Twitter Sounds Off After McDonald's Tries To Entice New Workers With Free iPhone

We've mentioned before that a lot of employers — particularly in the food service industry — experiencing a kind of labor shortage.

Whether this is because of an inability or unwillingness of franchise and other restaurant owners to compete with unemployment benefits seems to depend on who you ask. But if higher wages aren't on the table, it seems that some restaurants — especially fast food ones — are trying other strategies to get more warm bodies on the line.

And the latest such move from McDonald's doesn't seem all that popular on Twitter.

It's hard to tell where he took it but Twitter user @brogawd_ seemed positively tickled when he saw a local McDonald's offering free iPhones as a hiring bonus.

But while he seemed to think McDonald's is getting desperate, the fact that this iPhone is only available after someone stays on board for six months suggests they've put a little thought into this idea.

For the most part, the stunt was treated with suspicion for a few different reasons.

One user said, "Companies will do everything but pay you a living wage," while another was pretty confident that fewer employees than we might think were ever going to get it.

As they put it, "These companies are counting on their turnover and know you probably won’t make it 6 months anyway."

But while some didn't trust the offer itself, others thought there was some sort of catch with the actual iPhone.

As we can see here, one figured that McDonald's would cough up an old model like a 5s once workers make it through those six months. That would still technically make it an iPhone, amirite?

Another person saw a more nefarious reason for this even if the phone is brand new, saying, "Is that phone provided so they can call you in to work on your day off?"

While it's not unheard of for McDonald's to raise their wages, they usually do so as a reaction to local hikes in minimum wage.

As economists Orley Ashenfelter and Štěpán Jurajda told NPR, it's common for McDonald's franchises to pay about a dollar above the minimum wage and adjust accordingly when that minimum increases.

However, this usually corresponds with an increase in prices, which suggests that the cost of wage increases tend to be passed on to the consumer.

There's also a difference between what McDonald's can do in stores owned by the corporate office and in stores with their own franchise owners.

After all, if you don't start seeing this free iPhone offer everywhere, you're probably getting a first-hand look at that difference.