Black Friday vs. Green Friday
One of the most consumerist times of the year is about to begin. And very soon will be Christmas, and without realizing it, we will be immersed in the race to find the perfect gift for our family and friends. The start of the campaign is on the last Friday of November, right when the Christmas lights are turned on, Black Friday starts, a day full of extreme offers USA style, which is already a tradition in Spain.
Black Friday is celebrated on the fourth or on the last Friday of November, the day after the American Thanksgiving holiday. It consists of a day in which major brands, big corporations and stores offer great deals and discounts to the public. As I said, this practice was born in the United States and its goal is clear: to sell as much as possible in a single day. And this year’s Black Friday is November 29th.
This initiative of extreme consumerism has been around for some time, and now it has reached our homes, and virtually all brands, stores and malls have also joined in, offering discounts of no less than 25/40%. During the previous weeks before Black Friday, we are bombarded with advertising and commercials where brands and companies present us their extreme discounts, to incite us tocan take advantage of them and buy their products and services during “Black Friday”. All this set of strategies, ends up provoking us a feeling of euphoria and collective need to take advantage of such discounts, to the point of making you feel like a “loser” – excuse me the expression – if you end up not buying anything during Black Friday.
But you are not a “loser”, because luckily, there are more sustainable alternatives to this day of excessive consumerism.
Green Friday, the local and sustainable alternative
On the very same day that Black Friday is celebrated, the Eco version of this day of massive discounts is also celebrated. This event called Green Friday was launched a few years ago to be able to put a little sanity into this day of crazy discounts and big purchases . Its aim is to promote responsible, ecological and local consumer habits.
“Green Friday is offered by handmade products, respectful to our planet and on a small scale”
For this exact reason, you will hardly find dazzling discounts, such the ones that large multinationals offer. During Green Friday, discounts are more limited, ranging between 5 and 15%, and those who offer them are smaller brands that offer handmade products, respectful to our planet and on a small scale. These are people who manufacture their own products, but who are dragged to join Black Friday because their customers ask them to do so, but at the same time, they want to do so respecting their values and teaching their customers about the need to buy in a more responsible way.
Here there are no big announcements or Prime Time advertising on television. If you want to know what Green Friday offers, you will need to enter the social networks -especially Instagram– and look for the #GreenFriday hashtag. There will be different brands explaining which discounts they will make and on which products they will be applied.
Buy Nothing Day, the other side of the coin
In the event that neither Black Friday nor Green Friday convinces you, because you think you’ve had enough buying , then you have another option for November 29th, which is Buy Nothing Day, the day to buy nothing.
“The only thing we really have are the experiences we live in our daily lives”
Its name is a clear statement of intent, don’t you think? This initiative was born in Canada (1992), as a response to the Black Friday fever, and has already spread to more than 60 countries. The idea behind this day, is a clear proposal: to not buy anything for 24 hours. Its promoters, artist Ted Dave and the anti-capitalist organisation, Adbusters, say that an object can never make us happy, and that the only thing we really have are the experiences we live in our daily lives.
So… what is your choice?
As you can see, there are plenty of options, suited to all preferences, and also, detractors and promoters of the mentioned different initiatives. So the most interesting thing is to be able to know them all and be able to choose the one that agrees with your values and your way of thinking. So, do you know which one you are going to join?