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Killexams : Amazon Certified history - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/SAA-C03 Search results Killexams : Amazon Certified history - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/SAA-C03 https://killexams.com/exam_list/Amazon Killexams : How to edit and delete your Amazon browsing history No result found, try new keyword!Read More. Whether you're a frequent Amazon shopper or only use the service occasionally, your browsing history comes in handy for finding products and deals you previously viewed but didn't save. Fri, 20 Jan 2023 20:54:00 -0600 https://www.androidpolice.com/amazon-edit-delete-browsing-history/ Killexams : This Amazon Worker Calls Out His Employer On A Podcast But Still Keeps His Job Daniel Olayiwola, in front of the Amazon warehouse he works at, on Jan. 18, 2023 Scott Stephen Ball for BuzzFeed News © Provided by BuzzFeed News Daniel Olayiwola, in front of the Amazon warehouse he works at, on Jan. 18, 2023 Scott Stephen Ball for BuzzFeed News

In May 2022, Daniel Olayiwola, a 29-year-old picker at an Amazon warehouse in San Antonio, spoke at the company’s shareholder meeting. As an employee, he held a small number of vested stock options that he was able to buy, making him an official shareholder, but a warehouse worker had never introduced a proposal at the annual gathering before, which is typically dominated by the major investors focused on Amazon’s plans to raise profits and dividends. 

Near the end of the virtual meeting, Amazon’s moderator played the two-minute recording Olayiwola had sent in advance. In the statement, Olayiwola said he was proposing a resolution to end the company’s “injury crisis” by getting rid of the productivity quotas and surveillance mechanisms that push workers to prioritize speed over safety out of fear of losing their jobs. 

“I’ve personally felt the physical toll of working for Amazon,” he said in the recording. “I’ve seen my coworkers work themselves to exhaustion.” 

The resolution he submitted included citations of news investigations, research studies, and a government inspection report collectively showing that injury rates at Amazon warehouses were higher than at non-Amazon warehouses thanks to conditions that sometimes violated labor laws

In the overview it sent to shareholders before the meeting, Amazon argued against calls for policy change by noting that its “worker incident rate” had declined since 2019. “Safety is integral to everything we do at Amazon, as demonstrated by our relentless focus on health and safety training, engagement with employees, and refinement of our processes to Improve working conditions,” the company stated. “Our commitment to supporting our employees’ well-being and success is demonstrated through our competitive compensation and employee benefits.”

In a statement responding to questions for this story, Amazon spokesperson Sam Stephenson defended the company’s productivity expectations, which he said are “based on time and tenure, peer performance, and adherence to safe work practices,” and its use of surveillance, which he said is “common practice at nearly every major retailer in the world” and helps “ensure employee safety, inventory quality, or protect against theft.”  

When Olayiwola’s recording ended, a heavy silence fell over the line. Then the moderator noted that Amazon recommended that shareholders vote against the resolution. And most did, sinking the proposal.    

Olayiwola wasn’t sure if he had just cost himself his job.

 “I was super scared about speaking out for the longest, but I was thinking, like, Dude, they’ve already fired everyone you know. Just consider yourself fired,” he said. “I kept on thinking, They could fire you anytime, and if they do, nothing you say will matter. Say what you say right now while you’re in here, so they can’t say I’m just speaking out because I got fired.

Amazon spokesperson Stephenson said that Olayiwola’s job wasn’t at risk because “retaliation of any kind isn’t tolerated.”

But Olayiwola wasn’t sure what to expect when he showed up at the warehouse the next week. On the way to his work station, he said, a manager stopped him. To his surprise, the manager told Olayiwola he respected him for speaking up. But, he added, a job in an Amazon warehouse was still better than most alternatives. “You could have it a lot worse,” Olayiwola recalled the manager saying.

He wasn’t fired. But none of his proposals were put into place. 

So last summer, he started a podcast with the provocative title Surviving ScAmazon, posting the short episodes on YouTube, so far seven in all, two- to 10- minute monologues each focusing on different slices of company policy and how they affect workers. The videos haven’t gotten more than a few hundred views and are far from the polished productions of full-time creators, but they stand as a noteworthy case of a non-unionized, low-wage worker creating an independent channel to publicly and non-anonymously call out the company actively employing them. Olayiwola hopes his initiative spurs others to contribute their voices, perhaps one day forming a vast digital chorus clamoring for corporate accountability.      

“The sooner we open a dialogue, the sooner we can start to figure out what’s going on and see what we can try to change or fix,” he said in the first episode, which went up in July. 

The podcast is only part of his effort to amplify his message. Over the last year, he has done interviews with at least four news outlets, published an op-ed in Fortune, and volunteered as a leader for United for Respect, an advocacy group that campaigns on behalf of retail workers. 

“Everybody was so scared about speaking out,” he said. “I felt like I had to do something to inspire others to tell their experiences working at Amazon.”

An Amazon warehouse in San Antonio, Texas on Jan. 18, 2023 Scott Stephen Ball For Buzzfeed News © Provided by BuzzFeed News An Amazon warehouse in San Antonio, Texas on Jan. 18, 2023 Scott Stephen Ball For Buzzfeed News

A military veteran with a newborn child at home and five years of productive work at Amazon on his resume, Olayiwola casts a sympathetic image. He has wondered if he remains employed because the company realizes that firing him would risk drawing even more attention to the issues he keeps speaking up about. 

“I’m thinking I might stay at Amazon for a while,” Olayiwola said. “Like everybody else, I’m just trying to find stability. I’m not anti-Amazon, I don’t hate Amazon, I’m just tired of the way they treat people.”     

(Clockwise from top) TikTok from a worker at Sonic; Members of the Amazon Labor Union and others protesting in New York City on Nov. 30, 2022; a TikTok from a former Dollar Store manager; a TikTok from a Walmart employee Screenshots via TikTok; Spencer Platt / Getty Images © Provided by BuzzFeed News (Clockwise from top) TikTok from a worker at Sonic; Members of the Amazon Labor Union and others protesting in New York City on Nov. 30, 2022; a TikTok from a former Dollar Store manager; a TikTok from a Walmart employee Screenshots via TikTok; Spencer Platt / Getty Images

Olayiwola is part of a growing swath of low-wage workers publicly calling out their corporate employers for labor conditions that they say leave them overworked and underpaid.

While an Amazon warehouse in New York became the first to unionize in company history last year, no others have successfully followed suit. And while more than 270 Starbucks branches have unionized over the past year, overall union membership at companies around the country dropped to its lowest rate in 2022 since the Bureau of Labor Statistics started keeping track in 1983.

In the absence of union protections and campaigns, workers have turned to more informal methods for building pressure on companies to raise wages. Retail workers at Dollar General, Walmart, Sonic, and Burger King, among others, have filmed TikTok videos chronicling what they say are routine challenges on the job. Last year, low-wage service workers across the South formed an unofficial union through the labor rights group Raise Up the South. In recent months, fast-food workers across California have rallied outside the state capitol calling for legislators to support AB 257, which proposed stricter oversight of labor conditions and opened the door for wage raises but is now on pause after the restaurant industry filed a lawsuit to put the law up for a public vote next year. 

While corporate employers have the authority to fire workers without cause and labor protections are notoriously difficult to enforce, a shortage of prospective job applicants has empowered many low-wage employees with newfound leverage. These days, “We’re Hiring” signs hang on countless retail windows across the country, and many workplaces have operated shorthanded since the pandemic’s early months. This shifting dynamic traces back to a dark reality: recent research has revealed that the national worker shortage was in part due to so many service workers dying from COVID-19 or declining to return to work after catching it.  

Employers considering whether to discipline vocal workers may also weigh the consequences they risk for terminating those who speak out. After management at a Staten Island Amazon warehouse fired Chris Smalls, a worker leading protests for safer working conditions in 2020, the incident fueled the first successful union drive in company history. Smalls became the face of the campaign, a modern-day labor icon marching across Amazon parking lots in his signature red hoodie and sideways snap-back. His trajectory showed how an act of corporate aggression can turn a little known advocate into a martyr recognized from coast to coast. 

“You be getting home and thinking about not meeting rates and not sleep very well at night,” Olayiwola says. “It’s kinda traumatizing.” Scott Stephen Ball for BuzzFeed News © Provided by BuzzFeed News “You be getting home and thinking about not meeting rates and not sleep very well at night,” Olayiwola says. “It’s kinda traumatizing.” Scott Stephen Ball for BuzzFeed News

The son of a Nigerian immigrant nurse and a car salesperson with deep roots in the South, Olayiwola joined the military right after graduating high school in Jacksonville, Florida, because he “didn’t have a way to pay for college,” he said. He served five years as a combat medic in the Army reserves, then got a job as an EMT at a homeless shelter, then as a delivery driver for UPS. When he saw an online ad about openings at Amazon, the job benefits appealed to him: a 401(k) plan, shares in the company, opportunities for raises, and the freedom to transfer to facilities anywhere he wanted to move to. 

If anything, Olayiwola embodies the sort of career Amazon proudly promotes. He started at a warehouse in Jacksonville, making $11 an hour. In the years since, he has worked at seven Amazon distribution centers across Florida and then Texas as he moved homes. He got certified to handle a forklift and settled into a role as a picker, pulling bins from shelves and moving items to a conveyor belt as quickly as he could to meet productivity expectations that determined his fate at the company. The job took a toll on his mental health, he said. 

“You be getting home and thinking about not meeting rates and not [sleeping] very well at night,” he said. “It’s kinda traumatizing.”

He made good rates. He was young and in strong physical condition. Many of his colleagues were in their 50s and 60s. Few of them lasted long before losing their jobs. 

Within two years, he said, he found he was often one of the most experienced employees in warehouses that cycled through workers quickly, shedding excess labor during slow seasons and staffing back up during peaks. Often, he’d see old colleagues return when the next hiring surge came around, starting again at the entry-level salary floor.

“They built these warehouses in places where people need work and run them through the gauntlet, but they still go back,” he said. 

Amazon maintains that the turnover only affects workers who sign up for short-term contracts. 

“During our peak season, we provide seasonal employment options for people looking for temporary roles and flexibility,” Amazon spokesperson Stephenson. “Headcount reductions following peak season impact employees who were hired with the understanding that their roles were seasonal.”

“You be getting home and thinking about not meeting rates and not [sleeping] very well at night,” he said. “It’s kinda traumatizing.”

By 2019, Olayiwola had maxed out his raises, which at the time capped out at around $18 an hour. He grew increasingly frustrated that his income wasn’t keeping up with his rising living costs, even as each shift left his body sore and his mind drained. 

That October, he started posting videos about his experiences on the job. His first, a four-minute vlog aiming to “document the internal struggle that I get from Amazon,” contains confessional-type clips of him walking into the warehouse before work or sitting in his car after work, venting about “how bad it is in there” and being “so tired my knees hurt all the time.”

“I just ran out the sweat shop,” he says to the camera. “I’m really happy not to have to work tomorrow.” 

His second video, in November, stitched together glimpses of workers crowding around break room microwaves with clips of him calling for a raise to $20 an hour and a 45-minute break. Neither video garnered more than a few hundred views, but Olayiwola found the outlet cathartic.   

“Someone has to say something because most people do not care,” he says now of his decision to start publicizing his opinions on the internet. “Part of it is getting the information out that this is wrong and they need to stop doing this to people.”

After those first two videos, though, he panic about getting fired if he kept going and decided it wasn’t worth the risk. He’d only been at the company for two years and “wanted to have a solid tenure” moving forward, he said. So he stopped posting his thoughts.

But he started hearing from other Amazon workers after they saw his videos on Facebook, who told him about United for Respect, which has campaigned on behalf of Amazon workers for years and organized a community of employees advocating for policy changes. Olayiwola stayed in touch with the group, keeping tabs on the rallies, walkouts, and other labor actions simmering at facilities around the world.

He was working at an Amazon warehouse in Dallas when the pandemic started and was present when Jeff Bezos visited the facility for a walk-through of safety conditions. Two months later, one of his coworkers there, Daniel Warren, died from COVID-19. Olayiwola learned about the death when he arrived at work one day and saw Warren’s face on a big TV in the break room as a memorial. 

As the pandemic continued across the globe, Amazon workers protested unsafe working conditions and low pay, escalating a labor rights movement that had started years before. In France in April, a judge ordered Amazon to suspend its operations in the country until it improved its safety protocols in warehouses — the company agreed to new policies approved by the union before beginning to reopen facilities in mid-May. In Poland from March through the end of the year, workers went on a series of strikes to call for higher wages, though the actions have yet to lead to any changes. In Bessemer, Alabama, workers organized a union campaign that came close to winning but fell just short in March 2021. In Staten Island, New York, in the year leading up to a March 2022 union election, Smalls rallied his former coworkers to join the Amazon Labor Union, which he’d just founded. 

Through those months, though, Olayiwola’s mind was on more personal matters. When his wife was pregnant with their first child, they moved to San Antonio to be closer to her family. In summer 2021, their daughter was born. With their budget stretched tighter, he said, he started pulling money from his 401(k) savings. Even with his wife’s income from her job in the insurance industry, Olayiwola said he realized he needed a second job to cover all their bills, which now included $280 in daycare every week. He started picking up work as a roofer. 

Two or three days a week, he said, he wakes at 5 a.m., arrives at a roofing job around 6:30, and puts in six to eight hours before heading to the Amazon warehouse for his night shift, which runs from 6:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. He clocks 60 hours a week between the two jobs, enough for all the bills to get paid every month but not enough to escape paycheck-to-paycheck precarity, he said.

He found himself stuck “in a situation where you have no upward mobility, no ability to save up money, in a cycle of literally poverty, even though this is one of the top companies in the world,” he said.

“I wanted to give us a platform to talk about what we really want and need.” Scott Stephen Ball for BuzzFeed News © Provided by BuzzFeed News “I wanted to give us a platform to talk about what we really want and need.” Scott Stephen Ball for BuzzFeed News

Reflecting on it, he noticed that his complaints echoed those he repeatedly heard from coworkers. He thought about the coworkers who iced their knees in their cars after shifts, the coworkers who returned to lower-paid positions after getting fired because there wasn’t any better option on the job market, and the coworkers who expressed resignation at the conditions, convinced that nothing would ever change. Having worked at Amazon for five years and witnessing conditions at seven facilities, Olayiwola came to the realization that he was probably one of the most qualified employees to speak with authority about the physical and financial struggles warehouse workers experience. In early 2022, he decided that he was willing to risk getting fired for the chance to nudge the company toward even incremental changes. 

Through United for Respect, he attended an online class on organizing, which laid out his legal rights and made him feel more comfortable “to become more involved,” he said.

His approach wasn’t radical — it was pragmatic. Though some Amazon workers in other warehouses tried to unionize, Olayiwola sought more modest aims, hoping to reason with management rather than battle them. “They’re really anti-union, so let’s try other ways,” he said. “I just wanted to get a dialogue started.”

The shareholder meeting offered him a chance to get his message across to people with real influence in the company — and to open a line of communication on their terms. Working with United for Respect organizers, he put together a proposal focusing on ending the policies he found most detrimental to workers: the quotas that pushed them to exhaustion and the surveillance that pressured them to maximize their effort at all times. Once he’d purchased some of his vested stock options, he emailed the corporate office requesting a chance to introduce the proposal at the upcoming gathering. To his surprise, they approved his request. 

“We encourage you to provide us with a pre-recorded audio file in advance of the meeting that we will play to present your proposal,” Senior Corporate Counsel Jung Ju said in the email. “I look forward to hearing from you.” 

Listening to his own voice on the call, Olayiwola imagined what was going through the heads of the wealthy investors on the line. Who let this broke warehouse worker in here to speak his mind? he suspected some of them were thinking. We don’t care what’s going on in the warehouse.

But then it was over. The shareholders followed the company’s recommendation to vote against the proposal. Olayiwola went down in history as the first Amazon warehouse worker to pitch a policy proposal at a shareholder meeting, but his moment in the spotlight was merely a perfunctory bump in the road for a company pursuing ever-higher revenues.   

Nonetheless, the experience emboldened him. Two months after the May shareholder meeting, he posted the debut episode of his Surviving ScAmazon podcast on YouTube. He has posted at least one episode a month since then. Unlike his videos from 2019, which centered the toll the job was taking on him, these carry the tone of a grizzled veteran passing down hard-won lessons about navigating Amazon warehouse work. 

He aims for the episodes to resemble the conversations he and his coworkers have in break rooms. He issues warnings about managers discouraging vacation during the high-demand holiday season, demonstrates stretches he likes to do at his workstation, reads out complaints posted on an internal employee forum, and chronicles the walkouts and strikes at facilities around the country. 

“I wanted to give us a platform to talk about what we really want and need,” he said. 

Olayiwola is far from a social media influencer. He doesn’t have much time to create content. He’s still learning how to edit videos. None of his posts have gone viral. He is still figuring out the format for his show. He hopes to feature fellow Amazon employees as guests one day, but first he hopes to inspire them to feel comfortable enough to speak publicly about their experiences. 

He said that  managers tell him they’ve seen his posts, but he hasn’t faced any reprimands, warnings, or punishment. Sometimes a manager will even tell him, “Thanks for the callout. We’ll get right on that,” he said. But he said he hasn’t seen much change. He supports efforts to unionize at Amazon, but the high turnover rates have made it hard for organizers at warehouses around the country to build momentum. The conditions he stepped into when he first took the job remain in place. 

Thinking back on the past couple of years, he could recall just one policy shift that he deemed “a little bit” of progress. For years, Olayiwola had taken issue with the price of food in the warehouse cafeteria, from the vending machine snacks to the $15 lunches. (Amazon spokesperson Stephenson said its vending prices are “20% below market value.”) 

Then, several months ago, Olayiwola said he arrived at work to find a rare mark of good news: There were now free bananas.  ●

Thu, 16 Feb 2023 01:30:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/news/this-amazon-worker-calls-out-his-employer-on-a-podcast-but-still-keeps-his-job/ar-AA17zwnh
Killexams : Amazon’s layoffs will cut nearly twice as deep as previously warned

The tech sector’s ongoing economic woes continue to hammer Amazon, resulting in the largest round of layoffs in the e-commerce giant’s history. The company will eliminate an additional 8,000 positions this month alone, bringing the total up to 18,000 workers. That follows Amazon’s previous target, made public in November, to scale back 3 percent of its white-collar workers, or about 10,000 people.

On Wednesday, CEO Andy Jassy published a statement about the company’s updated plans to reduce its labor force. According to Jassy, the majority of the additional layoffs come from other areas of the company, such as brick-and-mortar Amazon Stores as well as its People, Experience, and Technology (PXT) organization, which handles human resources and similar responsibilities.

[Related: Meta lays off more than 11,000 employees after ‘worst downturn’ in company’s history.]

Amazon generally prefers to notify affected employees before making a public announcement, the CEO writes in the letter, but he says the news came earlier than executives hoped due to an alleged external leak from “one of [their] teammates.” The company will notify which workers have lost their jobs starting on January 18.

“Amazon has weathered uncertain and difficult economies in the past, and we will continue to do so,” Jassy writes in his statement, later adding that he is “optimistic that we’ll be inventive, resourceful, and scrappy in this time when we’re not hiring expansively and eliminating some roles.”

[Relate: Amazon debuts telehealth program.]

To further add credence to Amazon’s ongoing financial issues,  an SEC filing made public on Tuesday shows the company recently obtained a $8 billion unsecured loan from various unnamed lenders, as The Register highlighted recently.  Amazon explained the new loan in a statement provided to Reuters, saying it is part of “different financing options to support capital expenditures, debt repayments, acquisitions, and working capital needs.”

The online store joins fellow tech companies including Netflix, Peloton, Microsoft, and Twitter in recent dramatic layoffs and scaled back hiring strategies as a result of economic slowdown, as CBS News noted on Thursday. In November, Facebook’s parent company, Meta, announced the largest layoff in its history affecting 11,000 employees, citing “one of the worst downturns” in the company’s nearly 20 year existence.

Fri, 06 Jan 2023 18:55:00 -0600 Andrew Paul en-US text/html https://www.popsci.com/technology/amazon-layoffs-january-2023/
Killexams : Building a relationship with Amazon beyond the fulfillment center | Rick Minor

Leon County Commissioner Rick Minor (second from left) served as a panelist at the AWS Summit in Washington DC on May 24, 2022.

Like many, I’m excited about the Amazon fulfillment center and the economic impact it will bring to Leon County.  The $200 million facility, along with the employment of 1,000 workers, makes this the largest single private sector investment in the history of this community.  Even so, that’s only part of the picture.  Amazon has indicated they’d like to explore a partnership that goes far beyond the operation of a fulfillment center.

Amazon Web Services (AWS), a subsidiary of Amazon, provides a broad set of cloud-based products to businesses, nonprofits, and governments.  Its annual revenue is $62 billion and with clients like NASA, Toyota, Disney+ and Verizon, AWS leads the cloud services industry with about a third of the global market.

For the past year, Leon County’s Office of Economic Vitality (OEV) has been leading talks with AWS about the prospect of investing in our workforce and business community.  There’s a strong mutual benefit in doing so, and AWS is already doing it in other states and localities.  Some examples:

  • Georgia’s Governor Kemp recently launched a new collaboration with AWS in which 5,500 Georgia residents will be trained in cloud computing.

  • In 2021, the State of Pennsylvania and AWS announced a partnership that expands e-commerce opportunities for Pennsylvania businesses.  Small businesses can reach new customers and increase their sales by digitizing their inventory and marketing it via an online storefront, for free or very low cost.

  • Washington State and AWS formed a first-of-its-kind agreement to train and certify 2,500 high school students in cloud computing by 2024.

Investments like these can change lives for the better.  A person certified in cloud computing can earn a high salary, with no college degree required.  A small business with a new online presence can increase profits.  When these things happen on a large scale and median income rises, a community experiences a multiplier effect that can help alleviate poverty, food insecurity, and affordable housing shortages.

These types of public-private initiatives are possible for Leon County, too.  And why wouldn’t they be?  Our community is a prime candidate for Big Tech investment.  We are the most educated county in Florida.  We have 42,000 college students attending a Top 20 public university, the #1 public HBCU, and the #1 community college in the nation for associates degrees.

We have a robust, cohesive network of stakeholders including not just the academic institutions, but also the three Chambers of Commerce, our workforce development organizations like Tallahassee Community College, Lively and CareerSource, and a thriving, highly influential IT sector.  On top of all of that, we have a strong record of inclusiveness and working collaboratively to help each other, as demonstrated during the pandemic in 2020-21 and by the All-America City Award in 2015.  Leon County / Tallahassee has a lot to boast about.

We’ve been promoting these attributes to Amazon and have made strides in fostering a productive relationship.  Last February, AWS and OEV co-hosted a roundtable discussion with 40 local IT, academic, and workforce development leaders to identify new talent pipelines.  Soon afterward, AWS sponsored Leon Works, which connected 750 high school students with 100 employers from around the region.

At the AWS Summit in Washington DC, where AWS and its partners presented the broad range of cloud computing services to conference attendees. (May 24, 2022)

Because of my background in IT, I was invited last year to serve as a panelist at the AWS Summit in Washington DC.  My presentation focused on how Leon County is exploring workforce development opportunities with AWS, while other panelists represented communities with projects underway.  One talked about how her state’s high school students were learning valuable tech skills, and another discussed how AWS is helping his state increase diversity within its IT sector.

There’s been a lot of talk about the economic boost of Amazon’s fulfillment center, and that’s understandable.  However, in the long-term view, collaboration with Amazon Web Services in workforce development might be an even bigger opportunity.

Over time, Leon County should become a model for how a community can partner with Big Tech companies so that they’ll invest heavily in local skills development as a means toward achieving their own business objectives.  When we foster this kind of public-private partnership, we’re helping our workforce compete in the digital economy and we’re improving the quality of life for our neighbors here at home.

Rick Minor

Rick Minor is the Leon County Commissioner serving District 3.  Prior to serving in the public sector, he spent 12 years as a consultant in information technology, business, and public policy.


Send letters to the editor (up to 200 words) or Your Turn columns (about 500 words) to letters@tallahassee.com. Please include your address for verification purposes only, and if you send a Your Turn, also include a photo and 1-2 line bio of yourself. You can also submit anonymous Zing!s at Tallahassee.com/Zing. Submissions are published on a space-available basis. All submissions may be edited for content, clarity and length, and may also be published by any part of the USA TODAY NETWORK.

This article originally appeared on Tallahassee Democrat: Building a relationship with Amazon beyond the fulfillment center | Rick Minor

Sat, 04 Feb 2023 20:04:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/building-relationship-amazon-beyond-fulfillment-100409974.html
Killexams : Microsoft And Amazon To Layoff A Total Of 28,000 Employees - Why We Are Seeing Some Of The Highest Layoffs In Tech History

Key takeaways

  • Combined, Amazon and Microsoft are laying off a total of 28,000 employees
  • The wave of tech layoffs is continuing into 2023
  • An uncertain economic climate is one reason behind the string of layoffs

The current economic climate is highly unsettled, and recession fears have plagued our economy for months. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, we haven’t hit an official recession yet. However, mass layoffs in the tech industry have shown us that the economic picture is anything but rosy.

Let’s dive into the details of the latest wave of job cuts and explore why we might be seeing these historic layoffs.

What’s happening?

It’s not a secret that the tech industry has been struggling for months. In 2022, hundreds of companies across the tech industry instituted layoffs. Meta’s layoffs were among the eye-popping headlines, with over 11,000 employees out of a job.

It looks like the tech layoffs will continue with lasting impacts in 2023. Earlier this month, Amazon and Microsoft announced layoffs totaling around 28,000 employees combined.

Here’s a breakdown of the layoffs at both companies—plus what it all means for tech investors and how Q.ai can help.

Microsoft layoffs

On January 18, Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella, announced significant layoffs at the company. In a statement, Nadella said, “today, we are making changes that will result in the reduction of our overall workforce by 10,000 jobs through the end of FY23 Q3. This represents less than 5 percent of our total employee base, with some notifications happening today.”

Nadella continues, “It’s important to note that while we are eliminating roles in some areas, we will continue to hire in key strategic areas. We know this is a challenging time for each person impacted. The senior leadership team and I are committed that as we go through this process, we will do so in the most thoughtful and transparent way possible.”

Interestingly, Microsoft mentions hiring employees in certain areas. Earlier this month, Nadella warned of challenging times ahead in the next two years for the tech sector in an interview with CNBC-TV18.

Amazon layoffs

While Microsoft is laying off around 10,000 people, Amazon is laying off an astounding total of 18,000 people. This combined number includes layoffs in November 2022. The cuts represent approximately 6% of Amazon's workforce.

According to a memo from Andy Jassy to Amazon employees, many teams are impacted. However, most of the eliminated roles are connected to the Amazon Stores and PXT divisions.

Within the memo, Jassy says, “Amazon has weathered uncertain and difficult economies in the past, and we will continue to do so. These changes will help us pursue our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure; however, I’m also optimistic that we’ll be inventive, resourceful and scrappy in this time when we’re not hiring expansively and eliminating some roles. Companies that last a long time go through different phases. They’re not in heavy people expansion mode every year.”

Tech layoffs: reasons

It’s estimated that approximately 174 tech companies have already laid off over 56,000 employees in 2023. Given that it’s still only January, these cuts are remarkable. However, the latest wave of layoffs is a continuation of the series of layoffs that happened throughout 2022.

These layoffs are evidence of a struggling tech industry. But why is the tech sector having a tough time? Here’s a look at some of the reasons behind the history-making layoffs.

The need to pivot

The tech industry is constantly shifting. That’s the nature of companies working on ever-evolving technology. As the company grows toward new technologies, some are left behind.

Even Microsoft’s CEO pointed out that the company will continue hiring in key areas. In other words, the company is channeling its resources to new technology that might be beneficial in the long run.

With technological advances, some of the layoffs at major tech companies are an unavoidable part of progress.

Shaky economic times

In the last year, the economy has been anything but stable. As households and companies brace for a recession, it’s an appropriate time for some belt-tightening. While households can trim their expenses by cutting back on splurges, companies often cut back by instituting layoffs.

Layoffs aren’t pleasant for anyone, but the action might be what the company needs to stay afloat. With fewer jobs to support, companies can continue moving forward regardless of economic storm clouds.

Are layoffs bad for investors?

Although people’s gut reaction to headlines about layoffs is negative, layoffs aren’t necessarily a sign of doom for the tech industry. Instead, the industry is likely to continue shifting as it pushes the envelope of technology forward.

While individual companies might become winners or losers, technology will likely continue to be a worthwhile investment for many portfolios. The main challenge is to determine which companies will come out on top. Of course, it’s impossible to predict the future, but carefully monitoring the market might indicate the right choices for your portfolio.

If you aren’t up for the challenge of regularly monitoring all things tech, that’s okay. You can harness the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to monitor the markets for you. Using Q.ai, you can add Investment Kits to your portfolio.

Once you choose an Investment Kit, Q.ai will monitor the changing market. If things change in the tech industry, Q.ai will make the appropriate changes to your portfolio to keep it aligned with your goals and risk tolerance. If you are interested in tech, consider adding the Emerging Tech Kit to your portfolio.

The bottom line

The latest layoffs from Microsoft and Amazon will leave thousands of tech workers without jobs. Although the numbers are eye-popping, the layoffs don't mean disaster for the tech sector. Instead, it signals economic uncertainty and a need to redirect company resources toward new technology ventures.

Download Q.ai today for access to AI-powered investment strategies.

Wed, 01 Feb 2023 04:19:00 -0600 Q.ai - Powering a Personal Wealth Movement en text/html https://www.forbes.com/sites/qai/2023/01/25/microsoft-and-amazon-to-layoff-a-total-of-28000-employeeswhy-we-are-seeing-some-of-the-highest-layoffs-in-tech-history/
Killexams : Amazon Makes Renewable Energy History. Here's Why Investors Should Love the News.

Amazon (AMZN -0.97%) grew its renewable energy portfolio by 8.3 gigawatts (GW) in 2022. That set the record for the most renewable energy purchased by a company. It brought the company's total portfolio to more than 20 GW, which is enough to power 5.3 million homes. 

With those purchases, Amazon remains the largest corporate buyer of renewable energy, a title it has held since 2020. The company continues to make new investments, positioning it to achieve its renewable energy goal well ahead of schedule.

Another record year

Amazon secured 133 new renewable energy projects across 11 countries last year, setting another record for securing new energy projects. They run the gamut. It continues tapping into one of the world's best renewable energy resources by securing new offshore wind projects in Europe. The company also added its first on-site solar project at the Amazon Air Hub in California. Meanwhile, it's supporting the development of three wind-solar hybrid projects in India. 

These new additions grew Amazon's portfolio to 401 projects across 22 nations, including 164 wind and solar farms and 237 rooftop solar projects attached to its facilities. Once all these wind and solar energy projects enter service, they'll have the capacity to generate 56,881 gigawatt-hours of clean power each year. Most projects supply electricity to the grid, which Amazon buys to power its data centers, fulfillment centers, and physical stores. 

The company is now on pace to power 100% of its operations with renewable energy by 2025. That's five years ahead of its original target.

Thinking outside the box to accelerate its strategy

Amazon is working with several developers and operators to achieve its climate goals. It's also using innovative deal structures to help accelerate renewable energy development. For example, the company partnered with Brookfield Asset Management, which chose Amazon Web Services as its preferred cloud provider last year. That deal will accelerate Brookfield's digital transformation, enabling it to modernize its technology infrastructure, optimize operations, and boost its innovation. In addition to that agreement, Brookfield's subsidiary, Brookfield Renewable, agreed to provide Amazon with an additional 601.6 megawatts (MW) of wind and solar energy from projects in Europe, North America, and India. 

That agreement enhanced the strategic relationship between Brookfield and Amazon. In 2021, Brookfield Renewable signed a strategic collaboration agreement to develop renewable energy projects supported by power purchase agreements with Amazon that will help it achieve its climate goals. These agreements also enable Brookfield to advance its enormous pipeline of renewable energy projects. 

Good for the environment and shareholders

Amazon is helping accelerate the global transition to cleaner power by supporting projects from developers like Brookfield. It's playing a pivotal role in getting projects off the ground that will be crucial to the future. For example, renewable hybrid systems in places like India will help accelerate that country's decarbonization by lowering energy costs. The hybrid system maximizes clean energy production to reduce variability and address a fundamental critique of renewable power.

Meanwhile, many of these developments will supply Amazon with clean energy at fixed rates set by the power purchase agreements, giving it visibility into its future energy costs. That's important given the amount of power it uses, especially at its data centers. By locking in prices, Amazon can keep expenses at bay, benefiting its bottom line. In addition, the company is winning incremental business by signing strategic partnerships with companies like Brookfield to help them with their digital transformation initiatives as they assist others with decarbonization, creating win-win partnerships.

Over the long term, Amazon's renewable energy strategy should create value for shareholders by keeping energy costs down and driving incremental business. Because of that, its continued success in executing this strategy is a big positive for investors.

John Mackey, former CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Matthew DiLallo has positions in Amazon.com, Brookfield Asset Management, Brookfield Renewable, and Brookfield Renewable Partners. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Amazon.com, Brookfield Asset Management, and Brookfield Renewable. The Motley Fool recommends Brookfield Renewable Partners. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Wed, 01 Feb 2023 00:50:00 -0600 Matthew DiLallo en text/html https://www.fool.com/investing/2023/02/01/amazon-makes-renewable-energy-history-heres-why-in/
Killexams : Amazon set to begin its largest jobs cull in history affecting 18,000 employees

Tech giant Amazon has started to axe over 18,000 jobs which is the largest in their 28-history as the company looks to adapt to the gloomy economic outlook

Amazon are to cut 18,000 jobs

Amazon is set to begin its largest jobs cull in history affecting more than 18,000 employees.

The online giant announced plans earlier this month to make the largest cuts to their workforce in its 28-year history.

Andy Jassy, CEO of Amazon, confirmed the cuts would see over 18,000 workers in its human resources and stores lose their jobs.

Many of the jobs being axed include workers on Alexa devices, the voice assistant which launched in 2014.

Jassy told employees earlier this month: “Amazon has weathered uncertain and difficult economies in the past, and we will continue to do so.

"These changes will help us pursue our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure.”

Amazon said in November they were looking to axe staff after the company went on a huge hiring spree during Covid.

Amazon has started culling its workforce (


Getty Images)

They had 1.6million workers by the end of 2021 up from 719,000 in 2019.

However, the company is also facing difficulties with slow online sales, rising expenses and inflation.

Amazon has also put a temporarily halt on hiring workers across its workforce in addition to trimming down its warehouse expansion and experimental projects.

Retail analyst Neil Saunders, managing director of GlobalData Retail, said the Amazon job cuts were "a big number" but claims the company went on a huge hiring spree "some of which was based on irrational exuberance during the pandemic."

Amazon boss Jeff Bezos went on a huge hiring spree in the pandemic (


POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

He added: "We're now in a different era and Amazon is on a diet", with Saunders predicting more heavy cuts in the months and years ahead.

Tech companies are following suit including Meta, which owns Facebook, and Twitter who have made drastic cuts amid a deepening and gloomy economic outlook.

In addition, Microsoft is set to cut 11,000 jobs as the technology industry responds to a slowing demand.

Morningstar analyst Dan Romanoff said: “From a big picture perspective, another pending round of layoffs at Microsoft suggests the environment is not improving, and likely continues to worsen.”

They plan to cut jobs in a number of engineering divisions as well as in human resources.

Microsoft, as of June 30, had 221,000 full-time employees, including 122,000 in the United States and 99,000 globally.

In July last year the company laid off just under a 1,000 workers across several divisions.

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Wed, 18 Jan 2023 20:14:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.mirror.co.uk/money/amazon-set-begin-largest-jobs-28935354
Killexams : Amazon will require corporate employees to work in the office at least three days per week starting in May

Kara Swisher and Amazon President and CEO Andy Jassy speak onstage during Vox Media's 2022 Code Conference.Jerod Harris/Getty Images for Vox Media

  • Amazon employees will need to be back in offices at least three days per week starting in May.

  • Amazon CEO Andy Jassy announced the change to corporate employees on Friday.

  • Jassy cited improved chances to communicate, innovate, and learn from each other in offices.

Amazon's corporate employees will be required to spend at least three days per week working in offices starting in May, CEO Andy Jassy told employees in a memo shared Friday.

Jassy said the decision was made by himself and Amazon's "s-team" of senior executives this week, and will allow employees to collaborate and communicate more openly with each other by working in person more often.

"I know that for some employees, adjusting again to a new way of working will take some time," Jassy wrote in the Friday note. "But I'm very optimistic about the positive impact this will have in how we serve and invent on behalf of customers, as well as on the growth and success of our employees."

The new policy marks a significant departure from Jassy's prior comments, as he said during a panel in September 2022 that the e-commerce giant had no plan to require employees to return to offices. At the time, Jassy said most employees were on a hybrid schedule that was decided on by individual managers.

"We don't have a plan to require people to come back," he said at the event, per CNBC. "We don't right now. We're going to proceed adaptively as we learn."

He continued: "I do think there are some things that are harder to do remotely. I think it's a little harder to invent remotely."

In October 2021, Jassy axed a similar plan to the one announced Friday that would have required employees to return to offices amid the pandemic, and instead allowed individual teams to decide when their workers needed to be in offices.

Last October, Insider reported that leaked emails showed Amazon's intent to require up to 200 employees at a Phoenix logistics hub return to the office, even if it meant relocating to the area, or risk possibly losing their jobs.

Earlier this week, Insider's Eugene Kim reported that Amazon's stated quest to become "Earth's best employer" — an effort which began just before Jassy took over at the helm — has reportedly had little impact inside the company. Current and former employees told Insider that the initiative lacks clear definition, and little has changed about the company's toxic culture.

Several other large US corporations including Google and Disney have announced policies in recent months to require employees spend at least some time in offices, with varying degrees of success. Over 2,000 Disney employees have reportedly signed a petition urging CEO Bob Iger to reconsider mandating employees to spend at least four days per week in the office.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Fri, 17 Feb 2023 06:38:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://sports.yahoo.com/amazon-require-corporate-employees-office-203800972.html
Killexams : Amazon has gutted the safety teams for its ambitious drone delivery program, as employees warn of stepped-up pressure to meet delivery goals
  • Amazon launched its Prime Air drone delivery program ten years ago.
  • A string of crashes at one test site has led some employees to raise safety concerns.
  • Prime Air's safety teams have been hit hard by Amazon's far-reaching layoffs, employees said.

When Amazon announced last summer that the towns of College Station, Texas, and Lockeford, California, would be its first test sites for package delivery by automated drone, some residents expressed concerns.

The possibility of Amazon's nearly-90-pound drone "falling from the sky onto our home, onto our car, onto our children" was nerve-wracking, College Station resident Amina Alikhan said at a public meeting last summer. 

Amazon did its best to assuage those anxieties. "Safety is of the utmost importance" to Amazon, a company representative said at that Texas meeting. In Lockeford, Amazon hosted a "Welcome Picnic," inviting residents to "learn more about how our drones can safely navigate through the sky and conveniently deliver packages right to your backyard," according to a picnic invitation seen by Insider.

Now, barely a month after starting deliveries to real customers in those towns, Amazon's drone safety teams in Lockeford and College Station have been decimated by the company's far-reaching layoffs, four current and former employees told Insider.

Cuts have also deeply affected the safety team in Amazon's Pendleton, Oregon, test site, which has seen a string of crashes, including one in 2021 that sparked a 25-acre brush fire, the employees said. 

Amazon is in the midst of its largest-ever layoffs. More than 18,000 people have been let go in rolling cuts since last autumn. CEO Andy Jassy has justified the layoffs as positioning the company to better face "the uncertain economy."

The drone safety team cuts, combined with stepped-up pressure to meet delivery targets, have generated new concerns about the potential dangers the program poses and thrown into question Amazon's stated commitment to safety, the employees said.

"I think it says what their priorities are," said one current employee. If Amazon prioritized safety "as much as they like to tell the media, that team wouldn't have gotten laid off." (Employees interviewed for this article asked not to be named in order to discuss internal matters. Insider has confirmed their identities.) 

In an email, Amazon spokesperson Maria Boschetti said that "many of the allegations in this story are misinformed or inaccurate." It's "incorrect" to say that the safety teams had been hard-hit by layoffs, she added, though she declined to specify how many people from the team had been laid off.

"Safety is our top priority," she wrote. "Implying that we no longer have a robust safety team in place is completely inaccurate." Amazon has "a dedicated safety officer in each location, plus dozens of other employees who are responsible for safety as part of their job," she wrote.

Amazon's then-retail chief Jeff Wilke revealed Prime Air's new drone model at the 2019 Re:Mars robotic conference.

Employees say Amazon has recently deputized some people to serve as safety officers in addition to their other responsibilities, but argue that's not the same as having a dedicated safety team acting as an intermediary between flight operators and management. 

Now, "there's very few people on site I trust to push back on pressure and do the right thing if there's a safety or regulatory concern," another employee said.

The layoffs mean fewer people than before are watching to make sure every flight is safe, employees contend. That could make it harder to tell if the drone could be inadvertently flying over people – which it's not certified to do.

"We can't properly clear the airspace," one employee said. "We can't really confirm that we aren't flying over people."

Boschetti said the company is complying with federal aviation safety requirements and safely serving customers. Employees who believe otherwise are "misinformed and incorrect," she wrote.

Bezos presented Prime Air as the future of Amazon

When Amazon launched its drone program, called Prime Air, in 2013, then-CEO Jeff Bezos presented a vision of a fleet of drones able to fly packages to customers within just 30 minutes and said he anticipated the drones would be delivering packages within five years.

That deadline came and went. A year ago, executives concluded the seven years Prime Air had spent on R&D had failed to produce "a delivery service that could be safely operated over populated areas," Insider previously reported

Prime Air has previously faced criticism from employees who say the pressure from executives to meet ambitious goals for drone delivery has at times superseded safety considerations. 

Employees in Prime Air's UK division told Wired in 2021 that safety sometimes seemed to be an afterthought. That division, which was responsible for reviewing footage for potential threats to train the automated drone's hazard-detection system, could be dysfunctional, workers said. One employee recalled seeing another hold down the "approve" button on their computer to mark footage as all-clear, regardless of whether there were hazards in it.

Boschetti said the software powering Amazon's automated drones is "industry-leading technology that ensures they can safely navigate to their destinations and back while detecting and avoiding obstacles – even unexpected ones – and safeguarding people, pets, and property."

The Pendleton test site's history of crashes has also prompted safety concerns from some employees.

One crash in 2021 sparked a 25-acre brush fire after the drone plunged to the earth "in uncontrolled free fall," according to a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) crash report. An "intense lithium battery fire quickly consumed the aircraft," and the fire spread to the field where the drone had crash-landed, the report added. 

Six months ago, a drone plummeted 180 feet out of the sky and "just blew apart when it hit the ground," said a person with knowledge of the crash. In Amazon's required reporting to the FAA, that crash was described as a "hard landing." 

Amazon reported another "hard landing" drone crash at Pendleton in October, according to an FAA report obtained by Insider. Boschetti did not respond to questions about the cause of that crash.

Last month, a Prime Air manager at the Pendleton test site sued Amazon for retaliation after he said he was fired for reporting safety concerns, The Seattle Times reported

Amazon has previously stated the manager's allegations are false. Boschetti also said that some drones are expected to crash during testing, where they are being pushed to their limits, and that no one has been harmed during drone tests.

Prime Air is also still having challenges sticking to a schedule, employees said.

In Lockeford, only two customers had been onboarded to participate in the pilot as of mid-January, according to two employees. The College Station site is "servicing just a handful of customers," local news station KBTX-3 reported last week. Amazon had planned to deliver packages to 1,300 customers in those towns, Insider previously reported.

Senior leaders are pushing hard to get more customers onboarded, even with the new reductions in staff, those two employees said. 

Upper management "continually demands huge goals that we barely manage to do and then asks for more," another employee said. Even before the layoffs, Prime Air was struggling, this employee added.

"In my opinion the layoffs just killed the program."

This story has been updated to include Amazon's specific denial that the safety team was hard hit by layoffs, as well as the company declining to disclose how many safety officers it laid off.

Do you have a tip or insight to share? Contact reporter Katherine Long via phone or the encrypted messaging app Signal (+1-206-375-9280), or email (klong@insider.com). 

Wed, 01 Feb 2023 04:01:00 -0600 en-US text/html https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-prime-air-safety-teams-drone-delivery-layoffs-2023-2
Killexams : Amazon is taking half of each sale from its merchants

Grappling with slowing sales growth and rising costs, Amazon.com Inc. is squeezing more money from the nearly 2 million small businesses that sell products on its sprawling online marketplace.

For the first time, Amazon’s average cut of each sale surpassed 50% in 2022, according to a study by Marketplace Pulse, which sampled seller transactions going back to 2016.

An Amazon fulfillment center is seen on Oct. 20, 2022, in Suffolk, Virginia.

The research firm calculated the total cost of selling on Amazon by tallying the commission on each sale, fees for warehouse storage, packing and delivery, as well as money spent to advertise on a site where hundreds of millions of products jostle for attention. Paying Amazon for logistics services and advertising is optional, but most merchants consider these a necessary part of doing business.

Sellers have been paying Amazon more per transaction for six years in a row, according to Marketplace Pulse, but were able to absorb the increases because the company was attracting new customers and rapidly increasing sales. That abruptly changed when pandemic lockdowns eased and people began traveling and dining out again, sucking the oxygen out of online shopping. Last year, Amazon generated the slowest sales growth in its history.

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Consumers are far more deal-conscious than they were during the pandemic, so Amazon merchants are loath to raise prices. That reality, along with the steady increase in fees, means many sellers are struggling to make money — prompting some to handle shipping themselves and to spend less to advertise on Amazon’s site.

“For these small businesses, it’s getting harder and harder to be profitable because they are spending more and more money on Amazon fees,” said Juozas Kaziukenas, Marketplace Pulse’s founder and chief executive officer. “Amazon might be tempted to keep increasing fees because it’s in a tough spot, but you have to reach some kind of equilibrium.”

Amazon sellers choose to use its logistics services because, on average, they cost 30% less than alternatives from other shipping companies, and merchants are free to buy advertising anywhere, company spokesperson Mira Dix said in an emailed statement. The fees Amazon charges reflect the company’s own costs and investments, she said.

“Many selling partners have built and run their businesses without advertising,” she said. “If they choose to advertise their products, they have many service providers to choose from. Sellers are not required to use our logistics or advertising services, and only use them if they provide incremental value to their business.”

Maintaining profits as sales slow presents a major challenge for Amazon’s core online retail business. Without Amazon Web Services, the profitable cloud computing business, Amazon would have posted a $10 billion operating loss last year. CEO Andy Jassy is trying to restore the balance by cutting 18,000 corporate jobs and narrowing the company’s focus to key growth areas rather than investing in a scattered portfolio of new devices and services.

In response to rising costs, Amazon increased the annual price of a U.S. Prime subscription by $20 in 2022. Last month the company announced plans to levy fees on online grocery orders of less than $150. But charging customers more is risky. Merchants, many of whom generate 80% to 90% of their sales on Amazon, are less likely to rebel.

Chuck Gregorich, who sells fire pits and outdoor furniture, says turning a profit on Amazon is getting harder. One of his popular fire pits costs $200, of which Amazon takes $112 for its commission, warehouse storage, delivery and advertising. That leaves him with $88 to pay the manufacturer, ship the product in from China and cover his overhead. He expects his Amazon logistics expenses to increase up to 8% this year due to a new fee structure that took effect in January and additional changes scheduled for later this year.

“I’ll have to raise my prices and I already raised them a lot last year,” said Gregorich, who is based in Eau Claire, Wisconsin.

Amazon sellers don’t control the commissions Amazon charges or fees for things like packing and delivery. The one thing they control is advertising, and there are signs they are pulling back. Amazon’s advertising revenue in the holiday quarter grew 18.9%, a still robust expansion but a big slow-down from the same period a year earlier, when it increased by 32.2%.

Some sellers are benefitting from Amazon's changes. Desert Cactus, a Chicago-based company that sells flags, license-plate frames and other merchandise on behalf of colleges and professional sports teams, uses one of Amazon's cheapest shipping services designated for small, inexpensive products. Amazon increased the maximum product price allowed for the program to $12 from $10, which makes more Desert Cactus merchandise eligible, founder Joe Stefani said.

“It’s hard to replace Amazon because the value is still there,” Stefani said. “They deliver all of these customers and the shipping fees are less than if we did it ourselves. It’s the place to be and it’s going to be for some time.”

Wed, 15 Feb 2023 03:15:00 -0600 en text/html https://elkodaily.com/news/national/amazon-is-taking-half-of-each-sale-from-its-merchants/article_f6d6b8a9-4a28-5214-b98d-ff44c5c4bd9a.html
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