Vampires, Amazon.com, and Other Creatures You Should Never Invite Into Your Home: The Neoliberal Invasion Grows Even Bolder
In 2017, Amazon announced a new service, Amazon Key, which, according to the corporation’s October press release: allows customers to have their packages securely delivered inside their home without having to be there. Using the Amazon Key app, customers stay in control and can track their delivery with real-time notifications, watch the delivery happening live or review a video of the delivery after it is complete.(http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20171025005287/en/)
Promising that this service will “make customers’ lives easier in many ways” and that it will enable “convenience” and “peace of mind,” the same corporate statement offers a utopian promise that “in-home delivery is backed by Amazon’s Happiness Guarantee.”
Amazon Key customers will install a “smart lock” and an in-home surveillance system, “Amazon Cloud Cam an intelligent indoor security camera” allowing for packages to be delivered directly into the home and, according to Amazon, easy access for “thousands of [service] providers.”
In this paper, I will argue that thus far most of the questions being raised about this innovation skirt the most significant and troubling concerns about the continuing insertion of powerful global corporate entities into our personal lives. While there has been some mainstream media debate about the safety of this system (whether allowing strangers access to your home could have unintended consequences including theft and home invasions), I contend that this discourse misses the most crucial issues, such as the continually advancing power of private corporations, gradual public accommodation to increasingly intrusive neoliberal practices, and disintegrating boundaries between our autonomous selves and the capitalist structures we inhabit.
Yousman, Bill, "Vampires, Amazon.com, and Other Creatures You Should Never Invite Into Your Home: The Neoliberal Invasion Grows Even Bolder" (2018). International Critical Media Literacy Conference. 42.