The "Social Circle" is a group effort between readers, social networkers and the OnMilwaukee.com editors. Every Monday, we ask a question via Facebook and Twitter and then post the responses from our Facebook "likers" and Twitter followers in this column. Well-known Milwaukee movers and shakers will contribute, too.
One week ago, OnMilwaukee.com broke the story that Alterra was changing its name to Colectivo Coffee. The announcement blew up on social media and people expressed strong feelings both for and against the name change.
Hence, OnMilwaukee.com had to ask the Social Circle their thoughts on the name change. The feedback was incredible, with scads of posted comments. Here’s a sampling of sentiments.
Feel free to add your own thoughts via the Talkback feature and to read the whole thread, go here.
Kim Albrecht: "Negativo."
Alexander Allgood: "Don’t care at all."
Tom Bauer: "After reading the interview with the boys, I am OK with the explanation. Better get some Alterra swag while I can. That is my thought."
Jenni Buehler: "I kind of love it. I hope the company actively reflects the spirit of its new name."
Michael Buehler: "First thought was someone gave them a lot of money."
Jeannette Cable: "Their business. Their game. Their choice. I don't get an opinion because it's not mine. However, as I said to Lilith (wife of Colectivo co-owner Lincoln Fowler) yesterday, I'm beyond impressed that these men have captivated a community in such a way that so many care so much! Impressive business-building, gents!"
A. Francis Carr: "I have yet to say it out loud — I'm not sure when I will have to for the first time."
Josh Christiansen: "Granted, I’m not their biggest customer, but I couldn't believe that people really cared so much. More than anything I prefer things to stay the same for nostalgia's sake, though. It was pretty neat how they took Mars' cash and squirmed away from them right away."
Daniel Dowdy: "A brand is only as good as its product and service, anyways. A latte by any other name will still wake me up. Who cares?"
Jim Draeger: "I still won’t go there."
Ralph Drzewiecki: "So glad they will remain local and not a mega-brand."
Jeffrey Eckel: "I fear change."
Linn Elliott: "It will be the same coffee under any name. I'm pleased that the owners had the spine to say, ‘Yes, Mars – we'll collaborate but you will not own us.’ I don't think it will affect their local presence in any negative way long-term."
Kat Froelich: "It's not the easiest name to remember or pronounce, but I'm surrounded by them, so I'll catch on eventually."
Sam Froiland: "Cool that they did well and still hung on to the home business."
Alissa Gonyea: "Valentine is my new love. Thank you, Alterra, for many great years and for all you have given back to Milwaukee. I am moving on not because the name change, but because it is time to support the next guy."
Anita Guerrero: "Pretty cool that a local brand went global."
Jeffrey Jordan: "Building a business is difficult and the path is loaded with land mines. These guys have done well so far. As for the name, this week I think it's silly and not well thought through. Next week I won't care."
Tammy Koz: "Love it. Good for them! Way to put Milwaukee on the map! I love that it was important to them to stay local and I think was a very smart business move on their part. Perfect way to 'sell out' without actually selling out like so many corporations do. They stayed committed to staying local in Milwaukee which they did not have to do. Way to go Colectivo! Boo yah."
Erin Shea Linnane: "I do not care for the name – I think they could have done better. That being said, as long as the great service, tasty food and coffee stay the same, all is good. I will just put the coffee in my Alterra travel mugs/cups and pretend it is all a dream. Also, my stepmom calls it ‘The coffee shop formally known as Alterra.’"
Jennifer LaPorte McCanles: "Wish it were more ‘we're proud to be from Milwaukee’ than arty/political."
Yance Marti: "It's a new name being replaced with an old name. Nothing special. What else can they do? Colectivo is just as good as Alterra, probably even better."
Mike Mattner: "Life-changing moment."
David Mike: "Sounds way too lefty."
Daniel Patrick O’Grady: "If I sold my business name to a large candy bar corporation, I would definitely search for an exotic, socialist sounding name to ease my conscience."
Jeff Pawlinksi: "It makes Penny Mustard Furnishings sound reasonable."
Sara Going Poullette: "I love saying the word, co-lec-teevo."
Bryan Schmidt: "It is what it is."
Bret Spangenberg: "Sounds too communist to me."
Anna Spankowski: "Not a fan of the new name. Glad everything else is going to stay the same."
Annie Weidert: "Seems culturally appropriative. I hope it at least foretells a surge in their support for local public transit, given the supposed namesake."
Caitlín Zhenotdel: "The new name doesn't sound communist enough."