Amazon Prime

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PacNorWest
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Amazon Prime

Post by PacNorWest »

We've joined Amazon Prime and I can't say how satisfied we've been with it.
The free two day shipping has more than paid for it. Plus, we've used the Amazon Prime to stream a lot of free videos and an occasional paid movie.

Speaking of which - does using the Amazon.com link on this forum for purchases of "anything" generate a referral fee?
wilked
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by wilked »

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PacNorWest
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by PacNorWest »

Does Bogleheads.org get a referral fee if I access Amazon.com through this website???
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mhc
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by mhc »

Yes it does.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Alex Frakt »

PacNorWest wrote:Speaking of which - does using the Amazon.com link on this forum for purchases of "anything" generate a referral fee?
Yes. If you enter from our site, anything you buy in that session at Amazon results in a referral fee to us. A session is supposed to last for a day, but if you leave and then re-enter Amazon from another link during that time, we'll lose the credit. If you right click (option click) our link and bookmark it, it will always work :-) Note that bookmarking after you get to Amazon does not work as they strip off our referral tag (the part of the URL that says "tag=bogleheads.org-20") when you enter the site.

Thank you for any future purchases. :D
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by nisiprius »

My wife and I bought Kindle Fires. She got sucked in by the one-month trial of Amazon Prime, mostly because of the free loans from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library, and signed up because $80 a year doesn't seem like much.

I declined, even though it seems like decent value for the money, because I'm allergic to any kind of automatic monthly or even annual expense--I believe it's not the splurges and big-ticket items that bust your budget, it's the slow bleeding to death from $29.95 a month here and $19.95 a month there.

Plus I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.

The funny thing is that I can't bring myself to pay to borrow items from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library... even though I would probably spend less than $80 a year.

(Shrug) I have my own extravagances, of course.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by mackstann »

nisiprius wrote:My wife and I bought Kindle Fires. She got sucked in by the one-month trial of Amazon Prime, mostly because of the free loans from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library, and signed up because $80 a year doesn't seem like much.

I declined, even though it seems like decent value for the money, because I'm allergic to any kind of automatic monthly or even annual expense--I believe it's not the splurges and big-ticket items that bust your budget, it's the slow bleeding to death from $29.95 a month here and $19.95 a month there.

Plus I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.

The funny thing is that I can't bring myself to pay to borrow items from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library... even though I would probably spend less than $80 a year.

(Shrug) I have my own extravagances, of course.
You can share Amazon Prime with family members. :happy
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sscritic
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by sscritic »

mackstann wrote: You can share Amazon Prime with family members. :happy
But do you know if she considers him family? :)
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mike143
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by mike143 »

mackstann wrote:You can share Amazon Prime with family members. :happy
Don't even have to be family ;-) Few of my coworkers and I share an account.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by JupiterJones »

nisiprius wrote: Plus I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.
Same here. I haven't seen the value in paying $79 for two-day shipping, when I get what amounts to "anywhere from two to around five, but usually three" day shipping for free. (Showing once again how the ability to delay gratification pays frequent dividends.)

Maybe if I weren't already a Netflix subscriber I'd get something out of the streaming feature, but as it is... meh.

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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by mikep »

JupiterJones wrote:
nisiprius wrote: Plus I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.
Same here. I haven't seen the value in paying $79 for two-day shipping, when I get what amounts to "anywhere from two to around five, but usually three" day shipping for free. (Showing once again how the ability to delay gratification pays frequent dividends.)

Maybe if I weren't already a Netflix subscriber I'd get something out of the streaming feature, but as it is... meh.

JJ
This is a good value for ordering diapers.. need to have prime to get the amazon mom 20% discount with subscribe and save (after the first year of free shipping). Cheapest site to get them.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Alex Frakt »

nisiprius wrote:Plus I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.
I originally got a free Prime trial for signing up with Amazon Mom for discounted baby stuff. I've kept it primarily because there is no minimum order size for free shipping. I've found it very convenient that I can order something small like a book, a USB cable, or a couple of LED bulbs when I think of it rather than have to wait until I have a $25 bundle of stuff. It also prevents me from wasting time and money trying to figure out something I "need" to buy to get to the free shipping minimum.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by sscritic »

Prime members under a free trial or paid subscription can share their shipping benefits with up to 4 additional family members living in the same household, or up to 4 coworkers to shop for the related account. Other Prime membership benefits such as Prime instant video and the Kindle Owners' Lending Library can't be shared.
...
Amazon Mom and Amazon Student members with Amazon Prime shipping benefits and customers receiving a free month of Amazon Prime benefits with Kindle Fire will not be able to share their benefits with additional people.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/ ... 4180#share
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Jerilynn
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Jerilynn »

Alex Frakt wrote:
nisiprius wrote:Plus I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.
I originally got a free Prime trial for signing up with Amazon Mom for discounted baby stuff. I've kept it primarily because there is no minimum order size for free shipping. I've found it very convenient that I can order something small like a book, a USB cable, or a couple of LED bulbs when I think of it rather than have to wait until I have a $25 bundle of stuff. It also prevents me from wasting time and money trying to figure out something I "need" to buy to get to the free shipping minimum.
+1

On Wed I noticed that my shower curtain was kinda beat up. Popped on Amazon, ordered a $9 shower curtain and it will be here today. Shipping was free. And no 9.25% sales tax (as of now, at least).
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by gkaplan »

nisiprius wrote:I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.
Me too.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by nirvines88 »

Students can get 1 year free of Amazon Prime. I think all you need is a valid college (.edu) e-mail address. I signed up for it, but I was disappointed that most of the things I've bought weren't eligible for free shipping under Prime. I was also disappointed that the free college students' Prime doesn't get streaming, but I guess when you're getting something for free you might get what you pay for!
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by sscritic »

Jerilynn wrote: On Wed I noticed that my shower curtain was kinda beat up. Popped on Amazon, ordered a $9 shower curtain and it will be here today. Shipping was free. And no 9.25% sales tax (as of now, at least).
That's one of the joys of April 15, paying the use tax.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by pennstater2005 »

gkaplan wrote:
nisiprius wrote:I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.
Me too.
Except that you have to spend $25 to receive that benefit. I myself don't always spend $25 at a time on Amazon. The prime shipping comes in handy when you just need something small that is less than $25.
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cheapskate
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by cheapskate »

mike143 wrote:
mackstann wrote:You can share Amazon Prime with family members. :happy
Don't even have to be family ;-) Few of my coworkers and I share an account.
Upto 4 different users can share a Prime account. I share mine with 3 others :)

Works great, we link our individual Amazon accounts to the shared Prime account. From that point on, it is just like having Prime membership all by myself. Works great ! Can't beat this deal (~$20/year).
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by linenfort »

Although I was happily getting by with super saver shipping, one day I ordered a minifridge. The shipping would have been almost as much as the fridge, so I decided it was a good time to try out prime. (Yes, I could have bummed a ride to a brick-and-mortar store).
Free fast shipping and many a streamed episode of 'Foyle's War', also free. Good stuff. But, I stopped after the one year.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by bertilak »

cheapskate wrote:Works great, we link our individual Amazon accounts to the shared Prime account. From that point on, it is just like having Prime membership all by myself.
You do miss a couple of things with a shared Prime account: free loaners of (some) Kindle books and (some) free streaming video. The selection is quite limited on both of those.

I used to share my son's membership, paying him $20/year. For Father's Day he got me my own membership so from next year on it will cost me $79/year for a couple of extra features I don't really want! Oh well, it's the thought that counts.
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rj49
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by rj49 »

nirvines88 wrote:Students can get 1 year free of Amazon Prime. I think all you need is a valid college (.edu) e-mail address. I signed up for it, but I was disappointed that most of the things I've bought weren't eligible for free shipping under Prime. I was also disappointed that the free college students' Prime doesn't get streaming, but I guess when you're getting something for free you might get what you pay for!

The regular student Prime is only $39 a year, which gives the free streaming video, which I've been using quite a bit, especially when they made an ipad app for it. One drawback is that Amazon now sends ad emails to student prime members, and doesn't let you opt out unless you cancel prime. As with credit cards, though, the ease of buying things and quick shipping means you'll buy much more than you ordinarily would (I still have bulk nutritional yeast and bulk instant coffee filling my closet, along with other unnecessary purchases from Amazon). The free monthly ebook is more of an irritation than anything else, because unless you like Hunger Games books, it's difficult to find anything I'd want to read--besides, most good books are available from the library for free anyway, with a wait sometimes.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by gkaplan »

Two questions about Amazon Prime:

1. Does it apply to used books, as well as new books?

2. Does it apply to purchases made through third parties, as well as directly from Amazon?

Thanks.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Toons »

Prime is nice and Amazon is getting faster and faster with their shipping.
Lately I get packages next day after ordering :happy
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Toons
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Toons »

pennstater2005 wrote:
gkaplan wrote:
nisiprius wrote:I've always found Amazon's free Super Saver shipping to be fast enough.
Me too.
Except that you have to spend $25 to receive that benefit. I myself don't always spend $25 at a time on Amazon. The prime shipping comes in handy when you just need something small that is less than $25.
+1 :happy
"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Alex Frakt »

gkaplan wrote:Two questions about Amazon Prime:

1. Does it apply to used books, as well as new books?

2. Does it apply to purchases made through third parties, as well as directly from Amazon?
It applies only if the third party order is "fulfilled by Amazon", which means the merchant has handed the items over to Amazon to keep in their warehouse(s). This is usually not the case with used books, but it's not uncommon with other items. If you don't currently have Prime, anything that is marked "eligible for Super Savor shipping" will also be eligible for Prime.
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But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by happytrades »

It is a raw deal in this respect though.

One of the reasons that Amazon has been so successful is that it competes unfairly with your local merchant because Amazon pays no sales taxes. In short, that has been its business model.

Your local merchant who hires local citizens also pays a sales tax, which helps pay for the police, fire protections in your home town, and maybe gives your kid or grandkid a job. Amazon gets a free ride because it does not pay this tax. That is a big reason for why it has been so successful and has fought internet taxation of sales.

Think of what kind of community you would live in if everyone else got the same deal and paid no taxes. Every time you buy from Amazon, you are telling the little guy on the corner that is paying local taxes and providing a job to someone in the community that he is a chump. If you like Amazon, you must love Congress.

The reason Amazon has done so well is because it gets a free ride on the backs of other people who pick up its share of costs in living in a free society. Enjoy your free shipping.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by gkaplan »

Alex, thanks for the information. Since I mostly buy used books from Amazon, Prime may not work for me.
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by sscritic »

happytrades wrote:It is a raw deal in this respect though.

One of the reasons that Amazon has been so successful is that it competes unfairly with your local merchant because Amazon pays no sales taxes. In short, that has been its business model.
But it now has a new business model. It supports collecting sales tax so it can drive out smaller internet sellers for whom collecting and remitting sales tax might be a burden. It is cutting deals with state after state and supports the uniform sales tax provisions (whatever they are; there is an official name that I don't remember).
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by Sidney »

happytrades wrote:It is a raw deal in this respect though.

One of the reasons that Amazon has been so successful is that it competes unfairly with your local merchant because Amazon pays no sales taxes. In short, that has been its business model.

Your local merchant who hires local citizens also pays a sales tax, which helps pay for the police, fire protections in your home town, and maybe gives your kid or grandkid a job. Amazon gets a free ride because it does not pay this tax. That is a big reason for why it has been so successful and has fought internet taxation of sales.

Think of what kind of community you would live in if everyone else got the same deal and paid no taxes. Every time you buy from Amazon, you are telling the little guy on the corner that is paying local taxes and providing a job to someone in the community that he is a chump. If you like Amazon, you must love Congress.

The reason Amazon has done so well is because it gets a free ride on the backs of other people who pick up its share of costs in living in a free society. Enjoy your free shipping.
I am probably an outlier but I file an annual use tax return for all my internet purchases. At least the main ones like Amazon and Newegg which account for ~90% of our purchases online.
I always wanted to be a procrastinator.
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Jerilynn
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Jerilynn »

Two questions about Amazon Prime:

1. Does it apply to used books, as well as new books?
Some.
2. Does it apply to purchases made through third parties, as well as directly from Amazon?

Thanks.
Some.


You can sign up for a free trial and take it for a test drive. Not everything on their website is eligible for prime, but lots of things are.
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Bungo
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by Bungo »

happytrades wrote: The reason Amazon has done so well is because it gets a free ride on the backs of other people who pick up its share of costs in living in a free society. Enjoy your free shipping.
Technically, taxpayers are responsible for declaring any out-of-state purchases for which sales tax was not paid at the time of purchase. I don't know anyone who actually does this, though. In any case, the dominoes are starting to fall: I believe Amazon is going to start collecting sales tax from California customers on September 15. This will obviously benefit the state government's coffers and perhaps tilt the market slightly more favorably toward local merchants. However, this move will also free Amazon to build warehouses in California, which it has avoided doing until now. They've already announced that this will enable them to add a same-day delivery option to the Amazon Prime service. (It won't be free, though.)
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by Mudpuppy »

happytrades wrote:The reason Amazon has done so well is because it gets a free ride on the backs of other people who pick up its share of costs in living in a free society. Enjoy your free shipping.
I pay sales taxes on my Amazon orders just as I pay on my brick and mortar purchases. There is a Use Tax line on the CA tax return for just such responsible reporting and payment of the sales tax. Just because most people don't do this, does not make such sweeping generalizations about all Amazon buyers justified. Some of us actually do the right thing.
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by mackstann »

happytrades wrote: One of the reasons that Amazon has been so successful is that it competes unfairly with your local merchant because Amazon pays no sales taxes. In short, that has been its business model.
It has benefited from that, no doubt. But to say that is its business model is overstating it by far. I live in Oregon where we have no sales tax at all, and Amazon is still incredibly competitive, convenient, and informative (reviews!) compared to brick and mortar stores and also most other internet retailers. I pretty much shop from them by default, unless I have some good reason not to, and sales tax isn't a factor whatsoever.
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by Tom_T »

Bungo wrote:
happytrades wrote:I believe Amazon is going to start collecting sales tax from California customers on September 15.
New Jersey will be doing the same, starting sometime in 2013.
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by sscritic »

Mudpuppy wrote: I pay sales taxes on my Amazon orders just as I pay on my brick and mortar purchases. There is a Use Tax line on the CA tax return for just such responsible reporting and payment of the sales tax.
Here's a little story about having your cake and eating it too.

As a responsible citizen, I tried to use part of my refund to pay my use tax and asked that the remainder be applied to my 2012 taxes.* The FTB sent me a refund check for the amount of my use tax. Bottom line: I was responsible and tried to pay, but the FTB wouldn't give the money to the BOE.

* The 540 has you compute your refund or amount due before the line for the use tax. You then either add (subtract) the use tax from the amount due (to be refunded). My line 115 was zero, but they sent me a refund of the use tax in spite of what was on my return.
91 Overpaid tax . If line 75 is more than line 64, subtract line 64 from line 75 . . .
92 Amount of line 91 you want applied to your 2012 estimated tax . . . . . .
93 Overpaid tax available this year . Subtract line 92 from line 91 . . . . . .
94 Tax due . If line 75 is less than line 64, subtract line 75 from line 64 . . .
95 Use Tax . This is not a total line (see page 14) . . . .

111 AMOUNT YOU OWE. Add line 94, line 95, and line 110 (see page 15) .

115 REFUND OR NO AMOUNT DUE. Subtract line 95 and line 110 from line 93 (see page 16) .
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by mikep »

happytrades wrote:It is a raw deal in this respect though.

One of the reasons that Amazon has been so successful is that it competes unfairly with your local merchant because Amazon pays no sales taxes. In short, that has been its business model.

Your local merchant who hires local citizens also pays a sales tax, which helps pay for the police, fire protections in your home town, and maybe gives your kid or grandkid a job. Amazon gets a free ride because it does not pay this tax. That is a big reason for why it has been so successful and has fought internet taxation of sales.

Think of what kind of community you would live in if everyone else got the same deal and paid no taxes. Every time you buy from Amazon, you are telling the little guy on the corner that is paying local taxes and providing a job to someone in the community that he is a chump. If you like Amazon, you must love Congress.

The reason Amazon has done so well is because it gets a free ride on the backs of other people who pick up its share of costs in living in a free society. Enjoy your free shipping.
My state allows you to estimate the use tax based on your annual income, that's what I do and add the business purchases separately. So I'm following the law, even if the amazon orders add up to more than the estimate.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by tetractys »

I avoid marketing gimmicks. -- Tet
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Alex Frakt »

tetractys wrote:I avoid marketing gimmicks. -- Tet
If the gimmick provides an advantage to me, I use it. I started in grade school by sending in box tops from the cereal I ate anyway for a pocket knife (incidentally, can you imagine a promotion like that today :-)).

I live in the middle of a big city. Consumer purchases other than overpriced groceries mean a minimum of an hour from the time I leave my front door until I get back and at least $5 in gas and wear and tear on my car. I walk to work, so there's no opportunity to pick something up on the way home. If I'm not going to a big box store, I'll have pay a few bucks for parking as well. A Prime membership means I can usually avoid all of this.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by tetractys »

Alex Frakt wrote:
tetractys wrote:I avoid marketing gimmicks. -- Tet
If the gimmick provides an advantage to me, I use it. I started in grade school by sending in box tops from the cereal I ate anyway for a pocket knife (incidentally, can you imagine a promotion like that today :-)).

I live in the middle of a big city. Consumer purchases other than overpriced groceries mean a minimum of an hour from the time I leave my front door until I get back and at least $5 in gas and wear and tear on my car. I walk to work, so there's no opportunity to pick something up on the way home. If I'm not going to a big box store, I'll have pay a few bucks for parking as well. A Prime membership means I can usually avoid all of this.
That's a pretty good excuse. Watch out for the Amazon Fresh driver though. -- Tet
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hoppy08520
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by hoppy08520 »

I have no personal experience with ths, bu I thought the NYT review might be of interest:

From The New York Times:

STATE OF THE ART: Potluck for the Eyeballs: Amazon’s Streaming Service

Amazon challenges Netflix in the streaming-movie arena with a free service. Well, it’s free with the purchase of an Amazon Prime membership.

http://nyti.ms/PryYui
kermit
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by kermit »

I encourage everyone to get Amazon Prime. Also you can "split" the cost by sharing Prime with your family members. My wife, mother, and mother-in-law all are Prime members under my account; they get the same free 2 day delivery that I do. The only thing they don't get are the extras: streaming video and book lending.

I make *very* good use of the book lending program. In fact I just downloaded a new book this morning!
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by GeauxBR »

We got it free for a year for signing up for Amazon Mom (baby registry). Our year ran out last week and it was a very easy decision to re-up. The shipping and instant watch video on our mobile devices is so worth it to us.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by ejvyas »

I used it for one year but I wasnt too happy with their free streaming content
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Sidney »

ejvyas wrote:I used it for one year but I wasn't too happy with their free streaming content
That was my impression of Netflix as well. Canceled it after 6 months.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by Jerilynn »

hoppy08520 wrote:I have no personal experience with ths, bu I thought the NYT review might be of interest:

From The New York Times:

STATE OF THE ART: Potluck for the Eyeballs: Amazon’s Streaming Service

Amazon challenges Netflix in the streaming-movie arena with a free service. Well, it’s free with the purchase of an Amazon Prime membership.

http://nyti.ms/PryYui
True.

Also, the amazon streaming does not have subtitles, lots of netflix movies do. That said, there are still times when amazon will have a movie or show that netflix doesn't.
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Re: Amazon Prime

Post by gkaplan »

I don't do streaming, so this is not really a benefit.
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Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by Diogenes »

Not at all. The taxes you mention are not the obligation of Amazon but of the individual consumer. Most of those who complain about Amazon are really complaining because they want all of us to pay more to support a rapidly extinct business model instead of a more competitive market system. Same people who complain about Walmart. Both Amazon and Walmart clearly serve the interests of the consumer with their efficient service at low prices, and are great companies.
Times change. No longer are we dependent of the price whims of the nearby store and no longer is free enterprise geographically restrained. Thanks Amazon for the free shipping! Yay!!

_D_
happytrades wrote:It is a raw deal in this respect though.

One of the reasons that Amazon has been so successful is that it competes unfairly with your local merchant because Amazon pays no sales taxes. In short, that has been its business model.

Your local merchant who hires local citizens also pays a sales tax, which helps pay for the police, fire protections in your home town, and maybe gives your kid or grandkid a job. Amazon gets a free ride because it does not pay this tax. That is a big reason for why it has been so successful and has fought internet taxation of sales.

Think of what kind of community you would live in if everyone else got the same deal and paid no taxes. Every time you buy from Amazon, you are telling the little guy on the corner that is paying local taxes and providing a job to someone in the community that he is a chump. If you like Amazon, you must love Congress.

The reason Amazon has done so well is because it gets a free ride on the backs of other people who pick up its share of costs in living in a free society. Enjoy your free shipping.
Truth and clarity are important in all things...
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: But don't you feel a little guilty?

Post by sscritic »

Diogenes wrote:Not at all. The taxes you mention are not the obligation of Amazon but of the individual consumer.
This would depend on state law. In California, the seller is responsible for paying sales tax. The seller has the option of passing that along to the consumer, but is not required to.* Retailers can run ads saying "we pay the sales tax" and all that means is that they are not passing the sales tax cost on to the consumer. So the question is, is Amazon a retailer in a state? This is where the nexus issue comes in. If Amazon is a retailer in a state, Amazon owes sales tax. If Amazon is not a retailer in the state, the consumer owes the use tax, but the consumer never owes sales tax to the state.

* If passed on, it has to be listed separately. If you buy a hot dog for $2 from a street vendor, there is no sales tax collected from you, but the vendor owes the sales tax to the state.
Topic Author
PacNorWest
Posts: 89
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 11:07 pm

Re: Amazon Prime

Post by PacNorWest »

Off topic now, but. . .

Amazon gets special shipping rates - so low that an individual seller can ship through Amazon cheaper than working solo.
Amazon does it two ways.
If you sell a product that is "boxable" such as wristwatches, sunglasses, etc. and the profit margin and quantity fit Amazon's criteria, then Amazon will stock it for you and ship it directly from their facility.

Working with Amazon at that level also provides you with the rights to print out shipping labels billed at Amazon shipping rates so that you can ship the items not stocked by Amazon.

This information obtained from an Amazon seller acquaintance.
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