Black Friday Is Looking Bleak

Giants are unpopular guests – they are silly and trample over your flower beds. Unfortunately, this isn’t just the case for fantasy creatures. International retail giants are just as bad. 

Now you are faced with something that couldn’t be more problematic: A "shopping holiday" that regulates "demand" solely through giveaway prices. In the United States, Black Friday is an institution because the most important family celebration isn’t Christmas but Thanksgiving which falls on the 3rd Thursday of every November. Consequently, the Friday after is a bridge day for many Americans and therefore perfect for a day out shopping. Since the 1950s, this Friday has been known as "Black Friday."

Why? If you believe the retail industry’s proclamation, then Black Friday is the only day of the year on which struggling retailers make a profit. This, however, can only be described as shameless whitewashing because this notion is nothing but a myth. In reality, Black Friday got its name in the 1950s due to the general chaos that the bargain hunters caused. And despite increased variety and more competitive prices, the situation didn’t calm down. In fact, it only got worse if you take a look at the death statistics. Yes, you read that right. In the last ten years alone, at least ten people died, and hundreds have been injured. 

But even if you disregard those statistics, Black Friday to me is an extreme example of everything that’s wrong with the retail industry. Days such as these are the exact opposite of sincere, genuine customer retention: They fool their customers beyond the myth of the name and straight-out manipulate them. In the long run, those practices won’t pay off. On the contrary, giveaway price strategies and fooling tactics such as these leave me pessimistic about the future of retail.