Gransnet forums



(174 Posts)
annsixty Sun 28-Jun-20 19:05:48

We have had , in the past, a few threads about “virtue signalling”
Am I the only one, or does anyone agree with me that we now have quite a few posts “ wealth signalling “?
I may be completely wrong and to talk about possessions, travel etc is normal.
I will be happy to be proved wrong.

Lucca Mon 29-Jun-20 08:45:49

Re the clothes buying and mentioning expensive brands, some of us only buy those occasionally AND in the sales !

Lucca Mon 29-Jun-20 08:47:41

As far as signalling or boasting goes I’d say if anyone is doing that then they are rather “sad” !

Marydoll Mon 29-Jun-20 09:11:08

Grammaretto, I loved your analogy about the boats.
It really rang true for me.

Also, I really enjoyed the clothes thread. I noted down the names of certain retailers, then proceeded to look at their sales or eBay. 😉

Recently a poster complained about people boasting, when posters were just talking about their lives. I think it can also depend on how you are feeling when you are reading a thread.
There will always be people on here who misinterpret innocent threads, I was once unfairly accused on here of being an inverted snob. It really upset me, because that hadn't been my intention.

ann, don't regret posting this, it is an interesting thread, better than some of the nonsense posted recently.

Ellianne Mon 29-Jun-20 09:14:36

I don't think anyone would boast intentionally on here about their wealth, what would be the point? It's just people talking about their different lifestyles, and anyway, money doesn't buy happiness. All part of the big tapestry.

lemongrove Mon 29-Jun-20 09:18:54

I hadn’t noticed Ann ( but we will all be on the lookout now)
The gardens pics thread is only to show the actual plants and groups of plantings ( I expect you didn’t mean that thread anyway.) In any case, it’s possible to have a large garden without having a great deal of cash.
There are ( on the clothes threads) some naming of labels it’s true, but that’s bound to be the case as we all have different
Lifestyles and bank balances.
Don’t feel guilty about starting the thread though.

Calendargirl Mon 29-Jun-20 09:28:01

I suppose it’s not necessarily homes, gardens, holidays, clothes that can be interpreted as ‘boasting’.

Some can post about their children and grandchildren, which to anyone without, can be seen as a form of bragging.

And some can speak about having a cleaner, say, which can be viewed in the same light if others don’t have one.

All different viewpoints I suppose.

NotSpaghetti Mon 29-Jun-20 09:30:51

Well I'd like to apologise for mentioning my kettle about six months ago. I did feel bad after someone looked it up and commented on the price. People were discussing things that brought you joy and mine was a gift and I had been looking at "from afar". It was from my 5 adult children who all chipped in.

I just want to state that I was not trying to signify wealth - but I hope my (beautiful, functional, gorgeous) kettle didn't upset someone who couldn't afford to replace theirs. Believe me, I too have had to use a pan on the stove in the past. Pans do not make good tea.

GagaJo Mon 29-Jun-20 09:31:36

There is a fair bit of wealth signalling on here. I'm afraid when I read it I just think 'vulgar' and move on. Only the insecure or 'Hyacinth Bucket' brigade would need to boast.

Plus, how they think possessions confer cachet is beyond me.

Calendargirl Mon 29-Jun-20 09:35:02

There was a post recently about a very expensive washing machine.

It didn’t bother me, I was just astounded as I hadn’t realised you could get one that cost so much!

But each to his own.

Greeneyedgirl Mon 29-Jun-20 09:39:10

I don't think people are particularly "signalling" annsixty, but I think topics are just a reflection of members, who seem judging by the threads, a middle class and quite well heeled bunch on the whole.

So yes, not signalling, but "normal for Gransnet"
After going through, and still in, a pandemic where worldly goods count for nothing, it seems somewhat ironic, now being urged to spend, spend, spend to save the economy.

MawB Mon 29-Jun-20 09:41:44

I certainly don’t agree that the majority of posters sound as if they are wealthy - in the past there have been many threads describing getting by on a state pension, or on benefits because a poster never paid enough to even qualify in her own right.
However, there are some who can afford cruises as a “regular” holiday, or more exotic or long distance holidays to Cuba, NZ, the US or Australia, who pop over to their “place in France” or have second homes either for their own use or to let as holiday lets.
Some clearly have more generous pensions than others and with the leisure to enjoy them the differences are more obvious. Good luck to those who have the health to travel I say. It is something I have been aware of since I retired and I just smile and look interested while I “switch off” when I hear about their trips!
(One good thing about lockdown I suppose, is that none of us can go anywhere! )
So there are all sorts.
Identifying clothes by labels is not signalling, it is a form of description and if I have been guilty of that I apologise- to me, reading e.g. a “Joules top” is telling me a “striped top with sleeves “. “Hotters” or “Skechers” say “comfy shoes” -and someone who shares my favourites!

dragonfly46 Mon 29-Jun-20 09:43:17

You are right Grammaretto we are in different boats at the moment.
I also agree with Marydoll as it depends what mood you are in when you read it. If I am not in a good place I skip over many posts which could be construed as boasting.
I too get 🤢 when hearing about DGC and DC popping round if only for a socially distanced chat. I haven’t seen mine in the flesh since Christmas apart from a five minute exchange of the dog.
But that is life. It isn’t fair or kind I am afraid.

MawB Mon 29-Jun-20 09:43:36


There was a post recently about a very expensive washing machine.

It didn’t bother me, I was just astounded as I hadn’t realised you could get one that cost so much!

But each to his own.

Being nosey, I tried to find that “expensive washing machine” but the best (worst?) I could find online was one for about £1300 - still ridiculous though!

OceanMama Mon 29-Jun-20 09:44:22

Calendargirl, I bought a more expensive washing machine last time I needed one. Still not expensive, but not the cheapest. It had the best reviews and after the hassle we had with the previous appliance, I thought I'd rather pay a bit more for something that would last longer (so cheaper in the long run) and not need repair all the time. If someone asked me, I would recommend it for those reasons. Sometimes spending a bit more is the cheaper option, but I've also, not so long ago, been in the position where spending more for the better buy wasn't possible. Two sides to that one, neither = signalling.

annsixty Mon 29-Jun-20 09:45:57

Thank you for that reminder of replacing a kettle.
I can now see how casual remarks can be interpreted wrongly.
I probably posted when my H was on his Alzheimer journey and our kettle stopped working.
I nipped up to Sainsbury’s and bought a new one, he just looked at it and said, I don’t know how to use that, a bog standard , electric kettle.
I had to get onto Amazon and pay extra for an identical Dualit one, it cost about eighty pounds and extra for quick delivery as he got in a state about it.
I now realise how that must have looked to some posters.

As you point out, an innocent post could be misinterpreted as boasting, so the answer to my question in my OP is that I am wrong.

Thank you everyone for not jumping down my throat and apologies to anyone who felt “got at” that was never my intention.

Grammaretto Mon 29-Jun-20 09:48:23

I did what you did Marydoll on the clothes thread! I went a bit too far and bid for a dress on ebay which didn't turn out well but as I wear my Rohan wink raincoat bought on ebay several years ago, I have no regrets.

The fact we can be "on here", are mostly old enough to be grandparents, and have wifi and computer equipment suggests that we have more in common than not.

I was once told that a boy I fancied at college had been turned off me when I (innocently) asked him what school he had been at. I was immediately branded a snob and more besides but I was just so naive. Not the best chat up line, I discovered.

Alexa Mon 29-Jun-20 09:53:43

I agree, MawB . Gransnet welcomes people from different socio-economic backgrounds to write about whatever interests them. Obviously there are people who like to display their wealth and power, and this is true of real life as well as Gransnet.

Some activities and possessions are expensive but that should not deter posters from mentioning what interests them. What matters is the intention of the poster to brag or not.

GrannyGravy13 Mon 29-Jun-20 10:01:25

I do sometimes think that the trouble with posting something as opposed to speaking face to face is that we are unable to see facial expressions and hand gestures which can totally alter the meaning of what is being posted.

A lot of companies have excellent online sales at the moment, not just clothes, shoes and bags, but homeware and white goods. Many companies are struggling due to Covid-19 and if they are not supported may disappear forever.

mumofmadboys Mon 29-Jun-20 10:29:41

We all share our humanity, the core of our being. At the end of the day the same things matter to us all - our relationships with family and friends, our ability to love and be loved. It doesn't matter how much money we have as our main concerns are probably very similiar.

Nortsat Mon 29-Jun-20 10:30:45

ann this has made me think about my posts.
I haunt the on line sales and by decent quality clothes, shoes and household stuff and I never buy anything at full price. Gosh I hope that doesn’t come across as ‘wealth signalling’.

I suspect from reading threads over a lengthy period, there are many GNs whose houses and gardens are far larger than ours. Many probably live in areas where the property is more expensive than this corner of east London.

However, I can’t say I have particularly noticed ‘signalling’ as an issue. I read threads with interest in many cases because of the diverse views and experiences of so many lovely GNs.

The ‘last meals’ thread was a case in point, people were posting about fish and chips at the beach and food their mother’s or grandmothers made for them. I suggested a river cruise in the Loire Valley, but I sincerely hope it wasn’t read as ‘wealth signalling’, because frankly, we have no wealth to signal. 😎

Rosalyn69 Mon 29-Jun-20 10:38:34

Oh dear. I hope this isn’t me. I confess I like nice things and do spend quite freely but there’s no intent to wealth signal.
I apologise if I’m guilty.

Ellianne Mon 29-Jun-20 10:44:09

annsixty don't worry, that expensive Dualit kettle will last you forever! They're great and save you money in the long run.

Boast time .... I have the matching toaster too! grin

DiscoGran Mon 29-Jun-20 10:47:23

Grammaretto hit the nail on the head, we are all in different boats, in lifestyles, and in our attitudes to all things.

That is what makes GN interesting. Lately there was a thread about the cost of a colander. All the different opinions were really entertaining.
Personally, I am not interested in labels, brands, or paying stupid money for stuff.
Not that I can't afford to, but I don't equate cost necessarily with quality.

GGumteenth Mon 29-Jun-20 10:49:36

I can understand Annsixty starting this because she feels a bit blue. But I do wonder about those who have jumped on the bandwagon to suggest there is "wealth" signalling!

When some of you complain about the time since you saw your grandchildren - a month or two ago I feel sad. I don't know when I will see mine again. I certainly would blame my son and my DiL for not coming to this country for some time - maybe years. I may never see my older brother again for similar reasons. But who knows. I certainly, other than then slight twinge do not think you shouldn't talk about it and celebrate when you do see you GCs. I'm pleased for you even when I'm sad about our situation.

I have loved some of the recent threads and been prepared to share bits about myself - probably for the first time in the five years or whatever I have been on GN. I will think twice next time.

My greater worry is what is making Annsixty sad.

Witzend Mon 29-Jun-20 10:54:01

@Riverwalk, re titchy gardens (ours is, too) the gardens I always liked best at Chelsea (I’ve been several times) were the relatively small, ‘artisan’ I think they called them, gardens. The sort of garden millions of people have - typically the small, narrow rectangle of so many city houses. It was lovely to see what they did with them ( nothing flamboyant or deliberately ‘different’) - I liked them so much better than most of the ‘show’ gardens.

All too often gardening gurus talk as if anything under a quarter of an acre is very small.