Amazon Calls Man ‘Racist’ – Shuts Off his Smart Home
In a world where technology pervades our lives, the question of who holds control over our devices has become increasingly pressing. Recent events surrounding Amazon’s punitive actions against an innocent homeowner have ignited a debate on the company’s moral authority and its ability to wield power over our smart homes.
The incident, triggered by a delivery driver’s misunderstanding, led to a week-long suspension of the homeowner’s entire smart home system. As we delve into this tale of unwanted disruption, we confront the fundamental question: Does Amazon have the right to shut down your smart devices based on its opinion of your behavior?
Brandon Jackson, a user of Amazon’s extensive smart home ecosystem, found himself thrust into a perplexing situation. His Amazon account was abruptly suspended, leaving his Amazon Echo devices unresponsive and rendering his smart home system useless.
The cause? A delivery driver’s claim that Jackson had used a racial slur through his automated doorbell system. Jackson possessed video evidence that contradicted the accusation—the communication to the worker had been a benign, automated greeting: “Excuse me, can I help you?”
As society becomes increasingly dependent on technology giants for critical services, the vulnerability of individuals and communities grows. Consider the ramifications of having credit cards abruptly cut off or transportation means being taken away without just cause by companies like Amazon, unelected authorities, whose political or religious stances are opposed to yours. In an interconnected world where financial transactions, mobility, and communication are intricately tied to digital platforms, sudden disruptions in these areas can have far-reaching implications, destabilizing lives and causing chaos.
The incident prompted Jackson to reassess his reliance on Amazon’s services and advocate for improved customer service and a more sophisticated approach to incident management. The incident served as a rallying cry for users who seek to challenge the moral authority of tech giants like Amazon, urging them to adopt a more customer-focused approach to problem-solving and conflict resolution.
As technology infiltrates deeper into our lives, we stand at a precipice where the consequences of surrendering control to corporations and their ability to punish us for seeming misbehaviors become increasingly apparent. The incident involving Amazon’s suspension of a homeowner’s smart home system serves as a stark reminder of the potential dangers lurking beneath the surface.
The thought of larger parts of our lives, such as electricity, water, credit cards, transportation means, or telephone services, being subject to arbitrary suspension by wokesters, political fanatics or religious fanatics within those companies sends shivers down our spines. China is already using an Orwellian “social credit” system, that can lock you out of transportation and other services if they thing you behave unacceptably. Do we want that in America?