Oldjohnw wrote:Recently I have increasingly been concerned about my effective support of Amazon. My concerns were mainly around the way warehouse staff earn so little and work in such difficult and often even dangerous workplaces. Also, the company's complete disdain for paying proper taxes, despite using taxpayer funded infrastructure, education, healthcare and police. Bezos decides what tax he will pay and makes an offer. He then sounds good by offering £10bn for green things - he has probably avoided more than that in taxes.
I have a niece who has just become head of sustainability in Europe. She earns a telephone number salary at a mere 32. It appears that sustainability to Amazon is how can they continue doing what they are doing but, by a little tinkering, look good but really do nothing.
Then on Monday BBC panorama did a documentary on Alexa. Whilst I have always worried about Alexa and don't and won't have it, to discover Amazon's developing relationship with UK police in Alexa related surveillance doorbells made me seriously troubled. Added to this is the way they deliberately hurt smaller organisations using their marketplace out of business, and their utterly devious way of making people think they need something and selling them things they never knew they wanted.
Yesterday I deleted my Amazon Account.
Am I alone in this concern or am I being paranoid? Of course, I know that every time I go online or use a pi CE of plastic I am surrendering some privacy, but Amazon is taking it to lengths that horrify, especially with their police connection. Ok with a relatively benign government and an independent police force. But we have already witnessed government using the police as an arm of the state (banning XR marches).
PS Panorama alone is worth the TVL! If there was a commercial interest this programme would never have been made.
You are not alone. IMV Amazon's business is based on three pillars:
1. Tax avoidance
2. Exploitation of a monopoly position
3. Exploitation of workers
Additionally, there's market failure through information asymmetry - you cannot tell whether the goods are real or fake, good quality or shoddy, from the website. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information_asymmetry
I never use them for anything. Stick to reputable retailers whether online or in person. Bezos is the Rockefeller of his day, and Amazon deserves the same fate as Standard oil.