What’s a “Cash Mob” and is it dangerous like the mafia?

Heard of ‘cash mobs?” Maybe you know about “flash mobs?”  This is probably one of the most compelling videos I can find of a flash mob – when hundreds of Santas mobbed Grand Central. Skip to 2.28.

Improv Everywhere’s has been credited with organizing some fabulously intricate flash mobs, like this:

But, we’re talking about “cash mobs” now. It’s when an organizer gets a mob of people to go to a certain store or group of stores and encourages them to spend about $20 there. It’s just a grassroots way to help out small, local businesses. Think about this: if all the effort expended in the two previous videos was focused to boost a small business, what a great effect that would have! If we don’t help the little guy, the big guy is the only guy we’ll ever see. And, he’s bigger than us. Think about the power that big bully at school had. I’m not saying the big retailer is all set up to bully you, but he or she can.

The concept was apparently started by Chris Smith, a blogger and engineer from Buffalo, New York, back in the summer of 2011. Like flash mobs, organizers use Twitter and Facebook to spread the word.

Want to be part of a cash mob? The town of Huntington in Long Island wants you to mob and spend next Thursday, April 26th at 6pm. There’s a little spot called the Crushed Olive at 278 Main Street right in the heart of the cute little village. It sells EVOO, balsamic vinegar and the like. And they’d love for you to bring $20 and your support. People will meet first at Vitae Restaurant and Wine Bar at 54 New Street, mingle, network, and then head over.

There’s another this Saturday in the village of Haverstraw in Rockland County. I’m thinking of organizing one in the West Village. Why not? Would you come?


One Comment Add yours

  1. sephelan says:

    Hi Debra,

    What a great idea! I like it, although I don’t have a lot of disposable income to take part unless it’s a business where I need to shop for something anyway.

    I also think it would be wonderful if the Santa flash mob took part in some kind of charity work before they all go visiting bars and tying one on for the day.

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