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October 20, 2004


ben wolfson

That reminds of the long story at the end of Katchor's second collection of Julius Knipl comics, actually (unless it was the third collection, but I think The Beauty Supply District was the third), with the Evening Combinator.


Yeah, I think that's what I was thinking about. The Beauty Supply District. That's the one.

Glenn Fleishman

My friend Sarah's brother was the creator with Matt G of Futurama, so I watched it quite closely, and have even listened the commentary on the discs. The commentary is great, because about 1 1/2 seasons worth, at least, was recorded after they knew that they had no future (ironic, and Bender would agree), so they don't have any compunction about being really bizarre or critiquing the networks or what have you.


I would guess the logic is to get you hooked on the first season, then jack up the price when you come back looking for more. A similar marketing strategy can be found by those selling giant cookies at the mall.


Comedy writers, tsk. Thieves and malcontents all.

Though if his initials were DV, I am pretty sure this was something we originally discussed back in college, along with the unresolvable question, "What if we're all Starfleet officers who have been deluded by Q?"


Whoa, Carlos, that's heavy. But his initials weren't DV.

Hey, Glenn, thanks for dropping by. And I'll be sure to listen to the commentary. (I really bear the show no ill will over the petty intellectual theft of a joke. Funny show.)

I do idly wonder where Amazon makes its money these days. For example, are they significantly in the shipping business? I notice that there are often used items selling for a penny. Not much profit, unless you are really selling $3 worth of cardboard packaging and movement around the globe. Does Amazon turn a significant profit on shipping? No doubt their volume of sales allows them certain economic advantages in this area.

Also, although Associates don't make anything really, I can't imagine that Amazon does either after giving Associates their 5% commision. Surely their margin is razor thin (although their prices have gone up.) So is it just that their model demands maximizing volume of sales, even if it is profitless. Or are they perhaps most concerned to buy advertising. Amazon wants to be the very first hit for every single google search for every item they sell. Towards that end, hundreds of thousands of little Amazon buttons around the web is probably a pretty effective googlebomb.

Jacob T. Levy

Their shipping profits have gone way down, with the introduction of a permanent free shipping option, though it makes a big positive impact on their volume and earnings. (Gift wrapping is still a profit source.)

Amazon is in large part an Associate now itself-- an Associate of Target, Toys R Us, lots of clothing and department stores, etc, etc. In exchange for doing nothing more than providing bandwidth, they get a nice share of massive amounts of sales of stuff besides books, videos, CDs, and software.

But the core business is profitable these days too. The days when Amazon's investors were swallowing a loss every time we book junkies bought books are over.

Nick Caldwell

There'a guy who, with a bit of clever scripting and a really long .htaccess file, built a 3 million page dynamically generated Amazon affiliate site. Allegedly, he makes five figure profits a quarter. And this is *after* Google started cracking down on content-free Amazon sites. So you can make money from it; you just have to be fairly, um, strategic, about it.

Insane, really. I'm torn between finding the whole thing a bit dubious and feeling pure envy.

Julian Elson

I love the idea of product placement in dreams.


I've been using Amazon for a while, and I agree, with a little technical work in the way of design and development, you can have a great looking amazon associates website.

I've developed a few myself, www.WeKnowPhoto.com and www.OnlineToolsandHardware.com to name a few, and they've done great. I started using Amazon Associates program as a way to supplement my income, but in the last few years, it has become one of my main income sources.

I would encourage everyone to take a second look at the amazon associates program if they haven't used it in a while.


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