The Million Dollar Joke


By Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus · Follow: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram

Yesterday, April 1, 2016, we introduced the official minimalist T-shirt, a $729.00 piece of cotton, as our April Fools’ Day gag. Because the response was overwhelming, we learned several lessons as our audience split into three camps:

THE TRUSTERS. The first group—the trusting folks—allowed their trust of The Minimalists to steer them in a direction that didn’t align with the values of minimalism: more than 7,000 people clicked the “Buy Now” button, which, assuming everyone continued their checkout, would’ve resulted in over five million dollars in revenue. While that sounds nice, as The Minimalists we do our best to ensure our income aligns with our principles, so a payday drenched in consumerism—even a multi-million-dollar windfall—ain’t worth the compromise.

Yes, trust is extremely important, but blind trust is a recipe for dissatisfaction; therefore, we must work hard to trust but verify the world around us, especially when it comes to the 5,000 marketing messages we see every day. You see, marketers do a fantastic job of creating ostensible trust by way of vapid marketing speak, which is what we attempted to highlight, satirically, in yesterday…

What do you think?