A few days before, the news broke regarding McDonald’s Japan releasing a memo which outlined new speech restrictions for their employees on social media. Many believe these new rules are an effort to stem worker’s complaints over the new “Enjoy! 60 Second Service” promotion.
After the memo was released, McDonald’s crew members and Japanese netizens took to Twitter and 2channel to voice their opinion about the controversial new restrictions, and everyone’s unanimous opinion was this:
“The Chicken Tatsuta is delicious! It’s my favorite burger!”
This line is in reference to the memo’s fourth rule which states:
4. Any remarks on behalf of the company are limited to a spokesperson from McDonald’s headquarters.
When you make statements about McDonald’s you may be viewed as an “official member”, so try to make it clear that your opinions are personal.
Example of prohibited comment:
‘For store support and changes to procedure, I have received inquiries from many followers. However, I’m afraid I cannot respond at this juncture due to the confidential nature of this information.’
Example of an OK comment:
‘The Chicken Tatsuta is delicious! It’s my favorite burger!’
The Chicken Tatsuta sandwich is basically a standard chicken burger, only instead of the piece of chicken being deep fried in flour or bread crumbs, it’s deep fried in potato starch. It’s also sometimes topped with shredded cabbage and a slightly spicy sauce, but toppings are subject to change. For example the sandwich pictured above had lettuce and a tartar/wasabi sauce.
The burger is offered for a limited time once every few months or years, and was also ranked the number one McDonald’s burger in an online poll a few months ago.
In accordance with McDonald’s new online speech policy thousands have taken to social networks and websites such as Twitter and Japanese message board 2channel, and posted the approved message of rule 4.
As of this writing – roughly 48 hours after the story hit – tweets consisting almost exclusively of the message “The Chicken Tatsuta is delicious! It’s my favorite burger!” (チキンタツタ美味しい！一番好きなバーガーです！) have been steadily pouring in.
At an estimated rate of about 2 tweets per minute for two days that would make approximately 5,760 tweets professing love for the Chicken Tatsuya so far. And the trend is showing no signs of waning.
The response has been so overwhelming that some claim this was all a big marketing ploy on behalf of McDonald’s.
Much like some accused Coca-Cola of doing with their New Coke fiasco, perhaps McDonald’s had set themselves up to fall in such a spectacular fashion in an effort to get everyone talking about them.
Stranger things have happened, but that seems too Machiavellian for McDonald’s Japan to have come up with. McDonald’s Australia though…