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comment by kleinbl00
kleinbl00  ·  824 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: The bounty of the tech industry

    You can still skip town and buy something at a random shop.

Not if the shop's not there.

The population of the Los Angeles Greater Metropolitan Area is 18.79 million according to Google. Yet I was unable to buy spare parts for a Shimano 105 Groupset anywhere within the city. The most popular line for the most popular bicycle part manufacturer in the world and the only place it was available was Amazon because everyone else doesn't want to compete on price. So they've got some Dura-Ace in stock at four times the price because it's a luxury item people want to fondle.

Sure- any number of shops could get it for me. They're on a 4-week turnaround because they've refined their supply chains to the point where they only get what they can sell. And they're not going to compete on price because if you needed it you'd buy it off of eBay - it'll show up gray market from Shenzen a week faster than they can get it anyway and if none of it fits, it's your problem for "not buying local." And yeah - some of those parts I had to order two or three times because Amazon doesn't pay their drivers enough for them to not have a "not feelin' it" day. So in the end you can't "buy something at a random shop" you have to find it online, make sure it isn't fake, wait a week, and then go five miles to the nearest Amazon Locker because at least there? You know it'll likely arrive.

wasoxygen  ·  821 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Your perspective in this discussion is invaluable. Most of us never buy targeted Facebook ads.

Do you think that when you paid Facebook to identify users within ten miles, by sex, age, and education, that gave Facebook incentive to collect personal data on their users?

You've worked in a few sectors. Do you think it would be smart business for Facebook to collect as much data about their users as possible, so they can offer you the widest possible menu of targeting choices when you want to advertise your next venture?

Do you think that when you pay an annual fee to Amazon for the privilege of being a Prime Customer, you directly support and promote the business practices you complain about?

kleinbl00  ·  821 days ago  ·  link  ·  

So your argument, then, is corporations are allowed to do whatever nefarious shit they feel like because it is the duty of every consumer to have perfect 100% clarity into the morality of their purchases? That the calculus of the transaction lies on the virtue of the consumer, not the provider? You're arguing that if the world didn't want the Amazon to burn they shouldn't have allowed Bolsonaro to win.

As for Facebook, targeting by sex, age, education and distance is absolute fucking child's play. That level of granularity was available in the junk-mail era. Facebook's innovation was to allow you to target 16-year-old girls on their period who listen to Taylor Swift. Or 55-year-old white men with an interest in Ruby Ridge, Dale Earnhardt and Vince Foster. Facebook didn't start with the basic offering and work their way finer and finer - they hit the ground running with microtargeting. They had the data, they didn't do the due diligence, they monetized COINTELPRO. Our prior use of Facebook (we discontinued our Facebook advertising long before Zuckerberg testified to Congress, if I recall correctly) was an extremely blunt use of a surgically precise tool so no, I would say we were doing the exact opposite of incentivizing them in their methods. But then, we're some shitty brick'n'mortar establishment in the hinterlands of Seattle, not Cambridge Analytica so really, what was your economic argument again?

As to Amazon, no aspect of my Prime membership contained any votes for Prime Marketplace or Prime Video or Prime Pantry. By your argument, if I wanted local bike parts I should opt out of Amazon Prime and be incapable of purchasing anything within two weeks. This is like your "if you don't like cars you can always ride a horse to work" argument which is Ben-Shapiro-grade speciousness.