Talk:Discount store

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Department store, contradiction[edit]

The article Department store states that a discount store is a type of department store. However, this article states that discount stores 'are often referred to by shoppers as "department stores", although in the retail world, the label is more accurately applied to larger-format stores'. Anyone familiar with these terms know what a discount store is, and if it really is a department store? 04:40, 1 May 2006 (UTC)

A "discount store" is NOT a type of department store. A "discount department store" is a type of department store. They include Wal-Mart, Target, and Kmart. 22:46, 1 May 2006 (UTC) Alexzero77
I've never seen Target, Wal-Mart, and K-Mart described as department stores, only as discount stores or big-box stores. I am an avid reader of the L.A. Times, the N.Y. Times, the Washington Post, the San Jose Mercury News, the San Francisco Chronicle, Time, Newsweek, U.S. News & World Report, Business Week, etc. Can you provide a reference for that unusual usage? --Coolcaesar 06:11, 4 May 2006 (UTC)
Another reason why I'm confused. A simple Google search for discount department store will reveal two uses for the same term, and conveniently enough both uses contradict each other. An article from J.D. Power and Associates refers to all of these as "department stores"; it refers to Wal-Mart, Target, and Kmart as "discount department stores" and stores like Khols, JCPenney, Mervyn's, and Sears "moderate-price department stores". However, another article written by an editor for the San Jose Mercury News uses the term "discount department-store" to refer to places such as Mervyn's and Kohls, while calling stores like Target "discounters". Tuxide 14:23, 4 May 2006 (UTC)
Let me try to explain this. Sears, Macy's, Dillard's, and J.C. Penney are moderate-price department stores. Bloomingdale's, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, and Saks Fifth Avenue are also departments stores, but they sell things at higher prices. People call them specialty stores mainly because they get Neiman Marcus confused with the "specialty" department store, Bergdorf Goodman that they spun off. Wal-Mart, Target, and Kmart are discount DEPARTMENT store since they sell different items in different departments like the "food department" and the "clothing department." Newspapers are usually a terrible source of information at the classification of things. 01:54, 10 May 2006 (UTC) Alexzero77
And do you work in the industry or are you a business school professor or something? I'm just wondering what qualifies you to assert the truth of that ontology. --Coolcaesar 19:45, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
Perhaps the term "discount department store" is a POV term (like Team Member is Target POV lingo for Employee). The article Target Corporation suggests this by stating the following: Target refers to itself as a "discount department store" instead of just a discount store. I don't know where it cites it from, though... Tuxide 22:08, 7 May 2006 (UTC)
Actually, I ran the term "discount department stores" through America's Newspapers on NewsBank while at the library this afternoon and it returned 6013 hits. So the term is in common use after all. It seems to be much more popular in articles from the middle and eastern portions of the country. The few West Coast newspaper article that used it were consistently discussing only store openings or closings, so I suspect the reporters simply borrowed it from the stores' press releases. There is probably a West Coast/East Coast dialect split in progress, though I'm not a linguist so I'm not certain about that conclusion. --Coolcaesar 05:16, 8 May 2006 (UTC)

Is anyone able to pull the earliest point in time that the term "discount department store" was used... I'm no expert but I have an inkling that it was coined to ward off any negative connotation that the term "discount" brings along. I also get this feeling seeing as Target "refers to itself" and isn't simply just "classified as" a DDS. J.reed Flag of the United States.svg 07:00, 8 May 2006 (UTC)

I checked the New York Times (my public library subscribes to ProQuest Historical Newspapers so I can look up the NYT archive from 1851 to 2003 anywhere). The earliest mention is in Business Records, page 24, 5 March 1934. Someone named Paul Silken filed a bankruptcy petition in the Eastern District of New York, "individually and trading as Employes [sic] Association Discount Department Stores." After that, the next significant mention is in a 1961 article about the Montgomery Ward takeover of the Interstate Department Stores chain, which is described as a chain of "discount department stores." But the article also uses the "discount store" terminology that most people, myself included, are more familiar with. The citation is: Myron Kandel, "Ward Maps Entry In Discount Field," New York Times, 28 September 1961, 59. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Coolcaesar (talkcontribs) .
So, use of the term "discount department store" predates 1962, the year that Kmart, Target, and Wal-Mart started. Do any of these three brands use it to describe themselves then? Googling the term on the entire site returns only one result dated November 1998, while Wal-Mart's sites don't return anything relevant. Tuxide 20:28, 8 May 2006 (UTC)
Well there goes my idea. J.reed Flag of the United States.svg 04:02, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

Thought I'd point out that Target Corporation refers to itself as a "discounter", says so on its corporate fact card. Tuxide 04:34, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

It seems that since we've had this conversation, the phrase "discount department store" has been Google-bombed. The #1 and #2 results for discount department store are the Wikipedia entry for Department store, and respectively. Tuxide 06:16, 15 September 2006 (UTC)

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