The Phoenix Fire

History of Black Friday

Boris Rokhmanov, Feature Reporter

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While long lines pour from every outlet and store, the unbeatable prices and flash sales beckon many to purchase. Likewise, the following Monday, online stores such as Amazon are flooding with customers for their products.

Soon it will be Black Friday and its counterpart, Cyber Monday. As many will be purchasing new goods in the heavily-advertised sales, the origins of these days have a humble, but quite dark beginning.

Back in the 50’s, Black Friday was the term used to describe the chaos that happened after Thanksgiving day. Many, many tourists and shoppers flooded the streets for the Army-Navy football game, held on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

Police used Black Friday to describe the day because in addition to being a mandatory day to work, they had to work extra long shifts to deal with the surplus of traffic. There were also many shoplifters on the day that took advantage of the chaos.

However, by the 80’s, big box stores and companies had found ways to transform the negative connotations of Black Friday into a positive day of plentiful sales. No longer a single day, the sales pitch spread out into four days: the original Black Friday, Small Business Saturday/Sunday, and Cyber Monday.

In summary, the once-dark roots of a long awaited and celebratory day have been quickly forgotten, replaced with gigantic store sales and an overflow of advertisements on public TV.


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History of Black Friday