Malls were already closing before the current downturn in US retail. Radioshack is dead, Sears hasn't made profits since 2010, just how bad is the current decline in the US retail market?

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With automated warehouses soon to be on the rise, the future for them is beyond bleak. Gone are the days of spending a day out at the mall, people just order their shit online and use the saved time for other activities.

Shit's bad, fam.

Is this happening only in the US or is it affecting other developed countries too?

UK is having similar bankruptcies, don't know about other developed countries.

I feel bad for the Trashmen, their source of free luxuries is going to end shortly. It's not as prevalent among grocery stores, correct?

I don't work for one of the retail chains affected so far what are the chances that this could snowball to the point that it does affect me?

Don't remind me, user. We should really get another hauntology discussion going. I don't know where the future is heading anymore.

How bad is Canada looking?

Daily reminder to read pic related.
especially if you're a britbong

Who needs em? The shit sucked anyway lol.. it's not good culture to sit in the food court and eat oily foods and spend money you don't have. Did you really want to work there? Are you missing your nipple? I'm not advocating bootstraps, but I'm not pro-stipmall-hellworld either.

This is the same feeling I got from seeing this. I remember years ago as a teenager going with my friends to the mall, watching movies, buying shit, playing games. All of these things will be in the past.

I downloaded it after that thread, but have to get a bit more theory before going into it. Is it theory heavy?

No. Its fairly simple and reads like Zizek speaks but more coherent.
Background in Deleuze and Guattari is useful but definitely not necessary to understand it and its a short 1-2 hour read at most.

Didn't Target, Zellers and Eaton's already tank in Canada?

And nothing of value will be lost.

it's 80 pages but uses a few po-mo obscurantist words

Yo, would be great if you provided it.

Zellers got bought by Target, and then it tanked, and I actually might have heard about Eatons once and that's about it. The other I know are, like, Safeway, Superstore, and Walmart.

TBH the only place I would want to go is a park or a restaurant. The mall has never been that interesting to me.


I kind of miss it personally, when you become a quasi-NEET without much human contact, you really wish you could go back.

Gracias. Also know what you mean. We're all becoming atomized.

sounds good to me tho.
I mean, I get it, it was an obvious excuse to go out and socialize, and there arent really that many excuses to do that.
Now, I'll repeat that
there arent really many excuses to hang out and socialize under capitalism without going to a shopping center and spending some money

I remember in middle school me and my friends would just go walk around town. Sometimes wed go into a resteraunt, but just as often we'd just hang out at the library. It was nicer than the times ive been to the mall with people.

Do you think capitalists have a plan on what to do with all the retail space being dropped onto the real estate market? Or what to do with the warehouses full of unsold inventory? Or the workers they layoff? Or the outstanding debt the big retail chains are defaulting on?

real bad. thank god

The good news of this is that retail is hell. The bad news of this is that there are not going to be jobs for the people who get kicked out of retail.

What replaces it in terms of jobs? Somehow reproletariansing the cities?

There was at least one or two Eatons near me when I was younger, I was under the impression they all closed in the early 2000s.

I wouldn't be surprised if Hudson Bay went under soon as well.

That's the point.

While capitalism has always been systemically incapable of sustaining anything close to full employment.
The rise of automation and the out-sourcing of jobs have left the west with an increasingly dramatic shortfall in job positions available.

The near future of western capitalism is mass unemployment and 'rich flight' to more stable areas of capitalism (such as India).
I expect that in a decade the most pressing policy matters on the mainstream left will be UBI and 'automation tax', the most pressing issues on the right being to crack down on the increasing social unrest and cut away the last vestiges of the welfare state.

Things are about to get a whole lot worse for western proles, I suspect far worse then they had it even under to worst of early industrial capitalism or even feudalism.
We are witnessing the death throws of capitalism in the west.

Surely you're j-just being alarmist, user.


True. My father is from the Soviet Union and growing up one could spend time at palaces of cultures. They were mostly used for sports, hanging out, and learning foreign languages like Esperanto and Polish.

I mean I'm a supervisor now, but I've stopped believing in how stupid and pointless it all is

Honestly a lot of that shit was unnecessary. Who actually went to buy shit at payless or crocs?

Radioshart I can understand, but buying clothes online seems dumb because you can't try them on. A lot of pants, for instance, aren't actually the size marked so the vain fatass boomers can still say they have a 28" waist, and also since they're machine-cut and can vary even within the marked size. Gander I'm sorry to see go, they had good gear. JCBenis and Sears can go fuck themselves though.

This, I've worked at one of these beasts. There is no dignity in selling things with faggy names to bovine, medication-addled boomers and the kind of smug, medium-rich teenagers that think Holla Forums is clever. The retail empire is dying, it sucked hard, but the replacement (Amazon/Google monopolies tracking every purchase you make, which you can't make with cash) will suck far harder.

Anybody know if fast food is dying too? pls say yes

They already tore down the mall I hung out at in highschool years ago. It was run-down and sketchy and had a lot of people whe seemed to be kind of at the margins of society, like if /r9k/ was a physical space almost or the Big Rock Candy Mountain was real and a mall. Everything was ghetto as fuck, the clerks would yell at you like drill sergeants if you went to get water from the soda machine because 'we've had a problem with people stealing' and you'd have to shout them down. The next building over or at the bus stops there were people hustling dice or 3-card monte. There were fistfights semi-regularly, and the security was a joke. It was incredibly depressing, but we were 'appy

here's hoping

please be another recession please be another recession please be another recession please be another recession please be another recession please be another recession please be another recession please be another recession please be another recession

nah it reads easily and (at least in my experience) helped to crystallize a lot of thoughts. also, like with autism there's something quite relaxing about simply having a diagnosis available for the problems we're facing. (phrases like capitalist realism and market stalinism are wonderful at describing… the thing they describe.

what if I redefine full employment as 10% unemployment in developed economies and 40% globally?

Checkmate, communism.

poor people bought their shoes at payless or goodwill

Unfortunately, I do not think so.
While I admit to being struck by a rather melancholic mood currently.
I think that the writing is very much on the wall in regards to capitalism in the west.

Things really are going to go to shit for the proles.
Those with money are going to go somewhere more stable for capital, such as India.
The western poor will be left to languish in the streets of their decaying cities.


It's lower-end malls that are in trouble.


Payless """shoes""" never lasted more than 2-4 months. My mom would rather just have me use the same 2 pairs of shoes than to keep buying new shitty ones every season.

whats the source on the audio?

It is a video from The Youtube channel Tha Preachers of Swag


I wonder, how will the Co-ops movement handle this?

Can only pol are as tough in real life as they say because "the lower class won't go quietly" and mass unemployment manifests itself as higher crime, more recruits for gangs(who will evolve as smarter people join instead of just shovelheads) for that promise of money.

Future looks fucked up for slot of reasons.

H-Holy shit. Amazon is gonna make Standard Oil look like a mom-and-pop organization.

Keep in mind that's the (oft fantastical) "value" of the respective corporations' shares on the stock market, NOT the actual cash flow nor size of the businesses. For instance:

Revenue: US$135.98 billion
Total assets: US$83.402 billion

Revenue: US$485.87 billion
Total assets: US$198.82 billion

Revenue: US$69.495 billion
Total assets: US$37.431 billion

one thing to consider is that 10% of amazon's operating income is generated by amazon web services. That's nothing to sneeze at.

Where the fuck will people work after this? in our service based economy walmart is the largest employer and tons of people work in retail? automation truely is killing capitalism


Wall Street cares about market value.


Radio Shack went under because their prices were often insanely high. When you are 3X or more above eBay prices, people aren't as likely to shop at your store unless they need it immediately. Even their closing sale discounts were still higher than I could get most of that stuff for elsewhere.

Many Radio Shack locations also abandoned electronic components and other things the store chain used to be known for. Many of them focused mainly on cell phones and overpriced RC cars with only a minimal amount of space dedicated to anything else.

Walmart suffering too? Maybe if I could actually find shit when I went in there. It's bad enough going to the toy section to find shelves barely stocked because they do not give a damn(no wonder toys are a "loss leader", stores put little effort into stocking the section) but when they are too lazy to restock even basic necessities then it's little wonder their sales are down.

And yes- ordering something online means not having to spend an hour driving around, wasting gas, hoping a store has it. Sometimes it's cheaper than even retail.

Other factors killing retail-

Netflix & Hulu make it almost pointless to buy DVDs

The gaming industry has been trying to actively kill off physical copies and the used game market, because they see no money from people selling their physical property. They're slowly phasing out physical copies of games in favor of digital sales- which you can't buy or sell used.

Same for music- why buy a CD when you can buy the MP3s online?

More and more people are also pirating shit, because they are either too poor to buy copies, don't wish to support these big corporations, or because they are cheap. This is why companies are spending billions suing downloaders and trying to get laws like TPP passed.

I haven't bought a video game in 8 years, save for a modded Wii which I play all pirated games on. Only music I have bought were some used thrift store CDs, rest downloaded free. Movies/TV are either Netflix/Hulu, Youtube/Dailymotion or torrents.

I don't think so. A while ago I decided to try and eat at more independently owned non fast food places for my lunch breaks at work and almost all of the places I went in only had a couple people in compared to the big fast food places which are pretty full.

how about skill up and not be a damn trolly boy forever


Mcdonalds is bringing in automated order terminals and it's a matter of time until the rest follow suit.

Bit random but here's an archive of old in-store cassette tapes from K-Mart

It's rather nostalgic but in a creepy kinda way

Who do you think plans where capital goes in our capitalist economy? It is not industrialists but investors on Wall Street.

I think its a terminal decline that will solidify the power of online retail and delivery, making platform capitalism ever more relevant. But also opening up new avenues for advocation of planning and struggle. Organising delivery workers should be a focus and trying to highlight the need for cooperative socialised online retail.

In reality its no longer just "online retail" its all of the market placed in one private platform, centralising market information and trade into one private hand. Payment, debt, and logistics will be integrated, demand measurement is allready in place and advertisment to esure maximum consumption will follow. Scaling and usual advantages of having the largest userbase, subcription models further strengthening user retention will make these quasi monopolistic platforms unassailable.

For a brief time this will alll rest on an army of underpaid overworked delivery workers, but they will soon be replaced with a completely integrated and automated logistic system. Just in time/on demand production with more highly automatized factories moving back to the point of consumption will further strengthen the new system(its allready happening with high quality shoe prodution). Even food prodution wont be save in the coming decades, leading to further urbanisation and destruction of agrarian economies.

tl;dr Invest in Amazon and Alibaba.

There are many more jobs associated with retail than just "trolley boy" they are also the only low entry jobs avaible in many areas.

I wonder, how will the Co-ops movement handle this?

With that in mind it makes sense. If they succeed, and they may very well, then they'll make a point of censoring other forms of content as well created by individual users, thus killing two birds with one stone. Lolberts would chime in this is bad because it kills competition, but I would say this is the end logic of it. I haven't had cable in over ten years myself.

Belgian. It's hard to tell; we were still developing a mall culture, still in the phase of Main Street stores being closed due to mall competition. But certain sectors are clearly being hit hard: clothing stores, electronics.

Ohh mayn song name?

“There’s a decline in the retail market” Good, Comericlizing of culture must end.

Not seeing this trend. More likely the rich will flock to certain megapoleis that will keep on developing and offer the last low-hanging jobs available: service sector and pure servants for serving the rich. Everything in between will utterly decay though, absent UBI etc. It's what has happened in London, Paris, NY, SF, etc.

lol that wont change at all

Everything seems so bleak fuck, sometimes I feel humanity is being phased out to make way for more capitalism. I wanna fucking kill myself sometimes

First, there was mecha. Then, there was moe. What form will the next level of late stage capitalism take?

brand advertising in anime

this already exists

I work in a chain hardware store, and every week they make a point of telling us employees associates how great the company is doing and how the sky is the limit. The stock price was at something like $156 bucks a share, which is a record for it iirc.

So I'm sure it's about to fall and fall hard, especially as the effects of this housing/building bubble begin to be felt.

If you go by the capitalist perspective that only cares about efficient consumption, this is great. From the Human perspective it is fucking bleak. Think our suburban sprawl full of big box stores seems eerily empty and inhuman? just wait till the big stores are gone. That means the death of public space. You are left with a world of friendless, atomised consumer units, like lab rats on their cages, just responding to ad stimuli, searching for escape in pornography, tv streaming services and consumption. An escape that never arrives.


Big corporations, such as McDonalds and Coca Cola, paying large amounts of money to hire out Toei, Madhouse, Bones, and other studios to make entire series dedicated to promoting their products, similar to what we saw in the States during the 80's and 90's.

Alternatively, we get a scenario where interest groups take total control over the mass media, and creative expression will be utilized for nothing more than propaganda.

believe me, you are gonna miss shopping malls if they ever go away. fuck efficient consumption, i dont care if they make the commodities arrive on time.That just means further enslavement to the commodity form, something which just makes me feel hollow and dead inside. Seriously fuck Amazon and fuck google, the fact even many self proclaimed 'leftists' idolise capitalist tech for destroying what's left of our society makes me fucking angry. Jeff Bezos' head sure seems like a good place for a bullet.

With the number of Harem animus, idolshit(with games featuring the player as the manager of said idols) and isekai we could assume there is a trend towards making self-inserts easier.
Though it's not a genre in itself.

and worst of all you know this is the world porky and the liberal technocrats want. Just read the Atlantic or WAPO's tech section, it's almost like they hate humanity for getting in the way of 'disruption' and 'innovation'.

This sounds like hell on earth

There already is a McDonalds anime commercial


And the most horrifying thing about this is that the article is playing it off like some Futurology piece. As if this is something to look forward to with wonder.


Can what is playing you make it to level-2

I'm sure this has been said before, but think about this in the context of commodity fetishism. Online retail creates an environment where we don't even see the commodity, only an image of it, before we buy it. We are removed and abstracted not only from the production, but also it's physical form. We buy based entirely on a literal image and our commodity arrives directly to us in an atomized little box.

I'm hoping an user with better theory than me can maybe take that further or can link to someone who already has, but to me this seems like the final form of our removal from the process of production.


Seems JC Penny is going belly up. How many retail companies are going to die in 2017?

Not as bad as you think. The companies dying now are those that refused to adopt to have online services. For example, the grocery giant Safeway was one of the first to offer online ordering and delivery, leveraging their existing stores and distribution network to do so. As a result, Amazon Fresh is mostly dead because they simply cannot compete against an existing retail giant who already has a massive customer base.

Also, some malls are thriving if they're in the right area (ie a place with transit connections) with a smart owner (who turns the parking lots into apartments). But this is very situational, I'll admit.

However, both Radioshack and Sears's fall is truly unprecedented considering that the former was supposed to be a "tech" store (and thus should have offered everything online very early on) while the latter was the biggest catalog distributor in the US, and could have easily moved it online before Amazon existed. They're textbook cases in bad administration/management refusing to adapt new technologies.

Realistically many people who moved into retail will start taking more factory jobs, where they will realize how badly they are being burned by trade and immigration. Expect calls for protectionism to steadily get stronger, especially as AFL-oriented Unionism dies and Democrats find themselves completely divorced from the new Republican working class.

It's not that easy. The thing that kills full auto delivery is that Americans are assholes who don't like other people in their neighborhoods or property. As a result, this means a confluence of obstacles such as: onstreet parking, front gates, hedges, dogs, and other stuff that makes door delivery nigh impossible. This even assumes gated suburbs even allow in auto vehicles, when most obviously won't (because muh childrens).

Full auto logistics only really works if there is no last mile and people have to pick up their stuff at a branch office, because branch offices can have custom vehicle ports built to allow goods to be reliably transferred. Which is why if it does happen, it'll begin with semi-auto railroads (think one computer guy controlling an entire stretch of track, rather than multiple in-vehicle operators) and move on from there as roads are tolled (a thing Republicans have voiced support for) and urban post offices all get RR hookups rebuilt.

Capitalism can't seamlessly deal with such a sudden shift, this is why Wall Street is panicking. This decline in the retail sector means falling stock and debt that will go toxic along with a shit ton of space dumped on the real estate market. That is not even getting into the unemployment issue that Wall Street doesn't care about.

This would actually be a good thing wouldnt it? With a good adblocker you would only buy stuff because you are actually looking for the product and not because its pushed on you IRL? The incentive of trying to buy everything together at once and to forsee needs is gone.

The shift is from commodified collective experience to commodified individual experience. It's the virtual creeping down to the most basic level of society.

Even if the last mile isnt solved it would reduce dilivery costs still by a lot. Also I personally think that copter drone technology will solve this fast. The hardware is almost ready, only software is still a problem.

VR shopping might happen soon.

No it isn't. A huge cargo van that can make 100+ deliveries in one load is far cheaper than a drone that has to return to a loading facility after each dropoff. Larger drones could solve this, but then we're getting into a situation where they're too big to safely drop something onto a 10' driveway. And this isn't even taking to account weight restrictions aircraft have to deal with, whereas a ground vehicle does not.

T-t-thanks capitalism

Good point, there are larger ramifications. But the core of retail is solid, at least with businesses that choose to adapt. Those are the ones who get the best of both worlds, lots of foot traffic that taper into online sales and online sales that taper into in-store purchases.

Well, what about self driving cars? They could make a self driving van with a system that spits out the package onto the driveway/door of the person then moves on, maybe a robotic arm or something.

Or it can just deliver everything at a branch office and the customer picks it up.

Sounds like discourse collective if I'm not mistaken

All they are doing now is what Sears was a century ago. Which is why Sears's current position is so ironic.

Right but there is massive over capacity in the US retail sector. Amazon has the advantage of not having over capacity, having newer fixed capital and not drowning in debt.

That graph is a bit misleading. A quick search for “australia retail per capita” brought up:
Sure enough, the next highest are the only other countries geo-economically resembling the USA.

I think this has more to do with the USA’s unique position as a large and thinly populated 1st-world country with “muh car culture” exacerbating urban sprawl.

The only thing that will ever get rid of this aberration is good public transport and denser, taller construction in cities.

You are still talking about the US having significantly higher square feet of retail space. Also the US retail sprawl layout is due to US codes, General Motors way back in the 1950's lobbied to made it illegal to develop any other way.

Does Eddie Lampert represent the current generation of porkies, playing both sides with clear conflict on interest so they get rich regardless?

Part of the reason is because people let their kids run wild in kids' sections. Combine high effort jobs like maintaining kids apparel or toys with business practices like having only one person per department (or more) and you get high burnout rates. Then it falls to already overworked supervisors, who are probably fucking swamped with other shit, and then it all falls apart.

Inevitable to an extent. Grocers might be able to survive a bit longer, and anything that provides a service/experience along with the retail (like a well ran FLGS), but even those will be hit and hit hard