Upset has erupted this week after Amazon.com's famous 'Amazon recommends' function has been adjusted by the site's designers to be more frank with their consumers. Despite 'honesty is the best policy' having a certain ring to it, however, the initial reactions to this new approach have been overwhelmingly negative.
Customers who have viewed the TV & FILM section of the site are now directed to a torrent database, and told 'Amazon recommends you get with the times'. Those who have purchased numerous romance novels are now directed to various dating websites and told 'Amazon recommends you give real life a shot'. Customer's browsing 'War and Peace' are now directed to the 'War and Peace' spark-notes page and told 'Amazon recommends you stop kidding yourself'. Those who had purchased 'fifty shades of grey' are now directed to proper pornography websites, with the tag 'Amazon recommends you admit what you really want'. Customers who've bought Dan Brown's complete works are now directed to various adult education courses, and customers who pre-order Cher's new album are now simply shown a picture of a noose.
One business analyst suggests they should've seen this coming, commenting 'the new function comes off as somewhat condescending. People don’t buy things to improve who they are, they buy things to pretend they aren’t who they are until they’ve worn whatever it is they’ve bought a few times! Maybe a business should be the customer’s friend, but it should be the friend who knows all the best coke dealers and buys you cheap shots, not the friend who’s there the next morning trying to stage an intervention. People say 'sharing is caring' and that you should 'live to give'. I wonder if that's wisdom or does it just rhyme? Business is brutal, sorry, but it's the truth. Honest business people are full of shit: the only ones you can trust are the liars.'
It would appear that in Amazon's case, such 'friendship' has in fact alienated every demographic there is. Given the comprehensive memory and personal information it retains, Amazon's new system is able to make startlingly specific recommendations: One man from Leicester says, after browsing luxury automobiles for over an hour, a message popped up saying 'Amazon recommends you spend more time with your son'. Another claims, after buying everything Amazon told him he would like for three years, he got a message recently saying 'Amazon recommends you don't do what Amazon recommends', which has left him in a state of confusion for eight days.