Summary of “The monopoly-busting case against Google, Amazon, Uber, and Facebook”

We need a new standard for monopolies, they argue, one that focuses less on consumer harm and more on the skewed incentives produced by a company the size of Facebook or Google.
On a good day, Google is the most valuable company in the world by market cap, with dozens of different products supported by an all-encompassing ad network.
“If you’re looking for a silver bullet, probably the best thing to do would be to block Google from being able to buy any companies,” says Stoller.
The company’s modular structure is arguably a direct result of that buying spree, and it’s hard to imagine what Google would look like without it.
Of course, Klobuchar’s bill doesn’t focus on Google or even tech giants, but Stoller says that kind of blockade would have a unique effect on how big companies shape the startup world.
“All of these companies, from Amazon to Facebook to Google, they proactively find their competitors and buy them out,” says Stoller.
Amazon makes life hard for its competitors – and by now, the company is competing against nearly everyone.
Anti-monopoly lawyer Lina Khan laid out the case against the retail giant in a 2017 article called “Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox,” in which she argued that the Amazon store had become a utility infrastructure that the company was subverting for its own benefit.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Amazonization of Whole Foods, one year in – TechCrunch”

At the time, Amazon said the goal was to make “High-quality, natural and organic food affordable for everyone.” Bananas, avocados and even tilapia was going to be cheaper than before.
A bunch of other Amazon offerings involving delivery options were also mentioned, including the getting of Whole Food groceries through a then new Amazon Fresh grocery delivery program and Whole Foods private label products would be made available through Prime Now and Prime Pantry.
Further, Amazon lockers would be showing up at select stores to make pick ups and returns easier for Amazon customers.
Walking into my local Whole Foods, the Amazon branding is everywhere from the deep orange lockers off to the side, the large, green Amazon Fresh coolers greeting me at the entrance to the parking lot and rows of bags ready for pickup and delivery via Amazon workers.
You want to do one better, just download the Amazon app to your smartphone, use the code given and then purchase with Apple pay using your Amazon Prime credit card for maximum benefits.
I’ve also enjoyed using the integrated partnership to order Whole Foods items straight from my Amazon Fresh account.
With Amazon, I can order from various stores, including Whole Foods through my Amazon Fresh account all in one order and then choose a time for delivery.
There’s still some bumps with that process – you can’t order every item available in Whole Foods, just what Fresh offers that week through the Amazon platform.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Amazon Echo is losing smart speaker market share to Google Home. Here’s why.”

Google Home devices are rapidly catching up to Amazon Echo devices in worldwide sales, and may have already surpassed them.
China is the fastest-growing market for smart speakers, and neither Amazon nor Google is a significant player there.
As recently as a year ago, Amazon single-handedly controlled the global smart speaker industry, with a market share upward of 75 percent, according to estimates from two of the leading market watchers, Strategy Analytics and Canalys, based in Singapore.
It makes sense that Amazon was crushing the competition, because there wasn’t much competition yet: Google had just launched the Home in late 2016, and Apple’s HomePod was not yet on the market.
The firm projects Google’s smart speaker sales to surpass Amazon’s by 2020, said Bill Ablondi, director of smart home strategies.
It found that 62 percent of U.S. smart speaker owners had an Amazon Echo, while 27 percent had a Google Home, as of May. That methodology favors Amazon by counting devices purchased in the past.
On top of that, it makes it very easy to buy things on Amazon, and plays nicely with other Alexa devices like the Fire TV. Purchase a Google Home, on the other hand, and it will fit right in with Chromecast, YouTube, your Gmail and Google Calendar, and the Google Assistant on your Android device.
Correction, Aug. 27, 2018: This article originally mislabeled two columns in a chart titled, “Global Smart Speaker Market by Vendor: Q2 2018.” The third and fourth columns should have been labeled “Q2 ’17 Shipments” and “Q2 ’17 Market Share,” not “Q2 ’18 Shipments” and “Q2 ’18 Market Share.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “”Everybody Immediately Knew That It Was for Amazon”: Has Bezos Become More Powerful in D.C. Than Trump?”

Though there has long been talk about the Defense Department joining the cloud, the current call for bids was put together only after Defense Secretary James Mattis hired a D.C. lobbyist who had previously consulted for Amazon.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos personally tweeted a photo of himself hosting #SecDef Mattis.
“Everybody immediately knew that it was for Amazon,” says a rival bidder who asked not to be named.
In places, JEDI echoes Amazon’s own language: It calls for a “Ruggedized” storage system, the same word Amazon uses to tout its Snowball Edge product.
Leading Amazon rivals like Google, Microsoft, and IBM are up in arms about the way JEDI was crafted to benefit Amazon.
Amazon has spent $67 million on lobbying since 2000-including more this year than Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase, and Wells Fargo combined.
If you think the JEDI contract is big, consider this: Last year, working for Bezos, Rung helped pass the so-called Amazon amendment, a provision buried in a defense authorization bill that will establish Amazon as the go-to portal for every online purchase the government makes-some $53 billion every year.
President Trump may enjoy firing off incendiary tweets attacking Amazon.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The 3 Stages of Failure in Life and Work”

A Failure of Tactics is a failure to execute on a good plan and a clear vision.
In Centratel’s case, they had a clear vision and a good strategy, but they didn’t know how to execute their strategy and vision.
Of course, there is no requirement that says you must to develop a personal vision for your work or your life.
What do you want to accomplish? How do you want to spend your days? It is not someone else’s job to figure out the vision for your life.
Your emotions caused you to turn a Stage 1 or Stage 2 failure into a Stage 3 failure.
If you are committed to making your vision a non-negotiable factor in your life and not giving up on the first try, then you have to be willing to navigate criticism.
Failures of Tactics can occasionally create enough havoc that you mistakenly believe you have a Failure of Vision.
It would have been easy to assume that his vision of being an entrepreneur was the failure when it was merely poor tactics causing the problem.

The orginal article.

Summary of “20 Years of Wisdom From Amazon’s Jeff Bezos”

There’s another founder/CEO giving Buffett a run for his money: Over the last 20 years, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos has been putting pen to paper and churning out the same type of actionable wisdom we should all be reading.
We cannot numerically estimate the effect that consistently lowering prices will have on our business over five years or ten years or more.
Optionality – i.e., being able to pursue multiple lines of business moving forward – is a key characteristic of Amazon.
Bezos looks for three things in such lines of business.
To get an idea for the kind of outside-the-box thinking that happens in Amazon’s C-Suite, look at how Bezos described the mindset used when designing the Kindle.
Bezos gets into the nitty-gritty of how Amazon constructs its technology to make the business better.
Amazon worries more about fulfilling its mission than about what the competition is up to.
Starting in 2014, Bezos made it clear that three lines of business were driving most of Amazon’s results: the online market place, Prime, and AWS. A dreamy business offering has at least four characteristics.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Futures of the Major TV Networks Are Coming Into Focus”

The Television Critics Association’s summer press tour, currently underway in Los Angeles, often serves as a helpful litmus test for the networks and the streamers that produce the medium’s best programming.
The TCA tours-which happen twice a year-congregate the biggest networks and the critics and reporters that cover them into one place.
It’s mutually beneficial: the press get access to the minds behind the programming they cover, and the networks in turn can use any press to churn the hype machine for the programs that merit it.
Below is a handy guide for assessing how the biggest networks and streamers are positioning themselves for 2018 and beyond.
While AMC isn’t operating as it was during its Prestige TV heyday, back when Breaking Bad and Mad Men were at the height of their powers, the network is rapidly on the rise again, becoming more than a Walking Dead content mill.
Netflix supplanted HBO’s stranglehold on the Emmys, up to a point-for the first time in nearly 20 years, HBO didn’t garner the most Emmy nominations from a single network.
It’s not a lot, but what the network does have coming is undeniably exciting.
Facebook Watch is even newer-still attempting to conceptualize its role in an ever-growing pile of networks and programming.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Amazon and Walmart’s rivalry is reshaping how we’ll buy everything in the future”

Walmart’s ongoing battle with Amazon for the retail crown is expanding well beyond retail, and it’s forcing one of the largest companies in the world to reexamine its DNA. In the last six months alone, Walmart has partnered with scores of tech firms to better compete with Amazon and make progress in markets that may become pivotal years down the line.
That’s largely because Amazon continues to grow, specifically in key areas like cloud computing, where its profit margins are huge, and offline retail, where it can steal Walmart customers, thanks to its purchase of Whole Foods and its aggressive expansion into grocery and household good delivery.
That’s how the two companies have arrived at an embittered rivalry, with Amazon increasingly moving offline as its online business continues to dominate e-commerce, and Walmart rethinking its future as customers decide to buy more everyday items online and have them delivered.
“I think clearly if you look at it historically, you can say Walmart missed an opportunity that Amazon captured, but I don’t think Amazon took business from Walmart.”
Walmart’s future depends on its ability to compete with Amazon After all, both companies have grown at eye-popping rates over the last two decades, mostly serving different customers for different needs.
The ways of Amazon, and how its customers shop, are fast becoming the norm, and Walmart now risks actively losing customers to its e-commerce rival.
For Walmart to compete going forward, Hetu says, it needs to invest in how it thinks people will want to shop in the future.
That’s the same network of contractors that Amazon is using for its growing Seamless-style food delivery service called Amazon Restaurants.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Amazon Is in a Battle With the Far Left for the Soul of Seattle”

As the city struggles to decide just how far left it wants to drift, housing prices, Amazon’s head count, and the homeless population all continue to rise.
Despite Amazon’s charitable efforts, Seattle infrastructure is increasingly littered with graffiti tags like “Amazon Get Out” and “Fuck Bezos.” The tensions between Amazon and its home city came into stark relief when the company announced in September it was going to choose a second headquarters through a thirst-inducing public bidding process.
The HQ2 search was an acknowledgement that Amazon was getting too big for Seattle.
Sawant had been pushing for a head tax in Seattle since her first year on the City Council, to no avail-a previous head tax, adopted in 2006, was repealed after it was deemed a drag on the economy during the recession.
As the City Council was settling on a $500-per-employee tax proposal, Amazon paused construction on a new tower and floated the idea of subleasing its office space in another, pending the head tax vote.
The figure represented the most Amazon had told the mayor it’d be willing to pay, according to the Seattle Times.
” talked about Amazon so much that they forgot Seattle is an incredibly diverse economy that has both blue- and white-collar [jobs], tech and businesses like Dick’s Drive-In, who would have been included in the tax as well,” Spady says.
“Having seen Amazon lead the fight to repeal such a reasonable tax in Seattle, that would help significantly address issues of homelessness in that city, it really cast a doubt in my mind about whether or not we want to see Amazon expand in Austin,” he says.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How a cabal of romance writers cashed in on Amazon Kindle Unlimited”

Shortly thereafter, Amazon rolled out the next iteration of Kindle Unlimited – authors would now be paid per page read. Many self-publishers, says Gaughran, moved on to producing books that were thousands of pages long.
Either way, book stuffing plagues the romance genre on Kindle Unlimited, with titles that come in at 2000 or even 3000 pages.
It’s not clear to what extent Valderrama was involved in book stuffing or other techniques, or how many of her other clients engaged in the kind of marketing strategies Willink says she told her about at RWA. Her current roster of clients includes multiple authors whom sources in the romance community named as prolific book-stuffers and who have regularly published books clocking in at a thousand pages or more, including Cassandra Dee.
There are over 5 million books available via Kindle, with over a million books available on the Kindle Unlimited system.
As described earlier, Carter’s books were removed from Amazon in June, for reasons that Amazon declines to explain.
In the Kindle Unlimited program – where readers pay a $9.99 monthly subscription to “Check out” as many books in the program as they want – a reader can indulge any passing impulse to peek behind a cover.
Scattered throughout the top featured titles in the Romance category for Kindle Unlimited are books labeled “Compilation,” “Anthology,” “Collection,” or “Box Set,” running thousands of pages long.
In June, one of the top books in romance was Cassandra Dee’s Pregnant By My Boss: A Romance Compilation, clocking in at over a thousand pages.

The orginal article.