From ROB HOPKINS
I’ve done it. I’ve closed my Amazon account. I now stand before you as an ex-Amazon account-holder. I feel curiously shaky, but at the same time empowered, excited even. While opening a new Amazon account is easy as pie, closing one is another matter altogether. I’d like to share with you how, and why, I did it.
Was it the recent Panorama programme about working conditions in those vast Amazon ‘fulfilment centres’ that tipped me across into doing something? Was it the stories about the appallingly low levels of tax Amazon pay in the UK? Was it the recent video showing Amazon’s plans to be delivering across the UK within 30 minutes through the use of drones? Was it hearing the level of taxpayers’ money that goes in sweeteners to attracting Amazon to open up in different communities, while the profits generated pour out of those same places? What actually tipped me across was a conversation I had with a book seller in my town. It was that that led me, finally, to build the steely resolve needed to close down my Amazon account.
Yes, I confess, I had an Amazon account. I buy music from my local record shop, I support my local book shops, but there are times when I need a book quickly, or feel I do, and it’s just easier and more convenient. And, if I’m honest, I love getting exciting parcels in the post. And isn’t it cheap? But as Carole Cadwalladr, who went undercover in Amazon’s Swansea ‘fulfilment centre’ for The Guardian puts it:
Our lust for cheap, discounted goods delivered to our doors promptly and efficiently has a price. We just haven’t worked out what it is yet. More…