Suspend Your Disbelief

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Amazon calls FAIL "ham-fisted" – but questions linger

The sales figures are coming back.

But I have to say I’m still very suspicious of this whole thing…call it a “glitch,” or a flipped-switch error, or the fault of the French, or an elaborate prank by a famous hacker. Whatever may have happened and whoever may be at fault, Amazon is offering explanations, not apologies, and considering the magnitude of the situation, I think the latter is sorely needed. And said explanations have more than a few holes. Whatever unfolds in the next few days, Amazon owes customers (1) a speedy and complete fix…a “flipped-switch error” really shouldn’t take long to correct and (2) a super-sized reparation to illustrate their not-homophobia — perhaps an offer to prominently feature and promote GLBT-themed books, films, etc. in some way? And I like the following suggestion from Twitterer pegobry: “Why doesn’t Jeff Bezos post a video to YouTube to apologize for #amazonfail? Social leverage, dude!”

Ad Age notes that Amazon’s silence over the weekend was — and is — a terrible strategy in situations like these, and NPR’s Linda Holmes considers why Twitter hashtags might be the most powerful bullhorns around.

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