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McDonald's Twitter campaign backfires

Read time 1min 40sec

The world's largest hamburger food chain walked straight into a social media nightmare when a well-intentioned Twitter campaign turned into a platform for sharing McDonald's horror stories.

McDonald's started the campaign last week with a series of tweets that promoted the company's supposed guarantee of fresh ingredients. The tweets introduced followers to the farmers behind the produce with the hashtag #MeetTheFarmers.

The fast food chain then made the error of using the ambiguous hashtag #McDstories. The original tweet said: "'When u make something w/ pride, people can taste it,' McD potato supplier #McDstories.”

McDonald's detractors, from animal rights activists to environmentalists to people who just don't like the food, jumped on the hashtag bandwagon. While McDonald's tried to end the campaign, the “McDstories” hashtag is still going with stories taking a dig at the company and its food.

“Eating a Quarter Pounder value meal makes me feel exactly the same as an hour of violent weeping. #McDStories”

“I remember spitting out a chicken nugget after finding a chicken nail inside the mechanically separated chicken #McDstories”

“So PETA and McDonald's got into it today on Twitter. I was surprised. I didn't know there was actual meat at McDonald's. #McDStories”

Plan B

In a statement to the press, McDonald's has acknowledged that the promoted #McDstories campaign did not go according to plan, and that it was pulled from promoted tweets after just two hours.

“With all social media campaigns, we include contingency plans should the conversation not go as planned. The ability to change midstream helped this small blip from becoming something larger,” said McDonald's.

McDonald's has tried to deflect the negative attention by shifting to a new campaign for its Chicken McBites, with the hashtag #littlethings.

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