I’m Not Lovin’ It: The Bloody Sundae Incident

Report by Sarah Hickey.

McDonald’s Portugal recently made headlines after a Halloween campaign backfired. In an attempt to celebrate the spooky season, the fast-food giant’s Portuguese branch released a special Halloween edition of its ice cream Sundae.

To advertise their strawberry-flavored ice cream special, McDonald’s Portugal used the slogan “Sundae Bloody Sundae.” What, according to McDonald’s, was meant as a well-intended tribute to the song “Sunday Bloody Sunday” by Irish rock band U2, and a celebration of Halloween (incidentally a holiday of Celtic origin), was perceived as insensitive on the Emerald Isle.


The Sundae Bloody Sundae promotion of McDonald’s Portugal.

Why the outrage?

The term “Bloody Sunday” makes reference to three bloody events that took place throughout Irish history.

This has been a preview. The full report can be accessed online by Nimdzi Partners.

The full publication contains information on why McDonald's campaign in Portugal was controversial, examples of other companies guilty of similar missteps, and how companies should try to avoid the pop-culture pitfall. If you are not a Nimdzi Partner, contact us.


This publication was researched and written by Nimdzi's Chief Researcher, Sarah Hickey. If you wish to learn more about the topic, feel free to reach out to Sarah at [email protected].

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