There isn't a thing for sale on Amazon that you can't buy somewhere else. Consider doing that...
I'm not opposed to Amazon negotiating better deals with their suppliers. I'm opposed to them treating their own customers like bargaining chips and collateral damage. I don't like being jerked around for the benefit of a huge company having a dick fight with another huge company.
Wonder how long it will be before people finally get the message the Amazon is not there for the good of either the customer or the product supplier -- only for the pockets of Jeff Bezos? How many of these merchandise unavailabilities is it going to take before people go back to looking first at the web sites of the manufacturing retailer?
Its almost like you didn't bother to watch The Colbert Report in which his hachette titles are available at Powells Books of Portland and he was betting Powells could sell more of them than Amazon.…
Is there even any indication that Time Warner is fighting back and not kowtowing to Amazon's demands? Or is this, in actual fact, some sort of dick-waving preemptive action on Amazon's part?
While its stupid for Amazon to list such an item (one they aren't currently selling) at all, This is a pretty standard "negotiating" tactic of big retailers. Costco for instance does this all the time.
@ 3 When people stop getting great deals on the Amazon probably.
In short, Amazon places these discounts over their customers' needs.
Let's come back down to Earth here. Agreed, Amazon sucks, but does anyone NEED the lego movie immediately upon release?

This isn't a transplant organ or bomb defusing robot... We're still just talking about petty consumerism here.
Uh, at the risk of not going with the flow, I feel compelled to point out that a company not offering something on PRE-order is not a reason to call them a terrible company.

I understand that some people don't like Amazon's agressive business practices. Thats a reasonable opinion. But Amazon is not "plac[ing] these discounts over their customers' needs." You dont need to pre-order the lego movie. Thats not a need for any person. Amazon has been incredibly effective at helping customers to find and buy products, and they are willing to NOT facilitate that convenience if it doesnt benefit them. Go Figure. And its really no big deal.
Glad someone is finally willing to stand up for Warner Brothers.
It's maybe slightly inconvenient, but I guess I must have missed the part about our sacred consumer right to pre-order a product. Does Scarecrow do pre-sales?
When Costco temporarily stopped carrying Coke in 2009 did slog cover that?
I understand some of the reasons why Amazon is a terrible company, but I don't think that this is one of them.
If Amazon decides not to sell a productither because they couldn't negotiate a better deal (or for any other reason), that doesn't necessarily "block their customers' access to that vendor's products". They just can't buy it from Amazon on, they'll buy it from a third-party seller on, and most customers probably wouldn't even know the difference, especially if it's a vendor who uses Amazon's fulfillment service, where the customer can get free/cheap shipping.
Why the Amazon bashing? They can provide me products cheaper than a brick and mortar. If the b&m doesn't want to keep up with the 21st Century, why should I pay for their antiquated business model?
I support small businesses. Modern small businesses. I'm not going to hold back progress in my community by giving money to businesses that can't innovate and change. Evolve, or die and get out of the evolutionary space so that those who can evolve have the space to do so.
Won't somebody please think of Warner Bros.?! That little mom-and-pop operation is getting screwed!
Your sense of entitlement must be really out of control, like a really bad yeast infection. One of the great things about Amazon is that they negotiate rates for their customers so we can make more affordable purchases and often times get free shipping. If this is worth writing about, you may need an intervention. You have an addiction to online shopping...
The Stranger's hate hard-on for Amazon continues. Paul Constant's life will end if he can't pre-order The Lego Movie. STOP THE FUCKING PRESSES, Y'ALL!
The funny thing is, though, I never thought I'd see The Stranger act just like The Seattle Times. Maybe the two papers should coordinate a Amazon Hate Circle-Jerk together.

That "great" thing drives legitimate companies out of business. For more information, look up what Wal-Mart did to Rubbermaid.
The flipside of Amazon strong-arming suppliers to sell their products at or below cost is Amazon refusing to compensate smaller vendors for the services they provide to Amazon. Amazon is big enough that a lawsuit won't hurt them, and the vendor can't go to court or publicly shame Amazon out of fear of "alienating" a bigger company.


Too bad those small business can't "negotiate" sweetheart deals for themselves, eh?
Certainly we have more pressing concerns than this.

I'm sure these multi-billion dollar companies will sort out their little squabble. God forbid anyone goes without the Lego Movie for a few more days.
LMFAO...more amazon bashing...The Stranger is just looking silly now.

and good ole keshmeshi open its mouth and swallows every last drop

I'm sure Bezos is just shaking in his boots that a bunch of $15 hour wannabe loser writers have it out for him.
shit's for sale right now, dumbass.…

unless of course, you just have to have something you can put on the shelf.
@21, those small businesses absolutely can negotiate sweetheart deals. Small business does still thrive in America, in part for that very reason.
I will grant you that in the last 30 years, the percentage of American employees who were employed by small businesses has decreased dramatically. But to imply that sweetheart deals and strongarm tactics are the reason why is correlation implying causation.
Uhhh you guys do know that Time Warner (along with other companies) purposely delay the release of movies to Netflix & Redbox, so they don't eat up DVD sales? Did ya? Did ya know this?…

If anything Amazon is "sticking it to the man" where Netflix and Redbox could not. But then this doesnt fit the theme of "Amazon bad!!!" theme being pushed by The Stranger.
I'm done with The Stranger--they are clearly putting the needs of sensationalist news reporting over the needs of their intellectual readers.

Christ. Cover important fucking issues like gun control, class warfare, gerrymandering, etc. etc. Stop dicking around with corporate negotiations because you can't order your damn disney movie before it even comes out.

This is just stupid.
Someone kindly explain where on Scarecrow's website from the 90's I can (pre-)order the Lego Movie.

Nice projection. You're the one sucking Amazon's cock.


Prove it, or shut the fuck up.
Until you boycott all posts by Paul Constant, this is the best you can expect from the Slog.

Paul posts inflammatory headline about Amazon, we go "what the fuck now??," Paul gets his clicks and comments. Paul's bottom line is tied to these clicks and comments. His job performance and compensation are based upon them.

In short, Paul places these clicks and comments over his readers' needs.

Boycott Paul Constant Slog posts.

I will leave all the cocksucking to you. You seem to be doing such a fine job of it - as you seem to do it with every post you do.

get your $15 an hour yet? winner!
@29, the world proves it for me. Look around. See small businesses? See them open? Done. As far as proving small businesses can still get sweetheart deals, I'm under NDA.

Now can the hostility, person up, and learn how wrong you are.
Taken in the context of the larger stories of how Amazon treats publishers (large or small) and its own workers, I don't think the issue is that Warner Bros. will be hurt. The bigger, continuing argument is against Amazon's ethics and manner of treating people who are not directly handing them cash (but upon whose work Amazon relies).

It is funny that some people here are complaining that the Stranger is pursuing this argument--biasedwhich by itself shows the paper's unreaonable bias, even if the argument is largely based on actual facts--and complaining that this particular instance is special--because Warner Bros is big and (implicitly) movies and the people who make them (and therefore rely upon profits from them) are not as special as books and their creators--which proves the Stranger's bias and lack of reason, thus denying the importance of the pattern.

In fact, reporting on this (even if it is somehow less meaningful than when smaller companies, individulas, or books are involved) shows the Stranger's interest in recognizing patterns of behavior (i.e. how Amazon conducts its business).

The patterns are what is important. One can't rationally deny that just because this time one cares less. One's apathy doesn't render the overarching story (of which this is but a part) bullshit.

Those objecting to Paul's article may, of course, remain unconvinced by Paul et al's arguments against Amazon. However, their method of dismissing those arguments is in this case spurious, disingenious, or (charitably) ignorant of how arguments are carried out over time in public. This undermines their criticism and overall skepticism.

It is much more frank to simply admit to not caring about ethics, as some here have done. Hooray for them.
I'm still waiting for Amazon to take on Comcast. It'll be like Godzilla vs Mothra.
@33, I do care about ethics. I also use Amazon wherever possible. I support how Amazon does its business, and feel we would all benefit if more companies acted like it. Amazon isn't perfect, but it is more like Google (which at one point had "Don't be Evil" as their motto) and less like M$ or Apple. It is easily in the top 10% of "good" companies on the face on the planet.
@Post Mortem: Those objecting to Paul's article may, of course, remain unconvinced by Paul et al's arguments against Amazon.

Good job, you figured it out! That's pretty clearly what's motivating every single negative comment in this thread.

Paul feels most comfortable preaching to the choir. Convincing the unconvinced isn't really what Paul is about. If you hate Amazon, or you hate gender normative men (see, for example, @keshmeshi), Paul Constant is your man. Otherwise, his writing comes off as demon wrestling.
Amazon's the worst.
I'm curious as to how you are supposed to sell a product when you haven't finished negotiating the price?
@36 I don't hate Amazon. I have a Prime membership and a Freetime my son uses all the time. I am typing this from my Kindle fire. Yet I still understand Paul's purpose in writing this article and his overarching point, because I understand argumentation and am capable of both paying atyention and thinking. The irony of people complaining that this article is pointless and Paul is biased is that it is their irrational bias which makes them think so.

@35 see:…………
*Freetime membership
"Amazon places these discounts over their customers' needs."
Customers don't need the LEGO movie. Customers want lowest prices for the LEGO movie. If they want to pay more, they can go elsewhere or they can pay nothing at Kickasstorrents or Pirate Bay.
Merriam Webster's definition of need (2, a): "lack of something requisite, desirable, or useful".

You will note that the inclusive disjunct allows two ways for a pre-order to be a need, and the same two ways for ownership of a movie to be a need. Both may be desirable or useful, and lacking.

People who have been quibbling over Paul's word choice either do not understand the language they are using (and thus should probably not criticize other people's use of it) or else are intentionally misunderstanding him for the purpose of having something petty to nit-pick (which shows an apparent paucity or smallness of counter-arguments against his anti-Amazon stance).
#39, your links fail to satisfy.,, a blog, and a hit piece on wikipedia entitled controversies (how's that for a neutral PoV?) are not reputable news sources. Amusingly enough, Griffey's blog reminded me of more reasons to shop at Amazon, not less.
The piece was particularly odd. I've worked in assembly line warehouses before. While most may not track your every move as much, the average warehouse has a much more oppressive daily procedure than anything at Amazon. Heck, Dick's employees at 45th are more overworked than an Amazon warehouse employee.
It is a matter of perspective. Amazon isn't great, but the number of worse places (even worse places heralded as great) is legion.
@43 When I worked at Dick's, I never experienced anything like the conditions at Amazon warehouses (which have been widely reported).

I find it somewhat odd and rather telling that you simultaneously reject the links I offer for superficial reasons*, and judiciously engage with some carefully chosen bits of those pages.

As to perspective, the number of retailers with power and reach greater than Amazon's is few. Their actions and our relationship with them carry more weight than many others, as they impact greater numbers of people and more markets, and can have a disproportionate impact in areas like bookselling and publishing.

Besides, the argument isn't, "Amazon is the worst company known to man, therefore something must be done"; it is, roughly, "The disregard and ruthlessness with which Amazon treats many of its employees, business partners, and competitors is beginning to impact its customers. If its maltreatment of others was excused before on the basis of positive customer experience with the company, we should consider this change troubling, and rethink our relationship with Amazon." So it doesn't matter to the discussion at hand that, say, retailers have directly or indirectly abetted or profited from Thai slavery in fisheries, or if Wallmart is better, worse, or morally and economically equivalent to Amazon. Those are separate issues, unless your only choice is between Amazon and one of their moral lessers (which, in most instances, it is not).

*Especially the term 'controversies', which simply makes clear that some people have take issue with some things Amazon has done, while allowing that there are other sides. It is, in fact, a neutral word which accurately describes its subject. The word occurs on a page with lots of sources, whose factual information can be checked both via those references and through further research. Yet the use of this term allows you to somehow dismiss everything on the page.
@44, which Dick's did you work at? 45th is the busiest of all of them. It is a very different atmosphere than say, Holman Road.

I read the controversies listed on the page. They aren't terribly neutral. As someone who edits wikipedia, I am well aware of the limitations on its content. There is nothing neutral about listing something on wikipedia about something someone takes issue with. Look at the creation-evolution controversy page. Look at the link you provided. See the difference?

Amazon does not treat its employees, competitors, or business partners ruthlessly or with disregard. Amazon treats them the same way every other company treats them, slightly better in some respects and slightly worse in others.

There is no maltreatment. Nothing is troubling.
The practice of, say, forcing workers to choose between working in an overheated warehouse and losong their jobs is not troubling? Their apparently illegal and definitely questionable practices of evading taxes (over which they have been and continue to be taken to court) is not troubling? Their arguably monopolistic business practices are not worrisome? To you, perhaps, but that is hardly a rebuttal to those who are concerned.
As an Amazon customer I suppose you have to decide whether access to books and movies from the country's largest publishers is important or if the money spent on Prime would be better spent elsewhere.
If you don't agree with their tactics, STOP BUYING from Amazon. And complain to them.

Over a year ago, I read and realized the unethical business practices that Amazon takes part in. The solution? I've started paying a few extra dollars to independent bookstores that are in my community, in my city and that will help hard-working people instead of simply lining the pockets of Amazon execs.

Amazon = Walmart = Billions of dollars to the heads of the company, but not much else.
@46, what "overheated warehouse" are you referring to? Just because a building isn't A/C set to a perfect 68 degrees does not automatically make working conditions deplorable. Do you think working fries at Dick's is a cool, relaxing job?
M$ and Boeing have evaded more taxes than Amazon has owed in its entire existence.
Get some perspective. You desperately need it.
You can, in fact, pay $15 to watch the 100-min. commercial in question on Amazon Instant Video right this instant. If you have the bandwidth, you can simultaneously order the products depicted in the commercial from, direct from, or from any number of other retailers; or, you can use the magic of the search engine to discover multiple large online retailers who will allow you to pre-order the commercial on DVD. I see lots of reasons why this is a sign that our society is going to hell in a handbasket. The failure of one online retailer to offer a pre-order of this particular DVD at this particular moment in time, however, is not among them.
For a reasonable discussion of this situation (something you will not see on Slog), you might try here:…
@49,had you fully read and understood the links I offered, you would know what I was referring to. Had you fully read and understood my posts, you would know I am only concerned with showing that this article is a relevant part of a rational, ongoing argument against Amazon's business practices ( and makes sense as such) in the face of irrational, dismissive responses such #50's. But you haven't read or understood these fully. That isn't my fault.
@52, I did read and understand them. They just provided no objective, unbiased information. While I understood them, I understood them to be what they are, as opposed to thinking they were viable sources. Indeed, when your data is as accurate as reading tea leaves, this article does look like a relevant part of a rational, ongoing argument against Amazon's business practices in the face of irrational, dismissive responses. Using the same kind of logic, Putin is trying to raise Pol Pot from the dead. When you lower the bar to that level, you lose all sense of perspective. A lack of perspective is a hallmark of your posts on this topic.
That isn't my fault.
This isn't the whole story. WB pulled the Standard $29.95 3D version, leaving only the $39.95 Everything is Awesome 3D version available. Those shitheads at Amazon then gave everyone that preordered the Standard 3D version a $10.00 credit towards the Everything is Awesome version. THEN they stopped the preorders. So everyone that preordered the Standard BR will get that version, everyone that ordered the EIA version will get that version, and everyone that ordered the Standard 3D version is getting a FREE upgrade to the EIA version from AMAZON.

What a bunch of jerks over there...
@53 There are verifiable facts, incidences, and cases of law in those links, but who cares, because they are attached to viewpoints? And besides, lots of businesses do bad or illegal things--which we might as well pretend are the same, as though moral and legal claims were indistinguishable--so who cares? But you already have your answer to that stupid refrain. Paul, a number of other Stranger writers, various people here and across the Internet of varying celebrity (or none), and not you.

I, personally, am ambivalent. But if you think I must hate Amazon in order to understand the arguments levied against it, there's your lack of perspective right there.
@55, a list of similar cases and incidents (incidences? ESL?) can be produced for most Fortune 500 companies. The list lacks context, and is artificially produced to support a preconceived notion.

Try this one last time.

I mistapped an autocomplete on my phone while waiting for Tacocat to start playing. Any person for whom English is not their primary language with the fluency I have shown would be unlikely to make that mistake except as a typographical error. In my experience, at this level of proficiency, native speakers are much more likely to make such mistakes out of confusion, especially if it is not part of a pattern of misuse.


Repetition does not make an impoverished argument any richer. Nor does it magically render people who were fans of Amazon until they started delving into reporting on them (which at least characterizes the Slate author) into people who started out with a desire to hurt or defame a company whose services they enjoyed, and thus sought out only negative information to make their case.

Nor does broad repetition of an act (or set thereof) necessarily render it acceptable, moral, legal, or desirable. Rape and murder of civilians and captives are widespread tactics in war, yet many still condemn such acts as illegal and immoral. Slavery was, at one time, a nearly global phenomenon, but this did not convince abolitionists they should just get some perspective. Petty theft and vandalism are common, but not necessarily good or excusable just because they are nearly ubiquitous. Underage college kids go on benders fairly often, and at most campuses, but that this is normal hardly makes it healthy or wise; and if some other crime is committed by these youths while under the influence, that would not surprise most of us, but its obviousness and semi-regularity doesn't make it alright. If lots of warehouses lack temperature controls, don't let air circulate, and force workers to go faster when the temperature spikes above 100° F in the midst of ten and twelve hour shifts, that doesn't make it a safe and laudable practice.

Nor does your one word refrain tackle issues of scale.

It is rather weak, and does nothing to attack my position. To clarify, I do not hold Amazon's critics to be so clearly right as to brook no disagreement. I am not suggesting that one must agree with Paul. I am instead saying that he and others like him are engaging in a fairly straightforward moral argument whose motivations and tactics make sense. Because reasonable people can disagree, even given the same information, this is not a radical or difficult stance to hold.

Telling me I need perspective about Amazon in comparison to other companies does nothing to sway me from my position because it doesn't address it. But feel free to repeat yourself if it will make you feel like you've accomplished something. I can tell you have faith in the power of reiteration, and I hear faith is comforting.
#57, If only your verbosity could equal your validity. This might actually be an interesting conversation if that were the case.

Paul Constant has been spewing anti-Amazon hate for close to a decade now on The Stranger. Several links to Amazon's "controversies" talk about Constant in particular having tirades against Amazon, pointing to behaviors that started some time between 2005 and 2007.

Constant and others had "a desire to hurt or defame a company" long before they had enough data to develop a well informed opinion of it. They are not engaging "in a fairly straightforward moral argument whose motivations and tactics make sense." They have a long reputation for unfounded anti-Amazon hit pieces, and for years nobody has been able to figure out why. Sure, this isn't a difficult stance to hold. Neither is creationism or eugenics. The easy stance is in fact most often the wrong one as it often shows a lack of...

...wait for it...


Nobody is trying to change your mind. I'm just making sure the other people reading don't fall prey to the same myopic tunnel vision you appear to be a victim of. I must admit the "pot calling the kettle black" in regards to mindless repetition is hilarious though. It makes me wonder what you're going to try and project next.
What exactly do think I am blind to?
And, I guess I should also inquire, in what way do you think my reasoning invalid? I am curious.
Well, to go back to the points I have already made...
Your reasoning is invalid because it is too limited in scope. You rail against Amazon for things every Fortune 500 company does. Your lack of ability to the see the forest for the trees leads you to come to illogical conclusions. In other words, your tunnel vision is so tight you can't see the small picture, much less the big one.

Look, I don't love Amazon. I don't love any corporation. I am an economic anarchist who would wipe currency and trade off the face of the planet if I had the power. I firmly believe the love of money is the root of all evil. But Amazon? They're normal. Average. Sure, average is horrible. But that means there are many more important windmills to tilt at. Every joule or calorie used against Amazon is one that can't be used against Wal-Mart, Apple, the RIAA or anybody else much more deserving of scorn.

You're blind to your own myopia., Constant, and others have convinced you that Amazon is a Herculean beast to be slain, a modern Lernaean Hydra. In reality, Amazon is just another wolf or coyote, not some magic monster of legend. There are more important battles to fight first, battles that will take us decades to finish, win or lose.
I am not railing against Amazon. I have offered links to opinions and documented actions as context to the argument Paul and others have made, in support of my claim that they have a reasonable and understandable position, which this particular article is a part of and which is not trivialized by this article.

You have yet to show Amazon's practices of illegally evading taxes in places like Japan, of avoiding having customers pay state taxes, of managing labour thoroughly and sometimes illegally (as in Germany) or ethically questionably (as in the case of forcing workers into heatstroke), arguably negative impact on small and local shops, or arguably monopolistic bargaining tactics are shared in kind or scale by "every Fortune 500 company", or that all those companies have the scale, reach, and broad or specific impacts that Amazon does. No doubt some companies engage in illicit or immoral behavior, and some companies have similar practices to Amazon's, but not all large companies do all of what Amazon does which might be objectionable. And not all large companies are as important to, say, publishing as Amazon, so there are different concerns at play with varying corporations.

Even if you could give convincing evidence for your hyperbole, in arguing that 'everybody does it', you neither justify those actions nor respond to my argument (which is not Paul's). In failing to respond to my position, and instead engaging Paul's, you cannot show my form to be awry, and therefore cannot show my argument to be invalid.

(Although showing the sort of position taken up by people like Paul to be unreasonable and poorly done would show that I am wrong, it would not address the validity of my argumentation. I do not feel like you have shown the argument against Amazon to be mistaken, but I am sure you would disagree.)

Your second argument, that resources are limited requires that they be too scant for Paul or those who share his position to write other columns, and for readers to have too little time to read those columns (which is trivially true if your issue is that no one can read everything); or else that opposition to Amazon should be so all consuming as to leave no room for campaigning against Wallmart, global warming, or police brutality. Even in just the scope of Slog, we can see the assumptions necessary to your argument utterly destroyed. Paul spends time supporting a boycott of Amazon, and still does other things. Readers see these articles, comment on them, decide to act on them or refrain from action, and still do as much for other topics.

Perhaps this is not your personal experience. I am sorry if this thread has consumed all your time and thought. I release you from any obligation to such drudgery. No one should have to focus on only one thing to the exclusion of all else ever. Go, and be free.
You are railing against Amazon. You're trumping up individuals and websites with a known irrational bias against Amazon dating back more than several years to try and convince others that their ridiculous propaganda is valid.

Avoiding state sales taxes? Most online companies do this. Tax evasion? As I mentioned before, both Boeing and M$ have evaded more in taxes. Forcing workers into heatstroke? Happens all the time, even here in King County in small businesses (especially in the light industrial corridor south of Southcenter). Arguably? If it is arguable, why are you trying to promote it as valid? Most Fortune 500 companies have a scale that dwarfs Amazon. M$ and Boeing certainly reach more people (I keep using them, due to their status as local large companies with a significant employee base) than Amazon with their products. Most companies do most of what Amazon does. Most companies are worse than Amazon.

Your form is awry in its very form. I don't have to show your argument to be invalid. It does not attempt to have validity for me to refute. Your argument is little more than links to puff pieces. You have to have something of substance before I can disprove it.

Paul has spent an inordinate amount of time, effort, and energy over numerous years ranting and raving against Amazon. picked up on it and has run with it. Even assuming that this kind of pointless attack is "fine" and that other, more important things are still talked about, this does not justify the pointless attack. Good behavior does not justify bad behavior.

This thread hasn't consumed a fraction of my thought. Why people behave the way Constant does consumes more of my thought. The trend of supporting negative cognitive behavior as something we should strive for is so fundamentally dysfunctional I have no reason why it has gained so much traction.
Your bewilderment, at least, is clear.
Well, at least you help demonstrate that thinly veiled ad hominems are often the last refuge of those who have completely lost in an argument. That's something, I suppose.
Please, by all means, declare victory in a conversation where you haven't convinced anyone of your views.
Because you polled anybody other than yourself. Stay class- oops, far too late.

Please wait...

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