Black day indeed: Spend local to save our towns

It is not necessary to be a curmudgeon — but it helps — to recognise that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are contrived marketing swizzes with a single objective — to shift product in time to get it under the Christmas tree.

Black day indeed: Spend local to save our towns

It is not necessary to be a curmudgeon — but it helps — to recognise that Black Friday and Cyber Monday are contrived marketing swizzes with a single objective — to shift product in time to get it under the Christmas tree. Despite that, a survey commissioned by PwC shows how very successful the idea has become in a relatively short time.

Around 1,000 people were surveyed and an average Black Friday/Cyber Monday spend of €251 was recorded. More than a third — 36% — will buy up to a quarter of their Christmas gifts, while over 28% will buy up to a half. Almost two thirds — 62% — of shopping will be online.

The event, if that is what it is, is a perfect blend of consumerism and technology, one that brings Christmas to you and your laptop in a way so convienent that it can hardly be ignored. And in January, we, our inner curmudgeon at least, will fret that town and city centres are dying. Just as Canute was humbled by a rising tide, it seems pointless to rail against online consumerism, but it is important to remember traditional, local retailers, who rely on the Christmas market.

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