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Amazon.com Nears 10-Year Anniversary 181

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the stuff-to-read dept.
mopslik writes "Amazon.com is nearing its 10-year anniversary. "Soon after Amazon.com Inc. debuted 10 years ago, Jeff Bezos and his handful of employees spent late summer nights packing books in a tiny warehouse, scrambling to ship a growing gush of orders. Today, the man who has grown accustomed to being hailed the king of Internet commerce runs a global powerhouse that did nearly $7 billion in sales last year, dealing in everything from banjo cases to wild boar baby back ribs." Although Bezos has drawn some ire from his collection of patents, there's no arguing that his company is one of the most successful online sites today."
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Amazon.com Nears 10-Year Anniversary

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  • by callipygian-showsyst (631222) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:37PM (#12986301) Homepage
    I want to buy it a present!
  • by Threni (635302) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:37PM (#12986305)
    And make the most of it - for legal reasons, this'll be the last 10-year anniversary party you'll be able to have without obtaining prior written consent from Mr Bozo!
  • by team99parody (880782) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:39PM (#12986318) Homepage
    It's interesting to see how Amazon's playing the patent game. In some ways it looks like they recgonise it's an absurd game and are taking out all these borderline patents that wouldd be a great case study as to why patent reform is needed.

    If he does take that approch, he could be seen as a great hero to your average /. guy, with quite a bit of positive PR. Wonder if this segment of the market matters enough for him to do this.

    • by grahamsz (150076) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:44PM (#12986389) Homepage Journal
      If your competitors play it then your hand is forced and no large corporation can afford to NOT patent random crap.

      For the most part these patents only exist to create some sort of nuclear stalemate - where your competitors are too afraid to sue you since it's certain that they violate some of your patents.
      • For the most part these patents only exist to create some sort of nuclear stalemate - where your competitors are too afraid to sue you since it's certain that they violate some of your patents.

        That's exactly what happens, although usually with a bit more negotiating than the Cold War.

        When I worked at [large builds-everything company], I heard stories of the yearly "Lawyer's Meeting", where we would meet with [other builds-everything company] and the lawyers would actually sit down and negotiate "lawsuit
      • If your competitors play it then your hand is forced and no large corporation can afford to NOT patent random crap.

        Exactly - there is such thing as getting patents defensively. If you don't get it, somebody WILL, and then they'll try to use it against you.
      • by FreeUser (11483) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @01:48PM (#12986961)
        For the most part these patents only exist to create some sort of nuclear stalemate - where your competitors are too afraid to sue you since it's certain that they violate some of your patents.

        You're joking, right? Surely you aren't really that naive.

        Amazon has already sued Barnes and Noble for "violating" (read: independently developing) one-click purchasing capabilities on their competing website. In other words, Barns and Noble were competing, in age old fashion, by trying to make their on-line store at least as convinient and easy to use as their competitors' (Amazon, in this case).

        Amazon is doing anything but collecting a portfolio of defensive patents...they are actively stockpiling offensive weapons to use against any competitor, anywhere, for any reason they like. Usually that reason is because said competitor is simply too successful for Bezos' taste.

        Add to that his sleazy misrepresentation of PriorArt as an anti-patent cooperative (when in fact he was using it as his own private research group for strengthening his own patents), and you have one asocial prick. He may be a rich and successful asocial prick, and he may have built a company that, despite its despicable patent record, does have redeaming qualities (I buy on Amazon occasionally, and as a book shop it is quite good. However, as an "inventor" it leaves a lot to be desired), but his actions define him, nevertheless, as an asocial prick.
        • Had barnes and noble been behaving like a tech company then they'd have patented crossing out a books list price and displaying their lower price.

          Then Amazon would have been afraid to sue B&N for fear of a retaliatory suit.
        • For the most part these patents only exist to create some sort of nuclear stalemate - where your competitors are too afraid to sue you since it's certain that they violate some of your patents.

          You're joking, right? Surely you aren't really that naive.... Amazon is doing anything but collecting a portfolio of defensive patents...they are actively stockpiling offensive weapons to use against any competitor, anywhere, for any reason they like.

          That may be the case, but the parent post was right t

    • It's interesting to see how Amazon's playing the patent game.

      We have a large number of patents owned by a company that is just hitting ten and will soon be a teen. The analogy of a teen driving the internet will soon be in order.

      Modern business theories teach that you must either dominate the market or die. Making a profit at what you do is not sufficient, you must either have complete control of the market or perish.

      If Amazon hires people from modern American business schools, I think it is mor

  • yawn.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by ShaniaTwain (197446) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:39PM (#12986330) Homepage
    ..dealing in everything from banjo cases to wild boar baby back ribs.

    Wake me up when I can buy banjo cases made out of wild boar baby back ribs.
    • Yahoo gave out free ice cream on their 10-yr anniversary. Wake me up when Amazon tops that.
    • EBay (Score:3, Funny)

      "Wake me up when I can buy banjo cases made out of wild boar baby back ribs."

      No, for that you need EBay.

    • Wake me up when I can buy banjo cases made out of wild boar baby back ribs.

      I don't know ... I figure anyone with need of a banjo case probably knows someone who has an in on getting wild-boar.

      But that might just be an unfair stereotype. :-P
    • Re:yawn.. (Score:2, Funny)

      by lbmouse (473316)
      "Wild Boar Baby Back Rib Banjo Cases"

      Great name for a rock band.
  • by AtlanticGiraffe (749719) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:39PM (#12986331) Homepage

    ...my birthday will be a slashdot story :D

  • Commoditization (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DanielMarkham (765899) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:41PM (#12986356) Homepage
    FTA --
    "I think Amazon's biggest challenge is itself. They've really raised the bar for the entire industry," said Kurt Peters, editor of Internet Retailer, a monthly magazine covers the business.
    Amazon is generally considered to be one of the pioneers in the field. If I remember my business theory correctly, there is a certain amount of time between when a new market opens up and when it becomes a commodity. Right now, the technical hurdles are still high enough to keep Mom and Pop out of the Amazon business (to a certain degree). But Amazon has obviously set the bar and defined the standard, even coming up with this distributed marketing deal where you can reommend books and get paid for it.
    At some point, however, you've covered all the bases. Amazon is already selling everything imaginable on that site, and they're exploring a lot of the horizontal and vertical market tie-ins. To me, this means that the industry is ripe to move towards commoditization: farming out all the stuff that Amazon does and connecting the creator of the material directly to the consumer. My two cents only.

    Learn Management, Kid! [whattofix.com]
    • by grahamsz (150076) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:52PM (#12986460) Homepage Journal
      Connecting the buyer and seller is all about trust.

      Lots of people (myself included) would rather buy from amazon marketplace rather than eBay. Amazon probably take a bigger cut, but they provide decent customer service and bail you out when things go wrong.

      Amazon have brand recognition and consumer confidence and it'll be a struggle for anyone else (particularly a non-profit organization) to garner that kind of support.
      • Ebay offers half.com as their answer to the amazon marketplace. I sometimes find cheaper prices there than at amazon's marketplace. But, unfortunately, they don't allow Canadian sellers, even they allow us to buy (with extra costs, but often worth it).
        • I've had a seller fail to ship the advertised book in each of these situations.

          It took me close to 2 months to get my money back from half.com, and in the end I did some detective work and called the seller up... Turns out it was an innocent mistake on their part and they refunded my cash - they hadn't even heard from half.com about my problem.

          Amazon had it sorted in about 2 hours.

          The plural of anecdote isn't data - but i've made my choice.
      • Most importantly to me, Amazon doesn't require the use of Paypal. After being burned by Paypal once, I will never use them again. Strangely enough, though, I got an e-mail from someone at Paypal about a FTC complaint I filed, claiming to be interested in the problem I had.

        Still, I will never use Paypal, but I do buy things from Amazon on a somewhat regular basis, and have never had an issue, and have heard of fewer people who have had problems. I agree with the parent poster.

    • Amazon lets anyone sell books through their system. Why would anyone want to start their own online bookstore (for millions of dollars) when they can just setup an Amazon frontend?
  • by Junior J. Junior III (192702) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:42PM (#12986364) Homepage
    I hear that Bezos has applied for a patent on the 10-year anniversary.
  • Nice Flamebait (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:42PM (#12986367)
    Seriusly, what does Amazon's patents have anything to do with their 10 year anniversary? Can't you have left that out of the story? What was the relevance here?

    You may not like Amazon's patents, but it's pretty irrelevant to the subject at hand. To me, this was a cheapshot for the sake of pumping up RMS' and his hordes agenda.

    I like how slashdot can't leave even this one story alone without trying to start a flamewar. The editors are the biggest trolls here.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Try switching to Sanka.
    • Re:Nice Flamebait (Score:2, Insightful)

      by mopslik (688435)

      what does Amazon's patents have anything to do with their 10 year anniversary?

      Nothing at all. It has to do with the "Although Bezos has drawn some ire from his collection of patents, there's no arguing that his company is one of the most successful online sites today" part. If anything, it goes to show that even with a group of relatively vocal opponents, Amazon has had no trouble becoming the giant that it is right now. Also, patent discussions are commonplace on Slashdot, which has an apporiate audi

    • Seriusly, what does Amazon's patents have anything to do with their 10 year anniversary?

      Name one other characteristic of Amazon that is of MORE interest to the slashdot crowd?

      You can bet Amazon's PR firm is working over-time hyping their 10th anniversary. A little anti-hype is appropriate.

      It isn't like Amazon is your kid brother and slashdot just made him cry on his 10th birthday.
  • When I was watching Amazon years ago, it seemed like it was destined to go out of business. With their seemingly pointless acquisitions of unrelated companies and the building of zShops, it was (at that time) a foregone conclusion that Amazon was buying itself into bankruptcy and that the company would be out of business before it ever showed a profit.

    In that time, it has turned itself into a profit center and the foremost bookseller not only on the web but even among the traditional bricks and mortar boo
    • > With their seemingly pointless acquisitions of unrelated companies and the building of zShops,

      Indeed. This is my beef with the "knowledgable" analysts and journalists who write about the reasons for success or failures of ventures. If the company fails, they would point to these acquisitions as the blunder and the reason the company fails. Today, these same analysts would probably call it a brilliant move on part of amazon.

      Sometimes, in the same breath, they will call a move by a successful compan
  • Oh come on (Score:5, Funny)

    by DrMrLordX (559371) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:42PM (#12986370)
    Is this really news? Approaching a 10th anniversary, hmm? Are you going to run the same story when we actually reach their 10th anniversary? This is nothing more than a dupe in the making.

    I suppose you could run a story about the aftermath of Amazon.com's 10th anniversary once it's all over, too. Fine journalism, that.
  • Amazon and patents (Score:5, Interesting)

    by daniil (775990) <evilbj8rn@hotmail.com> on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:44PM (#12986378) Journal
    Actually, the one-click patent cited in the GNU link was really not so obvious after all. Even Tim O'Reilly, the man that offered $10,000 rewards for finding prior art to this, has later admitted [linuxtoday.com] this.
    • The problem is in the definition of prior art. If it's not written down, then it doesn't count. So, if your mom&pop general store has recommended products to customers because thats the way your greatgrandpappy did it a century ago, if it's not written in the training manual your daddy gave you when you started sweeping the floors, then it doesn't exist.

      Oh sure, Amazon throws the words "database" and "web" and "click" around like they invented them or something, but the fundamental operation of comme
    • Actually, the one-click patent cited in the GNU link was really not so obvious after all.

      It was obvious.

      It wasn't documented, but it was obvious.

  • Secret of Success? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by webword (82711) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:45PM (#12986400) Homepage
    I'd sum it up in one word: usability. Sure, there are other reasons, but the Amazon User Experience (UX) is outstanding. Few other sites compare in terms of ease-of-use.

    (I'd say the same thing about Google too.)
    • by Anonymous Monkey (795756) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:52PM (#12986464)
      Yes, but it can be a pain if you want to suprise your wife with a gift, and it pops up on recently viewd items next time she checks amazon. From now on all anniversary gifts will come from brick-and-mortar stores and be purchased with cash
      • by Dolly_Llama (267016) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @01:57PM (#12987059) Homepage
        You just need to be more imaginative. You browse for diamonds, making sure that an expensive diamond is left in the search history, then you go out and buy a cubic zirconia!
      • Serves you right for not giving her her own account on your computer.
      • Yes, but it can be a pain if you want to suprise your wife with a gift, and it pops up on recently viewed items next time she checks amazon.
        Which is why my wife and I established seperate logins on Amazon years ago...
    • I'm not sure I entirely agree. I use Amazon regularly and my reasons are

      • Convenience - why trek into town only to discover that HMV/Waterstones haven't got what I want.
      • Availability - Amazon usually have what I want.
      • Recommendations - the other customers also purchased feature has led me down some unexpected and rewarding avenues. Sometimes I just browse but often enough I purchase.
      Maybe this all adds up to usability but I see it as wider than that.
    • by Deinhard (644412) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @01:00PM (#12986548)
      I'll second that. I was thinking about my history with ecommerce a few days ago and looked up my old Amazon orders. My first order was Spear of Mars [amazon.com] a short story compilation. That was on April 4, 1997. Since it was out of print, it wasn't shipped until Sept. 6, 1998. Amazon's system kept looking until it found a copy.

      I've always been impressed with Amazon's experience. In fact, I'm considering an experiment this year to see if I can purchase all of my Christmas gifts just from Amazon.
    • ... the Amazon User Experience (UX) is outstanding. Few other sites compare in terms of ease-of-use.

      Well, according to ForeSeeResults.com, their recent survey [internetretailer.com] of customer and browser experience satisfaction had one company [netflix.com] doing better than Amazon.

      Obligatory disclaimer: I manage the web QA group for Netflix, so I have both a vested interest and a certain amount of pride in people discovering this particular fact.

    • I'd sum it up in one word: usability. Sure, there are other reasons, but the Amazon User Experience (UX) is outstanding. Few other sites compare in terms of ease-of-use.

      Certainly. When I face hard decisions in designing major web applications, I ask myself, "What does Amazon do?" (although sometimes it's "What does Google do", "What does IMDb do", or even "What does eBay do").

      As is often the case with great applications, Amazon is easy to use, yet the power is there if you want it. I like to think that
  • by tankd0g (875636)
    If cinderella had an unlimited advertising budget and blind faith investors to enable her to coast on zero profit for half a decade.
  • by OrangeStar (820331) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:48PM (#12986421) Journal
    It's no secret why Amazon.com has succeded when many other online stores have fallen. They have fairly good prices, good service, and deals(like the current $25+ free shipping). It is just as easy as going to a real store, with no downsides.

    They have a steady dependable business model of selling almost everything.

    Amazon.com just works.

    Note: I'm just a happy customer.
    • Absolutely.

      My wife really loathes having to use a computer. She will seldom use one if she doesn't have to. She'd rather do things by hand 99% of the time.

      But she quite happily logs on and goes to Amazon to buy books. So they must be doing a lot of things right.
    • More importantly, Amazon discounts nearly every book and CD I've bought, and doesn't charge MA sales tax. As a college student who bought a lot of books, the savings and convenience over the campus book store was huge -- it could add up to more than $100 per semester.
  • Can we patent one click posting?
    Seriously though, hats off to Amazon- like it or not, it wasn't easy to start a company 10 years ago on the net and have it still be in business....
    I will say that I won't shop there because I am suspicious of any compnay that has a "buyer's club" that offers discounts, shipping or otherwise....
    They do have some nice "Photography" books... Honest mom, it isn't porn, its erotica.... and stay out of the basement!"
  • by FunWithHeadlines (644929) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:51PM (#12986445) Homepage
    In the late 90s, I was one of those investing in Amazon stock. I used to read the Yahoo investment message board for Amazon, and I remember all those posters who were absolutely sure Amazon was going down. They used to post detailed diatribes about profit and loss estimates, and how Amazon was fooling everyone with their accounting, and that their end was going to be soon and hard.

    Yeah, yeah, I know, you get those types on every Yahoo stock board, and some of them are just shorts trying to scare people away. But the meme on the Amazon board was that they were losing money on every sale...but making it up in volume! Hardy har har. These people were absolutely convinced that Amazon would never succeed at their profit margins. And indded, Amazon was losing money every quarter.

    But Jeff Bezos kept saying that the important thing was growth and market share and mind share, and that to go to profitability too soon would be a mistake. The Yahooligans roundly laughed at Bezos for saying stuff like that. But in the end, Bezos pulled it off. Amazon survived the dot-bomb, and is a solid company. But I'll bet anything if I went to the Yahoo board today (I'm no longer an investor in them, so I don't check), they will still be saying that Amazon's end is nigh.

    Shows you the value of ignorning conventional wisdom if you have a new idea and a strong vision of how to implemenent the idea in the long term.

    • by MsWillow (17812) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @01:41PM (#12986884) Homepage Journal
      Jeff has always been one darned smart cookie. Back when I worked with him at Fitel, he told me of how he once wrote a program to convert / translate the tape counter on several different VCRs, so that the American ex-pat community could figure out where on the tape their favorite tv show was located. Clever, and non-obvious.

      I knew darned well he'd make money. He used to talk US Tax law at lunch, and how the IRS gives a company X years before they must show a profit. He used that time to build up his company, to be strong enough to compete.

      He's good, and a decent dude, too, tho Ellie may not agree - Ellie usually lost at the lunch tab games played with Jeff and I :) Heck, Jeff even came to my wedding in 1988 - a Wiccan handfasting, back before Wicca really took off.

      Good guy, Jeff. Hopefully, he learned from Graciella how to attract the best and brightest employees, and how NOT to treat them. Fitel was a bear of a place to work. I could not have survived without Jeff and his then-gf Annette St. Onge.
    • I know you already discount the Yahoo idiots. But seriously, is there a bigger wasteland of idiocy than the Yahoo message boards? The financial boards are even worse, because the ignorance there is more pronounced. I start subconsciously humming Baba O'Riley every time I visit. Teeenage wasteland... it's a teenage wasteland...
    • (I'm no longer an investor in them, so I don't check)

      I'm curious. Did you get scared off? Need the money? Cash out at an earlier date when you thought it hit a high?

      It's just that you sound like you were a fairly sensible invester who didn't believe in the hype that Amazon was going down, so it sounds distinctly odd that you dropped their stock.

  • Seems like for the first couple years they lost money, more money and more money still. They were predicted to go with the rest of the dot bombers.

    $7 billion... Are they turning a profit? I suppose so. I'm sure I did my part, after my favorite tech bookstores (Computer Literacy) closed up shops to go on-line and became fathead or fatbrain whatever. Saving a couple bucks is OK, but I know I spent a ton on programming books when I had the chance to flip through them. Now I have only reviewers to trust

  • 10 years (Score:4, Funny)

    by niXcamiC (835033) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:52PM (#12986462)
    This week amazon inc. filed a patent for keeping a dotcom open for 10 years. "We were the first to do this so I think its rightly ours" said amazon president Jeff Bezos.
  • ...now if they could only figure out that whole making a profit thing... :-)

    ------
    (Yes, I know they actually made a profit a couple years ago. It's a joke. Laugh and move along.)
  • Spammers. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sadtrev (61519) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:55PM (#12986498) Homepage
    One of my staff bought a book from them a year ago from a work account. Since then they've been sending me unsolicited offers for things I have no intention of buying.

    Their e-mail contains no return or unsubscribe link. I believe that here in the UK that is illegal. I have struggled even to find a phone number or postal address on their website to send a cease-and-desist letter.

    Yes, they're big and successful but their behaviour bears all the hallmarks of spammers.
    • Bizarre, I've been buying from Amazon for years, and they have never, not once, sent me unsolicited email. I've never had anything other than an order confirmation from them.

      And as for being illegal in the UK - I'd love to know if it was, I'm on a slew of mailshots courtesy of online ticket sales sites for gigs and theatre and I can't get a single damn one of them to stop sending me crap.
    • 5 easy steps (Score:4, Informative)

      by drewness (85694) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @02:01PM (#12987096) Homepage
      1. Go to amazon.co.uk
      2. Click on the "Your account" button
      3. Follow the link called "Update your communication preferences"
      4. Sign in
      5. Change your preferences. They're all pretty straight forward. There's even one called "Don't send me any messages that aren't related to my orders, bids or services that I sign up for directly."
  • They are driving smaller online retailers out of business, they encourage purchasing of cheap foreign imports and they have a negative cash flow into the economy in the form of low wages and outsourced jobs.

    I boycott shopping at Amazon.com in the same manner that I do for brick and mortar shopping at Walmart. Give the small guys your business and help maintain a strong U.S. economy.
    • by maw (25860) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @02:05PM (#12987134) Journal
      So you're saying that overpaying for things is good for the economy?
      • There's always some place that will sell you the same shit (or better) for less, so there's no need to overpay by boycotting Amazon.

        You can always look for it on the web [justfuckinggoogleit.com], you know.

    • I boycott shopping at Amazon.com in the same manner that I do for brick and mortar shopping at Walmart. Give the small guys your business and help maintain a strong U.S. economy.

      At what point does one stop shopping at the "small guys" because they've become a "big guy"? Where does small end and big begin?

      The problem with this sentiment is twofold:

      1. You penalize successful business. Become too succesful and I won't shop at your store anymore! (You probably don't do that with airlines - get too safe an
  • by pickapeppa (731249) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:57PM (#12986510)
    will have to blow out the candles TWICE when it's their tenth anniversary
  • Oh no! (Score:3, Funny)

    by QuickFox (311231) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @12:57PM (#12986511)
    Damn! Now they'll patent anniversary discounts presented on websites.
  • a method to celebrate the existance of a company for 10 years through the cutting of cake and passing it around and making sure everyone has a piece. Seriously though, I have to give Amazon some credit, their interface and search are pretty decent, they do try to give value to their customers, and being able to read portions of books online really helps determine if a book is worth getting or not. Although I have to say purchasing anything other than books on Amazon tends to be a ripoff. Get better luck
  • A contrarian view (Score:3, Insightful)

    by musicmaster (237156) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @01:00PM (#12986538) Homepage
    When I compair the Amazon site with B&N for books Amazon has a bit more choice and gives more insight in second and and third party prices. But in most cases the B&N page is more informative about the book itself.

    As an affiliate I find it rather sloppy that Amazon doesn't have a better integration for its national sites. You have to apply for each site seperately and you get your money seperately. And where Google adwords is advanced with bank transfers Amazon still pays with old fashioned checks. Affiliates are asked to get their product data from an XML database that quite often gives different results on availablity as the Amazon search engine.

    All in all my impression is that execution is rather sloppy. It will not be easy but there definitely is room for competitors to improve on what Amazon offers.
    • ...although I enjoy reading the "user comments" on Amazon.

      Many times, however, I find Amazon an easier process to purchase books except when a book is out of print or from a private seller, I can order it more easily from B&N when I order a couple of other books.

      I think the B&N search for a title or author usually does a better job than Amazon - less junk. I'm not enamored with the "search inside" or "related" garbage. I usually pretty much know what I want.

      Oh - and in NYC - I can get free overni
  • How successful? (Score:5, Informative)

    by syphax (189065) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @01:06PM (#12986594) Journal
    A quick glance [yahoo.com] shows that Amazon may actually achieve a level of zero net tangible assets (they've been in the red for years) this year. Similarly, another glance [yahoo.com] shows that 2004 was the first year Amazon actually made a real profit (2003 was about breakeven).

    I am impressed, though, that Amazon actually hung in there through years and years of losses and now actually has a profitable, reasonably sustainable business.
    • "I am impressed, though, that Amazon actually hung in there through years and years of losses and now actually has a profitable, reasonably sustainable business."

      Of course they'd have made more money just by sticking all the cash they got from shares into a Euro or Sterling bank account and forgetting all that tedious book-selling business...
  • . . . Amazon patents the 10-year anniversary.
  • by nimblebooks (800614) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @03:07PM (#12987762) Homepage
    I had a job interview over the phone with Jeff Bezos shortly after they launched (must have been Dec. 1995 or so). I got off the phone and my wife said, "He's a lot smarter than you, isn't he?" ;-) I wanted to take the job, but couldn't afford the 20% pay cut to $33K...
  • "Some folks might consider Amazon's shopper-tracking software an invasion of privacy, but they forget that users opt-in to the Amazon system; they log in with their personal account when they purchase and send to another personal account, an address which is tied to another, gift-receiving user's account. In accord with Amazon's A9 personalized search history, which tracks users' retail browsing, Amazon has synthesized data tracking window shopping and purchase behaviors. Now, users are encouraged to log in
  • by beanyk (230597) on Tuesday July 05, 2005 @04:01PM (#12988236)
    I know I'm just pissing in the wind about this, but "10-year anniversary" is as bad as "PIN number" and "ATM machine". The correct term is "10th anniversary".

    I blame people who want to celebrate three-month relationships with an "anniversary", in defiance of the fact that three months isn't really that long, and probably doesn't merit a Hallmark card.

    Rant over.
  • Well not quite - but my last order with them was a real pain - they said it was shipped, charged my card, but the Canada Post tracking never left the "electronically submitted" status - meaing I never got it. An email and another 2 week wait - and about 6 weeksafter I placed my order, I got it. The irony is, I can order a CD from Germany (a fellow there who deals in fairly obscure electronica) and always have it within about 3 days.

    Still, mnost of my dealings with Amazon, other than this one, have been ver
  • Here's some flashback to late 97 for ya'll. http://web.archive.org/web/19971221012817/http://s lashdot.org/ [archive.org] Rikki

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