Black Friday

blackfriday Have you noticed how the Thanksgiving shopping experience has changed in the last few years?

Until recently, merchants tried to build excitement by keeping the Friday sale prices secret until the Thursday ads appeared in the newspaper. An online cottage industry grew up around early leaks of the sale information, causing WalMart and Target and the other giants to get terribly excited and issue dire threats of lawsuits against anyone daring to publicize their sales. […] continued

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Amazon Love

It seems appropriate to say something nice about online shopping, after last week’s rant about

I buy everything from That’s why I have the Amazon search box at the top of the bruceb favorites page – because I use it constantly.

At some level you probably know that Amazon sells more than books, but you might want to try looking there for almost anything that crosses your mind. […] continued

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obama Today Amazon began selling a book of photographs and essays about Barack Obama’s campaign for the presidency and his first 100 days in office. It’s not the first book like that but this one has an interesting twist, and the publishing industry is hoping you find it compelling – or if not this one, then another one that uses the same technology. […] continued

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There have been a lot of changes in digital music recently, many of them favorable for consumers.

People are recognizing the value of the MP3 format, free of any licensing restrictions. If you are ripping your CDs, make sure you use the MP3 format at a high enough bit rate to preserve the quality of the music! […] continued

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I’d like to take a tour of an Amazon warehouse! I placed an order on December 21 at midnight and got the shipping confirmation at 10:30 in the morning. How do they do that?

This was Amazon’s best holiday season ever, with more than 99 percent of orders shipped on time worldwide, more than 3.9 million units shipped on one day alone. […] continued

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The music industry is in complete disarray; the shift away from CDs is irreversible and most consumers simply expect music to be free. The recording industry’s hostility, arrogance, and litigation tactics have alienated everyone, making it harder for the industry to imagine a business plan that works – especially while it’s controlled by executives who freely admit they don’t understand these new-fangled Internet tubes. […] continued

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I can’t vouch for this, but Timothy Noah at Slate writes that Amazon has a 30-day price guarantee – if the Amazon price drops on any item within thirty days after you purchase it from Amazon, you can get a refund of the difference just by asking. It’s not mentioned anywhere on the Amazon web site but word is apparently trickling out online. […] continued

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Cory Doctorow has closely read the license agreement that accompanies Amazon’s movie download service and he doesn’t like it.

“I buy a lot of stuff from Amazon. A lot. I won’t ever be buying one of these movies. Amazon has a great and well-deserved reputation for amazing customer service.

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A9.COM SEARCH has unveiled its own search engine, Search results are drawn from Google as well as Amazon, and include search results from inside books indexed by Amazon. If you sign in with your Amazon account, you can store your search history, annotate web pages, and even see a history of web sites visited. […] continued

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Amazon has been eyeing the market for downloadable music for years, wondering how to jump in. The issue isn’t technology, it’s the business model, availability of content and music industry support.

There was an unconfirmed report yesterday that Amazon is talking to Apple about licensing Apple’s online music store. Apple’s store has been a surprising success, but it’s unlikely that Amazon would be interested until the tunes could be offered to Windows users as well as Mac users. […] continued

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Amazon has improved its free shipping offer – starting today, you can get free shipping for any purchase over $25.

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I went shopping for a new monitor tonight and wound up buying it from an unexpected source. After checking Amazon,, CDW, Microwarehouse, Insight, and a few others, I stopped by Dell. I was fascinated to find the same monitor was about $40 cheaper from Dell than any other source – and with a promotional deal for free shipping to boot, another $35-50 swing in the price. […] continued

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Amazon has added a travel store, appearing as a new tab on Amazon’s home page. It links services from Expedia and Hotwire (a discount agency), presented in an Amazon design and with Amazon handling the transactions. Amazon has cut several of these deals where it provides the storefront (and customer base), and another retailer handles inventory and order fulfillment. […] continued

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Amazon has opened up an online store for selling computers from major manufacturers – Compaq, HP, IBM, Toshiba, and Apple. Amazon inked a deal with Ingram Micro, the number one wholesale distributor of computer products, which minimizes Amazon’s exposure to inventory problems. Amazon’s web site collects the order, Amazon ships money to Ingram Micro, and Ingram Micro handles logistics and shipping. […] continued

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The Los Angeles Times put together an interesting story about whether can survive. “On Monday, Amazon is expected to report its 17th consecutive unprofitable quarter, a money-losing streak with few precedents for a company its size in American business history.” As always, analysts look at Amazon’s numbers and draw different conclusions, but the tone is increasingly pessimistic and some are now predicting bankruptcy lies ahead. […] continued

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