Sunday, March 15, 2009

The McDonaldized Economy

The harshness of the current recession has left many social scientists asking “what happened?” Individuals are losing money in the market, facing rising energy costs, and struggling to hold on to their employment. Also affected are social structures such as Wall Street, corporations, cities, and states. The stock market is at its lowest point in years, banks have collapsed, and local governments have seen radical declines in revenue. So where did all the money go? Things were going well just a few years ago. It appears that our economy has been a victim of McDonaldization, a theory of social organization, expounded by George Ritzer in the mid 1990’s.

Among other things, McDonaldization suggests that society is becoming obsessed with efficiency, standardization, and control. A closer look at these factors will further our understanding of the current economic problems. This essay attempts to explain how these factors, in their extreme, have consequences detrimental to the socioeconomic health of American society.

Efficiency

It is commonly understood that greater productivity equates to getting more done in less time. Efficiency, therefore, is an essential component of productivity. The influential economist John Kenneth Galbraith lauded the importance of efficient production in The Affluent Society. Organizations that mass produce items must be efficient because time is related to costs and costs directly affect the bottom line. Few would question the importance of efficiency as a key component of a successful organization in terms of its output. However, problems arise when we begin to sacrifice quality for efficiency.

Less time can be dedicated to the individual attributes of production when volume and speed are valued over attention to detail and careful handiwork. Henry Ford, whose organizational principles are the precursor to McDonaldization, produced thousands of Model T’s, but they possessed very few distinguishable details and they were of dubitable quality. It is said that drivers of the early Model T’s were forced to travel uphill in reverse when low on gas because the positioning of the gas tank prevented fuel from traveling to the carburetor. Similarly, many argue that General Motors refused to reexamine its practice of planned obsolescence until it recently hit rock bottom.

Society’s fascination with efficiency also impacts consumption. We want everything quickly and conveniently. While it is not reasonable to wait an hour for a 35kb document to download, it can be concluded that extreme efficiency as it relates to consumption can have very detrimental effects on an economy. We value the present and seek to maximize its material potential whether we can afford it or not. This is indicative of the overwhelming desire for instant gratification in the American value system which not only involves meeting immediate needs, but also trivial desires; if it so happens that such desires are not present, then Madison Avenue will gladly manufacture them.

It has been established that extreme efficiency affects both consumption and production. Companies want to produce more and individuals want to consume more (with or without the cash to do so). Thus, there must be a mechanism that brings them together - something to support the high volume of production. Enter credit the great negotiator. With credit, consumers can satisfy their immediate desires for material goods which benefits producers and distributers of cheaply made products such as Wal-Mart, Chrysler, and Nike. Yet most of these products (including many homes in this current market) have little growth potential as assets, meaning that we are using debt to purchase liabilities. Indeed, the frightening reality is that our current economy is built on people borrowing money to purchase low-quality products.

This essay is not intended to be an indictment of credit. Credit can be good. However, credit run amuck will have detrimental effects. The problems associated with the current economic crises tend to revolve around the misuse of credit. Predatory lending, the housing collapse, and the failure of banks all involve debt outmuscling profit. Absolute power to produce and consume…. indeed it does; and it is extreme efficiency that sets this process in motion. Before we can rise from the current economic dilemma we must curtail the rate at which we produce and consume.

Standardization and Control

Standardization is a logical outgrowth of increasingly rational, social organization. In other words, the production or distribution of a product will adhere to standardized specifications leading to its mass uniformity (A Big Mac in Milan is exactly the same as a Big Mac in San Francisco). Control is a form of standardization wielded by companies where human ingenuity is replaced by centralized specifications.

Standardization is important because it ensures that a particular product will adhere to expectations. For example, a person may like the atmosphere at Applebee’s. Therefore, when walking into Applebee’s, he/she expects the walls to be filled with memorabilia reprints regardless of which Applebee’s they choose to patronize. Meanwhile, control is important because it allows for the organized mass production of goods through structured mandates.

Standardization and control add organization and a healthy efficiency to the production process. The problem lies not with standardization or control, but with the uniqueness of ideas in the product development stage. Not only are goods standardized and controlled, but so are the people involved in the process. An increase in standardization and control narrows the operating boundaries of indidvidual workers. This forces them to become increasingly specialized. School teachers are reduced to robots of standardized tests, craftsmen reduced to assemblers of prefabricated dinette sets, and what once was considered the general practitioner now only studies some tiny bone in the left arm. In an extremely controlled and standardized environment broad ranging skills, know-how, and intelligence are being replaced with instruction pamphlets, company handbooks, and search engines. This leads to a reduction in creativity which ultimately engenders economic hardships.

America’s current dearth of creativity compromises its ability to be innovative because potential ideas from talented people are suppressed by strict company guidelines. Creative concepts from the arts and social science communities receive little attention because they often lack immediate instrumental value. Such ideas are not appealing to West Coast venture capitalists. Nonetheless, the romance of American production is lost when the freedom to create is lost. America no longer awes consumers with its innovation and design (compare the 1960 Chevrolet Impala with the 2008 model).

Conclusion

Our economy has been McDonaldized to the point where we rely on cheaply made, non-innovative products. To make matters worse, we often pay for these products with credit. While settling for convenience we have sacrificed class and quality. In the process we have lowered our expectations and standards. This reliance on mediocrity has benefitted neither producer nor consumer.

America’s economic problems will not improve until it addresses the problems associated with a McDonaldized economy. Consumers must establish a demand for quality at lower-costs even if that means being patient. Producers must be open to ideas that exist outside of the corporate model and give its employees the freedom to maximize their talents.

America’s current economic slide is a social problem, and such dilemmas should be addressed with social solutions. We as members of society should give careful thought to the issues discussed in this essay. If we continue to allow extreme organizational rationalism to control our destiny, then our current economic problems will no longer exist as a temporary recession, but as a permanent norm.

87 comments:

  1. You should offer a course: The Sociology of Recession. Let us know where to sign up!

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  2. I think you hit on many key points that address the intertangling of the economic and social decline in this country. Many Americans do not realize the true meaning of cause and effect and how actions in one area of life can influence a seemingly non co-herent subpart. For instance, in an attempt to be "efficient," many companies have outsourced jobs to other countries in an attempt to save money; this action simultaneously eliminated jobs from the potential consumers of their product leaving both parties at a loss. Until America can rid itself of its self-absorbed nature and replace it with a desire to excel as a community, I doubt any change will be long lasting. This was a great essay and it addressed many long standing issues within this country. Kudos Dr. Hannon.

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  3. Great essay indeed Dr. Hannon. Long gone are the days of full service gas stations. The world is full of "Quicktrips" automatic gas pumping, convenient one stop shopping, 2 minute carwashes,McMalls, and meals on wheels (no wonder there is an obesity epedemic). No need for teaching a child how to read and comprehend when you can teach them to just skim through the text or 'sight read'. We want to get rich quick, never mind laboring with integrity and actually doing the work and we do it becasue we CAN get away with it. people don't care about quality. They care about quantity (hard and fast).

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  4. The article does not speek about technology and its overall effects on standardization and effeciency in our American economy. What does the author say about technology and how it acts in the context of this article?

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  5. Dr.Hannon I believe that our current economic problems have already become a permanent norm due to the fact the people in America have adapted to a new way of life. Receiving goods in a efficient amount of time appears to be better than the quality of things.This could possible come from fear of change.Demanding for quality at lower cost will cause society to be without for a while and i do not suppose they are ready for that. Some citizens like to ride things out until America actually strike rock bottom. Thats when I imagine a change will come when talking about standardization and effeciency.

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  6. Jamal Brown

    "The American Way of Life is Not Negotiable".
    -George W. Bush Sr.

    American economist Milton Firedman states in his book Capitalism and Freedom through a theory that the economic freedom that serves as a precondition for our political freedom is one of a kind. Our democratic structure is not the problem but the use of it as stated above. Through our excessive use of credit in McDonalization we have aloud socialist/totalitarianism countries such as China to grow through their inequality governing for means of international distribution. We have given to much leeway to citizens without any solid means of punishment except bad credit reports. Up until we have not had to face the minor consequences however a massive harsh one.

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  7. It's interesting how we as a people generally value effiency over quality. You would think that people would want things that last opposed to things that just can just "get the job done". But just like you once said, Walmart will always be in business, not because the products are built to last, but because they can get a job done at a low cost to the customer. Also, I never really thought about it, but the atmosphere in every Applebee's restaurant is the same. Whether you're in New Jersey or California, the restaurants are generally the same. We as patrons know what to expect and yet and still we continue to go to the same place. If Applebee's all of a sudden decided to take down all memorabilia and paint the walls white, sales would be effected. Overall, we like our standardization and we LOVE efficiency.

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  8. i agree that the United States is becoming a McDonalized economy. Walmart, Target, K-Mart, paying for cheaply made clothing, electronics, and no purpose but pleasure goods that are being paid for by credit. Greed and the monopoly of our society has slowly but surely placed us in a recession. People are losing their jobs because the value of a dollar isn't even half of what it used to be. The cost of education is becoming ridiculously expensive.

    Credit is a blessing in sin... my father says you only need a credit card for one reason and the reason is "EMERGENCIES ONLY". Its like a loan shark so to speak why borrow money when you can pay for it yourself without people coming after you. The US is in debt and so is its people..... But will we change our ways knowing the cause and effect?

    Patience Smith
    Sociology 11-12

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  9. I believe that the country is becoming McDonalized because now a days people are becoming more reliable on something quick instead of the quality and the time period of lasting. I agree Wal-Mart will never go out of buisness number one because Wal-Mart is a college students second home away from home and number two because its cheap and efficient something that this country appreciate. Now a days most families will run to Applebees,McDonalds or other fast food chains because they rather go get something quick to eat rather than take the time to prepare a meal. With the economy being so low many citizens look to save money at any means necessary.

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  10. The U.S. is so stuck on the id (instant gratification) part of everything, that they are not realizing that they are putting more people out of jobs. Every once in a while, science puts out some product that is new and efficient. Now this thing may be able to work ten times faster than ten people, but what about the quality of the product. You have phones that take the place of a computer, but drop it one darn time and see how fast 500 dollars goes down the drain. The screen might crack causing you nothing but anger. But people don't care that everything is being taking over by mcdonaldlization. They are going to play follow the leader until the end of time with this one. I guarantee you if they came out with something tomorrow more efficient than the combination of an IPOD, pager, computer, cell phone, calculator, GPS, PDA put together, people will being giving their last, going into debt, trying to get that product, no matter what cost. At the end of this, who wins? Is it the consumer or the inventors who are convincing to buy the next big thing of this generation? I say...neither When the world end, who is going to take our place?.

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  11. I think that mcdonilzation is killing the economy, because they are taking a lot of peoples jobs hear in america. Today there are moslty robots doing the work at your local plants. To me thats why it is so important to get an good education, because without one you have to take the risk off a robot taking your job. They went to robots so they wouldnt have to pay the workers, so instead of them paying a salary they just dish out money to get the robot fixed when it messes up. Timothy Foster 4-5:30

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  12. Efficeny is a must today in this economy, because everything these days is moving so fast, and time is money. Efficeny is similar to my article before. The owners get tired of there workers slacking of an not working at a steady paste so therefore they which to robots. Robots go fast they dont get tired so really it is a win situation, and plus they save a lot of money. In this economy peole wants things that is going to be consistent so therefore they get a machine that can do the job. Timothy Foster 4-5:30

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  13. Southerners are sterotyped as people that drink a lot of beer and sit out on the porch all the time, but the south really isnt like that because they are going by how the south was forty to fifty years ago. Coming from the south i realized that people from other parts of the country think just because you are from the south you are counrty. That is not true just because you have a different way of doing things where you are from dosent mean the way somone else does something means you are counrty. A lot of people from the south think that people from up north have smart mouths when that isnt always true,but i guess they are streotypes and you have to live with them.

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  14. Gerriod Sharp

    I agree with you Dr.Hannon, today's society and the economy is truely a victim of this threat called McDonaldization. By giving up our normal ability to be creative we settle for this new norm called efficency.By giving up creativity give more oppurtunity as stated in the essay to less diverse items, but they are very popular in the demanding society of today.These products are standard due to the face that they may be purchased at a particular store and there are many of the same product within the group of that product, without any difference.

    Also society are giving up the time used in the kitchen of their own homes for more faster and less efficent meals. For example, the fast food hamburger restaurnt are booming in today's economy, due to the fact of the credit/debit/income situation that you spoke about Dr.Hannon. This is a good and bad situation, but we are losing the old habbits of a home cooked meal to the ready to go meals from these fast food companies. We are relying to much on this standardlize society, instead of being more dependant on creativity.Me personally think that society is changing for the good and the bad.But who wouldnt want something creativitly made compared to the same old product everyone else has.

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  15. I would like to comment on the fact that efficiency is shown and excepted as well as mcdonaldlization. In life today we are in a recession through the work force, struggling to hold on to our employment. Everything is changing the names of business, someone cant maintain success throughout stock and other values through the market. Prices are rising and people are getting fired. All the money is going to the jails and support to the prisoners. Standardization is the upset of humans when a routine is loved in cherished then changed and broken. Creativity and quality is the key to business today, if it doesn’t have enough of the above traits it will tend to be organized the same as everyone else organizations. Some or mostly all economic ways are robust and its up to the updates in technology to save impression management as a well presented and thought out ideas. These situations are real and the problem you, Dr. Hannon, approached was well thought and well written.

    From: Chateau Dion Mercier

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  16. Rasean Stoney

    I would like to tell you Dr. Hannon i strongly agree with you on this matter. No longer are we relaxing and planing vacations. We are trying so hard to hold on to a job. We now have entered a recession.This calls for us as a society to help each other out. we can not keep making these other people rich with all of this crazy spending. Most of these BIG BUSINESS Owners are continuing to grow. For example Walmart, Sam's,and target are growing in profits because we continue to buy cheap stuff. Half of the stuff we buy is not even real. What happen to sitting at home and eating a nice dinner? Now it is so easy to get into your car and go to a fast food place and get food. We are eating stuff that is not good for our bodies, but we keep making these business owners wealthy. If you knew creating fast food restaurants would make you a lot of money because people are being lazy to get up and cook or not having time for your family would make you money. Would you turn it down? No! These businesses are picking on the weak spots on people and they are getting rich off of it. the economy is struggling we need to help fix it. People begun to love efficiency and no longer appreciate the old ways on doing stuff.

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  17. Mcdonalization continues because people want to get ahead of others for the pleasure of success, wealth, and advancement. No matter if it is the consumer or the producer, people somehow want the easy way out of situations just like Ford and the T-Model, that is part of the reason for the assembly line. An assembly line created a faster way to get the product out for the profit to come in, supply and demand. Sorry to say, but it has become a trait of the people of the US. We have been mcdonalized without realizing it. Since the US is such an influence on the world, other countries have adapted to mcdonalization slowly yet quickly.

    Blaire Lewis

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  18. Joshua Madison

    I also believe that today's society is mcdonalized more than ever before, because people now are choosing of means to reach a specific rapidly,with the least amount of cost and effort. People now have drive-thru windows at fast food restaurants, ATM machines, and microwave dinners versus having to come home and cook everyday. Every thing in today's time is already pre-packaged, pre-mixed, and automatically controlled. The only thing we have to do after a long day of work or school is to come in click a button and we are done.

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  19. Martha Ann Jones...

    American society is changing with the times.

    Majority of Americans are not able to "foot the bill" of a high quality item; therefore, the McDonalization economy will continue to prosper. America can not provide it's growing population with high quality substances at a low price. However, the standardlization and efficiency accomodates the daily lives and routines of many American to great satisfaction. If not, the McDonaldlization economy would not have survived as long as it has.

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  20. Why don’t we like the have the finer things in life? Life is a fast moving process and individuals are too lazy to take time and effort to have things of their own. Wal-Mart is a growing company who gets our paychecks weekly. Similar to what Dr. Hannon said in class, “The lamp you bought from Wal-Mart, are sold to thousand others with it in their house.” Because we want things so quickly, the uniqueness of the object diminishes. We don’t even care about what goes into our mouths. The McDonalds’ commercial is a great example of how we want to play less to get more. As the man travels through the town and search for what he can buy for a dollar, he is rejected numerous times until he reach the restaurant. How healthy is a meal that only cost a dollar? We refuse to answer or think about this question. We just want something that is readily available for us.
    .....................E.S. Austin...............

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  21. Clarence JeffersonApril 15, 2009 at 10:01 AM

    Dr. Hannon,

    I agree with you on the fact that we are worried too much about the how much of something we have(quanity). And we don't care enough about how well the particular thing works (quality). Producers will have no problem with producing low end merchandise in bulk amounts.

    I can also remember when wal-mart first started to become "super" wal-mart. This was when they introduced the food section to the store making it twice as big. It was a massive success in the eyes of the community. But what about all those small shops and family owned grocery stores that were but out of business at the hands of wal-mart? they are long gone now, and once the competition is gone I notice wal mart started to raise the prices. We have to get our values together and support small businesses again.

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  22. We are all some what effected by our McDonaldized society. Its gets to the point Wall-Mart is advertise in our own home. Especially when someone ask, " Where did you get that item" and most will respond, " I got it from Wall-Mart". In all, Quantity over rules quality in most cases when products has to be sold for a better profit. We often have to look harder and pay more for well made products. It seems that creativity and precision is sacrificed for a quick buck. The effects of quantity hinder the need for individuality and creativity. In the end, We need more distinction, creativity, and well made products. We need items that will last longer and better quality for less.

    Michael Ash

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  23. This concept is one that has been discussed many times and in many ways. One recurring instance that I had during this lecture is that of the book The Giver by Lois Lowry. In the book, the young boy’s society is a colorless, creative less world that runs on the love of efficiency and not enough on the people. The leaders of society have tried to repress the pass so the others would not remember pain but also freedom. The young boy realizes this and escapes to teach his people something: free will. Many people suffer in a McDonaldized economy; the producers suffer because they are stifled and the consumers suffer because those who would prefer something different have to pay prices that make you feel like it is a crime to yearn for something that has yet to pass through the hands of Wal-Mart.

    Samone Stevenson T/TH 4-5:30

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  24. Reneshia Hunt

    I agree that some Americans have lowered their standards and expectations because as some would say "the price is right". This recession has made people buy less quality items because its cheaper. For example, americans would rather go to Wal-Mart and get the same rug that everyone else has just because thats the quickest and cheapest way. Instead of being creative or being your own person, individuals have to get whats popular. They also seem to lack on creativity because as Americans we are becoming lazy and expect everything at a specific time. I would have to admit that I am very impatient person, but i also like quality and creativity. I wouldn't mind waiting for something I know nobody else would have. In my opinion Mcdonalization will forever be an issue.In general, we as Americans need to become more creative and search for high quality items.

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  25. In today's society, people are absolutely obsessed with efficiecy to the point that they forget about quality. Yes, you can go to Wal-Mart for the "one stop shop." It is really convienent to be able to buy in the buls at places like Sam's and Costco's. However, the quality is lost. Buying food at Wal-Mart, especially meat products, may save time but it may cost you other problems in the long run. Quality is an important factor that is often forgotten about is the McDonaldization.

    ~*Kristara Lewis*~

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  26. mcdonalization has taken over the economy. people are now becoming more dependent on quick, fast and a hurry. americans have lowered their quality and standards. there so worried about keeping a fast pace, and staying with the updated trends. this is putting society in the back burner. people will not be able to express thier full potential. the effect and drive that most citizens have has decrease

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  27. McDonaldization has greatly taken over America because who would of thought that a robot would be taking somebody's job, a robot? that is an insult to many hard workers out there thriving to make end meet because you telling the worker that a robot and do a better job then them. In addition, it is indeed that americans valued efficiency over quality don't no individual want to do something that will get them a long way, no they want it right then and there. However, many top selling businesses such as Wal-Mart, Sam's Club, Costco's and etc. also play a tremendous part in McDonaldization because these businesses are giving the americans what they want despite that fact that they putting other small businesses out of market.
    McDonaldization have came in and took over.

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  28. Jessica Morrissette

    I agree with you Dr. Hannon most Amrican people have lazy ualities about them. Instead of going for something more realiable we go for what is going to get the job done quicker. It doesnt matter how much it cost or how long it will last, as long as it gets done when i need it to be. People's standards on certain things seem to have lowered. People just down right dont seem to care anymore its all about effieciency. I may not have the money for this but just becfause its thenew hot thing im going to use credit, this is what you dont do. Im not going to say Im the most patient person but why spend you money on something thats not of great quality . If your going to walmart you want to save money not just by something cheap. If you doo that all you really did was waste money.

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  29. Why has it taken over? because humans are lazy, we always have been. Everyone knows that people have always been trying to find a way to make life easier and less work. They dont want to do any more work than required to complete a task. McDonaldization is simply another way to showcase this. People now have found a way to be even more efficient and would rather be done faster, or buy more at the expense of quality. People have lost a multiude of jobs at the expense of this attitude and many more will soon lose theirs. They dont realize that in essence they are by saving money they are losing the uniqueness or indivduality that they once possesed. Not until it's too late will the naive minds of the human race be changed to see this for what it truely is.

    ~Walter Corn, III~

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  30. The American way of life is very expensive, not just monitary but in every way possible. as thhings advance Mcdonaldization grows and become stronger then before, our economy begans to suffer from using quality as our sacrafical lamb. I didnt know that the reason for our economic slump was because of social problems, but as i think about it more it makes more sense that alot of the things that we do as Americans tend to effect our economy. My grandmother always says that things arent done and built they way they used to be, she wpould stress that the new cars are mad of plastic and not metal like they used to so they dent alot easier then they would have vback in her day. they fall apart more too but it is true wat you say Dr. Hannon we americans have sacrificed quality for effiency . In conclusion Mcdonaldization will always occur it will never end unfortunatly so how will we fix our economy ?

    Sika Shiel Intro to Sociology T TH 4- 5:30

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  31. (a) Could the situation stem from leaders (private and/or public) attempting to create a "New World Order" whereby a single financial system or accounting practice will be established and enforced?

    (b) Could the situation stem from organizational leaders attempting to rid themselves of unproductive followers and hire the "knowledge worker"?

    Based on scripture --My people parish because of lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you...

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  32. Laura Dewberry..REPOST OF COMMENT

    I fully agree with this essay. Society has Become accustommed to the quick, fast, and easy ways of life. As a society we have become accustomed to fastfood restaurants and not cooking for ourselves, we have been accustommed to the World wide web to be our main source of information instead of researching the information for our selves. As a teen growing up in the prime of Mcdonaldization, I could not imagine life any less. In my opiniion Mcdonaldization is not a bad thing, it is just the norm of society today.

    Laura Dewberry..SOCIOLOGY REPOST OF PREVIOUS COMMENT

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  33. Kaneesha Knight said...

    This is a very good article. I wish I would have read it before class today, because it goes right along with your lecture from today.
    I also like the statement where you said we value speed and volume instead of attention to details, and that is so true. I work at Hardee's, and I see impatient people all the time. When I am rushed to make an order, then 99% of the time, I mess it up. So being fast is not always great. The impatient customers always leave unhappy.

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  34. Kadeem Richardson said...

    I honestly believe that Macdonaldization has had a strong impact not only in the United States,but world wide. Macdonaldization has shaped the world they way it is today, which is some what postive and negative at the same time. It can be looked at in a positve way because products are being created at a much faster pace. The down side of companies being so efficent, is the quality of their products are very poor,I believe. Like the example the was given about the Chevrolet Impala. The 1960 Chevrolet Impala is consider a classic car, because of the craftsmanship put behind it, now the most recent Impala lack that wow factor craftmanship to it; its not so much that we're in a different era ,but the 1960 Impala has a better quality behind. Another way Macdonaldization is having an negative impact is because it seems like it almost based on greed in certain areas as well. Like the auto-industry for example; at the dawn of this industry thousands of people from all over came to Detroit,MI to work on the assembly line. As the years went on the number of people began to shrink. The reason being is because a form of Macdonaldization took place. Machines are starting to take over. This means the companies could make cars at a much faster and cheaper pace; which defines effienct. By doing this this causes many people to lose their jobs. At the end of the day Macdonaldization is here to stay rather its looked at as good or bad because society as a whole loves effinciey.

    Kadeem Richardson

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  35. You made some very important points in your article. Macdonaldization has transformed and handicaped the United States. I find that we as a society have become so accustomed to things being done in a timely manner, that we fail to realize the lose of quality. For example, in an attempt to be "efficent" , many large companies have resorted to sending jobs to other countries inorder to save money. Subsequently elimnating jobs from potiental consumers, which is a lose for both.

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  36. I think this was an eye opening article Doc. McDonaldization has spread from mearly McDonalds to an amount of companies that are to numerous to name. We get things faster because people are to impatient to wait, and that does denote the quality of our product. YOu can't win either way, because if you ask people if you want quality or speed, there would be a variety of answers.

    ---Matt M. (i'm going to be on time next class!!!)

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  37. Jessica Crenshaw

    I agree that yes society is starting to follow the trend of fast pace living simulular to that of a fast food resturant. My only problem would that lik poeple say that fast food is unhealthy for you body, maybe the fsat paced wa society is becoming would be bad for society's health. and with the whole control issue , i think it would be beneficial to everyone as a whole to ind a way to gain control and fix the issues ( some not all becaus esome can't be fixed) and try to ween off a little from the adiction to efficiancy. Maybe things in society can move a ittle bit smoother

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  38. Aris Bradfield

    When reading your artilcle I was shaking my head because it's the truth. We deserve better but we settled for what's convient. No one has standards anymore they want quick, fast, and in a hurry! If things were more efficient there would be less expenses and more money in our pockets(i.e. Houses today are just put together and there not sturdy at all! If you go to an old house you can't hear nothing in the other room, but these newer houses you can hear the whole conversation).

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  39. I agree alot on the article, because society is in need of help! but the only way to fix it is to fix ourselves and what we accept. everything today is so fast past that people don't think about how long wiil the investment last. It's sad that we settle for things that we can change if we fight fot it(CONTROL). efficiency is a big problem. People are so impatient they don't want quality, but hopefully it's only so long before it changes.

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  40. This article has made many valid points. Society has become obsessed with efficiency. I have realized that as much as we crave for efficiency, it sometimes affects the consumption and production of the products we buy. For example, we consistently buy fast food knowing that it is unhealthy. However, because we love the speediness and convenience of the service, we continue to put our health at risk. Our Mcdonalized economy has enabled us of ever returning from the recession. Until we stop spending our money purchasing low quality products our society will forever be a Mcdonalized economy.

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  41. After reading this article I know have a deeper understanding about mcdonaldization. The article goes hand in hand with what we discussed in class yesterday. I learned the three principles of McDonaldization: efficiency, standardization, and control. I believe efficiency has the greatest effect on society; because as you stated in both the article and in class people are interested in and rely heavily on instant gratification. Instant gratification is not as beneficial as people want it to be. We give up a well produced product for something poorly made because it is convenient.

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  42. stephen Freeman
    i think that your accessment of no innovation is very correct. the world has become reliant on the quickest, cheapest, and easiest things to make. i also think our money has been getting misused for so long that it has us all in a bind.

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  43. Dr. Hannon,
    I completely agree with your stance saying that the cause of the U.S.'s failing economy comes from our McDonalized society. We as a society over time have allowed efficiency to override quality in the U.S. We as a country,in the past, believed in hardwork. Now that we possess these advancements in technology, which stem from McDonaldlization, have made us a country weak and lazy. This slowly but surely makes us more acceptable with poorer quality in every aspect of life, because we only look for the quick fix instead of a job well done. This relates to our economy and how we allow ourselves to fall in inescapable debt because we want flashy, overpriced goods and are not willing to wait paitiently until we can afford these material possessions through hardwork.

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  44. Ira Tigner

    I never realized until now how, McDonaldization's principle of efficiency- of producing products in mass volumes has caused many consumers to go into debt, because they have began to use credit to buy the product, but they are not refunding their debt. Like you stated that we burrow money to purchase low-quality products. At the time of purchasethe consumer never realizes that they are maki ng a sacrifice of quality for efficiency, which should not be compromised at all.

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  45. My Name is Elise Marie Tolbert. i feel that all these aspects do truely play a role in the ression of the United Staes at this time. However, I am a college student and i chose this route in my life because i realize that America is the land of oppurtunity. Once recieveing a degree i am able to diversify myself instead of limit my oppurtunties. And I also feel that having people who are very skilled helps America to be the country that we are: very Modernized ! so this does list aspects of our recession but it doesnt completely sum up the big picture of our recession. We have been in a war for many years, there is nothing Efficent, productive or controlled about,it just a WASTE OF MONEY< TIME and RESOURCES !!!!!

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  46. Jazmine Scott
    Very well spoken. America has become mcdonalidized and people fail to realize its costing us more money overall, more money that we dont have during this period of economic hardship. With efficiency comes faster, less durable products and when they break you have to replace it when one made with quality would last longer but consumers are to impatient to wait and producers love this because they can save money by cutting corners to rush you a product and know you'll be back because you'll need it replaced and they can make more of a product cheaper. I believe that america can fix herself if we stop consuming so much, its not a need its the want that has our economy collapsing. This" I have to have it" attittude ends up hurting us in the long run

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  47. Dr. Hannon,
    I agree with this essay in many ways. Our society has grown into a pattern of wanting things fast and easy which in an end result, lacks time and detail. Many of the little things you talked about in this essay pointed in on the key bigger things going on in society today. It really shows that everything is connected in some way. Unfortunately, many of the peeople in America, or in general, are acustomed to their ways of life now and might be hesistant to change for the better, even if it means giving up things.

    Sociology
    4-5:30

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  48. Quinton Coates:
    I really feel you on what you said. You hit every point, the way America is going we will be in a recession for a long time. The way American live is by the quick life, and that’s what’s hurting us. I mean people jobs are being replace with machine in a minute there will be no jobs for anyone like you said economy will be shot because there are no jobs and we American will be worst then what we are now. Another thing that gets to me is the fast food American complain about weight but we still eating fast food why because it’s quick to get I feel that we as a people should do better and be patient. This is a really good blog I learn a lot by reading this.

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  49. Dr. Hannon, I really enjoyed this article, you made some very important pointers. Yes the world has became a factor in Mcdonalization. Our generation has got a custom to the "easy life" we have became depended on the structure which we live in now. As for working, our great grands worked hard labour but now we can just take orders and press buttons get paid for it. At the ending of the article I really beleive that would had, if we don't stop it our society will fall to pieces.. ( Ms. Twyla Johnson :-)

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  50. Dr. Hannon,
    I completely understand your position as to where Americans are in today's society. Our society rapidly became accustomed to wanting things done in a quickly manner, but they totally forgot about the quality and details. For an example, nowadays, people will pull into the drive-thru at any restaurant and if the food is not ready at a particular time (regardless of what it looks like) they will ask for their money back and go on about their business. Although it maybe convenient for us to receive things in a hastily manner, sometimes the quality of the item may not be what was expected, but Americans seem not to care My dad works for Ford, and he will NOT (under any circumstances) buy another company car such as Chrysler. He says that the way they make their cars, they are rapidly put together, and when they were going into debt, they decided to use cheaper materials to make their cars. On another note, Americans are desperately going into debt just to have luxuries (some that aren't even necessary). I never understood why people let themselves go into debt, especially when they know they will not be able to recover in a certain amount of time! American wants are becoming ridiculously outrageous but at the same time, if it's convenient, it works!

    Naree McCoy
    Sociology 4-5:30 class

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  51. Dr. Hannon,
    As I read your essay, I come to understand more clearly of just how the theory of McDonaldization affects both our economic and social society. Personally, I can't help but wonder, "where will Mcdonaldization take us ten years from now?" and it raises another question, "will our economic state become better or worse because of this?" Although many people don't realize the effects this theory plays in their individual lives, I however, do realize this and even see where I have contributed to McDonaldization as a consumer. In solving the matter, I believe it will take time and understanding for people to realize the dominating principles of this theory, and choose not to conform but to refuse this norm and act consciously that which collectively, results in the betterment of our economy.

    Meghan Council
    Into To Sociology 240-03

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  52. This is by far a very intresting article Dr. Hannon, However i do not totally agree with everthing stated in this article even if it may be true. i do not believe that we as people have let society Mcdonaldize us. i believe that we prefer comfort as well as efficientcy. yes we like nice service, fast service and accurate service. Yes we like to sit in the car and go to the drive through. but just like some people like to do that others like to get out and go in. Some may feel that sitting in a car is more comfortable and less time consuming than having to get out and go in, while some may feel like getting out and going into an establishment and sitting down to eat there meal is more comfortable than going to the drive through and possible driveing and eating at the same time. Even though i do think you made a valid point about efficentcy. Most people do like efficentcy rather than having to sit around and wait but some people like to just be comfortable. In concusion i think that this is a 50/50 situation so i dont think our people have been Mcdonaldized i just think they like what they like.

    Errian Alexander
    Sociology 2:30-4:00

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  53. I think I've attained a decent grasp on the concept at the forefront of this conversation, and I understand what steps American society needs to take in order to gain a sense of stability as a country, but I for some reason can't possibly see this taking place in a country where people care more about cost and time efficiency than caliber. We are a people who (literally) have the least amount of free time in any given work week (we have the longest work week out of any industrialized country besides Japan (and the Japanese are more time and efficiency obsessed than we) and I believe Americans tend to feel as if quality MUST be forgone for efficiency and therefore we're all willing to settle. Heck, it’s gotten so bad that people automatically associate certain brands with efficiency that they don’t even seem to realize when they’re no longer taking the most time efficient route. Take Wal-Mart for example. It’s irrationality is seen on a daily basis when there’s somewhere between three and five checkout lanes open out of twelve but customers still pour in to save an extra $.35 on a purchase of $10. Yes, the price was lower, but is Wal-Mart still truly more efficient if one if it’s competitors could have sold you the same product at a rate twice that of Wal-Mart’s? The same applies to cost efficiency. Yes, an e-machine may be a available right there at Wal-Mart and yes, an e-machine may cost less than an HP which you’d probably have to order off line and pay more for, but if your e-machine has a life span that’s three years shorter than an HP is the e-machine still a more cost efficient purchase? Your average consumer would probably settle for the cheaper version of the product even faced with is poor quality which again points back to the fact that we are readily willing to settle in order to save time and money only at the present. We have no foresight and are undoubtedly doomed to wait until it’s too late (like everything else) to make changes.

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  54. Joshua Davis said....

    America has really lost it's sence of creativity. We're really settling for less now a days and it's showing as the years go by. We put ourselves on a stage where we rely on assistance and support all the time. We're losing our sence of knowledge because we dont seem to know whats going on any more. We seem to just go with the flow,not even analyzing situations. For this to change we need more people like YOU (Dr. Hannon)that really knows whats goin on in this world today. You think outside the box and give visions most dont see. This is something that needs to be put to the forefront because things can get even more drastic without serious notification. This Mcdonalized economy is steady weakening us and creating the lazy type citizen. This to me is a issue that I've never put to realization till now. Something must be done and something will be done....but till then....(The Struggle Continues).....

    Joshua Davis
    Sociology 2:30-4:00

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  55. Jhinora Pollard

    I believe that mcdonaldization will continue for years to come because people are so impatient. They want things as quick as they can get them even if its not what they really want. For instance someone may want a home cooked meal but because it takes more time to cook a meal they would rather go to a fast food resturant and get a burger. Because of the quality of the burger that person may be hungry again in an hour or so. The consumers and the producers are not concerned with changing mcdonaldization. As long as the producers are still making money and the consumers are still getting what they want when they want it nothing will change. This will become a permanent norm not only in the US but also in other countries as well.

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  56. Veronica I.

    I agree with this article.Society has grown accustomed to the pattern of wanting things fast because their in a rush or just simply dont want to wait.Which in the end lacks the time and detail.

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  57. The society has indeed became use to the McDonaldized society and economy. If not already, it will eventually become the norm and it will happen soon. We as people have become very impatient because we are use to everything being fast paced. Most of the time if we are call someone and they don't answer within the first few rings, we hang up. That is simply impatient. Then, we are so accustomed to this way of life that we are often robbed of creativity. Teachers have to teach according to guidelines, cooks at fast food restaurants have to cook how they are trained, and artists have to paint according to certain techniques. We are ruled by control and we are okay with it. We settle for less quality because it requires less time. We owe patience to ourselves.
    Dr. Hannon this was definitely an eye opener for me. I have never viewed the society from this prospective before reading this blog. Things have to change and they must change soon before we become citzens of a McDonaldized society.

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  58. I felt that this was a very strong piece Dr. Hannon. It really kept my interest. Two key points that really caught my eye were, "Problems arise when we begin to sacrifice quality for efficiency," "Society's fascination with efficiency also impacts consumption. We want everything quickly and conviently." Both of these statements are very true. We can see this as an everyday occurrence. For example if the internet on my cell phone is working slowly I tend to be extremely upset simply because my phone is supposed to have 3G service (which is the fastest speed out). But with all of this said does that mean that customization is not part of this theory since it takes time?
    Fedie McKenzie
    sociology 3-4

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  59. Nicholas Mathis. October 1st, 2009


    I feel that McDonaldlization has truly affected our economy. Many of the products we use today lack detail and good workmanship because big companies feel it is more important to produce goods and services at a faster pace instead of taking the time to make sure that their products are reliable and durable. If companies decided to hand make goods, instead of using machines, I feel it would provide more job opportunities.

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  60. I agree with how the companies in today's time are limiting the creativity for their employees. Someone who can better the company is limited because they have to follow the guidelines and handbooks, even if that is not the most effective way, but the fastest way to get the job done. This limits the company and employer from growing and evolving to another level, which would benefit the economy greatly.

    Sociology 4-5:30

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  61. (Darrian Douglas)
    I like the article because it brings out the facts about how the economy is really becoming mcdonaldized. with peopl wanting things right now and there and how we dnt take time out to use are creativity and take are time with situations. but we are so stuck in this world where we demand for things and want a quick outcome. we are not patience people so thats why we are becomeing an mcdanoldized society

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  62. I just find that we as people due tend to value efficiency rather than quality. We become so used to getting the fast service that when it's a hold up at the line at Wendy's or Walmart we begin to get irritated. But like you said a company like Walmart will never be out of business. Not because its such a huge company but, because it offers quality items at a low price. As a society patience no longer exists, everything has become so " at your fingertips"...=]
    B. Edwards

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  63. Michael Mattia said...

    I really didn't realize what was going on in America until reading this. I agree completely on your view of how America has Mcdonaldized Economy so much so that is has now effected society. I feel as though this should be some how broken to were our society expresses individuality, and creativity to be the country we once were, in a result improve our economy.

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  64. I. Anyadike agrees with all Dr. hannon has said in terms that the country is going through difficulties. what i will say is that most companys in america are wasteful in the process of bringing forth effiency, for example, a company buys material to manufacture or sell product and a little problem they get rid of it instead of fixing it before selling. Even down to consumers buying something and a little is wrong with it and they get rid of it. Another thing that could add to the recession is the rate at which people spend to have a high standard of living, even if it means borrowing money. companies should know their limits and spend according to that limit, people should also do the same, so there will be no problem of the government getting money to bail out companies or people.

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  65. (Chancer Smith)
    I agree with this essay, because I believe our society has become addicted to effiency and quanity before quality. Our economy is suffering because of this theory of Mcdonaldization, it has created a sense of unpatientness;the need to have everything so quick just like a fast food restaurant. I believe this theory limits companies employess creativity because our society stresses quanity and effeciency over quality.

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  66. I agree with this essay because I do feel that our society is becoming weaker due to the fact that we can get things done quicker. Americans today feel as if they are always in a rush to get things done and as if they do not have time for anything. Because of that, the quality of items are becoming weaker. I do beleive that America needs to get away from this habit but without it, we would not be where we are today, technology advancement wise.

    Brittany E. Johnson
    4-530

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  67. This is Mario Jackson and I don't feel like with the way technology is changing it is making our society lazy. I think people use that as a reason to not self productive as people in the early time of life. I do feel like technology is causing the lost of jobs because companies are using machines to multi task instead of hiring several employeers.

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  68. Christopher Ian BelgraveOctober 1, 2009 at 3:34 PM

    As far as the economy goes, I am not one to speak of something that I have no knowledge about; but, in reference to society, I agree with the points that you have made whole-heartedly. In terms of creativity, there is none when one has to adhere to the harsh standards of the industrialized world. There is no REAL creativity, and any kind of ingenuity is seen as ludicrous and most likely dispelled.

    And, in reference to sociology itself, McDonaldization will prove to be the death of socialization. With there beign as little human-interaction to get things done throughout the course of the day, socialization amongst ourselves will decline. And, yes, we do have these "nifty" little "communication devices," but can we REALLY call that communicating where there is rarely any emotion to be felt whilst speaking with another person through text messaging. And yes, forgive me, you can still call people on the phone, but honestly, how many people actually utilize that. Instead of calling you and asking you what you want to eat I would rather send multiple tedious text messages until you got your order correct. Convenient: yes; efficient: yes; social: no....

    And it is therein lies the problem

    PFC (Marine Corps) Christopher Ian Belgrave

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  69. I do agree with you Mcdonalization is affecting our society. On the topic I feel that society has become lazy when it comes to efficiency. I feel like we rather take the easy way out instead of being patient. Dr Hannon asked in class “who has never been to McDonalds” and sadly no one in the class room raised there hand I think when it comes to McDonald's it is no longer just a restaurant it has now become a way of life and not only for McDonald's but also something new Wal-Mart. They are monopolizing on every area possible taking over area where there used to be mom and pop store just because Wal-Mart is in expensive and convenient and convenience and efficiency go hand and hand. we as American people would rather buy the great value than getting the greatest value for our money. we have to break this cycle of laziness in order for American people to keep there jobs the lazy we become the more things become fast and with fast comes automation. which mean soon your bank teller will no longer be a person but a machine you must talk to. in closing efficient does not always have to mean cheap and quick.

    Eryk Pritchett -
    4-530

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  70. Isaac Martin 4-5:30pm

    Dr.Hannon you make very valid points in your essay. i think that if the economy continues to to depends on efficiency and not the quality of the things we consume we are buying into a standard of lower quality living. Today in society we are lazy and we think that it's benefiting us but it's not. for example we as students spend seven dollars on a meal at Mcdonalds because it,s efficient but the food we are consuming is probably not health at all but because it's efficient we pay the money rather than cook our own healthier meal. I feel that if this continues we as a society are digging ourselves into a pattern or a mold. a mold that is okay with just getting by. that the bear minimum is ok. This is not ok by any means i think we have the ability to change the state that we are in but because i believe that the society is Mcdonalized i think that we will become ok with the economy because it's easier to accept it than to try to change it.

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  71. Darius Burt said...

    I agree with your position on McDonaldization, if funny how people can compare the way the way a fast food restaurant is ran to a entire society. When you really think about it, it will probably follow suit for the next century or even longer. Technology by itself is a huge part of the reason why Americans are becoming "lazy" because as we become smarter and discover more technologies, we make life easier to the point where we ever have to lift a finger. Do I like the idea of McDonaldization? Well if I had to make a choice this second it will yes, because it simply makes life that much easier than it is and even though it has its cons I still wouldn't mind it.

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  72. Several times in this post you spoke about the decrease in the quality of the products we consume. I'm sure to someone that has seen previous products, a decrease in quality would be aparent. However, future generations will not know any better. Expectations will be lower and the products won't be seen as lower in quality than previous ones. A person can't miss what they've never had.
    -Kayla Lee

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  73. This post of McDonaldlization has forced me to think deeper into the phenomena that is in front of us and controls our society. It is actually scary how "controlled" and "standardized" we have become. And for what? As you pointed out, we have sacrificed quality and class for convenience and it does not benefit our society in the long run, at all. All it does is enable us to get a bite to eat 20 minutes faster so we can make it to basketball practice on time.
    My favorite quote from the blog speaks, "nonetheless, the romance of American production is lost when the freedom to create is lost." Which is so true. America was founded and based on the idea of originiality and stepping away from the norm. But now, we are just falling into and conforming to a standard, robototic way of life.
    I hope our society can wake up and realize what we are getting ourselves into by creating and supporting McDonaldlization.

    -Nia Clark

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  74. Since McDonaldlization has been taking place over a period of time, I believe that for current and future generations if actual good quality was presented before them it would be unrecognizable. Focus is often put more on the outer surface, instead of the actual substance.

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  75. Great essay Dr. Hannon, but on the contrary, The McDonaldization theory is definitely taking a toll on the levels of customer service and customer respect. In many fields the customer feels that they need things faster and some customers even want the best quality for them at low costs. Certain career fields have taken efforts to prevent the McDonaldization theory from overtaking their quality of work. These fields keep quality, standardization, and control in reasonable perspective. Architects, for instance, use the “triangle” affect when dealing with all clients (especially hasty ones). In the triangle affect, there are 3 points of control in which the client controls 2 and the architect controls the remaining one. The points are “quality, time, and cost”. For example, if a client wants a building made in 9 months with great materials and strong visual aesthetics, the architect may charge the client whatever he/she wishes. In this situation the client controlled “time and quality” while the architect controlled “cost”. If the client requests a structure made of glass but only wants to pay $2,000,000, the architect can take as much time as possible to design the glass building with such a small budget. In this case, the client controlled cost and quality while the architect controlled time. Finally, if the client wants a $20,000 building made in 4 months, the architect will probably design a crappy shack. In this example, the client controlled “time and cost” while the architect controlled “quality.” This is the main reason why I love my field…it keeps people off of you and helps them understand that YOU are providing them with a SERVICE and it’s NOT THEIR WORLD. Maybe more fields should take an approach to reducing the effects of McDonaldization and we will have a more humbled society.

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  76. Dr. Hannon

    I so agree with your article. I feel that Mcdonaldlization makes society lazy , and everyday its gets worst because techonolgy is alway expanding. Mcdonaldlization makes it easy for us to beable to recieve things quicker and faster because of efficentcy, but what we as a society fall to realize is that fast and quick is not always best because when you rush something you lose the value and quality of it. for example fast food resturants are great when don't have time to cook a meal at home, but at the sametime the quality of fast food is no where near the quality of a home cooked meal. I believe that is because of the time that was put into making both meals but fast food most of the times over rules home cooked because in today society we act like we have to have what we wont right then and there and we are in such a rush that if we dont get it quick we catch attitudes. I hope society gets it together before its to late.

    Deborah cottingham

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  77. McDonaldization:
    It's sad to say that America has fallen victim to Technocracy, so to speak. Where have our values gone? When did it become okay for efficiency to overpower quality? These are the questions we should be asking ourselves. I remember when the picture of a family sitting down eating together was the ideal American family, but now it seems that the McDonald's drive-thru has become the kitchen table. It's outrageous! With jobs constantly being replaced, and at the rate that technology is advancing what will be the role of humans? Maybe we should think about that the next time we use self-check out at Wal-Mart instead of the cashier.

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  78. McDonaldlization has many negative affects on our society. However, McDonaldlization brings forth a great deal of benefits. The principle of efficiency may be the reason why my generation is impatient and a little lazy. Yet, efficiency has allowed this generation to accomplish more in less time. Standardization results in a lack of creativity but at the same time it creates stability and keeps work enviornments balanced and under control.

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  79. I definitely agree that if we continue to live in an advancing McDonalized society our problems will only increase. Because of efficiency, we have become lazy, and being lazy has become part of the standardized norm. In the future, hard work and creativity will not get the recognition it deserves because it is not being "lazy." As time passes, technology and values are changing more rapidly. We become lazy with our values and become lazy by using advanced technology. Soon a nation that was founded by people with high values and creativity will become a mindless robotic society.
    -Gabrielle Bellamy

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  80. Leticia Hunt

    I strongly agree with everything stated in your essay on Mcdonaldization. It is amazing for me as a youth to see rapid changes in society on a day to day basis. Yet, it is also a bit frightening because with all these rapid changes, I am left asking myself what does the future, or better yet what can it hold. Mcdonaldization has impacted our communties so feircly that the older generations are left bewildered about the future of our nation and it's people. I called my grandmother and discussed this topic with her. My grondmother is from a large family from a small town in Mississippi and now resides in California. I mentioned to her that Mcdonaldization has three points, the ones you mentioned earlier; Efficiency , Standardization, and Control. She had alot to say about the topic, but what i got most out of our conversation was an example she gave about Mcdonaldization impacted one of the most controversol topics in America, healthcare. She said in the past, health care was more simplistic in nature. House calls were not unheard of, and doctors knew all of their patients. The doctor who delivered your parents would deliver you as well as your future children. Doctors were concerned with your progress for their own peace of mind. All the characteristics depicted by Ritzer are easily seen when one examines health care. From a normal trip to the doctor for a routine check-up or even a specific ailment to rush trip in the emergency room control, efficiency, and standardization are obvious. I was blown away when i got off the phone with her and actually thought about our current state of healthcare and the healthcare she once knew. I thank you for this essay, it has pushed me to think critically about society, and my place in society, i was even encouraged to call my grandmother and include her in my learnning process.

    Leticia Hunt

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  81. Shannon Wilson...

    I completely agree with this article. America's obsession with instantaneous satisfaction has resulted in the downfall of our economy as a whole. Because we expect more in less time we have to sacrifice quality. When quality is sacraficed satisfaction is short lived. Product will not last as they should which then leads to consumers having to shell out more cash. In this economy every dime that can be saved should be, and now that it can't be the consumers will become more and more financially strained, and the manufacturers will take and take! But since we're constantly brain washed with slogans about how its only right that we not have to sit around and wait for things I don't know if we'll ever see the light!

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  82. I really enjoyed your essay Dr. Hannon and I agree completely. Fast, easy, and efficient is what eating at fast foods restaurant offers someone. This is also the way that America has become, McDonalidized. Items and sometimes people are no longer geared towards quality but quantity in the time that you can receive it. It’s all about instant gratification not usually thought out for the long run consequences. The economic problems that we’re facing today are because people have accepted the McDonalidized nation as a norm. American values no longer have high expectations; we often SETTLE(for less)!!!!! McDonaldization can be a good thing by making improvements but its also destroying America at the same time. Although we’re improving in technology by inventing robots and such to do human jobs the people who actually need those jobs are losing them. It brings about the topic of education but what about the person who doesn’t have an engineering degree? What are they supposed to do about a job? Standardization is controlling more and more aspects of American’s lives. Although it guarantees that things will be a certain way it hinders creativity and disvalues imagination and potential people with brilliant ideas aren’t getting their voices heard because of standardization. In theory: We're taught alike therefore we think alike, our thoughts direct our actions so we behave alike..."The American Way"

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  83. Lauren A. Kirksey
    While I do tend to agree that society and the market place has begun to mirror the McDonald model, it does not explain the country's current economic plight; no more so than Henry Ford's introduction of the assembly line causing the Great Depression.
    The current economic decline has been brought on by a lack of systemic regulation of wall street institutions and the banking industry at large. The federal government turned a blind eye while banks and other financial institutions engaged in reckless activity marketing products that were base on little more than market wagering.
    Prominent in the recent financial decline have been American International Group's (AIG) sale of "swaps", i.e. derivatives without sufficient collateral, resulting in massive government bail-out loans coupled with banks offering mortgages on what is 'b' and 'c' paper. (Mortgage loans to people who wouldn't ordinarily qualify due to insufficient income and/or insufficient down payments.)
    Our county's financial problems have been euphemistically described as the economic sector's effort to maximize profit; but it really has been a case of systemic greed, which is not good.

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  84. Erma Ayanna Wilson said...

    I totally agree with the aspects of this article. It is very disturbing indeed that we as consumers have resulted to settling for the lack of quality versus the increase in quantity. There have been too many times that the food has been right on time and the service and the food itself is at the point in which i need to see a manager.
    Outkast's Andre 3000 made a very significant comment referring to the production now " If it was considered a classic before the drastic change in production when cars were metal instead of plastic...". In too many ways is this the truth at its worse. It is now all too important to research something as major as the company's vehicle quality to insure that the quality with be parallel to that of your value of life.
    We should as consumers learn to speak up and stop paying for the inexpensive, low quality products and promote investing hard earned money into the things that matter and last.
    George Ritzer hit on a very important detail when observing the aspect of control and how it effects the society's thoughts of creativity. As employees and consumers we are subconsciously censoring our creativity and allowing those to grab hold and promote us to lose ourselves.
    We must now make this conscious effort to allow everyone to see the long term damage that we are causing and the mess we are leaving for our future generations.

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