A mother of two children from Sacramento recently filed a lawsuit against McDonalds, claiming that the fast food chain is marketing to children with its happy meal toys. The woman stated that she would like McDonalds to stop using toys from popular children’s movies such as Shrek. She says that her children often leave their food to get cold while they are playing with the toys. The lawsuit will claim that children do not have the cognitive ability to recognize marketing tactics.
Does this woman have a legitimate claim? I do agree that children do not have the ability to realize when something is being sold to them, which makes it unethical to tempt them with toys. However, some parents may enjoy getting these toys for their children. Asking the parent if he/she would like the toy included or not would be the most sensible option. McDonalds could also consider making toys that have some type of educational value. This way, parents can feel that the toy is providing value rather than just distracting their child from finishing lunch.
How do YOU think McDonalds should handle the issue and the negative press surrounding the happy meal toys?