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August 12 2013

Edward Snowden, meet Jeff Bezos

Edward Snowden, meet Jeff Bezos
http://pressthink.org/2013/08/edward-snowden-meet-jeff-bezos

“In November 2010, WikiLeaks began using Amazon’s Web hosting service to leak thousands of pages of State Department cables. But the company abruptly terminated the contract within 24 hours of receiving a call from a staff member for the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.”

[…]

That’s not answering the bell for freedom of information. That’s doing what the surveillance state requires, and relying on a legalism to justify it. This is exactly the kind of behavior Edward Snowden was reacting against when he made his decision to go AWOL and reveal key documents to The Guardian and the Washington Post.

August 07 2013

Jeff Bezos' plans for the Washington Post : How he could Amazon-ify the newspaper. - Slate Magazine

Jeff Bezos’ plans for the Washington Post: How he could Amazon-ify the newspaper. - Slate Magazine
http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2013/08/jeff_bezos_plans_for_the_washington_post_how_he_could_amazon_ify_the_newspape

But wait! Is the Washington Post so universally interesting to merit such prominent placement? Well, maybe not. But parse Bezos’ words carefully:
“The Internet is transforming almost every element of the news business: shortening news cycles, eroding long-reliable revenue sources, and enabling new kinds of competition, some of which bear little or no news-gathering costs…Our touchstone will be readers, understanding what they care about—government, local leaders, restaurant openings, scout troops, businesses, charities, governors, sports—and working backwards from there.”
Bezos tips his hand here. The Post isn’t known for its coverage of restaurant openings or scout troops. Yet Bezos seems to think the Post might return to its previous experiments in hyperlocal news.
One way this would be possible is if the news is personalized. And this is where the new Post could combine elements of Amazon and Facebook.
Let us hypothesize. If you are a Kindle owner, chances are Amazon already knows far more about you than Facebook, because it knows what you buy. That’s the real information gold. Facebook has clumsily been trying to get at your purchase history for years with browser-spying gimmicks like Beacon. But Amazon doesn’t need to violate your privacy. It already knows all about you.

#washingtonpost #amazon

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