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Submission + - Amazon Men Facing Gridlock in Company Restrooms (

reifman writes: Washington State's been investigating complaints by Amazon men about long waits for the restroom in company offices. Public records requests revealed floors with 150 men and as few as four toilets. Amazon refuses to release diversity numbers for its Seattle workforce but soon most of these will be able to walk to their nearby apartment units for bathroom breaks.

Submission + - "Flee the Jungle" Launch Promotes Amazon Shopping Alternatives (

reifman writes: Flee the Jungle launched yesterday to begin raising discussion and pressuring Amazon about its harmful impacts on its hometown, labor and women. It encourages consumers to end their Prime memberships and switch to competitors ( claims to be targeting Amazon's market share specifically.) International residents can request a copy of Flee the Jungle to launch in their countries.

Submission + - Amazon Misled the Associated Press About Seattle's Housing Problems (

reifman writes: Recently, Amazon PR told the Associated Press (AP) that it had 'given the city [of Seattle] tens of millions of dollars for affordable housing' for a story syndicated by more than 300 news sites including The New York Times, The Washington Post and many others around the world. It turns out their claim isn't quite accurate. The fees weren't donated nor were they in "the tens of millions." Furthermore, there have been recent protests outside the company's headquarters for its harms to affordable housing and a friend of mine working in the space told me, 'No one in the affordable housing world sees [Amazon] as anything other than a driver of increased costs.' The company also made claims that it 'paid for a new street car' and donated to 100 charities — statements somewhat overstated for effect. For example, it did buy one of four street cars but only paid for 1/10th of the four car system. It's actually rare that Amazon's PR team responds to reporters at all. The only time I've heard from them was for a Slashdot post on unlaunching their Civic Apps contest, they lied to me. Reporter Paul Constant once wrote he, '...suspect[s] that the Amazon PR phone line is connected to an answering machine in an abandoned warehouse in Belize.'

Submission + - Amazon's Leading the Economic Boom Wrecking Seattle ( 1

reifman writes: Seattleites are struggling with massive traffic, rising housing costs and declining diversity. Amazon's building and acquiring enough office space to triple its local headcount by 2020. Facebook, Google and many other tech companies are now expanding here as well — it's the San Franciscoization of Seattle. Downtown is filled with 75 cranes — some blocks look like mining towns. Amazon's hired so many white males that King County is now the whitest in the nation and hate crimes against gays have shot up in a formerly LGBTQ neighborhood. Politicians can't agree on reforming impact fees and taxes to address these issues. Recently, a long time Amazonian told its interns to avoid full time employment there. Since most employees burn out within one to two years and leave, the company doesn't care much about the quality of life in the city. It's treating Seattle as an empty vessel for profit.

Submission + - You've got Male: Amazon's Growth Impacting Seattle Dating Scene (

reifman writes: San Francisco's gender imbalance is so bad that a startup recently proposed flying women in from New York City for dates. But, if you’re a straight male thinking of moving to Seattle to work in technology, think again. Seattle’s gender ratio is even more imbalanced and it’s about to get much worse for men. Amazon is building out enough space to employ 5% of the city population and its workforce is 75 percent male. By the end of 2014, Seattle will have 130 single men for every 100 single women.

Submission + - Amazon's Outsourced Customer Service Making Fraud Easy (

reifman writes: Amazon's outsourced, semi-automated customer service makes it easy for unscrupulous buyers to prey on its marketplace sellers. Buyers just need to 1) request a return and then 2) file a claim alleging that the item was different than described. While Amazon says it retains emails between buyer and sellers 'to help arbitrate disputes and preserve trust and safety', it ignores the content of most email exchanges as it sends automated emails to sellers instructing them to issue refunds and threatening to withdraw the funds from their account. File this under 'our investigation team does not work according to case numbers.'

Submission + - Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos a virtual no-show at the ballot box ( 1

reifman writes: "Last week, The Seattle Times ran a four part series on Amazon hitting the company hard for a weak record of philanthropic contributions. One thing they missed is that CEO Jeff Bezos rarely votes, he's skipped 18 of the past 21 elections. Bezos gave $100,000 in 2010 to help defeat a progressive income tax reform initiative and Amazon spends about $60,000 annually lobbying for state interests."

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