bait and switch


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bait and switch

1. A deceptive sales practice in which a store attracts customers by advertising low prices for products that are not available or are of poor quality, so that customers buy more expensive items instead. A: "Why did you buy such an expensive blender? What happened to the one that was on sale?" B: "That one is sold out and won't be available for months—the store pulled a real bait and switch."
2. Any deceptive practice in which the information initially presented is found to be untrue. I thought my favorite band was playing at this club tonight, but it turned out to be a bait and switch—it's just a cover band.
See also: and, bait, switch

bait and switch

Fig. a deceptive merchandising practice where one product is advertised at a low price to get people's attention [the bait], but pressure is applied to get the customer to purchase a more expensive item. Walter described how the store used bait and switch, since they never seemed to have in stock the bargains that they advertised. Wilbur accused the merchant of bait and switch practices and stalked out of the store.
See also: and, bait, switch

bait and switch

A deceptive commercial practice in which customers are induced to visit a store by an advertised sale item and then are told that it is out of stock or that it is far inferior to some more expensive item. For example, I won't buy a car from this outfit; they're notorious for their bait and switch tactics. The verb to bait has meant to supply a hook or trap with a morsel of food so as to attract a fish or animal since about 1300; the verb to switch has meant to change, alter, or transfer from one thing to another since the 1890s. The pairing of the two, however, dates only from the 1920s, although the practice is surely much older. It is called switch-selling in Britain.
See also: and, bait, switch

bait and switch

AMERICAN
Bait and switch is a method of attracting customers by making a good offer, but then the customer is sold something of lower quality. The live performances were not shown often, and no doubt some viewers considered it a bait and switch. The bar really sells 11 dishes for the advertised price at lunch. There's no bait and switch here.
See also: and, bait, switch
References in periodicals archive ?
Her latest book is "Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream." Her website is www.barbaraehrenreich.com.
Robein says the company has often used such "bait and switch" bargaining tactics, which are the main basis for a series of unfairlabor-practice charges the union has filed with the National Labor Relations Board.
But Collier is not an "album-cover artist." Rather, the covers are among a number of handy devices for use in a kind of emotional bait and switch. Witness the three images closest to conventional self-portraiture.
To paraphrase one career coach I encountered during my research for Bait and Switch: We're not here to talk about the economy or the market; we're here to talk about you.
Critically reworking canonical images, the postmodern bait and switch foregrounds thorny concepts of authorship and identity, encouraging a reconsideration of source material, as well as querying crucial factors behind the surfaces of these masterpieces and even their status as such.
Horowitz's sly bait and switch thus exposes the fantasy that likely motivates o ur seemingly endless interest in talk shows: We imagine ourselves to be guests on the Tonight Show, saying the goofy, brilliant, witty thing we would surely say if only we had the chance.
One of my big fears while I was researching Bait and Switch was that I would never find a job.