Amazon declares Amazon Prime Service Hound FTC probe ‘too broad and heavy’ by Jeff Bezos, others

Amazon has complained to federal regulators that it is hunting the company’s founder Jeff Bezos and senior executives, making “unsatisfactory demands” during their investigation into the matter. Amazon Prime, a popular shopping and streaming service with free shipping and an estimated 200 million members around the globe.

The Federal Trade Commission has been investigating the registration and cancellation activities of Amazon Prime starting March 2021 with the issuance of civil subpoenas, the largest online retailer and tech giant revealed in a petition filed with the agency earlier this month .

The petition asks the FTC to rescind or extend the response deadline, the subpoena was sent last June to Bezos, former Amazon CEO and current CEO Andy Jassy. It said the FTC “did not identify any legitimate reason to need their testimony when they could have obtained similar information, and more, from other witnesses and documents”.

Jassy takes over top spot at Amazon from Bezosone of the richest individuals in the world, in July 2021. Bezos becomes executive chairman.

The FTC’s investigation has expanded to include at least five other subscription programs, according to Amazon: Audible, Amazon Music, Kindle Unlimited, Subscribe & Save, and an unknown third-party program not offered by Amazon. Regulators are asking the company to determine the number of consumers who signed up for the programs without their consent, among other customer information. In June, agency employees sought to serve subpoenas against nearly 20 current and former Amazon employees at their homes, with dates for their testimony in the coming weeks, the statement said. petition said.

In the lawsuit, Amazon said it worked “hardly and cooperatively” with FTC employees for more than a year to provide information related to the investigation, providing about 37,000 pages of documents. It called the information requested in the subpoena “too broad and burdensome.”

Amazon blamed the impasse on “unexplained pressure on employees to complete investigations in a hurry, by arbitrarily chosen deadlines.”

A spokesperson for the FTC did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

With an estimated 150 million US subscribers, Amazon Prime is the main source of revenue as well as rich customer data for the Seattle-based company, which runs an e-commerce empire and ventures in the US. field of cloud computing, personal “smart” technology and more. Amazon Prime costs $139 (about Rs 11,000) a year. The service added a coveted feature this year by acquiring exclusive video rights to the NFL’s “Thursday Night Football.”

Last year, Amazon unsuccessfully requested that FTC President Lina Khan drop separate antitrust investigations of its business, alleging that her public criticisms of its market power The company school before she joined the government made it impossible for her to be carefree. Khan is a fierce critic of tech giants Facebook (now Meta), Google and Apple, as well as Amazon. She entered the antitrust scene in 2017, writing an influential study titled “Amazon’s Antitrust Paradox” while she was a Yale law student.

Amazon’s latest petition against the FTC was first reported by Business Insider on Monday.

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