LFB – Why do you take the paper?

In every city I find people who hand out little pieces of paper on the street (it’s a ‘business strategy’ called panfletagem). Obviously these people are being paid to hand out adverts and notices of impending sales and parties. I never take them, even when they try to put it in my hands as I walk by (next, they might just start putting them in people’s pockets or taping them to our clothing).

So the big question is, why do Brazilians keep accepting these hand outs? I see it almost daily, they’ll accept it, then look at it curiously, then put it away (in their purse, pocket, etc). I don’t want to ruin it for you all by giving away the big secret but they’re all advertisements…every single one. And I’d bet that 99.9% of them are going to be of zero interest to you.

One day, I’d like to do the same but, instead of adverts, hand out glasses. Edit: video below from the comments section.


15 thoughts on “LFB – Why do you take the paper?

  1. i take them because i know most of them are getting paid depending on how much they distribute (you know the ones that have the little bloquinhos?) and now how long they’re out there – i’m just trying to help them out! and then i place them in my bad to later recycle or use the back of the flier as scrap paper. someone else would take it and just throw it on the ground or in the trash. might as well make some use of it!

    • Yeah, I get it but I just don’t want another piece of paper that I’m going to toss anyways. Scrap paper is good but I usually already walk around with some (normal, blank and white)

  2. Well, it’s free paper, isn’t it :P

    Plus, yeah, we take them to help them out. And most people DON’T take them if they can avoid it (by crossing the street, for example), but most of us are more polite than simply refusing to take it when someone hands it to you specifically.

    Now, I don’t want to ruin this for you by revealing the big secret but…. we know it’s advertisement.

  3. I try not to take them… I usually say: No, thanks. But I feel bad about it… it feels so impolite to refuse the person. Sometimes I take them just because I’m not in the mood to say “no, thanks” and then proceed to dump them in the next bin. Without looking at it, because of course I know what they are about.

  4. I go back and forth. Sometimes I take them and sometimes I don’t. My husband always REFUSES to take them, and he’s almost to the point of arguing with the person handing them out….

    • I’m just not sure what the point is since they probably all go in the trash shortly after. There must be some sort of market study that says it works, or else someone did it once and another person thought it was a good idea (no market study needed!)

      • It’s just cheap to pay half a minimum wage a month for someone to stand 6h a day handing them out. Even if most people don’t really care for what’s in it, some people will.

        Even if only 1% of the people actually do buy/attend whatever is advertised, there’s still a profit margin there.

        Most people who are handing them out have no education and can really only do these kinds of menial jobs. They gotta eat, and people with money can exploit them because of that.

        Oh the joys of capitalism.

  5. VVB said it properly.

    We usually take them to be polite, or to help the people who are handling the advertisements, because many of them are poor and need the money they are getting paid for doing that.

    Besides that, what is the problem? It doesn’t cost take the paper and throw it away later.

    Sometimes I read the adverstisement, maybe it’s about something I need. If it’s not, just throw away.

  6. Pingback: A closer look at Rio politics (documentary) | Eyes On Brazil

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