In my previous posts I have discussed many sites of the Amazon’s Pricing Algorithm: from describing what the issues were, through how it has effected the customers and retailers, to how the company is responding to all of these accusations. But it has come the time to address the final and (in my opinion) the most important question: How should Amazon itself act in order to bring positive change into its business?
I have decided to suggest a possible solution based on a specific deontological (Deon = duty; focus on duties or obligations) framework-Kant’s Ethics. This framework says that “In making ethical decisions we should first consider those decisions as potential universal truths: if everyone acted this way, would it be acceptable?”
In other words, if all companies (even the ones cooperating with Amazon) and retailers acted in the same- unethical way, would Amazon accept that? I believe that this is the best ethical framework to go by, because Amazon (being such a huge company) does cooperate with many smaller/ equal businesses. What if they all acted in the same way? (“Eye for an eye” if you will…)
I believe that deontological framework would be more successful in fixing this issue than teleological framework, because it doesn’t focus on outcomes as much. Amazon obviously is now very “outcome oriented” where they care about the fast and high sales, rather than how it makes others feel/ if it’s right or wrong.
First of all, I think that Amazon should treat their workers with more respect, by improving the working conditions. They should, also explain to customers how their pricing algorithm works and make sure that everybody is aware of it. I also think that they should show more support to small business owners by creating a “small retailers” filter option.
Also, I think that Amazon should make it clear what products they are making “extra” profits off of, so that way we can look for cheaper options.
When approached with a question about their actions, Amazon should be able to answer more in-depth instead of giving vague and unclear answers. As a customers, I personally do not believe companies that cannot even explain why they act in a certain way.
When it comes to customer reviews, Amazon has been blamed in the past for gifting high-status consumer reviewers with free products from publishers, agents, authors and manufacturers. I personally do not believe in that kind of approach. People might lie about what they actually think of a product in order to receive free “stuff”. How is that supposed to help us when judging if we want to purchase something?
All together- Amazon seems like a very successful company, and it definitely is very convenient to buy from. But they do need to work on their ethical values and make sure that they hold people responsible for stakeholder abuse. If they could fix these issues they definitely have a potential to grow even more.
I hope that you enjoyed learning about some of the issues that Amazon is dealing with!
Thanks for reading!