Deal Or No Deal? Black Friday Beckons

NAYA GHIRDARRY

Many people know ‘Black Friday’ to be the day after thanksgiving and the best day of the year for shopping and getting great deals, especially in time for the holidays! But what many people don’t know is why there are such great deals on Black Friday and where the name came from. According to a Business Insider article, the term originates from the Philadelphia Inquirer in 1981 and it has to do with retailers’ financial status, “… the beginning of the period when retailers would no longer have losses (the red) and instead take in the year’s profits (the black). The earliest known use that presents the “black ink theory” appeared in the November 28, 1981 issue of the Philadelphia Inquirer.” At first, many retailers were worried about the negative connotation of the term and how it would impact their businesses, but overtime the term has turned into a positive one and retailers are now able to use it to their advantage.

img_0074There have also been many questions that have been raised due to the fact that Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving. There have been many opinion articles on the negatives of Black Friday and how it is unethical to have a day dedicated to shopping right after a day which was spent being thankful for what we already have. And now, not only are there Black Friday deals on Black Friday, but many of those deals are being offered days before. Several people line up for hours before the store openings, (including on Thanksgiving Day!) to attempt to be one of the first ones in.

Although this is a personal choice, many people are forced to be at the stores on Thanksgiving. Several individuals must work Thanksgiving evening to help prepare for the anticipated opening; this issue has been widely discussed in recent years. Retail is a tough industry with cut-throat competition.  A New York Times articles states, “About 16 million people are employed in the retail industry, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and many are working through the holiday weekend. Retailers have hired an extra 700,000 seasonal workers this season, according to the National Retail Federation.” And in addition, not only are the workers forced to miss the holiday itself, but also the  quality time that would’ve been spent with their friends and family. Hence, Black Friday is seen as an exciting day for shoppers and retailers, and yet it’s also a wearing day for those who have to work and deal with the Black Friday rush.