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Amazon Patents Bad Gift Protection 210

Posted by samzenpus
from the no-more-fruitcake dept.
theodp writes "Thanks to the inventors at Amazon.com, you needn't fear Aunt Martha any longer. On Tuesday, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos received a patent for a bad gift defense system that intercepts gifts you don't want and instead sends you something that you actually do want. For example, Amazon explains that its 'System and Method for Converting Gifts' would allow you to set up a rule like 'Convert all gifts from Aunt Mildred,' which would automatically convert any online gift orders from your well-meaning-but-tasteless Auntie into a gift certificate. Other examples of how the system might be used: You could convert bad gifts to something off your wish list; block specific products ('Not another XYZ comic strip calendar'); or ensure that any clothing gifts match your exact size ('Check clothes sizes first')."

*

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Amazon Patents Bad Gift Protection

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  • by chemicaldave (1776600) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @03:47PM (#34189290)
    Instead of trying to make an educated guess about what I would or would not want, just let me know beforehand that you might have an order coming to me that I don't want. Then let me decide if I want it in gift certificate form.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ddxexex (1664191)
      The big problem with that is that you'd have to respond very quickly to the order before Amazon ships it out. The instantaneous approach has the advantage that if your Aunt does actually try to send something good, well you have a gift certificate for exactly enough to get it and it'll only be a bit late. Also I doubt you want to confirm the correct size for a gifted shirt and miss the deadline to change it and get an XXL instead of and XXS. And this isn't for all presents anyways - its just for the probab
    • by hodet (620484) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:08PM (#34189490)
      ....or how about not being a spoiled brat and accepting Aunt Mildreds gift with a little gratitude and respect. There is a saying, "don't look a gift horse in the mouth".
      • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:15PM (#34189556)

        Or how about not giving gifts to people in the first place simply because the calendar said to?

        I only give gifts to small children on birthdays and Christmas. Everybody else gets them when I find something they might like - regardless of what day it is.

        •   Not following along with the radical consumerism insanity during the Big Holiday is unamerican, didn't you know?

          SB

      • by IICV (652597)

        Uh dude, if Aunt Mildred is just ordering me some shit off of Amazon and not picking it out in a physical store and shipping it (or, *gasp*, bringing it over herself), she doesn't expect gratitude and respect for her gift. If it's going to be such a hands-off and clinical transaction as "I ordered this pair of socks for you from Amazon", then hell yeah I want to be able to convert that to cash instead - it's what I would have wanted to do anyway.

        And by the way, looking a gift horse in the mouth would have r

        • by Obfuscant (592200)
          Uh dude, if Aunt Mildred is just ordering me some shit off of Amazon and not picking it out in a physical store and shipping it (or, *gasp*, bringing it over herself), she doesn't expect gratitude and respect for her gift.

          How little you understand the Aunt Mildreds of the world, and how few gifts you probably get from them.

      • ....or how about not being a spoiled brat and accepting Aunt Mildreds gift with a little gratitude and respect. There is a saying, "don't look a gift horse in the mouth".

        ...or how about saving me time and Amazon money by bypassing the time lost and money spent on delivery and subsequent return by letting me accept a gift certificate.

        • by vux984 (928602)

          Or cut amazon out of the loop and just tell aunt mildred to send you a cheque in the first place...

      • ...or how about not being a spoiled brat and accepting Aunt Mildreds gift with a little gratitude and respect.

        I totally agree. If you just give people gifts that you know they want you might as well just give them cash.

        I only give gifts that I think are cool and I am totally fine if the recipient thinks it's junk because even if they didn't take it, at least I gave them a chance to expand their horizons a little bit.

      • I don't understand what the age of a horse has to do with gifts from Aunt Mildred.... Is she sending me a horse? If it is from Amazon shouldn't it be a monkey or something?
    • by Locke2005 (849178) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:56PM (#34190054)
      I've got a better idea. Every year, let's mutually agree on an amount, say $20. I'll mail you a check for $20, and you mail me a check for $20, then we can both go out and buy exactly what we want!
      • by gbjbaanb (229885)

        Hmm. you mean Amazon should implement a gift-certificate cash-transfer system, where you can buy cash to give to someone to show you care.

        How much commission do you think they should take on each purchase, and how much to transfer the cash into your bank account. You surely didn't mean to cut out the middleman did you, you commie! :)

    • by Jay L (74152) *

      In TFA, the sample rules wizard shows that you only want Amazon to convert Aunt Mildred's gifts to certificates "after checking with me". So that'd do exactly what you want.

      Much as I hate Amazon's one-click patent, *this* is actually a novel, clever innovation.

    • by Aladrin (926209)

      Since Amazon has a 'wish list' thing anyhow, it could just pick an appropriately priced item from that.

  • How about... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by contra_mundi (1362297)
    How about a bad patent protection instead?
    • Re:How about... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by falsified (638041) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @03:58PM (#34189394)

      Not (really) obvious, no prior art, kind of a cool idea. I kind of think patents for things that aren't physical objects are BS, but if we're going to allow them at all, then this seems like one we should allow.

      • by Dthief (1700318)
        No prior art? What about gift returns at a store.

        Its just gift return, receive credit, buy something new..... just without the initial delivery.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by nospam007 (722110) *

        "Not (really) obvious, no prior art, kind of a cool idea."

        Yep. Auntie pays a company to send something with bad taste and they substitute something else.
        It might sound like a good, patentable idea, but most countries just call it 'fraud'.

      • Not (really) obvious

        Uhm... it's a series of chained if-then-else statements. It's essentially the same as a firewall: does this packet match this rule? no? Then go to next rule (default: deliver).

        The only non-obvious part (IMNSHO) is the insight---which we haven't, AFAICT, tested and verified, so the jury is still out---that there is a _market_ for this as a user-facing feature. This insight is a marketing insight, not a software insight.

        if we're going to allow them at all, then this seems like one we should allow.

        Again, I disagree. To explain why, I need us to take a step back and look at the point

  • So in other words, Bozo^H^H^Hezos patented the ancient practice of bait and switch. His mother would be so proud...

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Danse (1026)

      So in other words, Bozo^H^H^Hezos patented the ancient practice of bait and switch. His mother would be so proud...

      No, just the practice of saving people the effort of returning products for store credit.

  • by WillAffleckUW (858324) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @03:58PM (#34189390) Homepage Journal

    Under commerce laws, a contract is signed between a consumer and a company to perform a service.

    The NON-action of that service - the unwanted gift ORDERED and PAID FOR by the consumer Aunt Milly - is a direct and actionable defrauding of service and a contractual BREACH by Amazon.

    I smell a massive consumer lawsuit that Amazon will lose.

    Amazon enters into the contract to deliver the goods and services specified. They are the AGENT of Aunt Milly.

    Anything other than a good-faith effort to fulfill that contract is an act of FRAUD.

    • by brainboyz (114458)

      They patented it, doesn't mean they plan on implementing it.

    • by Dthief (1700318) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:05PM (#34189458)
      Not if you opt into it via Amazon's terms of service.

      You just will no longer be creating the same contract. The contract will now read this item will be offered to the recipient, which he/she can accept or exchange for credit towards another purchase.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DavidD_CA (750156)

      I see the defense for this being that Amazon is simply speeding up the return process.

      Remember that gifts are sent via Amazon with a return policy for store credit, and shipping is free.

      So if Aunt Mildred sent Johnny a book, Johnny can return it for a $15 credit to Grand Theft Auto: Fargo.

      Amazon is just making that process faster, knowing in advance that Johnny doesn't want the book, and giving him the credit before even shipping.

      It's a win for everyone except UPS.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Danse (1026)

        I see the defense for this being that Amazon is simply speeding up the return process.

        Remember that gifts are sent via Amazon with a return policy for store credit, and shipping is free.

        So if Aunt Mildred sent Johnny a book, Johnny can return it for a $15 credit to Grand Theft Auto: Fargo.

        Amazon is just making that process faster, knowing in advance that Johnny doesn't want the book, and giving him the credit before even shipping.

        It's a win for everyone except UPS.

        Even UPS will win when Johnny uses that credit to get something he actually wants.

        • Not really. You're missing the fact that normal return nets UPS three deliveries (Amazon -> gift -> recipient; recipient gift (return) -> Amazon; Amazon -> replacement -> recipient), whereas this process only requires one (Amazon -> replacement -> recipient). UPS is still involved, of course, but not as much as before.

          • by Danse (1026)

            Not really. You're missing the fact that normal return nets UPS three deliveries (Amazon -> gift -> recipient; recipient gift (return) -> Amazon; Amazon -> replacement -> recipient), whereas this process only requires one (Amazon -> replacement -> recipient). UPS is still involved, of course, but not as much as before.

            Maybe, but I'm wondering how often people actually bother to return something if it involves shipping it back (assuming it will even be accepted). I bet it's a pretty small percentage of cases. More likely that the offending gift gets tossed in a closet, or possibly put up on Craigslist or something.

      • by Obfuscant (592200)
        It's a win for everyone except UPS.

        A loss for UPS is a win for everyone else.

        Rat bastards made me drive fifteen miles to the nearest UPS pickup point because they wouldn't leave AN ENVELOPE with an Amazon GC at my house without a signature and wouldn't deliver it to an address where someone was available to sign for it -- without charging extra.

        And they won't leave things at my house without a signature anymore because one of the drivers pried open my locked screen door and hid a package behind it, wh

    • by Motard (1553251)

      It's going to have to ask you if your purchase is a gift and would presumably have you opt in at that point.

    • by tgd (2822)

      Capital letters don't make you smarter.

      Or authoritative.

    • How is it any different than returning a crappy gift for store credit?

      Essentially, what Amazon is proposing is that they check with the receiver before they go to the trouble of lugging a package all the way to the customer's door. The customer is authorizing a third party (in this case, Amazon) to perform specific actions before making any delivery. If item=clothing, then confirm size, else if item=DVD, then substitute BR, else if item=paper book, substitute kindle book, else if item=gift from Aunt Mildr

    • So according to your sound legal reasoning, it would be illegal for Amazon to put a little check-box next to each order saying "Allow person to return/exchange his gift for whatever else he/she wants", and/or a checkbox saying "Notify person receiving gift that the gift is on its way", or something else entirely.

      Now I'm not a lawyer, nor do I work for Amazon, so I don't know what would be the best language for describing something like this to Aunt Milfy. But don't you think that, with enough legal oversig

  • by FranTaylor (164577) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:00PM (#34189410)

    It's just like fortune cookies.

    Append "in bed" and you get a laugh.

    Append "with a computer" and you get a software patent.

  • by OzPeter (195038) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:03PM (#34189436)

    However I believe (IMHO) it is not solving the fundamental problem.

    A gift from person A to person B should be a symbol saying "I know you, and I believe that you should have this gift I am giving you". If person B is not receiving a desired gift from person A then there are at least 2 issues at stake:

    1. Person A doesn't really know Person B - in which case why are they obligated to send a gift, and whose fault is it for the lack of knowledge?
    2. Person B does not care about Person A, and instead selfishly only wants the gifts that they want and as such ignores the feelings/beliefs of person A - in which case again, why are gifts being sent?

    So the fundamental problem is the lack of a proper relationship between Person A and Person B, and that this patent application goes to weaken all such relationships by automatically sweeping the real issues under the electronic carpet.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by MobyDisk (75490)

      I wonder if gifts are becoming fungible. You can buy gift certificates to store X at Wal-mart. Those Coinstar machines that convert coins to cash actually give you a discount if you convert the coins to gift certificates. Now, Amazon has made the ability to effectively convert any product into any other product, prior to even receiving it. Today, it is popular to buy gifts from someone's online wishlist rather than shopping. For my wedding, my wife and I wanted some furniture that no one could buy indi

      • by IICV (652597)

        Yeah, I just don't understand why it's not socially acceptable to just send people cash.

        In fact, I'd imagine that starting from first principles (i.e, without all the millions of dollars companies have put into marketing them) it would be far less acceptable to give gift cards than to give cash - because when you give someone a gift card, you're essentially saying "I don't trust you to not go out and buy drugs or get a tattoo or do something else I don't approve of with this cash, so I will instead force yo

        • by OzPeter (195038) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @05:11PM (#34190212)

          Yeah, I just don't understand why it's not socially acceptable to just send people cash.

          To me, the sending of cash is probably the rudest gift giving of all. It amounts to I am compelled to give you a gift but I don't know anything about you at all, so rather than be involved in your life and learning about your experiences I'll send this cash in the off chance that you will buy something for yourself and somehow link the emotion of that buying to me.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by adenied (120700)

            On the flip side of this, when I got married last year, my wife and I wished there was a tactful way to tell people "just send us cash to pay for our honeymoon!" We ended up finding a website called honeyfund.com where you can basically let people pay for specific things you plan to do on the honeymoon. You add whatever you want and a description and they can either send you cash or Paypal it. I think there was a minimal setup fee but otherwise they don't take a cut.

            The people I know from the Midwest who

          • by jjhall (555562) <slashdotNO@SPAMmail4geeks.com> on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @05:57PM (#34190738) Homepage

            I see cash gifts the other way. I have hobbies where the items I need for those hobbies is either expensive, obscure to the average bear, or both. The items that fall outside of those two categories I probably already have or there is a reason I don't already have it. Many of my relatives have started to just give me cash for gifts. At first it was prefaced with "I know it is impolite to give cash, but I know you've mentioned a Whizbang 6000 or some such doohickey and I don't even know where to get it. I figured this way you can get it yourself and make sure you get the right thing." I do the same thing to other relatives, such as my brother, who has no common hobby to me. I know he hunts with hounds, but I wouldn't know what call to get him, or know if a particular tracking collar will work with his particular tracker, if he already has an extra, or if it is better to buy from store B instead of store A because they have a longer return period in case it fails after the first couple of uses. Sure I could call and ask him, but that kind of defeats the purpose of a surprise gift. By giving him cash, I know he'll get what he wants. We call them universal gift certificates.

            We give cash because we don't want to have the awkward fake "Thank you, I wanted a HoundHunting-a-day calendar!" when he knows it will mean standing in line for 2 hours to exchange 2 of the 3 he got for something he can actually use. By exchanging cash he is usually online showing me "what I got him" (or at least helped him get) after the family meal. That makes me much happier seeing him excited about getting something he *really* wanted.

            Now that there are little kids around at Christmas time, pretty much all of the gift giving has changed to focus on them. We adults usually give token or even gag gifts now and get much more enjoyment out of watching the kids and enjoying time together as a family than anything else.

        • by dzfoo (772245)

          I weep for the future.

                  -dZ.

    • A gift from person A to person B should be a symbol saying "I know you, and I believe that you should have this gift I am giving you".

      Only that in reality, most (or at least many) gifts are a symbol given to satisfy certain social norms or expectations. While it certainly would be nice if every gift would be the heartfelt symbol you'd like it to be, that's not the world we all live in.

      • by OzPeter (195038)

        A gift from person A to person B should be a symbol saying "I know you, and I believe that you should have this gift I am giving you".

        Only that in reality, most (or at least many) gifts are a symbol given to satisfy certain social norms or expectations. While it certainly would be nice if every gift would be the heartfelt symbol you'd like it to be, that's not the world we all live in.

        Then those social norms that compel gift giving of shit presents are fucked up and no patent is going to solve that issue.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by compro01 (777531)

      I see it in a third way, as stated in the summery, with the "I already have X, I don't want another one" option. I've had this problem a number of times, where a new book in a series I like comes out near Christmas/my birthday/etc. and I get three people buying me the book, which I already bought myself.

    • Person B does not care about Person A, and instead selfishly only wants the gifts that they want and as such ignores the feelings/beliefs of person A - in which case again, why are gifts being sent?

      Speaking as a Person B, who was gifted a fundamentalist Christian book denouncing evolution from a Person A (a relative), I would say that Person A can ignore the feelings/beliefs of Person B as well. My position on religion was well known to Person A. It was, however, meant well. After all, I am going to rot in Hell for believing in "The Devil's Works of Charles Darwin." (Although, sometimes I think I'm already there).

      Anyway, I did have a few drinks, and flipped through the book a bit. It was so ridi

    • by Dhalka226 (559740)

      I think that is an oversimplified analysis. The reality is that almost anybody who likes you enough to want to give you a gift can probably select one that you will love given the right amount of time and money, but those are not always available.

      We have a lot of trouble in my immediate family with gifts, and the major problem is that we're all fairly old (I'm the youngest at 27). That means there isn't a ton of things we want in general, and also that most of what we do want tends toward the expensive

  • So basically it's a system that allows you to be a jerk? You're automatically turning every gift into cash!
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Danse (1026)

      So basically it's a system that allows you to be a jerk? You're automatically turning every gift into cash!

      Presumably if you're such a jerk, you won't be getting many gifts anyway...

      • Lightbulb!

        *Runs to sign up*

        Dear Sir/Madam,

        I represent Diapers for America, a program designed to get expensive disposable diapers into the hands of needy parents affected by the recent economic downturn. Please purchase any brand of disposable diapers as a gift on Amazon.com and send them to:

        H. A. Hasucker
        12 S Camyoo Way
        Irool, UT 12345

    • by vlm (69642)

      A bigger mystery item is converting gifts into ... other gifts.

      Say I'm 17, in the US, and I ask Amazon to convert my incoming gifts into Everclear. Who is to blame?

      1) Being a minor I can't enter into contracts and there's no proof (he he) that I was the person whom logged in and selected "convert to Everclear"

      2) Regardless of the drinking age where Auntie Mildred lives, she has no way of knowing what I've done.

      3) Amazon has no idea whats legal and not where I live, for me ... or do they?

      Booze is pretty

      • Require a credit card on the recipient account. That guarantees at least one 18-year-old is making the choice, and therefore the contract is valid (and everything except alcohol is an acceptable gift). Furthermore, checking IDs is a solved problem - UPS and FedEx do it all the time.
        • by vlm (69642)

          There's also social problems. Mormon Auntie might not like it if you turn her pack of socks into whiskey...

          So in addition to the kids "DO NOT WANT" list, and the US Govt "DO NOT WANT" list, Auntie also needs a "DO NOT WANT" list.

          This is getting complicated.

        • Having a credit card doesn't prove that you're over 18. It only proves that someone over 18 (a parent or guardian, or yourself if over 18) arranged for you to have a credit card. Minors can have their own personal cards with parental approval.

  • All of the bad gift givers for me rarely shop on Amazon or on the internet at all. This might work if every single person who bought me stuff did it through Amazon. If they did not, it would be an odd thing to ask people to do, "Uh, yeah, your presents suck. Can you order it through Amazon so that I can auto-return it before I even get it?"
  • by alen (225700) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:16PM (#34189570)

    like a bad gift to cash in an envelope conversion

    but bad gifts do serve a purpose, it's a free supply of crap you give to people where you have to give a gift but don't want to buy one

    • it's a free supply of crap you give to people where you have to give a gift but don't want to buy one

      The family of my in-laws are senior expert practitioners of this art. However, they are so efficient at gift recycling, that after a few hops, the crap finds its way back to the original sender. It's like some kind of Internet worm. Some of that crap will be in gift circulation forever, because nobody wants it, and nobody needs it.

  • Bad gift protection? Oh you mean they patented the gift registry. [wikipedia.org]
  • by hellfire (86129) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `vdalived'> on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @04:23PM (#34189650) Homepage

    I've always prided myself on meaningful and thoughtful gift giving. I was never perfect, but I tried very hard to think about every gift and how it matched that person. At the same time, I've always been someone who's been hard to shop for, because of my particular tastes, and because I disdain gift cards. I can understand people's desires to make gift giving easier, but let's get serious. A gift should be a well thought out and researched thing. Have we created such an incredibly greedy consumer society that a company like Amazon has to create services like "gift interception" to make up for the fact that we buy too much shit?

    I mean c'mon. Consumers have this false guilt about giving money because "it's impersonal" so they feel it necessary to give a gift, or give a gift card. Forcing me to deal with your crappy gift, or forcing me to buy something from a store I don't want, is just annoying. So now, in order to deal with the fact that we have this incorrect sense that we must buy shit for each other or force each other to buy shit from a specific store, that we have to create brand spanking new processes just to deal with the fact that we as a people suck at something we shouldn't even be doing in the first place? This is why happy go lucky cheery people who think gifts are doubleplusgood and there couldn't possibly be a downside get pissed off when I point out the very real reasons why sometimes giving a gift is not as nice as you think.

    It's a recession, and people are hurting for money. Instead of buying little timmy the latest power ranger or little sally the latest pillow pet, give them each $20 and open a saving account and teach them how to save. Or knit them a sweater. Or something equally unique or helpful. Last year for Christmas, my mother promised to make me about a dozen home cooked meals over the next year that I could take home with me. Best gift EVAR. Let's stop giving Amazon reasons to come up with ways to buy more shit.

    • by compro01 (777531)

      but I tried very hard to think about every gift and how it matched that person

      I see this more as a solution to "2 other people did the same thinking and came up with the same gift" issue, which seems to plague me at least every other birthday/Christmas.

    • by vlm (69642)

      At the same time, I've always been someone who's been hard to shop for, because of my particular tastes, and because I disdain gift cards. I can understand people's desires to make gift giving easier, but let's get serious. A gift should be a well thought out and researched thing.

      I've solved this, and my advice is you need to pick up a vice. Maybe pr0n, fine booze, sex (er, gift certificates for it from your S.O.), exotic chocolates, etc.

      In my case it's tea. The rotgut crud in the teabags at the grocery store is too icky to drink, but there is good stuff out there. Tell them to buy you about two ounces of good stuff. Two ounces of good stuff, at least for tea, will last at most a couple weeks (depending on how much you drink and how many people you share with), and set them back

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Jay L (74152) *

      Couldn't this also have the opposite effect? It allows me to take a risk and give you a personalized, non-bland gift, secure in the knowledge that if I guess wrong you'll be able to convert it without any inconvenience, and you'll *still* get "the thought that counts".

      • That's the problem... you as the gift giver ARE NOT THINKING if that happens!

        There are a lot of people out there that think it's more important to give a gift at all than to give the right gift. If you can't think of a good gift for me, I'd rather not see you give me crap I will end up throwing away, because that guilts me into throwing it away. I also don't like to take the effort to go return it or cash in a gift card when you could have given me cash. Then your gift has the opposite effect of annoying

  • As aunt Mildred will of course want pictures of you with your new gift...

  • Meanwhile, after a twelve year fight in the courts, Amazon is about to get its 1-click shopping patent granted in Canada:

    http://news.swpat.org/2010/11/canada-1-click-patentable/ [swpat.org]

    Background:
    * http://en.swpat.org/wiki/Amazon_v._Commissioner_for_Patents_(2010,_Canada) [swpat.org]
    * http://en.swpat.org/wiki/Amazon's_one-click_shopping_patent [swpat.org]
    * http://en.swpat.org/wiki/Amazon [swpat.org]

  • I know money isn't very imaginative but you're not in touch with what the other person likes then let them decide. They'll get something they want and your money isn't wasted. The idea of this patent is basically like giving someone money without actually giving them money from what I understand. Just cut out the middle man and give money.
  • Yeah... (Score:4, Funny)

    by Greyfox (87712) on Wednesday November 10, 2010 @05:19PM (#34190302) Homepage Journal
    Now if they can patent some defense against Aunt Milly visiting in the spring and being hurt that her crappy-ass gift isn't on prominent display in the middle of the living room. Perhaps they could intercept her airline ticket and send her to El Salvidor, instead...
  • Now we have the perfect gift giving services for Facebook "friends" to give "gifts" to each other. After all, you cannot chose the perfect gift for a "friend" that you have never met, and your attention span doesn't stretch to reading the recipient's wish list (or you don't actually have their email address to look it up) or buying a gift voucher. Now you can just pick an item at random and let Amazon "personalise" the item for you. End result? Unchanged, except that Amazon can screw their "friends" f

  • Can someone please explain to me when, exactly, it became legal to patent a general idea rather than a specific implementation of an idea?
  • Honestly, I think this is genuinely clever. To my knowledge, this is a original idea and the inventor should be able to profit from it. Well played, Jeff. Looking forward to seeing it on Amazon.com.

  • Can we force all the recommendations Amazon gives us through this system too?

    I mean like "automatically convert BluRay to DVD" (or the reverse), or "make sure DVDs are region 1", or "automatically convert PS3 games to XBox games" (or the reverse)? I'm getting quite sick of getting recommendations for media I can't use, games for systems I don't own, software for Windows, et cetera.

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