Woman sues McDonald's for $14 after cheeseburger ad did exactly what it's designed to
Orthodox Christian said mouth-watering banner made her break Lent fast
Advertisements are so prevalent that many of us have developed internal ad blockers and probably don't rush out for a cheeseburger just because we saw one on the telly or a poster.
But that's exactly what happened to Ksenia Ovichinnikova when she clocked a banner depicting succulent signature dishes by McDonald's, specifically, a cheeseburger and McNuggets.
So what's the problem? Ovichinnikova, from Omsk in Russia, is an Orthodox Christian and she claims the ad made her break her fast for Lent, a stretch of nearly six weeks before Easter.
The sinner is now demanding 1,000 rubles (£10/$14) from the fast-food merchant for sustained moral damage from "spoiled Orthodox fasting," according to local reports.
Sustained, we suppose, because the incident happened in 2019. That's a long time to be haunted by a cheeseburger, which for most of us is out of the system by the following morning – or sooner depending on one's digestive sensitivities.
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In her complaint, Ovichinnikova said she had successfully fasted through Lent for the past 16 years, but suffered a complete failure of willpower on seeing the ad and headed to the Golden Arches to get herself a burger.
In the Orthodox tradition, "Great Lent" runs for 40 days from "Clean Monday," which is the sixth before Palm Sunday. Meat and dairy are prohibited entirely until the fast is broken on Easter.
Of course, it's McDonald's aggressive advertising at fault, she claims.
In her statement, she said: "By this point, I had already been fasting for a month, but when I saw an advertising banner, I could not help myself, I visited McDonald's and bought a cheeseburger. In the actions of McDonald's, I see a violation of the consumer protection law. I ask the court to investigate and, if a violation has taken place, to oblige McDonald's LLC to compensate me for moral damage in the amount of one thousand rubles."
However, the court has not yet set a date for a hearing due to "shortcomings in the drafting." Fancy that.
In our opinion, Ovichinnikova should have ordered off the breakfast menu, which is dedicated to such situations.
Anyway... Big Mac for lunch, anyone? ®