Off topic: McJob - "an unstimulating low-paid job with few prospects"?
Thread poster: xxxmediamatrix

xxxmediamatrix
Local time: 19:54
Spanish to English
+ ...
May 24, 2007

The BBC website tells us here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/6683365.stm that:


Fast-food giant McDonald's has launched a petition to get the dictionary definition of a McJob changed.

The Oxford English Dictionary currently describes a McJob as "an unstimulating low-paid job with few prospects".


Just for fun, who can suggest a better definition?

MediaMatrix

[Edited at 2007-05-24 14:24]


 

xxxJon O  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 01:54
Dutch to English
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'a job.. May 24, 2007

only marginally more boring than translation'

perhaps?


 

Fernando Tognis  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 20:54
Member (2006)
Spanish to English
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100% accurate definition May 24, 2007

People use the term "McJob" that way. So what's the point of changing an accurate definition?

 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 01:54
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English to Afrikaans
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I agree May 24, 2007

Fernando Tognis wrote:
People use the term "McJob" that way. So what's the point of changing an accurate definition?


I agree. If McDonalds wants to have the definition changed, let them prove that the word is commonly used meaning something else, and let them prove the word is no longer commonly used in the current definition.


 

Edward Potter  Identity Verified
Spain
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Spanish to English
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Interesting issue May 24, 2007

The OED has every right to document the language as it sees it. According to the article, this particular term came into being in the 1980s and was popularized even further by an anti-McDonald's book published in 1991.

On the other hand, McDonalds and others have every right to defend their image by petitioning the OED to change the definition. They may not be successful but they are allowed to do so.

The anti-McDonald's people seem to have scored a couple of points here. Contrarily, McDonalds has every right to promote some negative term about the OED, if it can. McDonald's also has the right to fight its detractors in the battle of the wits.


 

Trudy Peters  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:54
German to English
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To Jon O May 24, 2007

Why do you think translation is boring??

 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:54
English to Spanish
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There could be worse May 25, 2007

I would not agree that a McDonald's job would fit the definition of "an unstimulating low-paid job with few prospects". People learn a lot on such jobs: discipline, work ethic, reliability, organization, quality, human relations, sanitation practices, and many other important details. Many of them are young people who definitely need to learn such things and can put them to good use as they move on in life.

That said, the pay is low and the work is hard. So what is wrong with that? When we start out, we don't start as Chairman of the Board. Another thing that can be learned there is "this is my only potential now, so I'd best continue my education so I don't have to be flipping burgers for the rest of my life".

Wih that the prospects can improve.

I've also noticed a fair number of older people, apparently even over retirement age, working at McDonald's. In addition to providing some income, it must provide other satisfaction as well.

Of course language is another thing, what people say is what they say, regardless of who likes it or does not like it.

Myself, I do not think translation is boring, but some of the jobs we get can be rather tedious.


 

Erich Ekoputra  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 06:54
Member (2007)
English to Indonesian
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Can we have a compromise then? May 25, 2007

Henry Hinds wrote:

I would not agree that a McDonald's job would fit the definition of "an unstimulating low-paid job with few prospects". People learn a lot on such jobs: discipline, work ethic, reliability, organization, quality, human relations, sanitation practices, and many other important details. Many of them are young people who definitely need to learn such things and can put them to good use as they move on in life.

That said, the pay is low and the work is hard. So what is wrong with that?


Strongly agree w/ Henry. Anyway, McJobs make food affordable for most people.

So, maybe we can come up with the following compromise:

McJob = an unstimulating low-paid job with few prospects, but offers lots of things to learn for later days in career and life.

That will single out McJobs from, say, slavery-type jobs.


 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:54
English to German
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Ah, taking everything too personally.. May 25, 2007

McJob doesn't refer to working at McDonalds, it refers to low-key, garden-variety, underpaid jobs that nobody wants to spend too much of his lifetime with. As highschool students, that's how we called our dull summer jobs.

Touchy, touchy, those McDonalds people.

A friend of mine refers to tools that are not quite industrial standard and quality as McQuipment, McWrench, etc.

icon_smile.gif)


 

JaneTranslates  Identity Verified
Puerto Rico
Local time: 19:54
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
And what about the Hormel people? May 25, 2007

My dear friend works for the head honchos at the Hormel corporate offices in Austin, Minnesota--home of the Spam museum. Spam (the canned SPiced hAM) practically built the city. They probably resent the use of "spam" to refer to the proliferation of unwanted email, but they also laugh and call it "free publicity."

Now, if I were McDonalds, I would do a series of ads using the term "McJob" and emphasizing the very things Henry Hinds is talking about.

By the way, all three of my kids worked at McDonalds while they were in college. Now, if we could just get the McD's (in Puerto Rico, at least) to serve Pepsi instead of Coke...


 

Jennifer Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:54
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Could McDonald's McDo it? May 25, 2007

Samuel Murray wrote:

Fernando Tognis wrote:
People use the term "McJob" that way. So what's the point of changing an accurate definition?


I agree. If McDonalds wants to have the definition changed, let them prove that the word is commonly used meaning something else, and let them prove the word is no longer commonly used in the current definition.


Good idea, Samuel. I'd like to see the new McDictionary.
Regards,
Jenny.


 

John Cutler  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 01:54
Spanish to English
+ ...
Getting off the subject a bit... May 25, 2007

Nicole Schnell wrote:

A friend of mine refers to tools that are not quite industrial standard and quality as McQuipment, McWrench, etc.

icon_smile.gif)


What I want to know is whether the prefix Mc- has a negative or positive connotation.

Most of the examples seem to point in a negative direction. Why then are the two “hot” doctors in the television series “Grey’s Anatomy” called McDreamy and McSteamy??
icon_smile.gif


 

Jalapeno
Local time: 01:54
English to German
Mc ... May 25, 2007

I agree with Nicole. McJob doesn't necessarily refer to a job at McDonald's.

Another popular "McSomething" construction is the "McMansion", defined by Wikipedia as "a particular style of housing that—as its name suggests—is both large like a mansion and as generic and culturally ubiquitous as McDonald's fast food restaurants."


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McMansion

[Edited at 2007-05-25 11:57]


 

Gillian Searl  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:54
Member (2004)
German to English
Food? May 25, 2007

Erich Ekoputra wrote: Strongly agree w/ Henry. Anyway, McJobs make food affordable for most people.


That would depend on your definition of food. And I don't see McDonald's fat laden rubbish as coming into the category of food. In fact you would have to pay me a lot to eat it.
Gillian


 


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