McDonald’s has been forced to apologize to David Sikorski and Kristina Bakrevski, the writer and photographer behind the now-viral photo series in which a burrito superfan (Sikorski) got engaged to the burrito.
Sikorski told BuzzFeed of his popular photo series, “With so many domesticated photos of staged afternoon picnics in the park or holding hands running along the beach, I figured people would be interested in sharing the happiness of my own current love life situation as well.”
A month later, McDonald’s was caught copying the engagement photos, down to the “wardrobe, the positions, and the concept,” Sikorski told Adweek. “The photos are in fact licensed. We gave permission to BuzzFeed for the first use of the photos within an article highlighting the project.”
Neither Sikorski nor Bakrevski even knew about McDonald’s plagiarism until a friend saw a sponsored tweet in her newsfeed. “My reaction was shock, disbelief,” Bakrevski said. “I was mad, even though a lot of friends told me the imitation was a form of flattery.”
Although the pair made a number of attempts to reach McDonald’s directly, it wasn’t until the publication of the Adweek piece that the company finally responded.
“This shouldn't have happened and, with our agency partner, we're working to find out how it did,” a representative told the publication. “We're reaching out to David Sikorski and Kristina Bakrevski. We apologize to them, their fans and ours.”