Black Friday consumer frenzy

Black Friday is the Friday public holiday after Thanksgiving Thursday, on which many US citizens begin their Christmas shopping. In recent years many retailers in Europe have also started trying to tempt customers with special offers and big discounts - much to the annoyance of the commentators.

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Le Monde (FR) /

Whatever happened to consumer scepticism?

It's astonishing how easily consumers give in to temptation when it comes to the latest technology gadgets on Black Friday, Vianney Vaute, co-founder of Back Market, a company specialising in recycled telephones and computers, writes in Le Monde:

“It's striking that the public opinion, usually so vigilant regarding food, cosmetics, cars or energy, is numbed to such an extent. With technology, consumers seem to adopt the attitude of the three monkeys - see no evil, hear no evil, say no evil - and are satisfied with marketing that's barely more sophisticated than the car ads of 50 years ago. Processor frequency has replaced RPM, but we gladly swallow any vaguely comprehensible technical jabberwocky in exchange for the promise of performance, entertainment and social success.”

Phileleftheros (CY) /

Not all that glitters is gold

Consumers should beware of Black Friday shopping deals, Philelefteros warns:

“The youngest consumers in particular take advantage of the discounts and special offers to buy products at reduced prices. ... On this day everything is adjusted to suit the wishes and needs of consumers. The offers are designed to attract attention. Colours, music, snappy slogans and above all the word 'free' create traps we can barely avoid. The market prepares itself for Black Friday days in advance. Consumers would do well to do the same - and remember that all that glitters is not gold.”