Senator Calls Out


This makes me pretty happy.
Yeah. Comparison shopping is positively un-American and should probably be made illegal.
I've decided to stop supporting amazon. A couple of days ago I was in a little mom and pop toy store and -- no lie-- this woman comes in and asks to look over this huge $100+ item that they had to bring down from a shelf for her. She looked it over, took a pic and said "thanks", I have to think it over.
Did I mention this little toy store provides a lovely space to look over merch, employs locals and pays sales taxes?
@3, I'm on board too. I normally don't boycott based on this kind of thing, but I agree with Senator Snowe: This is a bridge too far. If Amazon hadn't already picked fights over paying sales taxes and operated a warehouse in PA with no air conditioning, maybe this wouldn't push me over the edge. But they did, and this did.
I am kinda torn by this Amazon price check thing, because on the one hand I am solidly on the side of the future, but on the other it is a bit of a dick move toward small businesses. I guess it wouldn't sit so uneasily with me if there were a way to make it target the, well, Targets, Costcos, and Best Buys of the world instead of smaller retailers.

If I go into Fry's, and I ask them to price check Amazon, they will pull up the product, and then beat the price by 10%. (I've gotten some good bargains that way!)

So, this is Amazon doing the same in reverse.
@3: That's not like the Amazon app. She could have just been taking a picture to determine how it would look at home or to get approval from someone.
"not promote anti-competitive behavior "

Isn't she best known for being a shill for the health insurance industry?

Also, as I said on the previous article on this topic, the brick and mortar stores also do pricematching.
The sooner the corporatocracy and their paid SCOTUS "Corporations Are People With More Rights Than Citizens" are removed ...

The better for America!
This can't be stopped. Wal Mart already hollowed out Main Street all over this country--like it or not, people voted with their wallets. Just 'cause Amazon got all vertically integrated with it and got some bad press doesn't mean this isn't going to be a permanent part of the retail scene.
Conventional wisdom says that the big box stores will be more harmed by Amazon's price check app than small businesses will be. Stowe is being disingenuous (surprise!) in defending "Main Street businesses", when she's really just a shill for Wal-Mart, Target, etc.
Change is painful for small businesses. I love my neighborhood stores and will continue to patronize them as long as that makes sense to me. But, everyone needs to realize that Amazon has introduced a technological game changer, and its competition will have to adapt or suffer.
If you can't differentiate yourself from Amazon with your quality of service, or on price, you will lose at some point.
Regulation can delay it, but change is as inevitable as the elimination of typing pools and most clerical non-value add jobs.
Not to defend the promotion, but it was a 24-hour-only offer. I mean, I'm sure it was intended to get people thinking about the savings they might glean from seeing something in a store and buying it online, but a Senator calling for a company to end a promotion that had already ended two days earlier seems a little empty.
Dickish move by Amazon. The honey badger of retailers.
@ SecretBYUBottomBoy: Amazon also employs locals and pays sales tax in Washington State. BTW, I love me some Mormon bottom boys!

Sure, I don't like the idea of this being directed at small businesses but I am sure it happens to Amazon all the time. I found something on Amazon just last week but needed it that day so I took their price to Office Depot down the street and they matched the price.

Just to be clear about what is going on here: Amazon is essentially turning every retail establishment into its showroom. Retailers pay rent and wages so that consumers can see the products up close and decide if they are the right fit, etc. Amazon's game is to free-ride on all of that effort by encouraging people to check stuff out at the store and then buy it from Amazon.

And on top of that, Amazon benefits (in many states) by not paying the sales tax that local retailers cannot avoid.

Businesses should have to compete with each other for customers, but Amazon is undermining an important business model and is competing on an uneven playing field. And it is doing this shamelessly, even gleefully.

So anyway, I won't be buying from Amazon anymore.
@12 - Completely agreed DOUG.
Also note Amazon's offer was only vs. brick n' mortars, not other online vendors.
@12 and @14, don't worry, since she's a republican and fairly reasonable, for the crime of for having a human heart (or the equally egregious crime of trying to make herself look like she does) she will be torn to pieces by the feral dogs of the far right when she's up for re-election.
@12. wtf is 'conventional wisdom' ? thats the dumbest expression to use to back up an arguement . amazon is a take no prisoners business that works well for some (many?) consumers, but seems to care very little about their place in the 'Commons' or the negative side effects of their biz practices. so it seems to me that other businesses ( their competitors) and other stakeholders have every right and obligation to use whatever tactics they can bring to defend their turf.
@21: I agree, "conventional wisdom" is sort of a lazy expression. Delete the first five words of my post @12 and I'll stand by it.
theres a good essay in NY TImes today about this same subject...comments from authors and other industry folks. great reading...check it out!