By starting at 8 pm this year, they will be in direct competition with mass retailers such as Target and Walmart. It makes you wonder if other stores are planning an even earlier start. They can't go too much earlier without being in direct competition with Granny's Turkey, which might make for a very interesting battle.
Certain states and townships still have "blue laws", which date back to the 17th Century, preventing retail stores from being open on Thanksgiving. Sales in these areas will have to be pushed back to at least 12:01 am Friday.
Macy's has also released a preview of their Black Friday doorbusters. Historically, when a store releases a sneak peak of the ad, the release of the full ad is not very far behind. Macy's Pinterest page is hinting that this is indeed the case, by advising us to stay tuned as there is "more to come. Macy's released their ad relatively early last year, and may be planning on releasing the full ad even earlier this year, before a leak through a third party can happen.