TORONTO - Jill-Anne Hopkins always considered McDonald’s a family restaurant.
That changed Sunday when she had to shield her eight-year-old’s ears from loud, explicit pornography in the next booth over.
Hopkins was enjoying cheeseburgers with her ex-husband and their son, Grant, in a Keswick McDonald’s around 6 p.m. when they heard a woman’s voice say sultrily, “I want you to come over here and f--- me.”
Startled, she looked over and noticed a man on his laptop chatting to a topless woman on a webcam sex site.
“My son’s head popped right up and said, ‘Who said that?’” she said. “I said, ‘Someone with a bad potty mouth who doesn’t realize there are children at McDonald’s.’ And then the talk continued. I don’t know if he was touching himself under the table.”
As Hopkins, 43, moved her family over to another spot across the virtually-deserted fast-food joint on Woodbine Ave., she heard the woman on the computer hiss, “By the way, tell that broad to go f--- herself. Did she hear me or should I say it louder?”
The family finished their meal and while Grant was in the play area, Hopkins approached the manager and told her about the man, who appeared to be in his mid-20s, watching porn. The manager spoke to the man, but he didn’t leave for another 20 minutes. She doesn’t know whether he shut down the website.
Hopkins said because the restaurant chain provides free wireless Internet to customers, the company should be responsible for making sure inappropriate videos can’t be accessed at their locations.
“They didn’t even come over and apologize that my son had to see that,” she said, adding a customer representative was rude to her when she called to complain the next day. “I would like an apology. Who watches porn with children around?”
McDonald’s Canada said it’s impossible to tell whether the man in question was accessing the Internet through their free Wi-Fi or through another network or wireless stick.
Customers accessing the Wi-Fi must agree to their terms and conditions, which include not viewing pornography, McDonald’s spokesman Stephanie Sorensen said. There are also filters switched on preventing offensive material.
“We would absolutely ask them to stop watching it,” Sorensen said. “We’re a family restaurant. There are a lot of sites that are banned.”
Sorensen said the company on Thursday reviewed video footage of the incident, which captures Hopkins’ family and the man on his computer.
“The gentleman was conducting a webcam conversation and wearing ear buds as he is hearing impaired,” she said. “In approaching the gentleman, the restaurant manager on duty witnessed nothing inappropriate but did confirm it was a webcam conversation with a female. The manager asked him to lower his voice and avoid using any profanity (which the customer said he was using). The gentleman apologized and agreed to do so.”
McDonald’s added the customer service representative Hopkins dealt with on the phone apologized and advised her of the content filtering software.
“(They) were under the impression the customer was satisfied with how the situation was handled both in the restaurant and on the call,” Sorensen said.