Gransnet forums

Other subjects

Boycotting Amazon

(268 Posts)
YankeeGran Fri 16-Nov-12 20:01:40

Assuming that most Gransnet followers are at least vaguely aware that some of the BIG multi-nationals that operate in this country pay minimal UK tax, should we boycott them in order to make the point that while what they are doing may be legal, it IS immoral?! Google (don't know how we boycott it), Starbucks (you'll pay more for your cappucino than they pay in tax) and Amazon are all guilty parties.
Personally, I get cold and sweaty just thinking about boycotting Amazon. It is my "go-to" place for almost everything because it is guaranteed to be competitive in pricing, offer free deliver and send me things I cannot easily get elsewhere - and in a timely fashion. BUT the fact that they are making gazillions of dollars/pounds of profit and pay a pittance in tax makes me seethe. John Lewis pointed out that companies like this could drive them out of business because JL does pay the going rate for corporate tax and has no offshore advantages.
If enough of us boycotted Amazon and others, and made clear our reasons why, could we force them to do the right, moral thing?

Bags Fri 16-Nov-12 20:09:26

Possibly, but a change in the law so that they can't avoid paying their fair share of tax would perhaps be more effective. Not simple though.

Anne58 Fri 16-Nov-12 20:12:08

I think the chances of enough people boycotting Amazon to actually make them take notice are about the same as me winning Miss World or being able to plait snot.

nanaej Fri 16-Nov-12 20:13:33

EEEUUUWW! plaiting snot! grin but I have closed my account at Amazon anyway!

Ana Fri 16-Nov-12 20:15:58

Yuk, phoenix! And I'm sorry, but I won't be boycotting Amazon because it provides an invaluable service. Boycotting isn't the way - changing the tax laws is.

granjura Fri 16-Nov-12 20:26:42

I won't be using them either. If enough of us make a stand, it will hit them, and they will know why. Yes, we could influence those companies, if we hit them in the pocket hard enough.

granjura Fri 16-Nov-12 20:59:46

Living abroad, Amazon take a dimension of its own - but sometimes you just have to say 'no', even if it is very inconvenient. I'm sure we will survive without them.

Nanadog Fri 16-Nov-12 21:01:46

Sorry I won't be boycotting them either. Let the governments close the loopholes...a more worthy cause than culling badgers.

petallus Fri 16-Nov-12 21:25:21

I won't be boycotting them either. I've got a Kindle for one thing.

Mishap Fri 16-Nov-12 21:31:42

Kindle would be the problem for me. I don't think we should have to find a way of preventing companies from exploiting tax loopholes - the government should be closing the loopholes.

granjura Fri 16-Nov-12 22:04:26

since when do we, women of the world, wait for Governments to act for us.
Cop out.

Ana Fri 16-Nov-12 22:14:05

Sometimes the probable effect of a boycott is just too negligible to be justified.

Nanadog Fri 16-Nov-12 22:48:23

nanaj grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Ceesnan Sat 17-Nov-12 07:16:56

No boycotting from me either, I have a Kindle to support!

JessM Sat 17-Nov-12 07:38:38

Probably more effective to target Starbucks if you want to make a point. Amazon is so dominant in the market and does not really have equivalent competitors. Whereas Starbucks has lots. Amazon would never notice.
But of course a boycott of Starbucks could cause people working there to lose their jobs.
Us Brits are very bad at "buying British" in all sectors aren't we.
Maybe because the Germans and the Japanese have been better at building and marketing cars?
Maybe because we want cheap knickers?
Maybe because we are suckers for "brands"
Maybe because we just think all things foreign are better?
If a successful British company has an operation in another country do you really think they sit down and discuss in a board meeting:
"Shall we just pay all our local taxes to the maximum or shall we employ a few extremely clever tax experts to ensure that we pay as little tax as possible?"
The job purpose for directors is always to "increase shareholder value" (and staying legal).
There are many UK companies that have availed themselves of tax breaks in Ireland, by setting up their official corporate headquarters (with just a handful of staff) in Dublin.

Bags Sat 17-Nov-12 09:05:39

British coffee? How? Where?

Sorry. Couldn,t resist.

annemac101 Sat 17-Nov-12 09:46:22

I agree with what most people are saying ,it's up to the government to change laws I can't understand why they haven't closed the loophole that's enabling this to happen. As for John Lewis, the last few items I have looked at online have been about £30 more expensive in their store so I never shop there.

NannaB Sat 17-Nov-12 09:59:31

I heard someone say that the Post Office is employing more people because of the increase in on-line buying. Surely more jobs is a good thing. I for one use Amazon without a guilty conscious!

bigburd Sat 17-Nov-12 10:01:38

Well .... I am an Amazon" junkie" but thought can I survive without it ? I had several items in my basket (Christmas gifts) ready to purchase so I decided try to get them else where.It actually was not as difficult as I thought and managed to get all the items on other websites and actually paid LESS than Amazon even including postage..Go Me lol
The sticking point for me is my Kindle ,however my stepdaughter assures me that I can download from elsewhere (bought me out in a cold sweat)As for Starbucks I have been boycotting them for some time now (they refused to send some freebies to troops serving in Iraq)
Really shouldn't the government be more proactive and close these loopholes that allows this to happen,wont be holding my breath though !!!

harrigran Sat 17-Nov-12 10:03:02

Boycott Amazon ! are you mad ? shock

gracesmum Sat 17-Nov-12 10:42:29

My finances would bounce back to instant health if I could do this - but what would everybody get for Christmas and what would I read?

Bags Sat 17-Nov-12 10:57:23

Can any of us honestly say that we would pay tax that we weren't legally obliged to pay? It seems to me that it is tax laws that are the real problem.

Chris1603 Sat 17-Nov-12 10:59:53

After the news about Starbucks tax situation broke I noticed that Starbucks was empty for a couple of days but everyone is back there now.

DerekB Sat 17-Nov-12 11:17:35

Boycotting a company like Amazon is a waste of time. With their global reach of millions of customers, even if every customer in the UK stopped using them, they could move their operations to somewhere outside the UK, or just re brand themselves with a new name and we'd all still rush to buy from them.

What it needs is the Government to close these loopholes. Of course that would force prices up as they will still want to make a profit.sad

Hankipanki Sat 17-Nov-12 11:31:24

Amazon might not notice a boycott but the alternative companies we use might notice an increase in sales. I walked down my local highstreet yesterday and decided I could get all my christmas presents from there. I will not be buying from Amazon this year. A slight hesitation over my kindle but, I have been using it a lot less because I can usually reserve anything I want to read from my local library, I may have to wait a few weeks but no hardship. Forget kindle its important to keep our local library open. I am also angry that after buying a kindle I can only download books from amazon at the moment.