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Amazon: a tale of zero-rights contracts

What makes a good retailer? Is it minimal packaging? Is it community donations? Or is it being able to use the toilet?

The answer, of course, must be all three. But while Amazon has worked on packaging and giving money away, it is working too hard on making it in the first place. According to a Channel 4 news item, Amazon warehouse workers are given ‘contracts’ barely worthy of the name with no job security and as a result can expect them to work under draconian conditions. This includes actively minimizing toilet breaks.

On the positive side, it does not yet appear that staff are expected to wear nappies to cope with the demands of the job. This has been an option actually suggested elsewhere, especially by some of the more zealous call centers.

Zero hours contracts are very widespread and typical for the cleaners in a great many offices. They transfer most of the risk of work onto the worker, but little of the reward.

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