I love tradition and I love shopping. Put them together and what do you have? Black Friday. It's a perfect excuse to drag your friends along to participate in day where people are brainwashed to think they're getting much better deals then they actually are. The fact that I knew this, yet still decided that going to Old Orchard Mall while thousands of people were also going shopping at the same place, says a lot about how this society is persuaded by false advertisements.
A fellow blogger, Seth Godin, offers four steps for how he believes a marketing phenomenon is created:
1. Find something that people are already interested in doing (in this case, shopping)
2. Add scarcity, mob dynamics, a bit of fear.
3. Repeat the meme in the media. Press releases, B roll, clever statistics regardless of veracity
4. Do it on a slow news day, and mix in famous names, famous brands and even some hand-wringing about the plight of workers.
Godin's steps help prove that companies will take advantage of peoples interests and manipulate them to increase their own profit. Sounds kind of like Black Friday, which was created for the sole purpose of tricking consumers to think they're saving more money than they actually are.
Thanksgiving is one of the most (if not the most) American holiday this nation celebrates, yet the day after seems to have a greater influence on American lives than the holiday itself. Is that how Americans really want to percieved? I guess we've truly accepted our title as the worlds largest consumer nation.