Don’t wait – your gift will be doubled for a limited time.  Give Now

Consumer culture takes over YouTube?

Marketplace Staff Mar 5, 2010
HTML EMBED:
COPY

Consumer culture takes over YouTube?

Marketplace Staff Mar 5, 2010
HTML EMBED:
COPY

TEXT OF STORY

TESS VIGELAND: At the end of last week’s show, we opened a window onto something in the virtual world that baffles me to this day. They’re YouTube videos called “hauls,” that’s H-A-U-L-S, where folks detail their shopping loot.

Girl on a YouTube video: I just wanted to show you what I got at the mall today. I bought three belts, because I really needed some belts…

Reaction to our story ranged from “thumbs down, just another example of materialism overriding what is really important” to “hey, it’s just life documentation and a way to review products.” Well, one of our listeners, Moni Hill, was inspired.

Moni Hill on a YouTube video: Hi guys. I’m going to film my haul for you.

Oooooh geez.

Hill: …And let me show you a sample of what I buy. For taco nights on Fridays, I got these whole grain corn taco shells. And I thought, “Well that’s just…”

OK, it’s a parody. But what intrigued us was what Hill told us later about the haul video experience. Her first thoughts upon viewing?

Hill: Is this how humans, is this how we define ourselves, by what we buy and what we consume and how prevalent is the consumer culture?

But then, it became a teachable moment for her and her young daughters.

Hill: You can learn a lot about someone by the things they buy. Maybe that does tell the inside story. I mean, I had a lot of fun poking at myself, because I do claim to be this natural, back-to-the-earth kind of mom. But I’ll shop at Sam’s for broccoli. So that’s going to be on my next haul.

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.