Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Amazon.com Is Spying On Me

I've always been happy with Amazon's service, and I particularly like their free Super-saver shipping promotion - which seems to be going on for a perpetually limited-time only.

But ever since I forgot to cancel my Amazon Prime subscription before the trial period was over, I've been forcing myself to order more stuff from Amazon in order to justify the cost.

In case you're not familiar with Amazon Prime, it's an extra service that gives you unlimited 2-day shipping for the year, for the low, low price of $79.00. Normally, the 2-day shipping costs an extra 5 bucks or so. Although I'm not really sure, as I had previously only used the free Super-saver shipping option.

I just never found myself in an emergency situation where I needed to order a Dustbuster, a cookbook, and a DVD all at the same time - and receive all of the items the next business day.

Anyway, what's done is done.

And yes, that's 79 bucks I wish I had back, but like I said, I'm trying to make the most of my mistake.

The first few items I ordered with my new Amazon Prime membership were books, and arrived within the estimated 2 business days after ordering. No problem.

I even ordered a few electronics items. Most notably, the ill-fated HD DVD player I bought for my Dad back in December - about 2 weeks before everyone agreed to stop making HD DVD's. The electronics items also arrived quickly and as scheduled, with no problems whatsoever.

More recently though, I've experienced almost supernatural service from Amazon.

An example:

Jaimi and I are going to Spain in a couple of weeks, and we really hadn't done any planning whatsoever. We're visiting a friend of hers who'll be able to show us around. But still, it makes sense for us to have some background info before we arrive.

So I ordered "Rick Steves Guide to Spain 2008."

I really think it shipped before I even placed the order.

As usual, I selected the 2-day shipping option, which is included at no extra charge (beyond the 79 bones I already dropped on my Prime membership). This was on Monday. In the evening.

I received the book on Tuesday.

I inspected the book and its packaging for any telltale re-entry burns or gamma ray damage - perhaps they shipped via space shuttle?

Everything appeared normal.

I looked for any signs of time travel - fossilized insects, woolly mammoth fibers, Charlie Chaplin's mustache hairs - but found nothing.

The only other possibility is that Amazon is spying on me. They knew I was going to order that book before I ordered it. They may have even known I'd order it before I knew I was going to order it.

This whole apartment is probably bugged.


If I had known that this intimate level of service was included with the Amazon Prime membership, I would have been sure to cancel before the end of the trial period.

Maybe it should be called Amazon KGB, or Amazon Patriot Act Edition.

I think I'll test it out with a refrigerator, or something equally massive and difficult to move. If it arrives in a day, then I know I'm being watched.

Don't make the same mistake. Cancel that free trial!!


Anonymous said...

i did the same thing!! forgot to cancel that stupid service.

glad to see i wasnt the only one.

Dennis said...

I tried that service too. I canceled in time, so no $79 fee for me.

That's probably why I never get a shipment of something from Amazon even though I think about buying stuff from them.

Anonymous said...

I'm not stupid enough to take that carrot, so I don't have Amazon Prime, but I've read that it's actually very useful if you set up "subscriptions" to items like toilet paper or soap or whatever and it autimatically gets delivered at a pre-determined interval. With Amazon Prime, you don't have to pay the shipping costs for all these odds and ends.

Problem is, will your mail-carrier actually leave shit at your door?

The Mill said...

I'm going to start ordering a pallet of refrigerators every month. Or a case of 10 gallon jugs of laundry detergent.

But seriously, I do see how using it on a regular basis for toilet paper, etc. could make it worthwhile.

Congrats for not falling for the Amazon Prime charade.

Unknown said...

HA! Very funny. Also, Mr. Peevie and I love Rick Steves and Rick Steves paraphernalia. When we went to London (for 10 days) we followed his advice for no-carry-on packing, and we even bought Rick Steves carry-on size suitcases and backpacks. We're practically Rick Steves stalkers.