What’s the real story behind the ‘Black Friday’ meme?

A few years ago, a black-and-white image featuring a woman holding a shopping bag made headlines in the U.S. as part of a marketing campaign.

Since then, the image has gained prominence in the popular culture of popular culture. 

A new study from the University of Chicago finds that the meme originated in an obscure online forum. 

“It’s a bit of a stretch to say that the image itself was created by someone at a Black Friday or a Black Saturday sale,” said David Bielawski, assistant professor of sociology at the university.

“The image has been used in a number of ways in the culture of Black Friday and Black Saturday.

But we think that the real reason is that it’s part of the culture itself.”

Bielawksi said he doesn’t think the image is racist.

“In a way, the meme is just a response to a social media phenomenon where we’re seeing more and more Black Friday deals, where the products are being advertised more aggressively and in more ways that are targeted toward Black people,” he said.

“That’s a reaction to an actual social phenomena.”

Brielawski and his co-authors looked at data from eBay and Amazon that showed the popularity of the image. 

The researchers said that while the image may have been a viral phenomenon in some circles, it may not have been widespread or widespread enough to be considered a racist meme.

Bielwksi and co-author Joshua Harkness studied the image and found that the majority of the sellers using the image were selling Black Friday merchandise.

The images popularity is not surprising, Harknesses said.

It’s common for Black people to be depicted in advertisements, Halkes said.

But, it’s surprising that the vast majority of Black people who used the image in the Black Friday sale are also Black people.

“It’s an odd thing that there’s a lot of people who are using it to market their Black Friday products,” Harknes said.

Harkss said the data doesn’t support the notion that the images popularity stems from racist motives.

“We found that there was a fairly high degree of overlap between Black people using the images and people who were Black, and that this overlap is not necessarily an indicator of a race-based effect,” he added.

Halkens and his colleagues said they hope the study will encourage researchers to ask questions about Black Friday’s origins.

“What is it about Black people that creates this phenomenon?”

Harkens said.

The researchers said the study could help explain the widespread use of the Black Saturday meme.

“These types of images and memes often play a major role in Black culture and are used to further promote a racialized identity that is not only socially acceptable but also acceptable in some cases,” BielAWksi wrote in an email.

“While there is some evidence to suggest that the Black-Friday meme is racially-charged, it is still unclear how it emerged from the Black community in the first place.” 

Read more about Black History Month here.

Read more stories from The Associated Press.