This episode of On The Media presents (as it often does) a relevant and growing issue with the rapid expansion of e-commerce. Amazon is doing, or being accused of doing, what companies like Walmart have done in recent years: putting the individual or small business into an impossible situation. I understand what the others in class have posted so far about this topic, but I think the consequences may be larger than we realize.
Someone referred to Apple, but this is a different case entirely. Amazon is not selling products that it manufactures, but they’re selling them at prices that can’t be competed with. Apple is really impressive in that they have such great branding and marketing strategists that they’re able to own a large chunk of the market despite charging significantly more than competitors, such as Google or Microsoft.
This issue could be at the center of the capitalism/free market vs government regulation debate. We have seen in our country’s history what happens when we let the marketplace be an open competition: a select few gain unimaginable wealth while the rest of the country goes bankrupt. Just as the government intervened then with monopoly laws that restricted that type of dominance, they may also need to do so now. The economy continues to change with the evolution of internet business and the government may have to change along with it to protect certain people’s livelihood. Below is a picture reviving the mid-semester concept of culture jamming. Thought I would include it for effect.