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View Diary: Walmart is downplaying it, but Black Friday protests were historic (56 comments)

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  •  Your concern is noted, but (0+ / 0-)

    "historic" is accurate when you're talking about the most people ever to take an action, which all the available evidence suggests is the case here, just a month after the previous most people ever took that action.

    And I find it interesting you put "successful" in quotes when it's a word used nowhere in the post you're ostensibly responding to.

    •  I wasn't just speaking about your post (2+ / 0-)
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      Sparhawk, president raygun

      I was commenting generally about words I've heard describing the event.  But, with respect to your post, I think that your use of the word "historic" is premature.  

      If that's all "historic" means -- the most people ever to take part -- that's a pretty low bar.  After all, if 10 people take part in protest A, and 20 people take part in protest B, that's "historic."  I would save terms like "historic" for situations where they are not only more than before, but are significant when taken in context.  If you are targeting 1 million employees, and you get 5 in protest 1 and 10 in protest 2, that makes protest 2 "historic" in the sense that it was more people than ever before.  But I wouldn't use the adjective "historic" to describe that, because in context it's still a very low number.  On the other hand, if you are targeting 1 million employees, and you get 100,000 in protest 1, and 250,000 in protest 2, I WOULD call that "historic" because not only is it more than before, but the number, in context, becomes significant in that it's enough to make an impact.  

      In other words, I don't use the term "historic" in the sense of breaking some prior numbers record.  That's simply breaking a record for the number of people who turned out.  "Historic" to me means something more -- that the event also has such significance when taken in context that, years from now, it will be recognized as a significant event in the relationship between employer and employee, or at least in between Wal-Mart and it's employees.  After all, historic means  "what is important in history" which to me means that, when people look back on it, it will signify some societal change, movement, or turning point. That's why I equated it with successful -- the point was to make a difference, change things, affect things (even if it's affecting the attitude of people who didn't support you before).  That's what would make it "successful" -- and if it were successful, it could also be considered "historic."  If it doesn't succeed in any of those goals, I'd be hard pressed to call it "historic."  

      We do know that the numbers were higher than before.  However, in my view, we don't yet know (without more information) whether it was "historic" or not.  

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