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I have a confession to make – my name is Karen Scott, and I worry constantly about giant corporations with too much power.

So much so that when I learned back in 2003 or 2004 that Tesco was taking £1 of every £8 spent in the high streets, I started shopping at Asda and Morrison’s. I still do the odd shop at Tesco, but not as exclusively as I used to.

When Princess Diana was killed back in 1997, I stopped purchasing tabloid newspapers. Why? Because I’d been very uncomfortable about some of the methods that were used to gain information about public figures, prior to her death, but when I learned about the part the paps played in her death, I decided that I couldn’t in all consciousness endorse people who would stop at nothing to get a story.

Of course I don’t mind reading the odd tabloid paper, but it’s been years since I actually purchased one, and I intend to keep it like that for as long as possible.

My latest worry is over the fact that Google pretty much owns the internet, and that nobody else seems to think that this is a problem.

Hasn’t anybody noticed how great they are at acquiring start-up companies that have great innovative products? Blogger anybody? Youtube? Keyhole Inc? Has anybody taken any notice of their partnerships lately? Microsoft? AOL? Nokia?

Google currently have nearly 54% of the marketshare, in terms of search engine usage, which I think quite frankly, is very scary. And you guys know how I feel about Google Earth.

The problem is, they do what they do well. They’re innovative, and they continue to evolve and develop, whilst their competition are left scratching their heads. All very positive things as far as their shareholders are concerned, but I can’t help but worry, about the power they yield over Average Janes like myself.

When I attempt to conduct searches on anything other than Google, the results are poor, so I end up going back to Google. When I want to have a look at some footage that I missed on the T.V, I automatically search on Youtube, knowing that it’s going to be there. My main email account is with Gmail for God’s sake. This kind of dependency makes me nervous.

Amazon Fail wasn’t a surprise to me, given how much power Team Bezos has globally. Who was it that said ‘Power corrupts, but absolute power corrupts absolutely’?

The latest shenanigans by Amazon has convinced me that parting company with them is something that I have to do. I’ve been thinking about it for a while, but this latest debacle really was the last straw for me.

I’m going to cancel my Amazon account, and buy my books from The Book Depository and other online retailers that have a better regard for their customers.

I can’t justify continuing to support a company with such blatant disregard for its customers. I just can’t.

My little action wont make a blind bit of difference to Amazon or their profits, but in cutting ties with them, I feel like I’m taking back some of the control that I’d lost during my nine-year relationship with them.

So on Saturday, I will be removing the KKB shop links on here, and from here on in, we’ll be linking to other online retailers, rather than Amazon.

I’m not saying that this will be forever, because one never knows what will happen in the future, but certainly as of this weekend, for the forseeable, KKB will be an Amazon.com-free zone.

I feel better already.


  • Mireya
    April 16
    10:32 am

    I “divorced” from Amazon more than a year ago. What made me decide to do so was the Kindle frenzy. That’s what raised the red flag that made me decide to move away from it. I only use it for the odd discontinued item that I can’t find anywhere else but via their sellers or ebay.

    As to Google, I feel the same way that you do and I do expect at some point they will do something that will make me try to find an alternative. Problem is that with getting books I found my alternatives, but with Google I haven’t been able to find anything comparable (not even Yahoo).


  • I agree – you have to be true to yourself and do as your conscience dictates.


  • […] the true story, there are a lot of pissed off customers out there, including blogger Karen Scott. Karen’s latest post announces her intention to never shop at Amazon again and to remove the […]

  • Louise van Hine
    April 16
    10:43 pm

    It’s a good move, and this latest dustup is an excellent case in point for why Amazon should not become the GoogleEarth of the book distribution business. I am considering a similar move myself, once I figure out my alternative e-book vendors that I can get my ebooks onto my Kindle. Yeah, I got one.


  • I gave up tabloids at the exact same time and for the same reason. I later became addicted to gossip blogs, but that seems to be over, too.

    Before this latest thing, I probably averaged a couple purchases from Amazon a day. Especially with the Kindle making it so easy. I know people are, “Damn girl, get a budget,” but there it is. Amazon was also helpful when I was caring for my dying mom and could order clothes and supplies with one click.

    Since AmazonFail I have, I haven’t bought a thing from them. I canceled my pre-orders and subscriptions — about 10 things. I didn’t expect them to notice, or give 2 hoots in hell, but I can’t get beyond the damned form letters either.

    A week or so ago I posted and cross-posted how much I love my Kindle, etc. I mean, I really sort of tossed Amazon’s salad. A company has to work really hard to piss off a diehard fan in a week.

    I can’t say I’m gone forever, but every time someone mentions a book I would like, I can’t bring myself to get it from Amazon, not yet. I got such a huge TBR pile between Kindle and print, that it’s not like I’ll run out of stuff.

    I just don’t know. Even if I do go back, there’s permanent damage there. And you can’t salve the ouchies with form letters.

    (And there’s still that weird mystery picture next to my name.)


  • Bev Stephans
    April 17
    12:30 am

    Over a year ago, I divorced myself from Amazon. The only problem was that my eldest son still uses them and I usually give him a gift certificate at Christmastime. I bit the bullet, entered new accout information and I had an account again. My son got the gift certificate and I did a lot of mumbling under my breath.

    I won’t say that I haven’t used Amazon, because I did buy a 4 for 3 paperback deal plus a book that was cheaper than anywhere else. That’s it!

    As far as Google goes, they still have the best search engine, but when they start acting like Amazon, I’ll have to use Microsoft’s Live Search. Live Search sucks, but so far it’s the only one that comes close to Google.


  • CindyS
    April 17
    7:36 am

    There is an Amazon Canada but I only tried them about twice before realizing they sucked. It is hard though to stay away when I can’t find the book I want on Chapters. And for other products, their customer reviews have helped me to keep crap out of the house.

    Interesting thing about Google is just how many people work on the smallest of details. I just saw a small bit on the news about a higher up whose title I can’t remember now. They are so involved in the ‘users’ experience down to what colour a font should be. They will test all the blue hues until they find the one that their users use the most.

    I couldn’t believe how specific they were but I found their system kind of cool. So for every search and every colour on Google, it has been tested so that it is as close to perfect for the user as possible. Creepy and cool, all in one.

    Side note: I did like you after Princess Diana died. I used to buy People all the time and thought (naive) that the pictures in them were permitted. I realized after that they weren’t so I have maybe bought 2 in the ten years since.

    Now I’m addicted to Decorating Magazines. Let’s hope they don’t piss me off cause I’m truly hooked!



  • Marianne McA
    April 17
    10:23 am

    I’m staying with Amazon. And Tesco. If it gets me any brownie points at all, I don’t buy tabloids, though I would admit to the occasional ‘Hello’ magazine.

    Thought Asda was owned by Wal-Mart now? Morrisons is the one my in-laws use, but we don’t have it in N.Ireland.


  • amousie
    April 17
    6:22 pm

    I sent an e-mail today. I waited because I wanted to see how Amazon would handle the incident. Still not impressed.

    So I went into my account, removed all of my recommendations and then delete all the products that I own that I didn’t buy from Amazon.

    Will wait to see whether or not those actions stay updated before asking Amazon to delete my account.


  • I stopped buying from Amazon about a year ago. They are a horrible company who care little for authors or their customers.


  • Kylie Creel
    April 17
    11:08 pm

    I personally think that Google will take over the world someday, the more we use it the more it gets more powerful and one day, it’ll become self-aware. *insert Terminator theme here*

    As for Amazon, I try not to buy stuff there, but I do have wishlists on there because other family members use it. Plus, I have a seller account on there to where I sell books I don’t want anymore. *shrugs*


  • lilitu93
    April 19
    12:14 pm

    There are many creepy things about Google (as well as many cool things), but user testing isn’t one of them. It’s standard industry practice, though most don’t do it to the excessive level of checking various shades of blue.

    If anything, it’s worse when companies don’t take the user experience into mind, but then since I work in user experience (the design side, not the testing side), I’d be expected to say that.


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