Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Nothing is Ever Free

Posted by briannaembry on February 15, 2017

From this week’s reading of Spreadable Media, this section seemed to stick with me the most because it is very relatable and explained in a practical way. I’ve always heard the phrase, “Nothing is ever free in life.” In my economics class, the phrases, “everything comes at a cost” and “there are no ‘free-lunches,'” seem to be a popular theme. I found this section very interesting for this reason. This section pointed out that even if you don’t pay for a product- whether it be a T-shirt or a simple ink pen for “giveaways”- this product still isn’t absolutely “free.”

Companies and brands tend to give out “free” items, most of which may have their logos or contact information printed on them. These items are given out, not only to the customers’ benefit, but to the company or firms’ benefit as well. Think of this act as a form of advertisement. A bank that offers you a free T-shirt is obviously going to have a decent affect on you. The book explains this relationship by stating, “Those giving such gifts hope the receiver will incorporate those objects into their everyday lives, the brand regularly reminding them of the company, while the utility of the gift generates some sense of goodwill.” These items may work as advertisement, perhaps providing this company or brand with more business by establishing trust, familiarity, and a good reputation. These objects can, in turn, be very spreadable.


2 Responses to “Nothing is Ever Free”

  1. emilyjones232 said

    I took an Economics class last semester and I remember the phrase “Everything has a cost” being engrained in my mind. So, reading it in this class was not a shocking fact, even though it is completely true.

  2. laurenivey22 said

    I also took an Economics class in high school and my teacher would always explain about how nothing was ever free. He would tell us how when a sign says “buy one get one free” it actually isnt getting you anything for free, because you spent that money on gas to get the store in the first place or how you are wasting your time and energy when you could be using it for something else. It really opened my eyes.

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