On Sunday, Starbucks scrapped the first phase of its controversial #RaceTogether initiative, in which baristas were encouraged to start conversations about race with customers. Predictably, the effort drew immediate backlash online.

What wasn’t so clear was how the conversations actually went down in real life. So days before Starbucks ended its marketing ploy, ANIMAL attempted to experience the awkwardness first-hand.

We posted up outside two Starbucks coffee shops in Manhattan on Thursday and asked people to discuss race over coffee. Considering that most people thought we were with Starbucks, we expected to be met with at least some of the ridicule and skepticism the company faced on the internet. We were surprised, however, to find that most passersby DID want to talk about race with us…or maybe they just really wanted free coffee.

(Correspondent: Keith Ford)
(Video: Aymann Ismail/ANIMALNewYork)