This video has gone viral every

time that I have run it on the day

after Thanksgiving, since 2010.

The name "Black Friday" originated

in Philadelphia (where I currently

find myself), where it originally was

used to describe the heavy and

disruptive pedestrian and vehicle

traffic which would occur on the

day after Thanksgiving.

Use of the term started before

1961 and began to see broader use

outside Philadelphia around 1975.

An alternative explanation later began

to be offered: that "Black Friday"

indicates the point at which retailers

begin to turn a profit, or are "in the


Thanksgiving Day is a Federal holiday

in the US, which occurs on every

fourth Thursday of November. Many

non-retail employees and schools

give both Thanksgiving and the

following Friday off, followed by a

weekend, thereby increasing the

number of potential shoppers.

"Black Friday" has routinely been the

busiest shopping day of the year since

2005 and it is considered to be the

kick-off for the holiday shopping season,

in the US economy’s all-important retail


In recent years, most major retailers

have opened extremely early and

offered promotional sales, some of

which have disastrously culminated in

people being crushed to death,

underfoot by fellow frenzied shoppers.

I wonder if its message is more or less

relevant today as it was in 2010 , 2011,

2012 and 2013?

Video Total: (4 mins)

‘Black Friday’: Madness of a Lost Society

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Alexandra Bruce
Daily Videos from the Edges of Science