(NOTE: I posted this last year, but it seems relevant)
I wonder if the MSM will succumb to the “Cyber Monday” myth the way they have the past couple of years, when the marketing ploy succeeded beyond the wildest expectations of its inventors (at least, that’s what I like to think — it would be horrible if they were actually expecting a false notion to wield such influence).
Businessweek did a good job of nailing down the origin of the myth shortly after the origin itself, with an article about the attempt to blow up the Monday after Thanksgiving into some sort of significant day for online shopping (emphasis added):
The idea was born when a few people at the organization were brainstorming about how to promote online shopping, says Shop.org Executive Director Scott Silverman, who answered his phone, “Happy Cyber Monday.” They quickly discarded suggestions such as Black Monday (too much like Black Friday), Blue Monday (not very cheery), and Green Monday (too environmentalist), and settled on Cyber Monday. “It’s not the biggest day,” Silverman concedes. “But it was an opportunity to create some consumer excitement.”
In fairness, Shop.org (run by the National Retail Federation) seems to have covered its behind in the original press release, merely claiming “Cyber Monday” to be “quickly becoming one of the biggest online shopping days of the year.” But that hasn’t stopped some media outlets from extrapolating that it’s the biggest.
Hopefully this year the coverage will focus more on the mythic nature of this fabricated phenomenon, but somehow I suspect TV stations and maybe even newspapers will give in to the siren song of a convenient hook on which to pin an otherwise utterly ordinary feature on e-commerce.
(Addicted to eBay Barbie pic via)