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Sat Nov 30, 2019, 08:05 AM

Ethical alternatives to Amazon

My husband and I are starting to consider weaning from Amazon. It's not easy, I am a librarian, and I have my Kindle Fire with me all the time.

I found this link, which is an aggregate of other links, and am looking through it now.

https://threshold.us/c/cancelprime/amazon-alternatives?fbclid=IwAR1ESr28WBNufTAvbmNcpdt8_QtFxOuSRGRC9x7bkeSMiP8ikr0Lnf4nk3c&fbclid=IwAR1vle94UcYxhtD3tRLdR92rHIVpXcUfwo56qh6F1tqFAs9rK0rLdJCVhm0

16 replies, 2525 views

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 08:09 AM

1. Thanks!we had to buy receipt books and Amazon was 3x the price of

Neighborhood office supplies store. I know. gas and time, but damn!

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:13 AM

2. ebay and libraries

ebay is a dwindling aspect of my life. sales cratered for small sellers months ago. it's wasting my tiime as they focus on bigger sellers and items, corporations, and those who embrace their rules which squeeze sellers to the bone. All ebay wants to do is compete with Amazon. That's why they push Fast 'n Free (shipping), and bury low priced goods. It's all about the money.

my county library has always had a conservative bend in the books they buy. They will get 2-3 copies of Jerome Corsi/Limbaugh/O'Reilly, and only 1 or none of an occasional liberal book. The conservative books just sit, no one checks them out, and then they get a prominent spot for display on the shelves. The library board is pro-business/real estate from the area, and I think perhaps that is where it is coming from.

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Response to bucolic_frolic (Reply #2)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:29 AM

4. The stats should tell the librarians

which books are being checked out. You should discuss this with the librarian. Our jobs are not to make collection development decisions based on our personal beliefs, but rather data driven by patron needs.

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Response to essme (Reply #4)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 01:39 PM

16. Actually I did, several years ago

and was told all purchaes decisions are made at the main library. They take suggestions from everyone, but no guarantee they will ever actually buy a book. They'll have 5 copies of Rush Limbaugh but none of Haynes Johnson, and yes the conservative books are always in stock in numbers on the shelf because no one reads them, and generally the liberal book is on the shelf but when it first comes out it's hard to get. They also failed to have a rather famous mid-1900s book by Milovan Djilas. Can't recall the name but I wanted to read it because it was a staple in college history courses.

There's some library association that recommends all libraries buy such and such, that could be where the problem is. I think they only ever got one copy of one of Thom Hartman's books.

I mentioned to a local politician that tax dollars were being used in this manner, to in effect censor political beliefs, he said yes, absolutely. Of course he's a Democrat too!

THanks for your take on things. I don't blame librarians. I blame the Central Committee that purchases books that is stacked with Republicans. It's even worse at some of the branch libraries. Some are mainstream, some get every conservative book imaginable.

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:14 AM

3. Amazon is not unethical.

Republicanism is unethical.

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Response to gulliver (Reply #3)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:31 AM

5. I don't know about that

Have you seen the stories about the culture and climate of the warehouses, and delivery methods? It's not good. Don't get me wrong- when I say I need to be weaned from Amazon, it's because I use them all the time.

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Response to essme (Reply #5)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:48 AM

7. It may be in need of improvement (what human thing isn't?)

But it's not unethical. I don't like some things about Amazon, but I don't condemn them. A lot of people work there. A lot of people get good products there.

Note that Trump hates Amazon, because Bezos is liberal and owns the Washington Post. Therefore, we need to be careful our feelings aren't being manipulated through innuendo propagated by those who follow Republicanism and other bad actors like Russia.

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Response to gulliver (Reply #7)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:54 AM

8. Maybe you and I differ on the definition

of ethical. I personally believe that poor working conditions are unethical. For the same reason, we do not shop at Walmart.

I DO "condemn" them. If you disagree, fine. I really don't care. I posted this because there are others that might feel the same, and would like the link aggregate.

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Response to essme (Reply #8)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 11:09 AM

12. Liberals fighting against liberalism in the name of liberalism

...is a main concern of mine. I don't condemn it, but I try to point it out when I think I see it. I see it as a mistake, not unethical. Unethical is too strong a word.

Helping Trump against Amazon is, I'm sure, not your intent. I'm just warning others to avoid it.

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Response to gulliver (Reply #7)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:58 AM

9. Bezos isn't a liberal. He may be on social issues and he's not crazy...but it ends there.

That’s how far right this country is I guess...that bezos could be mistaken for a liberal! LOL

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Response to gulliver (Reply #7)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 11:37 AM

15. Bezos is a notorious sweatshop employer/slavedriver. People mean nothing to him.

All he knows is exploitation to enrich his own pockets. He would replace employees with robots in a heartbeat.

The main reason he is leaving the Washington Post alone is that he knows the long-term value of the paper depends on its journalistic reputation. Besides, he can afford it.


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Response to essme (Reply #5)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:59 AM

10. Same stories come out of Fed Ex and UPS...are we boycotting them too? nt

 

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 10:35 AM

6. I buy books from thriftbooks.com and abebooks.com

They are cheaper and you buy directly from a reseller cutting out amazon. Some of the same sellers also sell on amazon which cost more.

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 11:02 AM

11. Ethical alternatives to me is shopping around. Amazon doesn't always have the best price and

 

sometimes when I buy something I want to be able to return it to a store with ease. If I lived in the sticks, or didn't have a car or was elderly I'd be damn glad for all these shipping and buying options online.

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 11:28 AM

13. Good article, thanks

I am now hooked on Overdrive and Libby for audiobooks...unfortunately my local library doesn't support the hoopla or similar, will call them and see if they can get on board. Probably expensive! But a lot of patrons would use these services. As for Amazon...heck, Jeff and I are practically on a first name basis. Their prices are often not the best, so you have to shop around. My rural area does not have any of the big stores closer than 100 miles so over the years Amazon has been very good for me and my small farm business.

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sat Nov 30, 2019, 11:32 AM

14. "As powerful as it is, Amazon is set to be much more powerful"

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/30/business/amazon-baltimore.html

Prime Mover: How Amazon Wove Itself Into the Life of an American City
For most people, it’s the click that brings a package to their door. But a look at Baltimore shows how Amazon may now reach into Americans’ daily existence in more ways than any corporation in history.
By Scott Shane
Nov. 30, 2019

BALTIMORE — Another big Prime Air 767 takes off from Baltimore-Washington International Airport — where Amazon’s shipping last year eclipsed that of FedEx and U.P.S. put together — and wheels above the old industrial city. Below, the online giant seems to touch every niche of the economy, its ubiquity and range breathtaking.

To the city’s southeast stand two mammoth Amazon warehouses, built with heavy government subsidies, operating on the sites of shuttered General Motors and Bethlehem Steel plants. Computers monitor workers during grueling 10-hour shifts, identifying slow performers for firing. Those on the floor earn $15.40 to $18 an hour, less than half of what their unionized predecessors made. But in Baltimore’s postindustrial economy, the jobs are in demand.

Near the Inner Harbor are the side-by-side stadiums of the Ravens and the Orioles, where every move on the field is streamed to Amazon Web Services for analysis using artificial intelligence. Football players have a chip in each shoulder pad and baseball players are tracked by radar, producing flashy graphics for television and arcane stats for coaches.

Up in northwest Baltimore, a pastor has found funding to install Amazon Ring video cameras on homes in a high-crime neighborhood. Privacy advocates express alarm at proliferating surveillance; footage of suspects can be shared with the police at a click. But the number of interested residents has already outstripped the number of cameras available.

In City Hall downtown and at Johns Hopkins University a few miles away, procurement officers have begun buying from local suppliers via Amazon Business — and even starred in a national marketing video for the company. Buyers say the convenience more than justifies interposing a Seattle-based corporation between their institutions and nearby businesses. Critics denounce the retail giant’s incursion into long-established relationships. It is a very Amazon dispute.

Anirban Basu, a Baltimore economist who has studied the region for years, is skeptical of apocalyptic claims about Amazon, saying Sears and Walmart were both once seen as all-powerful. But he called Amazon a “profit-margin killer” and said it should be scrutinized, particularly because technological trends that include artificial intelligence, driverless trucks, drones and new payment systems all play to its advantage.

“All these things are a threat to other industries,” Mr. Basu said. “But they’re all good for Amazon. As powerful as it is, Amazon is set to be much more powerful.”

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