Buffalo News reporter Michelle Kearn interviews me as well as a few business analysts on the impact of Black Friday web sites on the retail industry.
Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving in the United States, which is historically one of the busiest retail shopping days of the year. Stores typically open earlier in the morning so more people can take advantage of their deeply discounted sales. Major retail chains such as Best Buy, CircuitCity, WalMart and ComUSA, typically hold back announcement of their Black Friday sales until the last day for competitive reasons. As such, when these Black Friday web sites leak information on sale prices before retail stores officially release them, retailers become visibly affected. You can read the ethical discussion in this scanned news article or on the online version of Buffalo News.
I look stupified in the photo above, but hey, its all good. Hat tip to Alex for introducing me to Michelle of Buffalo News.
UPDATE: Alex just posted more substantial observations which didn’t make the news. In brief, he spoke about how black friday web sites represented a movement towards consumers taking charge of their own economic lives (major encompassing theme!). He also illustrated this by noting systems that will provide for distributed, mobile “Total Price Awareness”, such as ScanZOOM and Scout Pal. I currently do this the old fashioned way: Surfing the web for prices on my Sidekick phone. Read his post for the full effect.