With our last SPECTRE post on June 12, we've been tracking the stories concerning the tyranical outfit. Here's what we've seen, listed according to the day on which we saw it:
June 13, 2014
From The Guardian: Amazon Living Wage campaigners place dummy book on site as protest
From The Stranger's "The Slog", links to two stories:
[from 7/28/13, our own post: Scorched Earth Business Practices]
June 19, 2014
From the LA Times: "Amazon Fire smartphone includes retail bombshell" - "Of course, Firefly will work not just in bookstores but in retail establishments, from a Prada boutique to Wal-Mart. It can identify up to 100 million items."
June 20, 2014
From the NY Review of Books, Steve Coll writing about Citizen Bezos
June 23, 2014
From The Bookseller, Benedicte Page's "Amazon pressing for new terms in UK"
[if you're keeping score, that's three countries in which SPECTRE is exerting presser on publishers - US, Germany, and now the UK]
June 24, 2014
From Melissa Eddy, writing in the NY Times: "German Publishers Seek Amazon Enquiry" - "The publishers contend that Amazon’s action should be considered 'extortion.'"
SPECTRE: SPecial Executive for Counter-Intelligence Terrorism Revenge and Extortion
June 25, 2014
“His main motivation is not to make money selling phones, but to encourage customers to buy even more stuff – from books and DVDs, to nappies and pet food – from Amazon. Specifically, he wants them to sign up and buy from Amazon Prime, a special service that offers free speedy delivery, ebooks and access to an online library of films and TV shows for £79 a year. Analysts at UBS reckon Amazon will lose £176m on smartphones this year and up to £330m next year. To make up for this, each phone owner would have to spend £207 more on Amazon products than the average customer.
This might well happen because the phone is primarily designed as a shopping device. It has a button called Firefly, which allows users to take a photograph of an object and immediately see its listing on Amazon. The software, which is linked to the user's Amazon account and credit card, can also recognise music – much like Shazam – and direct you to buy the album or concert tickets on Amazon.
Bezos, who is normally seen in jeans and a formal blazer, spent as much of the 90-minute presentation speaking about the success of Amazon Prime as he did on the new phone.
The numbers explain why. The average Prime member spends £719 a year on Amazon, £411 more than a regular user. Prime members' purchases and membership fees make up more than a third of Amazon's US profits. And membership is projected to rise 150%, to 25 million, by 2017.”
Also from The Guardian, Alison Flood wrote "New Amazon terms amount to 'assisted suicide for book industry, experts claim' "According to book industry bible the Bookseller, to whom UK publishers spoke on condition of anonymity, Amazon is putting publishers under "heavy pressure" to introduce new terms. The Bookseller reports that these include the proviso that "should a book be out of stock from the publisher, Amazon would be entitled to supply its own copies to customers via its print-on-demand facilities", and that "books cannot be sold for a lower price than Amazon's anywhere, including on a publisher's own website".
June 26, 2014
Agence France-Press: French lawmakers adopt 'anti-Amazon' bill to help out small bookshops'
As we noted in a post on June 21, 2012, bookselling in France has always been much different.
July 1, 2014
From the New Zealand Herald, "Amazon Defends Tactics Aganst Publisher Hachette"
July 3, 2014
July 7, 2014
In The Independent, author Emma Chapman asks "Do you want to live in a world run by Amazon? Their plans for domination of the digital world are deeply concerning."
we asked the same thing in our 2/3/12 post, Welcome to the Company Town and the Company’s Rules
July 8, 2014
July 11, 2014