McDonald’s has been forced to apologise after an ad that appeared in the Boston subway system was deemed insensitive and offensive to people dealing with a mental illness or emotional issues.
The poster showed a woman with her head in her hands, looking visiby distressed with the caption, ‘You’re not alone, millions of people love the Big Mac.’ The ad also included an 800 number at the bottom, which reportedly connected to McDonald’s corporate.
McDonald’s soon became aware of the situation and the growing animosity being shown towards the ad and released a statement saying, “A local print ad displayed on the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) was recently brought to our attention. We can confirm this ad was not approved by McDonald’s. And, as soon as we learned about it, we asked that it be taken down immediately. We have an approval process in place, with our marketing and advertising agencies, to ensure that all advertising content is consistent with our brand values. Regrettably, in this incident, that process was not followed. We sincerely apologise for this error.”
President of Arnold, the agency who created the poster, Pam Hamlin, told the Huffington Post that McDonald’s had not approved the ad, and that the whole situation was an ‘unintended error.’
The poster has now been removed from Boston’s railway lines.