same than their white co-workers, as talked about. Though, I completely agree with the idea of an immediate surcharge placed onto bills, because that ensures that those who are eating there cannot discriminate against their server, and they will be paid accordingly every single time. It's fair, and gives more responsibility to the business to correctly pay their workers.


Robin mentions ways to eliminate tips in restaurants and says that tipping causes problems. He mentions that some people only get paid $2.13 an hour because they also receive tips. This can be problematic for some, especially people who have families. People who earn an hourly wage of $2.13 plus tips never make the same amount of money each day. Some days where the restaurant has a slow day, these people will not make enough money to support their families with. I could agree with the idea of automatically adding a surcharge onto bills but from another standpoint, as a customer at these no tip restaurants, I would feel rude walking away without giving a tip. I feel as though it is common courtesy to leave a tip to your waitress or waiter after eating at a restaurant.


The author of this writing does not really specifically say why the reader should care about reading this article or the "so what" question as described in the novel. I think it can kind of make it's way around stating the "so what" in the article, because many people have worked or will work in a restaurant at some point. And even if they have not worked in a restaurant, they most likely have eaten out at one before so the whole tipping situation applies. It makes a difference whether they do so or not because it makes the generic reader who has no idea why they are reading this article, become more interested in reading it. The author does mention the effect of workers who are tipped and mainly the effects of people of color in her article, making these people kind of the "so what". But, to me she never really fully answers this question.

Wendy M

I personally think people should be educated about what they are eating, including the cost of the meals they are consuming. Besides that, I identified with this article because not that long ago I used to work at a restaurant as a waitress; they used to pay $11 dollars an hour. In that restaurant, it was not mandatory to leave a tip for the waiters. Although there were always good people who decided to tip us anyways. Some workers used to argue that it was not fair that some waiters were getting better tips than others. Which is not fair either, customers tip you according to how well you treat them and it's on you to learn how to earn those tips. I'm aware that some restaurants want to stop their employees from getting tips, this is an unjust decision. It is true that some workers don’t work for tips and they would be earning the same for doing heavier jobs but it is the client's' decision to tip them or not. I also agree that workers should not be working to depend on tips. If the workers depend on tips, they always tend to be worried and stressed during their work hours thinking about whether it will be a good day for them and if they will be receiving good tips. They say that by continuing to pay all employees with the minimum wage, the restaurants could go bankrupt, leaving out that by increasing the price to the meals with the intention of taking out the tips for their workers they could also start losing customers. The most considerate thing would be to pay all the workers equally and let the clients give tips to the workers they want, either because they like their service or because they just feel like doing it. After having worked in the restaurant where I was before, I realized that I also needed to do my part, now whenever I go out to dinner I try to give good tips. I also try to tip people who bag at the supermarket. First of all because I know how hard it is to work in such a place, and secondly because I know how good it feels when someone shows how grateful they are for your service.

Molly Jones

I believe that all consumers that visit restaurant's should know exactly what they are putting into their bodies. When it comes to not tipping later on in the future, that would ultimately hurt the workers rather than help them. Waiters especially rely on the tips they make during the day to survive to their next check. Waiters, cooks and dishwashers usually get paid minimum wage, therefore they rely on those tips day to day. It would be hard to do your best serving people at a restaurant when you know you're doing your best, but you still won't get a tip regardless of how nice you are. That would also be cause for waiters to not be as respectful as they would be if they new they were going to be tipped.

Toan Truong

In this article, Robins claims that voluntary tipping of servers should be removed to improve workers' salary and working conditions. He lists several reasons to support this claim.
First, tipping often makes servers and front-of-house workers have a higher income than back-of-house workers. Even worse, the majority of tipped and front-of-house workers are white while back-of-house workers are more likely nonwhite people. Therefore, tipping widens the income gap between white and color workers.
Second, tipping makes servers more vulnerable to abusive behavior of customers. This can be explained by the fact that the "tipped minimum wage" are lower than the standard minimum wage so customers will have more power over servers than other types of workers. Data shown that in the small number of states that give tipped worker the standard minimum wage, the rate of sexual harassment in the industry is half as high as it is in other states.

Brianna Holden

In the article “Are Eaters the Key to Better Restaurant Wages and Working Conditions” by Spencer Robins there is a lot of talk about eliminating tipping to increase pay for workers. Robin list reason why eliminating tipping would benefit workers in restaurants. Robins states, “ In many states, tipped workers are subject not to the standard federal minimum wage of $7.25 but instead to the federal “tipped minimum wage” of $2.13, meaning that servers’ total pay fluctuates daily.” Robin goes on to say how if the minimum wage would go up then it would benefit everyone. For example, people who work in restaurants can get better medical insurance if there was a surcharge instead of tipping according to Robins. Another reason that Robin list is how unfair it is that people of color would not make the same as a white waiter/waitress because people tend to tip white people more. Robin says that no tipping was allowed then everyone would get paid the same amount making it fair for everyone involved. In this article, I found the most persuasive reason was rising the minimum wage for tipped workers would benefit them. I find this to work the most because why would anyone want someone to suffer? I would like to see people thrive. I guess that is why I found it the most persuasive in my opinion.

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