Wednesday, September 21, 2016
As this story discusses, algorithms are becoming a public relations issue. It seems Amazon is favoring products it distributes rather than giving customers the lowest possible price for products available through another store selling through Amazon. There is no good reason for the company to do that except revenue maximization at the expense of customers. The company ought to know better than to gouge, but it looks as if it is playing games with consumers over the hundreds of thousands of products it sells. The consumer, not knowing better, pays and moves on until an enterprising journalist reveals the duplicity. Amazon got its start as the lowest cost provider of books then other merchandise. If it has now changed its algorithms to favor itself at the expense of consumers, it should say so. The worst thing that can happen to the company is abandonment by consumers because they perceive the firm as dishonest.