Manufactured Obsolescence: The manipulation of the consumer.

honda-motorcycle-cb400-hawk-ii-wiring-diagramManufactured obsolescence is the term used to describe the behavior of companies to purposely manufacture certain parts out of inferior materials. Yes, you heard me correctly, PURPOSELY manufacture parts out of INFERIOR materials. They do this to ensure they will have a limited lifespan.This is not a whimsical concept or conspiracy theory, this is a very real phenomenon.

This has actually been argued as being good for the economy!

The thought behind the benefit this provides to society is that it provides job security for people in the manufacturing and service industries. Products manufactured under this mindset will undoubtedly have a shorter lifespan causing the consumer to purchase a replacement or pay for repairs.

money-37I am not sure exactly what your thoughts on this may be but I personally find this whole concept appalling. To know I spent my time working hard only to be able to purchase inferior products is beyond frustrating. I find it a hard pill to swallow to know that manufacturers are forcing me to spend additional money on their products. The craziest thing is that they are saving money by using inferior products in the first place. Then, as they are saving money, they are forcing me to make the same exact purchase twice. Or at the very least pay a repair man to fix a relatively new product.

The Racket

To examine this logically is to see the behavior for what it is, exploitation of the consumer. The company saves money (i.e. makes money) by using inferior materials. skotan-no-signThen makes money from my purchase. That makes twice they made money while all I did was spend money. The subsequent repair causes me to spend money a second time, for the same product. If it cannot be repaired or I decide not to repair then I have to purchase a replacement which means, for the second time, the company saves money (i.e. makes money) by using inferior materials and then makes money from my purchase. That means they make money four times and I spend money twice. There is little doubt in my mind you are now as thoroughly frustrated as I am.

This is our fault!

How did we let this happen? We continued to purchase the inferior products from the manufacturer in the first place. We caused this mess by being more concerned with price than value and quality. You can read more on this topic by reading my blog How do consumers purchase; price or value?.

Anyway, now you know why products do not seem to last as long as they used to.

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