McDonald's UK arm has launched a petition to get British dictionary publishers to revise their definitions of the term "McJob".
The Oxford English Dictionary describes the word as an "unstimulating, low-paid job with few prospects".
David Fairhurst, vice-president (people), said: "We believe that the definition of McJob is out of date, out of touch with reality and most importantly is insulting to those talented, committed, hard-working people who serve the public every day in the UK.
"It's time the dictionary definition of ‘McJob' changed to reflect a job that is stimulating, rewarding and offers genuine opportunities for career progression and skills that last a lifetime."
McDonald's is now inviting its customers to sign petition books in its stores, or alternatively via a new website, called Change the Definition.
The company said it will hand the petition, already signed by the British Hospitality Association, Investors in People and others, into the Oxford English Dictionary in the autumn.
The word McJob was first used in the USA in the 1980s and was popularised by Douglas Coupland's 1991 novel Generation X. It first appeared in the online version of the Oxford English Dictionary in March 2001.
McDonald's has been working on improving the image of its employment opportunities over recent years and last year launched the slogan "McProspects - over half of our executive team started in our restaurants. Not bad for a McJob".
Earlier this year the company was named Caterer's Best Place to Work in Hospitality in 2007.
By Kerstin Kühn