A week today Marie and I will be taking part in a cultural phenomenon we have only ever observed from afar from the safety of our homes, in Toronto.
On Friday November 29 “Nat&Marie” will be in New York City to embrace…Black Friday! *dun dun dun*
Now, it may seem like I’m being overly dramatic here, but there is a lot of bizarro mythos and tragedy that seems to surround this most festive of American holidays. And if South Park can serve as a point of reference, even in its parody, Brack Friday Bunduru’s ain’t nuthin to f*ck with.
Reddit recognized this bittersweet trend and decided to take it to the next level by broadcasting its very first Black Friday livestream, dubbed “redditgifts shopping network”! Aaaaand, Nat&Marie will be hosting it!! We’re the “Canadian contingent” of the cast, which is being balanced out by some of NYC’s finest comedians.
The EPIC eight hour livestream starts at 12:00 p.m. EST and has been described as “part home-shopping-network, part old-school-holiday-variety-show, part fundraiser telethon and part Muppets Take Manhattan.” The products we will be selling come from the carefully-curated small merchants in the redditgifts marketplace.
1) So we know the what, where, when of the event, but the big question on our minds is the why. Why have you decided to launch this Black Friday livestreaming marathon and why now?
EM: We were out drinking after work in NYC, and we were talking about the magic that is /r/WhereDidTheSodaGo, and also talking about doing something big and fun for the redditgifts marketplace and a new unescapable idea was spawned. A couple days later I read about how retail employees are making more and more people work on Thanksgiving evening for the start of Black Friday sales, and that kinda sealed the idea in my mind.
2) Considering you’re lining up AMAs, PSA and performances from actors, musicians and “former heads of state”, the next largest question on our minds is who is in your lineup so far?
EM: All I can say right now is that many famous redditors will be participating, including at least 8.9 per cent Canadians. (UPDATE: You can check out reddit’s blog for who is expected to be there, including folks from CollegeHumor, Pee-wee Herman, /u/GovSchwarzenegger and Stephen Colbert.)
3) We hear Nat&Marie are hosting the livestream *wink, nudge, nudge* Why did you decide to partner with them and what do you hope they bring to the table?
EM: Nat & Marie are the perfect hosts for this extravaganza. They have the rare gift of being able to be genuinely excited about something without being annoying. They’ve somehow managed to live and breath the internet without becoming cynical and tainted. They are smart without making you feel dumb. Oh, they are Canadian and redditland employment law mandates at least 8.9 per cent Canadian representation.
4) What are some of the vendors/products online shoppers can anticipate getting their hands on during the lifestream?
EM: Shirts, original artwork, things for your pets, inspired by fine leather goods, tobacco vaporizers, shaving products, video game themed jewelry, reddit gold, gifts inspired by Omar from The Wire, and Moutain Dew Flavored Fudge
5) How will viewers be able to participate with the shopathon?
6) Is the Redditgifts Shopping Network only for US redditors? Or can Canadians take part in this as well?
EM: Not only will we not be blocking our youtube channel for Canadians, but if we find out that any other countries are holding Black Friday livestreams and block Canada, we will retaliate on Canada’s behalf and block them from our youtube channel AND cheer against their World Cup team. Don’t tempt us!
7) On that note, how big of a market is Canada within the reddit universe? Why do you consider Canada an important audience?
EM: Canada is extremely important and almost 10 per cent of reddit’s audience. On average, Canadians spend 13 seconds per session longer on reddit than Americans do. Only the Irish and the Icelanders spend longer on reddit.
8) What would success look like to you?
9) Final question – what part of the Reddit livestream are YOU most excited about? 🙂
EM: 4:20pm ET
(Photo Credit: Nat’s camera. L to R: Alien Nat, Erik and Alien Marie.)