or Black History

A company missing out on Black Friday sales?

Unexpected because it's the time when businesses typically make a lot of money, but intriguing because why wouldn't we want to?

The term "Black Friday'' was first used to refer to a financial crisis, specifically the crash of the U.S. gold market on September 24, 1869, rather than the holiday shopping after "Thanksgiving." 

The nation's gold was brought up as much as possible by two infamously cunning Wall Street financiers, Jim Fisk and Jay Gould. The goal was to drive up the price and resell it at staggering profits. The conspiracy was finally exposed that Friday in September, causing the stock market to plummet and bankrupting everyone from Wall Street tycoons to poor farmers.

The most commonly repeated story behind the Black Friday tradition of Thanksgiving shopping ties it to retailers. The story goes that after a full year of operating at a loss ("in the red"), stores are supposed to turn a profit ("go black") the day after Thanksgiving, as customers spend a lot of money on discounted goods.

This is untrue. The truth about Black Friday, which gives the holiday a particularly vile twist, is that it was originally a day after Thanksgiving when Southern plantation owners could buy slaves at a discount. Some sellers and shoppers naturally called for a boycott of the retail holiday in response to this version of Black Friday's origins.

One of them is SO Original. We don't participate in Black Friday or have sales. Since our revenue supports artisans in less developed countries and some of them also happen to be people of color, it would be hypocritical of us to support this "holiday" as a green and environmental company with strong values.

Furthermore, we believe that helping people in need is a better "sell" for a company. Every time a customer makes a purchase in our store, a portion of their money is donated to charity by our company. This way, not only are our customers practicing responsible and environmentally friendly practices, but they are also unconsciously (or consciously?) helping those in need.

We think this is a great way to manage our brand image and, more importantly, it is our responsibility to live up to the statements we make.

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