Regular visitors to RocketNews24 will no doubt be aware that McDonald’s Japan has been making the headlines a lot since the beginning of the month. The removal of menus from its counters, worried rumours of the restaurant putting a stop to free cups of water; the fast food chain has received a lot of negative attention.
After tweets on the theme of “McDonald’s next bizarre business move” hit the thousands, tweet-gathering mega blog Togetter has put up a collection of some of the best thoughts and creative ideas from Japan’s internet users, with some little short of laugh-out-loud funny.
So, what do the people of Japan predict for Ronald and pals’ near future? Let’s find out!
While many McDonald’s restaurants across the world have a “free smile” listed on their menus, in this writer’s experience, few countries’ staff can rival Japan’s for the enforcement of the rule. Come rain or shine, those guys are greeting their cusomters with a big, warm smile that makes you feel wanted; it makes you wonder whether they get free face massages at the end of the day…
During my first few weeks in Japan, in fact, while visiting a McDonald’s restaurant with a friend, I can distinctly recall saying to my pal “You know, I think that girl at the counter might like me- she gave me the biggest smile when she passed me my food.”
Little did I know that smile was paid for by Ronald McDonald…
So it should come as no surprise that at the top of the list for McDonald’s next business move came the suggestion that the “free smile for every customer” would see a price hike, with customers being asked to add a few extra yen to their bill in order to see their server raise the corners of their mouth.
Oh, that internet! Such a cynical bunch!
Other suggestions from witty Twitter users include the following:
- “The introduction of kimchi-flavoured milkshakes”
- “The restaurant making their fries from yams instead of potatoes”
- “Extra ice in the soft drink cups”
- “Making Happy Meals available only with the purchase of an extra value meal”
- “Charging 100 yen just to see the menu…” (Oooh, burn!)
- “Making you carry your food home without a bag, in the name of ‘saving the planet’.”
Perhaps our personal favourite, though, coming complete with fantastic hand-drawn design, is Twitter user Uramasa’s suggestion:
“Giving their cups a false bottom so that they hold less drink…”
▼ From top to bottom: lid #1, lid #2, juice, empty space
“Haha, don’t encourage them!” cried the concerned masses.
While the majority of the predictions made here are the result of netizens jumping on the bandwagon having a bit of fun, and there does not seem to be any sense that the comments are made out of feelings of genuine malice, McDonald’s Japan must be watching this coverage a little nervously.
The American company has worked its way up in Japanese citizens’ estimations over the years, and has, as well as performing unbelievably well even during times of economic crisis and recession, established a superb reputation for itself in the country. To see that reputation fall apart and for the company to become the butt of internet jokes and associated with hash-tags like “what on earth will they try to pull next?” must be worrying to say the least…
Or maybe McDonald’s is just happy to have so many people talking about it?
Your move, Mickey D!
Ronald McDonald image McDonald’s Corporation, edited by RocketNews24