Has Christmas become too commercialised?

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In days gone by children were happy with a clementine and some chocolate pennies in their stockings at Christmas. 

Now they are bombarded with advertising messages on the television and online in the run up to Christmas, showing them toys and objects that they never even knew they ‘needed’.  It is not unusual for children to be thumbing through gift catalogues as their bedtime reading or surfing online in search of possible gifts ideas!

Has the focus of Christmas shifted over the years from a wonderful time to spend with your family and friends, to an expensive present and gift event?

Has the meaning of Christmas gone forever?  Is there too much focus on buying gifts and less emphasis on family values?

Has Christmas become far too commercialised?

269 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

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15th Jan 2016
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So who is to blame for the over commercialism of Christmas, he marketers / retailers, or the buying population following along like a flock of sheep and no mind of their own? Hundreds of presents for individual children, peer pressure or parents spoiling their offspring ?
Some years ago I decided to break the dreaded family tradition of one year your parents. one year mine, with the attendant table load of food enough to feed an army, and went to America to spend Christmas with the Grinch, visiting Disney for one day in a week long holiday. Christmas was all over and done with in 48 hours !
Now I live in Prague, and it is a completely different and nice celebration here. The shops do not start selling Xmas goodies until the start of December, Trees are not put up until Christmas Eve when they are decorated by the family, Xmas dinner occurs on our Xmas Eve with presents being opened then. All family members gather on the 24th evening for dinner, after a day of fasting.
And then, a couple of days later, it is all over and done with, the shops have sales and everyone is back to work after the new year.

I think you have to blame members of the public not the resellers for the over-commercialisation, if they did not go along with it, would the shops not soon change their theme ?
1st Jan 2016
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The TRUE meaning of Christmas flew out of the window just after the second world war -- IMHO-- with the start of "The Consumer society" When The "Austerity" years were consigned to the dustbin- (Sorry it had become a Trash/Garbage can by then,) Suddenly not only the local Doctor & Vicar had cars but most people had one- whereas there may have been only one telephone within five miles or so suddenly all & sundry were talking to relatives in Australia- Canada- etc-- Christmas was when you got a card from them prior to this probably posted way back in October to make sure it got there on time,
For a Kid to get a bike back then was a rare thing -in my case it was a second hand me down off my cousin- these Days it seems like Every day is Christmas day for Kids regarding their collection of various "Gottahaves",
21st Dec 2015
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Heck YES!!! Too much greed/pressure/outside influence and for what? Too much stuff, no appreciation of why we celebrate Christmas in the first place and massive debt for the sake of showing our families and friends how much we love them!
Years ago I was at friends for Christmas. She'd made huge sacks out of single sheets - 2 for each of their 2 children, which had to be filled at Grandmas to bring home on Christmas Eve. The children just gorged on an 'unwrapping frenzy' in the morning with no gaps between each present.
Our Cousins were allowed to keep 3 of their toys each in the build up to Christmas, the remainder went to the local orphanage. The same thing happened each year.
We got the end-of-the-bed stocking and 1 main gift each or, as happened one year, a 'shared' gift of a tape recorder. We had the most wonderful day recording and playing back our messages.
Any recent suggestion to 'cull' toys before Christmas have fallen on very stony ground with friends who think their children's largely unused toys will be missed!!!
Reality check here.
I have asked for no gifts for the last ten years but was pressured by my Sister after our 'just one small gift' fell on deaf ears.
When I saw the mass of Christmas Bags just for me I felt so guilty that, after Church (NOW that's what it's all about!) I went to the cashpoint and added cash to the single gift I'd bought the three of them. Their gift from me, by the way, was a stunning tree bauble each - now that can be well used forever!
Bah Humbug? No.....just very sad at the over-commercialisation of this special time.
Finally, do folk accept/understand and appreciate my 5 years of no cards in lieu of a £100 donation to my chosen Charity each year? ABSOLUTELY - they love it! The Internet keeps us connected all year round doesn't it?
So, let's make the most of the true Spirit of Christmas and think about what we've done in the last 12 months and, maybe, how we could do more for others in the next.
Me - looking forward to being the 'Welcomer' at our 11pm Church Christmas Service and heralding in another year of hope, compassion and kindness.
A very Happy Christmas to you all.
19th Dec 2015
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Yes the rubbish that is sold in the shops is incrediblie. A lot of it has no purpose at all. and is all drastically reduced after Christmas.
Children would b better of with one main toy and their stocking full of bits and pieces, not toys and toys that never get played with.
14th Dec 2015
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Prefer to give and receive small gifts throughout the year.
4th Dec 2015
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I took to a local charity shop a bag full of unused Christmas presents from last year. It's not that I did not appreciate the gifts but I was unable to use half of them as there is no bath in my house and, if I lived to be a hundred, I could never have used all the perfume I had. It saddens me to think that people paid good money for these items. Hopefully the charity shop can raise some much needed funds from their sale.
1st Dec 2015
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Shops start selling Christmas stuff far too early, as early as August!! We haven't even had our summer holiday by then.
30th Nov 2015
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It makes me sad to see all the money spent on things which people don't need.
30th Nov 2015
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Yes, most definitely! It has become a competition about who can spend the most money. CHRIST has been taken out of Christmas and that is what is wrong with our society nowadays.
14th Dec 2015
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I'm not sure 'Christ' being taken out of Christmas can be blamed for society today although I agree that people appear to have forgotten the story of Christmas. What I can't understand is why do Atheists celebrate Christmas if they don't believe in Christ?
30th Nov 2015
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Yes it has, some people think Christmas is about spending as much money as they can in the shops. This is not the meaning of Christmas and giving some money to charity would be a better idea in my opinion.
30th Nov 2015
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No I think it has always been full of commercials but with the internet now and all these sales being pushed at us it just seems more commercialised. Its all part of the world changing-in most ways I think for the better
30th Nov 2015
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Definitely! Someone I know had their 11 year old throw a strop because she was told she couldn't have a iPhone for Christmas! Apparently - 'everyone else has one!'
30th Nov 2015
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Yes I think we are making it much too commercialised but having said that it was the same when I was a kid in the 60s/70s -constant adverts on TV but it has got a lot more so now but then thats the world we are living it. I think children still have all the Christmas plays at school and really enjoy the festive season exactly the same as we did. I know my kids even though they are in their early 20s still love this time of year as myself and my wife do. Not sure about all the huge discount days like "Cyber Monday" but thgen back in the 70s the sales always started on Boxing day and it was a mad rush to get bargains so nothing much changes-life just gets more hectic!
30th Nov 2015
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I do worry about Christmas being far too commercialised actually. But I worry even more that our culture surrounding Christmas is slowly being eroded by our total embracement of multi cultural Britain! Nowadays many schools are not even celebrating Christmas with a traditional Nativity play! Just in case they offend other religions. We seem to be in danger of losing our identity whilst accepting everyone else's needs and beliefs. Does anyone else feel the same??
14th Dec 2015
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I'm not sure other religion's object to Christian celebrations, it appears to be our own people (councils, politicians etc) who are worried. When I was a ward sister many non-christian nurses would volunteer to work over Christmas so 'Christian' nurses could have the time off.
30th Nov 2015
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Yes, I totally agree!
30th Nov 2015
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No-one seems particularly bothered about offending Christians though! I'm not religious personally, but its a tradition in the UK and that has to cut both ways!
30th Nov 2015
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