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I heart Amazon, for Alii, others, and... Dr. Bob

Posted by BeardedLady on October 27, 2002, at 10:25:37

In reply to Re: Amazon business practices, posted by Dr. Bob on October 27, 2002, at 9:56:02

This is long, but I hope you'll bear with me.

After Hechinger and Home Depot came to town, I continued to pay exhorbitant prices for screws and saws at my local Mom & Pop hardware store. I continued to pay them, and they continued to thank me by name. Alas, others stopped shopping there, and only one such store remains in my area. I have my windows rescreened there every year.

It is indeed sad that these chain places have pushed the indy sellers out of business.

But in my big metropolitan city, we've had two or three independent bookstores, and two of them only sold used books. The third was a lovely little cafe where everyone in town waited in line for a fabulous jazz brunch served by art school students and a few transvestites. That has also closed. All my life I grew up with the chains like Walden and B. Dalton. I am now grateful to have a bunch of Borders and Barnes and Nobles in my area.

I embrace Amazon as a place to save money in this troubled economy. It doesn't mean I don't support the other places; I do. But there aren't any indy stores left here.


As far as I know and have read and heard, Amazon is a great place to work. Many of the jobs are not exciting to me, but lots of those who work them have opportunities they may not have had elsewhere. And I admire Jeff Bezos for pulling off an internet store with fabulous customer service. Every year, UPS delivers me something I didn't order--a mug or a gift certificate--just for being a customer.

It's a great thing to be able to support the independent merchants. Many of us are not financially capable of doing so, and most of us who are don't do it in all cases. We have pizza from Papa Johns sometimes. We take our kids three times a year for MacDonald's french fries (that's literally how often I have done this). And we shop at Macy*s, Hecht's, and the Gap because it's just too expensive to choose the independent boutiques.

Dr. Bob's linking doesn't mean that anyone has to shop at Amazon. But they are offering a free service (for the price of a monthly ISP fee, which isn't paid to Amazon), and that is to be able to preview before buying. I go there often just to read the customer reviews and recommendations and to hear music before buying from my local real-life store.

No one has to link, but please remember that you are helping the independent authors of books (check out my wonderfully talented friend Steve Parke's new book, "In the Shadow of Edgar Allan Poe") , the independent recording artists (like my all-time favorite, Ani DiFranco, whose new album is out: "So Much Shouting So Much Laughter"*), and the work of other independent struggling artists.

This, to me, is the important part. I don't want to be pushy here. We all have our causes (some of us even correct other people's grammar a little too often! : )> ). I just wanted to present an alternative view that might make people like Alii feel a little bit more comfortable with the decision of others to use the double quotes.

And when my book of poetry is released, maybe someone will double quote it on the pages of social. Of course, I won't be able to own up to it due to my top-secret true identity.

Take care, y'all.

beardy

P.S. Docbob: you need to make that work with CDs and videos, too!


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