It’s ok, I know you missed me, but I’m back and bigger than ever for session 2 of 2013, I’ve have new tutors to please and a far more international flavour to embrace!
McDonalds Golden Arches is the most recognisable symbol in the world. When we talk about globalisation and what this means for our planet, then McDonalds is a very good place to start. McDonalds fast food can be purchased from stores in 119 different countries, and every day this fast food giant serves around 68 million people or around 1% of the global population. That’s a lot of people ‘lovin it’.
Globalisation is affecting the world we live in, in strange and unexpected ways. Globalisation is occurring because technology allows us in the 21st century not just to connect with people across the country, but across world. Some have suggested that this is creating a global village, a harmonious town of multilingual borderless people, or perhaps it something a little harsher, something less utopian.
In Australia we come across the problem of Americanisation frequently, we watch Friends on T.V. eat McDonalds and KFC, we understand the concept of ‘college life’ and listen to American pop in our top 40. However ask an American a few simple questions about Australia, our music our movies etc. and i doubt they could tell you much.
The effect of McDonaldisation, or of big international business making it harder and harder for smaller local businesses to survive in the local market is creating a strangely homogenised world, where each country and continent are beginning to develop a strange sameness, a cultural ambiguity if you will. McDonalds domination and the billions of marketing dollars spent promoting the brand globally is potentially creating one large homogenised and hybridised world.
The McDonalds model of tweaking there layout to fit in with the local cultural ideals of each new market shows us how easily this method can be used, we feel we are clinging on to small segments of our culture, the segments that McDonalds and other global corporations choose to accept. In India where cows are a sacred animal, McDonalds has a broad vegetarian menu, in Japan you soy sauce is a staple, but each McDonalds is basically the same as the next one. Should we be worried as the Golden Arches and Americanisation march on to take more of the worlds small business leaving behind much of our unique cultural footprints in the past?
I’ll leave you with this popular McDonalds ad from 2010 as you think over the McDomination.