"Blue Monday” means that people get the blues on Monday. There were popular songs called “Blue Monday” in 1954 and 1983.
Cliff Arnall (reported to be a specialist in seasonal disorders at the University of Cardiff, Wales) did a study for for Sky Travel that was publicized in January 2005, declaring that the third Monday in January is “Blue Monday”—the most depressing day of the year. Arnall’s “Blue Monday” work was widely criticized as pseudoscience and paid hucksterism.
Wikipedia: Blue Monday (date)
Blue Monday is a name given to a day in January (typically the third Monday of the month) reported to be the most depressing day of the year. The concept was first publicised as part of a 2005 press release from holiday company Sky Travel which claimed to have calculated the date using an equation.
The idea is considered pseudoscience, with its formula derided by scientists as nonsensical.
This date was published in a press release under the name of Cliff Arnall, at the time a tutor at the Centre for Lifelong Learning, a Further Education centre attached to Cardiff University. Guardian columnist Dr. Ben Goldacre reported that the press release was delivered substantially pre-written to a number of academics by public relations agency Porter Novelli, who offered them money to put their names to it. The Guardian later printed a statement from Cardiff University distancing themselves from Arnall “...was a former part-time tutor at the university but left in February.”
Wikipedia: Blue Monday (Fats Domino song)
“Blue Monday” is a song originally written by Dave Bartholomew, and first recorded by Smiley Lewis in 1954.
It was later popularized in a recording by Fats Domino in 1956, on Imperial Records (catalog # 5417), on which the songwriting credit was shared between Bartholomew and Domino.
Blue Monday (New Order song)
“Blue Monday” is a single released in 1983 by British rock band New Order, later remixed in 1988 and 1995. The song has been widely remixed and covered since its original release, and became a popular anthem in the dance club scene. It is the biggest-selling 12” single of all time.
Jan. 24 called worst day of the year
British psychologist calculates ‘most depressing day’
By Jennifer Carlile
updated 1/24/2005 1:51:05 AM ET
LONDON — Is the midwinter weather wearing you down? Are you sinking in debt after the holidays? Angry with yourself for already breaking your New Year’s resolutions? Wish you could crawl back under the covers and not have to face another day of rain, sleet, snow and paperwork? Probably. After all, it’s Jan. 24, the “most depressing day of the year,” according to a U.K. psychologist.
Dr. Cliff Arnall’s calculations show that misery peaks Monday.
Arnall, who specializes in seasonal disorders at the University of Cardiff, Wales, created a formula that takes into account numerous feelings to devise peoples’ lowest point.
The formula was devised to help a travel company “analyze when people book holidays and holiday trends,” said Alex Kennedy, spokesperson for Porter Novelli, a London-based PR agency.
The Guardian (UK)
MS = media slut, but CW = corporate whore
Friday 15 December 2006 19.09 EST
You might remember Dr Cliff Arnall. He is probably the most prodigious of all producers of bogus “equations”: proving that some arbitrary date in mid-January is the most miserable day of the year for Sky Travel; proving that some arbitrary date in mid-June is the happiest day of the year for Walls ice cream; and so on
I know that because I have received an avalanche of insider stories - Watergate it isn’t - including one from an academic in psychology who was offered money by Porter Novelli PR agency to put his name to the very same Sky Travel equation story that Arnall sold his to. In amongst their aggressive pitch they described how the story would go.
“Blue Monday - January Blues Day is Officially Announced: The 26th January is the most depressing day in the calendar for the majority of Brits as measured by a simple mathematical formula developed on behalf of Sky Travel.
The Telegraph (UK)
Ignore ‘most depressing day of year’ says Blue Monday psychologist
Cliff Arnall, the psychologist who ‘calculated’ that Monday is the most depressing day of the year is urging Britons to “refute the whole notion” and be cheerful instead.
By Alastair Jamieson 9:30AM GMT 17 Jan 2010
The third Monday in January became a black day in 2005 when Mr Arnall was paid by a public relations firm to identify the most miserable date in the calendar in order to promote holiday firm, Sky Travel.
The self-styled ‘freelance happiness guru’ chose the date based on a pseudo-mathematical formula involving the weather, debt, motivational levels and time elapsed since Christmas.
The Guardian (UK)
Blue Monday: a depressing day of pseudoscience and humiliation
A psychologist explains why the third Monday of January has for him become the most depressing day of the year
Monday 16 January 2012 01.59 EST
But that doesn’t stop the equation from popping up every year. Its creator, Dr Cliff Arnall, devised it for a travel firm. He has since admitted that it is meaningless (without actually saying it’s wrong).
Dr Arnall is usually described as a Cardiff University psychologist. To be a Cardiff University psychologist you usually have to be employed/publish research from Cardiff School of Psychology, hence I can claim to be one.
CBS New York
Interview: Tips For A Better Outlook On ‘Blue Monday’
January 17, 2016 2:53 PM
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — If the cold weather and maybe all those bills you racked up during the holiday season have you feeling a little bit down, you’re not alone.
Jan. 18 this year has been coined “Blue Monday,” the most depressing day of the year.
Psychotherapist Diane Lang stopped by the CBS2 studios with tips on how to get out of that slump.
“The truth is there’s not much science behind it,” Lang said of Blue Monday.
How to survive Blue Monday: the most depressing day of the year
Luke Graham, News Assistant
Monday, 18 Jan 2016 | 8:17 AM ET
The U.K. is enduring Blue Monday, the most depressing day of the year, as the weather worsens and Britons get back into the year-long daily grind after the Christmas and New Year break.
The term Blue Monday was first coined in 2005 as part of advertising campaign for Sky Travel. It was suggested that the third Monday of January is the most depressing due to a number of factors, including debt built up over Christmas, bad weather and how many days it had been since the holidays.
The Guardian (UK)
Blue Monday: is it really the most depressing day of the year?
It’s Blue Monday again. The most depressing day of the year. But is it really? REALLY? No, no it isn’t. But this doesn’t seem to make any difference, people still keep bringing it up
Monday 19 January 2015 02.00 EST Last modified on Monday 19 January 2015
Every third Monday in January is now Blue Monday, according to the mainstream media. Granted, some say the second Monday, or the fourth. It makes no difference, each one is just as likely to be the most depressing day of the year. You could pick the first Thursday in August if you like, it’s just as valid. Or the ninth Saturday in Smarch, doesn’t matter.
It’s difficult to keep track of how many times it’s been debunked and ridiculed, often in this very blog.