What McDonald’s Does Right

The U.S. is riven by politics and race and religion and foreign policy and the economy. But one constant unites nearly all warring demographics: fast food, America’s highly imperfect, deep-fried North Star. Sociologists refer to gathering spots outside of work and home as “third places.” Ray Oldenburg famously coined the term in his 1989 book The Great Good Place. To make quick bouillon of it, a successful third place has to be accessible and playful, a neutral territory that fosters conversation, a sense of communal ownership, and a constituency of regulars. ….[READ]