Amazonâ€™s scorched-earth campaign: Why the Internet giant started a war - Salon.com
Geege Schuman stashed this in AMZN
On May 10, the New York TimesÂ reportedÂ that, as part of an effort to negotiate better contractual terms from Hachette, Amazon had been for months making it difficult for Amazon users to purchase books by Hachette writers. Books that normally would be delivered in two or three days now required two or three weeks. Banner advertisements on author pages added insult to injury by promoting â€śsimilar books for lower prices.â€ť Hachette authors exploded in criticism, and even some longtime defenders of the company, like the New York Times technology columnist Farhad Manjoo, called the behavior anÂ â€śugly spectacle to behold.â€ť
But so far, Amazon hasnâ€™t backed down, and thatâ€™s nothing short of amazing â€” not to mention troubling.
Amazon has historically been extraordinarily sensitive to bad press, lest it run the risk of encouraging consumers of its services to think twice about the online giant. Everything Jeff Bezos does, so the story goes, puts the consumer front and center. So when Amazon says â€“Â as it did in aÂ press releaseÂ this week detailing its side of the business dispute with Hachette â€” that â€śwe regret the inconvenience,â€ť weâ€™re suddenly in new, uncharted, alien territory.
The companyâ€™s enormous self-confidence comes through even clearer at the conclusion of its press release, in the form ofÂ a link to an opinion pieceÂ that Amazon says â€śoffers a wider perspectiveâ€ť on the issue. The blog post, written by the co-founder of a small literary publisher, attacks the New York Times reporters who broke the story for their â€śalarmist zeal,â€ť calling their article â€śpoppycockâ€ť and dismissing the public reaction as a â€śkerfuffle of rage.â€ť
Think about that for a second. To convey its opinion more fully, Amazon directed readers to wildly biased rant. Tell us how you really feel, Jeff Bezos!
I'm beginning to think he doesn't have the world's best interests at heart.