Adbusters Buy Nothing Day Zombies

Adbusters has launched a new meme, Zombies, in response to the shopping frenzy associated with Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday in the United States. In their call for crowd action, the activist group suggest “the cheerful dead wander around malls, marveling at the blank, comatose expressions on the faces of shoppers. The zombies are happy to be among their own kind, but slightly contemptuous of those who have not yet begun to rot”. Adbusters is focused on challenging the entrenched values of capitalism: that the economy must always keep growing, that consumer wants must always be satisfied, that immediate gratification is imperative. A personal challenge for Buy Nothing Day, November 29th, is to go cold turkey on consumption for 24 hours, put up posters, organize a credit card cut up, pull off a Whirl–mart, or a Christmas Zombie walk through your local mall. It remains to be seen how readily crowds spread the zombie meme.

Adbusters Buy Nothing Day Zombie walk

The Credit Card Cut-Up involves standing in a shopping mall with a pair of scissors and a sign offering a simple service: to put an end to extortionate interest rates and mounting debt with one considerate cut. The Whirl-Mart involves ten people silently drive their shopping carts around in a long, inexplicable conga line without ever actually buying anything.

Filed under: Adbusters, Ambient

Location:

  • http://birdbeenfeldt.dk/reklamefilm.html Chris @ Reklamefilm

    Hi Duncan – thanks for writing about this move by Adbusters! It’s interesting that the apparent rationale is that they’re “focused on challenging the entrenched values of capitalism: that the economy must always keep growing, that consumer wants must always be satisfied, that immediate gratification is imperative.” I have thought that the campaign simply reflected a fairly crass attempt to cash in on the current pop culture popularity of zombies evidenced by shows and films such as The Walking Dead, World War Z etc. etc. This popularity was largely created, of course, by the major commercial studios and TV networks – so Adbusters simply seem to be engaged in a bit of mainstream-culture copycat activity.

    • http://www.theinspirationroom.com Duncan Macleod

      Chris I think it’s a case of appropriating a meme and subverting it.