Dear UK, please cancel Black Friday next year…

…the fun of the sale has gone! [rant]

“Why, why, why” I hear you scream (maybe, unless you’re working anywhere around Central London today and dreading being able to move!), well…

For a start, the “Black Friday” sale no longer appears to be a single day. This year all forms of retailers and service providers have decided to start this “Friday” thing a week before or have extended it to the following Sunday. It’s no longer a special day. At the very least it needs renaming! Any suggestions?

Secondly, as a consumer, this is not enjoyable and although operationally easier no doubt to spread it over a longer period (security concerns, etc.), I’d suggest it hurts sales of goods due to human-beings inability to make a choice when given too many at once! The apparent sense of 5-7 days of procrastination, hmmm, I fear it’ll end in no purchase. Forgetting that point, it also puts enormous pressure on Christmas shopping… All of sudden you’re thinking “I have to buy presents on Black Friday, I’ll save so much”, only to find the things you want aren’t in the sale and you’ve bought a load of things you didn’t want.

Lastly, and most importantly IMHO, the sale items are largely made up of stuff that wasn’t worth the original value anyway or like the ever-growing number of “brand outlets” around the country, its surplus stock or defected stuff that shouldn’t even be on shelves anyway… (what I like the call The Next Effect, after the crazy jumble sale style shopping madness after new year in store when they pull out all the old crap from 3 years ago and people perceive this as a bargain!!!).

It’s rather amusing to me that in the UK the term originated from the police and support services having to plan for the annual drink and disorderly binge before Christmas, codenamed “Black Friday”. Yet now the panic is with the businesses running the sales and thier ability to cope with the binge shopping and disorderly shoppers, which now seems to spam a similar length of time as Christmas!
I must say that 2014s Amazon sale, John Lewis’ sale last year and our sales figures sky-rocketing for a day, have all been both enjoyable and rewarding, but this year has been a constant flow of annoyance… The ever-distracting marketing emails have gone absolutely crazy, I swear one-in-three that I receive says “Our Black Friday sale starts today” or “be first to know about our Black Friday sale…”, the latter being the most irritating as it’s like saying “we want to jump on this bandwagon but haven’t decided how or what to sell yet”, then there’s the radio advertising that has been completely taken over by them, coupled with the more closer-to-life situation of having to prepare ourselves at the office for a busy day on the infrastructure. I don’t even want to mention social media, as this place is literally insane! Lucky Google and Facebook for creating such a profit making product, Twitter-schmitter…

So far, and thankfully, “Cyber Monday” has hardly been mentioned. I can only assume because “Black Friday” is now effectively “Black-Week-And-Weekend-With-A-Friday-Between”.

Rant over. Happy Friday! (oooh, there we go, let’s call it Happy Week – closely followed by the realisation of spending more than you planned to and becomes Sad Week or I’m Broke Before Christmas And Can’t Afford To Go Out And Enjoy It Week)