The price you pay for convenience
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The Cost of Convenience: Attention All consumers

Why you need to exercise your role as a conscious consumer.

Online shopping

In the age of online shopping and same-day deliveries, it's easy to forget that convenience comes at a price. Whether that price is your favorite department stores fading into extinction or your preferred streaming service jacking up its monthly rates, one thing is certain- you're more than likely going to pay.

Futurama gif, Finn take my money

You see, the problem with convenience is that it prioritizes comfort over consciousness. When you're sitting alone at home, snuggled in your favorite corner of the couch, surfing the web for deals, all you see is the products on the screen. You don't see all the people involved in the intricate process of assembling that product, packaging it for shipping and delivering it to your doorstep. By establishing this distance between you, the consumer, and company employees, online retailers make it easy to overlook any ethical violations made by the corporation. It's a classic example of the old adage: "hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil". As a result of blindly indulging in such conveniences, you may unwillingly and unknowingly be contributing to the unfair treatment of others.

By now, you've probably heard about the controversy surrounding Amazon's much anticipated "Prime Day". In an effort to secure better working conditions and pay, employees of the internet titan launched numerous strikes and protests over the promotional time period. As the conflict gained further traction among the general public, supporters turned to social media to organize boycotts of the company and raise awareness for the workers' cause.

Social media Boycott

At this point, you're probably wondering "what can I possibly do?" The answer is, surprisingly, more than you'd think.

As an individual consumer in one of the world's most notorious consumer cultures, you may not feel like you have much of an influence in the vast world of business. And this is exactly what retailers want you to think. In all actuality, your preferences and opinions on the ethical production of products matter to these companies as much as your money. All you need to do is make these convictions known by using your voice as a conscious consumer.

Part of this challenge is incorporating mindful practices into your current shopping routine. Some helpful suggestions on how you can do so include: reading product labels, supporting local businesses, researching your preferred brands and holding true to your own ethical principles. By only endorsing brands that confide with your ethical standards as a consumer, you send a clear message to producers- it's time to change. Additionally, practicing these shopping habits will help you develop a better understanding of the underlying processes of retail marketing and selling. Such knowledge is crucial as it enables you to use your own skills as a conscious consumer to help raise awareness among other shoppers as well.

The moral of this story is: when you actively exercise your authority as a conscious consumer, you can prevent and even stop the mistreatment of retail employees. Ultimately making the world a better, more mindful place.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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