So, you may or may not have heard about a crazy little incident at Amazon. On Sunday morning, I noticed on Twitter Gail Simone was pushing this outrageous Amazon sale. So I started looking at the books…I was seeing $60 books going for $8.99-$14.99. I added several items I thought would be kind of cool to have, stuff I was curious to read. It seemed like a cool idea. And as a Blu-Ray owner the idea of quick sales with ridiculous mark downs didn’t seem all that unlikely with Amazon. Of course, some “enterprising capitalists” were ordering multiple copies of every book. But, it turns out it was a glitch. Amazon had not intended for this sale at all. I stopped ordering the moment I knew it was a glitch. I knew right away I probably would not get the books at these prices. Why?
With respect to items sold by Amazon.com, we can’t confirm the price of an item until you order; however, we do NOT charge your credit card until after your order has entered the shipping process. Despite our best efforts, a small number of the items in our catalog may be mispriced. If an item’s correct price is higher than our stated price, we will, at our discretion, either contact you for instructions before shipping or cancel your order and notify you of such cancellation.
That is from Amazon’s pricing page.
I did the math. I was going to pay about $70 for what would be $510 in books. So, I figured that they would cancel our orders and that will be it. But, they didn’t Initially they seemed to suggest they might honor the prices. Then people who ordered multiple copies got e-mails saying their orders were being reduced to one copy of each book. At the absurd prices. This was probably the biggest mistake they ever made. People were already mad. The sense of entitlement was stunning. People were calling out for class action lawsuits. It got worse when Amazon started just canceling the orders. But really? Amazon did not owe us anything. In spite of the attempts to claim the only right thing to do is honor the prices and attempts to claim Amazon did this intentionally, the truth is? The one thing they were not obligated to do? Honor those prices. And really people… the idea that this was an Amazon scam? How? They lost money any way you look at it. This makes Amazon the worst scam artist ever. Seriously. Amazon took thousands of orders. They took a loss on every book they mailed out. They made no money on orders they fulfilled. They made no money on orders they canceled. And to top it off? They apologized for canceling orders by giving out countless $25 gift credits to our accounts.
I wasn’t sure how many books I was getting. Up through today, they listed all my orders as pending orders that were going to be honored. Days after others had complained about their orders being canceled without warning. Yesterday? They mailed one of the books out. And used gift money to pay for it. So, I got a 500 page hard cover for free. But yes, Amazon was the criminal here.
I appreciate everything Amazon did, considering they owed us nothing. And they took a massive amount of grief and angry false accusations. So, thanks a lot for everything, Amazon, you went above and beyond anything you had to do to apologize for a glitch.