I begin a new segment on Stay on Fountain with a picture of Lisa Simpson, my official Corporate Watchdog logo (until I get a cease and desist letter from Fox Entertainment).

I’m here to ruin your Amazon shopping experience today. You like those discounts, yes? Got a lot of Christmas presents this year from the old brick-n-mortar company known as The Great Dot Com, right? Reading this article on a Kindle, are you?

Well, here’s several balloon poppers:

Item One: Amazon dropped the price of a self-published author’s book to $0, never told him, and won’t be paying him for it.

James Crawford self-published his zombie novel “Blood Soaked & Contagious” at $5.99 in the Kindle Store. He also published it in the Nook store at the same price. Nook has a “Sample” option that allows you to read a selection of the book for free. Crawford allowed this and made the first three chapters available on Nook, with the option to buy.

Amazon’s algorithm picked this up and, due to a stipulation in their terms to match your sales at another store, dropped the price of his entire book to $0. He proceeded to “sell” over 6,000 copies.

Mr. Crawford was unsure of how long this had been going on, as Amazon never contacted him about this error. He will not be paid for his loss of money.

Okay, it’s a little “ouch.” Nothing outrageous here. He got lost in the holes of a system that’s in its infancy. And big deal! If I had to hang a black wreath on my door every time an author lost money unfairly, I’d never leave my home. What about this, though?…

Item Two: Amazon’s Flow app is for assholes.

The Flow app, which debuted on Droids in November, allows and promotes customers to go into other stores, big or small, and scan barcodes of items, which will let them buy it cheaper on Amazon because Amazon has the cheapest prices out there because they staff a revolving door of minimum wage temp desperates for their warehouses instead of benefited full-time employees.

But come on! Comparison shopping is what made the 50’s America great. And so what, they’re hiring temps who will be laid off if they hurt themselves on the job and then don’t show up the next day? At least Amazon’s creating jobs! Remember JOBS?

Item Three: Amazon’s Price Check app is for ASS. HOLES.

A slutty cousin of the Flow app, the new Price Check app, which debuted December 10, is set to do the same thing, allowing customers to scan barcodes to compare prices (and collect consumer data for free), AND on top of that, if you do that, Amazon will give you 5% (up to $5) off your purchase. But only if you walk into a store, collect information and give it to Amazon, and then leave without buying anything.

But come on! I mean….ehh….well, yes, that’s very cheap and greedy and…bad.

Item Four: Republican Senator Olympia Snowe says that people who use Amazon’s Price Check app should be kicked in their assholes, and since those people ARE assholes themselves, they should be kicked in their asshole faces, followed by their actual assholes.

Madame Snowe (who sounds like the world’s best X-Men bad guy) contacted Amazon and delivered a press release condemning Amazon’s Price Check app as being anti-Main Street and anti-small business. She’s asking consumers to, please, not do this very tawdriest of things.

Typical! Typical Republican bullshit coming straight outta WASHINGT– oh, what? She’s right. Damn reaching across the aisle.

So it appears that we have something of a liberal and conservative argument against this little company’s recently transpired doings. What are your thoughts on the matter?

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Written by Adam Sass

Adam Sass

Adam is a writer of gay-themed sci-fi thrillers. He lives in Los Angeles with his nurse fiancé and dachshund. Keep up with what he’s drinking on Twitter @TheAdamSass. Read more finger-wagging opinion & gay news with the new Stay on Fountain e-book: “A Look at the Great Gay Tipping Point”.