Amazon has sent a letter to all of its associates based in Minnesota. All Minnesota based associates are being thrown out of the Amazon Associates program as of July 1st. This is because the State of Minnesota passed a bill that Amazon does not like. Amazon may well have a good reason to not like this (or any other) bill, but I’m shocked and dismayed that the response is to strike out against its loyal associates.
This is where fine print rears its ugly head. If the contract between associates and Amazon was a normal business contract, it would not likely be possible to terminate it with just a few days notice. At the moment, Minnesotans who use the Associates program, collectively, have a gazillion links on their web sites and blogs pointing to Amazon, and Amazon will continue to reap the benefits of those links (or force Minnesotan web developers and bloggers to spend considerable effort undoing the links), while Amazon will not be holding up their end of the bargin.
This affects me a little … I’ve got some Amazon Associate links, though the total income they bring in for me is very small. Still, that is how I was paying the server fee for The X Blog (or at least most of it most months).
I’d love to change the associates links to Barnes and Nobel, but the last time I looked at their associates program it sucked and was difficult to use. Maybe I’ll have another look.
This, by the way, is why THIS IS TRUE even though I appear to the the only person on the planet who sees the impending end of civilization as we know it!