When Will Amazon Stop Running and Face Reality?

I have been an Amazon Associate for a long time and a Connecticut resident even longer.  Here is the sad email I received this morning:

Hello,

For well over a decade, the Amazon Associates Program has worked with thousands of Connecticut residents. Unfortunately, the budget signed by Governor Malloy contains a sales tax provision that compels us to terminate this program for Connecticut-based participants effective immediately. It specifically imposes the collection of taxes from consumers on sales by online retailers – including but not limited to those referred by Connecticut-based affiliates like you – even if those retailers have no physical presence in the state.

We opposed this new tax law because it is unconstitutional and counterproductive. It was supported by big-box retailers, most of which are based outside Connecticut, that seek to harm the affiliate advertising programs of their competitors. Similar legislation in other states has led to job and income losses, and little, if any, new tax revenue. We deeply regret that we must take this action.

As a result of the new law, contracts with all Connecticut residents participating in the Amazon Associates Program will be terminated today, June 10, 2011. Those Connecticut residents will no longer receive advertising fees for sales referred to Amazon.comEndless.comMYHABIT.COM or SmallParts.com. Please be assured that all qualifying advertising fees earned on or before today, June 10, 2011, will be processed and paid in full in accordance with the regular payment schedule.

You are receiving this email because our records indicate that you are a resident of Connecticut. If you are not currently a resident of Connecticut, or if you are relocating to another state in the near future, you can manage the details of your Associates account here. And if you relocate to another state after June 10, 2011, please contact us for reinstatement into the Amazon Associates Program.

To avoid confusion, we would like to clarify that this development will only impact our ability to offer the Associates Program to Connecticut residents and will not affect their ability to purchase from www.amazon.com.

We have enjoyed working with you and other Connecticut-based participants in the Amazon Associates Program and, if this situation is rectified, would very much welcome the opportunity to re-open our Associates Program to Connecticut residents.

Regards,

The Amazon Associates Team

The sad part of this email is what Amazon chooses to handle this….run.  This is exactly what they did with a distribution center in Texas at the beginning of the year.

The reality here is states are losing big tax revenue to online businesses and now they want the revenue they feel they deserve.  I pay my fair share of taxes and don’t really want to pay any additional taxes but it doesn’t seem fair that the local Mom & Pop establishment has to collect sales tax and others do not.

I just don’t agree with Amazon’s actions here and find them spineless.   One part of the email I particularly funny:

To avoid confusion, we would like to clarify that this development will only impact our ability to offer the Associates Program to Connecticut residents and will not affect their ability to purchase from www.amazon.com.

Translation, sorry to stick it to you but we still really want your money.  Thank you!

  • http://twitter.com/zeelot3k Lorenzo Pisani

    “collect says tax and others do not.” little typo there -> “collect sales tax and others do not.”

  • http://accidentaltechnologist.com Rob Bazinet

    Thank you, it’s now fixed.