Amazon fights Fed's request for names of book buyers

CNN Money reports that Amazon went to court to fight a subpoena demanding the names of thousands of used book buyers as part of a fraud and tax crime case against a man named Robert D'Angelo.
"The subpoena is troubling because it permits the government to peek into the reading habits of specific individuals without their knowledge or permission," [U.S. Magistrate Judge Stephen] Crocker wrote. "It is an unsettling and un-American scenario to envision federal agents nosing through the reading lists of law-abiding citizens while hunting for evidence against somebody else.

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"If the government had been more diligent in looking for workarounds instead of baring its teeth when Amazon balked, it's probable that this entire First Amendment showdown could have been avoided," he wrote."

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  1. Just another case of our rights being stolen from us.
    Thank god a few big companies are willing to stand up to the Nazi regime in power.

  2. We may have to tap your phone line now VitaminCM. Clearly you are not a good citizen.

    What is really sad about this is the lack of imagination by the prosecutor. Doesn’t he even watch Law and Order? Is it because they are dumb or think with the current administration they can swagger about as they see fit also? Besides asking Amazon to contact the buyers, they certainly could have posted a help advertisement on Google or even gotten Amazon to do the same. Did they really want 29K witnesses anyway? How would they even have waded through it all? What schools are responsible for handing out law degrees to this crowd?

  3. This points to more of Amazon’s split personality — on the one hand, here they are standing up for their customers’ rights (as they did when the Authors’ Guild leaned on them to undermine their used book sales), but as soon as it comes to digital media, they turn into pantywaists and add shitty DRM and EULAs. How can a company this customer-focused be so customer-hostile when it comes to delivering digital goods? You’d think Amazon would be the world’s smartest digital goods company.

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