Amazon demands FTC to go easy on Jeff Bezos and Andy Jassy... kind of

Portrait of Jeff Bezos in black long sleeve polo

Amazon has been under a lot of fire from regulators recently regarding its tactics to get consumers to sign up for Prime membership and then putting up hurdles to complicate the process of canceling the subscription. Last month, the company changed its cancelation process in the EU and EEA to comply with the region's consumer rules. However, no changes were made to the U.S. website. This is interesting because Amazon is being probed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the U.S. since March 2021 too. Now, Amazon has accused the FTC of making the lives of its executives difficult with its excessive demands.

Regulatory filings from early August have revealed that Amazon is not happy with the "unduly burdensome" demands being made by the FTC against 19 subpoenaed individuals. This includes ex-CEO Jeff Bezos and current CEO Andy Jassy, who have been required to testify about very granular details, which the company argues is a "tremendous burden on them". It has also claimed that the only purpose of these unjust demands is to disrupt Amazon's operations and harass its executives. At a bare minimum, it has asked to delay certain deadlines.

Other complaints made by Amazon include the allegation that the FTC bypassed Amazon's legal team to serve individual subpoenas directly, which resulted in confusion. It also argued that the individuals have only been given a few weeks to comply even though the FTC itself has been inactive on this matter for months. Amazon even claimed that one of its subpoenaed employees was actually denied full access to their legal team.

In terms of what's next for the complaints, FTC commissioners will be discussing them, followed by a vote on Amazon's demands. It remains to be seen how the regulator responds.

Source: Business Insider (paywall) via

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