7:27am

Mon November 29, 2010
The Two-Way

'Cyber Monday': Myth Or Must-Day For Online Shopping?

Which is it?

-- "Cyber Monday" is "mostly a marketing gimmick."

-- Or, "Cyber Monday" is "one of the biggest online shopping days of the year" and is expected to "ramp up" this year.

Both stories are on CNN.com this morning.

They don't quite contradict each other -- the second story doesn't make the claim that today will be the biggest online shopping day of the year because of the post-Black Friday online specials that many retailers are offering. But they certainly do leave a reader thinking very differently about whether Cyber Monday is or isn't a a big deal.

As is usually the case, it helps to pay close attention to the sources. The organization making the case that Cyber Monday is mostly a myth is comScore, which monitors Internet traffic. The group pitching the it's-a-big-deal angle is the National Retail Federation, "the voice of retail worldwide." Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.