At appoximately 9:17 PM (PHT) on July 19, 2014, #NoToSofitelDay7 and #BoycottSofitelPHDay7 start to fill the 3rd and 4th spots on Twitter’s Worldwide Trends.
It all started with a trending Twitter hastag. For 2 weeks now, the hastags #NoToSofitel and #BoycottSofitelPH have been claiming the top spots among the most trending topic in Twitter. These hastags have also created a louder buzz on Facebook and Instagram.
These hashtags are actually a campaign created by UNTV37 Chief Executive Officer Daniel Razon. The online campaign was made after they received a report that Hotel Sofitel Philippines in Pasay City removed UNTV Channel 37 – a free local channel – from its station listings without any reason at all.
Razon launched a boycott against the hotel for discrimination, which its supporters immediately picked up online.
The discrimination of UNTV37, however, is not an isolated case of discrimination in the history of Hotel Sofitel’s operations.
In June of this year, lawyer Romulo Macalintal filed a complaint after he was denied of a 20% senior citizens discount after he dined with a friend at the Hotel in February. He claims that it is a violation of his right, and that this is a case of age discrimination.
In an earlier instance, in December 2012, 2 nannies of one of the guests of the hotel were not able to enter the hotel’s buffet because they are wearing scrub suits. The said guest was an Accor Advantage Plus member, in which one of the privilege is that an Accor hotel customer can get advantages and rewards.
Also, in November 2013, a Filipino teenager guest was not able to enter the hotel because he brought a food from a fast food chain. According to him, the security told him that food bought from outside is not allowed, and he was asked to eat it in his car. However, the following day, the said Filipino teenager’s companion saw a bunch of foreigners entering the hotel with food from outside, which security surprisingly did not stop. The companion quickly took a video of the whole scene and presented it to the manager, who said nothing but: “pagsasabihan ko na lang po ang guard.”
Since UNTV37’s campaign became a trending topic, Hotel Sofitel has already did some action: to reinstall the channel only for guests who will request for it. This statement, according to UNTV37, is being unfair and unjustified.
UNTV37 adds that the online campaign was created so that there will be no discrimination against anyone no matter what the shape, form, or size is.
Currently, the campaign #NoToSofitel and #BoycottSofitelPH continues and stays at the 4th and 5th spots of Twitter’s Trending Topics.