Jeff Bezos and Andy Jassy

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and its CEO Andy Jassy are fighting US government efforts amid a year-long investigation into whether the e-commerce giant illegally imposed Amazon Prime and other subscriptions on consumers. In the recently released Federal Trade Commission filing, Amazon (AMZN) accused the agency of making incriminating legal requests that serve no purpose other than to harass Amazon’s top executives and disrupt business.

Amazon’s submitting calls on pinnacle FTC officers to intrude with the aid of using proscribing the scope of the agency’s facts requests; extending the corporation’s reaction time; and permitting corporation legal professionals to symbolize 17 present-day or former Amazon executives, consisting of Bezos and Jassy, ​​who have been one by one served with civil subpoenas as a part of the investigation.

The petition highlights the growing tensions between Amazon and the FTC, which under President Leena Khan has aggressively pushed to expand oversight of Big Tech, and also demonstrates the extraordinary breadth of the FTC’s investigation, which covered nearly half a dozen Amazon, including Audible. Amazon Music, Kindle Unlimited and Subscribers, and To guard.

Khan, who led the House antitrust investigations into Amazon, Apple (AAPL), Google, and Facebook in 2019 and 2020, noted that the FTC will soon write new privacy rules to control how Americans can collect, use and share data. Personal information.

“Ultimately, the initiative could boost the core business models of many major tech platforms, including Amazon, raising questions about everything from social media algorithms to targeted advertising to so-called dark pattern UI designs that they subtly lure people into adopting.”

The FTC is investigating whether Amazon illegally used deceptive techniques to trick people into automatically signing up for Amazon Prime, documents filed by Amazon confirm. Since then, Amazon has provided around 37,000 documents in response to the request, according to the document.

Amazon said that after months of radio silence, the FTC had sent the company a new legal request that significantly expanded the agency’s requests to include other companies. It also sought information on whether Amazon executives had used ephemeral messages, a feature provided in apps like Signal and Telegram that automatically deletes a message after it’s sent, to covertly discuss Amazon’s Prime enrollment practices.

Work to fulfill requests for these non-Prime programs has just begun. It will be impossible to finish in a few weeks due to lawsuits from employees, Amazon wrote in its FTC filing. Because all other companies are run by different teams, Amazon must spend time with the FTC interviewing dozens of potential witnesses and gathering relevant data to comply with the investigation, the document said.

The new June investigation follows a Spring Business Insider article that described internal Amazon documents showing how some at the company were concerned about dark patterns surrounding Amazon Prime. Amazon’s filing cites an internal article in the FTC’s communications with the company, but the filing does not specify which one.


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