For retailers, the day after Thanksgiving is a painstakingly orchestrated affair. Prices are scientifically slashed down to the penny. Sales begin at dawn. And glossy circulars containing well-laid plans are distributed just a day or two ahead to keep consumers and competitors in the dark. Or at least that is how it worked before people like Michael Brim came along. From a cramped dorm room in California, Brim, an 18-year-old college freshman who dines on Lucky Charms and says he rarely shops, is abruptly pulling back the curtain on the biggest shopping day of the year. His Web site, BF2005.com, publishes the circulars for what retailers call Black Friday–the day that officially starts the holiday shopping season. And he’s doing it weeks ahead of time. So far this year, sources have leaked advertisements to him from Toys “R” Us (showing the Barbie Fashion Show Mall, regularly $99.99, for $29.97); Sears (a Canon ZR100 MiniDV camcorder, regularly $329.99, for $249.99); and Ace Hardware (a Skil 12-volt drill, regularly $44.99, for $24.99). “It’s the day that even the average Joe becomes a professional bargain hunter.” –Michael Brim, BlackFridayAds.com Brim says his motive is to educate consumers. But retailers are furious, arguing that… Read full this story
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