Nov 28, 2017 – Black Friday: A Surreptitious Hoax Deployed By Companies To Legitimately Defraud Customers
…..A festival of dark, black and shoddy transactions at the expense of the majority of the Nigerian people.
By Moses Emorinken
The recent frenzy that permeated and circulated every space – from social, terrestrial and print media is simply amazing…all in the name of Black Friday.
Online buyers impulsively cherry-pick items such as home appliances, groceries, electronics, phones and laptops, and other similar appurtenances; they do so with the hope of getting the best deals in prices for the year.
However, their already wide and bright grins sagged as their expectations were dashed to the ground in an epic humpty dumpty style.
According to research in Consumer Psychology, humans are known to be the most impulsive creatures in this massive terraqueous globe we call earth.
Our excessive desire to satisfy our insatiable wants have become a major preoccupation making us hustle and toil day and night or even borrow money that we do not have, to purchase things we do not need, in order to impress people who really do not care about us.
What a wasteful expedition!
In Nigeria, e-commerce sites like Jumia, Konga, DealDey etc., are amongst some of the major players in the Black Friday saga.
Black Friday have wrapped its thick dark sheets around us just like the heavens wrap the horizons of the sky with “black” clouds before sending down the rain; the rain in our case is the purported discount promised us by a lot of these sites.
Little wonder it is called Black Friday because of the surreptitious hoax deployed to legitimately defraud customers of their hard-earned mazuma without them knowing.
Customers have been wooed and lured to believe they would have a blast and slash in the prices of their favourite items. However, just like the majority of gullible teenage girls who get deflowered before they clock 18, Nigerian customers have had their hearts broken, hopes dashed, and expectations dulled and lulled by the failed promissory love notes from these Casanovas called e-commerce stores. This is reminiscent to “daylight” rape and robbery.
How do you explain the rationale behind a product being sold during the discount period, which is more expensive than it was a few weeks ago?
They even have the effrontery to paste a former price against a discounted price and percentage off – we should be grateful…shey!?
This is the case of Sharon: A customer who found a product on one of our popular e-commerce website. She identified the product, saw the price and took note of it; only to wait till black Friday to find that the product which she saw barely 2 weeks ago at N3,000 is now N4,000 at a “supposed” discounted price. This is absurd!
Sometimes, what is most personal is most general; it’s almost certain that Sharon’s pitiable Black Friday story is the same narrative for so many Nigerian customers.
Please, somebody help me…why call it ‘Black Friday’ when the promo lasts from a certain date to end on another date very distant from the start date; why call it Black Friday, why not Black Weekend?
How do you call a bonanza period which lasts for days “Black Friday”? Meaning it was designed to start and end on that day (Friday) – not a second more. What we find today is a twisted narrated and semantics for a day of the week to be equivalent to the entire week or even more.
Is someone trying to play on our intelligence?
Haven’t we suffered enough from sleazy and corrupt politicians and government officials whose job description is to loot our collective patrimony all in the name of giving us the dividends of democracy?
I think the new narrative should be that they (politicians) have promised to give us a Black Friday (instead of dividends of democracy) because Black Friday in Nigeria is reminiscent to exploitation.
No wonder my friend’s grandmother never liked the idea of Black Friday (not because she is old-school), because regardless of the many good that comes with the day as practiced internationally, here in Nigerian, it is merely a show and a bauble.
Locally, especially in the Yoruba parlance, one can literally translate it to – “Oja Ale”; meaning night market.
A well-grounded and cultural person knows that nothing good really comes from Oja Ale.
For those that are already primed to mould and throw balls of accusations at the writer, did you know that e-commerce websites in Nigeria usually rake in billions of Naira in turnover this period than they normally would in a quarter (three months) of their business year?
It is certainly a festival of dark, black and shoddy transactions at the expense of the majority of the Nigerian people.
It is high time the Consumer Protection Council ( CPC ) stepped up its game and live up to its mandate of protecting the people from heartless and unscrupulous bourgeoisies who are wolves in sheep’s clothing.
Dear Nigerians, please think twice before picking those items from your favourite e-commerce stores; it is sometimes advisable to walk into a physical store to price and pick the items of your choice that you need and not being manipulated online to impulsively pick items that you don’t need, at a very exploitative price.
[About the author: Moses Emorinken is Public Relations Strategist, Business Consultant, Public Speaker and Writer]