debbie millman

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Yet Another Reason Why Civilization Is Doomed

yet another reason civilization is doomed

You see correctly: McDonald's sponsored Report Cards.

According to Ad Age:

"McDonald's has found a nifty way to reach kids even as TV ad options toward the demographic shrink: Advertise on report cards. The Golden Arches picked up the $1,600 cost of printing report-card jackets for the 2007-2008 school year in Seminole County, Fla., in exchange for a Happy Meal coupon on the card's cover. With 27,000 elementary school kids taking their report-card jackets home to be signed three or four times a year, that's less than 2 cents per impression. Children who earn all A's and B's, have two or fewer absences or exhibit good behavior are entitled to a free happy meal at a local McDonald's -- so long as they present their report card."

This is dastardly on so many levels.


Blogger Prescott said...

It's no secret McD's needs to get 'new users' and hook 'em while they're young — they've been doing that for years. In fact, McDonald's is one of the nations largest distributors of toys, and the largest operator of playgrounds. I believe there was a line in Fast Food Nation where Schlosser remarkes "Playgrounds bring in kids, who bring in parents, who bring in money".

But I agree, this is going overboard a bit — there is no reason for any corporate logos to appear on a report card, except perhaps the paper company. Someone send a wire to Naomi Klein.

And for the record, criteria No. 3 should read "2 or FEWER absences". Oh, the irony.

12/06/2007 10:36:00 AM  
Blogger berto said...

Hey Debbie. I agree. Civilization is Doomed, and if so is the case, let's waste a bit of time on this since the piece really made me laugh…

#1 The irony of having an apple (fruit, nutritious, healthy) as the logo for the Seminole County Schools, yet we have Mc Donald's (none fruit, un-nutritious and not healthy) sponsoring them.

#2 The writing is genius. Work, earn good grades, check if you had good grades and come enjoy a free Happy Meal. (As if free items translates to happiness)

#3 I loved that in the three McDonald's qualifying categories to win a prize there is no mention of sports execution.

Anyway... you get the point... this report card is like if it belongs to the twilight zone... lol

get the sarcastic tone

12/10/2007 04:12:00 PM  
Blogger Jesse said...

That's fairly disgusting.

12/11/2007 02:24:00 AM  

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Location: new york city, United States

Debbie Millman has worked in the design business for over 25 years. She is President of the design division at Sterling Brands. She has been there for nearly 15 years and in that time she has worked on the redesign of global brands for Pepsi, Procter & Gamble, Campbell’s, Colgate, Nestle and Hasbro. Prior to Sterling, she was a Senior Vice President at Interbrand and a Marketing Director at Frankfurt Balkind. Debbie is President of the AIGA, the largest professional association for design. She is a contributing editor at Print Magazine, a design writer at and Brand New and Chair of the Masters in Branding Program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. In 2005, she began hosting the first weekly radio talk show about design on the Internet. The show is titled “Design Matters with Debbie Millman” and it is now featured on In addition to “Look Both Ways: Illustrated Essays on the Intersection of Life and Design,” (HOW Books, 2009, she is the author of "How To Think Like A Great Graphic Designer" (Allworth Press, 2007) and “The Essential Principles of Graphic Design” (Rotovision, 2008).

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