Amazon.com and other companies have come under fire in recent weeks for not providing a simple way to block customer service calls, as well as for making it hard for customers to cancel a deal, and even for threatening to terminate the services of customers who make complaints.
But the issue isn’t limited to Amazon.
It also has a bigger impact on the rest of the tech industry, which could become even more impacted as the company’s stock prices continue to decline.
In fact, a recent analysis from the non-partisan consumer advocacy group Consumer Watchdog estimated that Amazon’s failure to provide a simple solution to the problem could cost the entire tech industry $15 billion in lost sales over the next three years.
The problem has been compounded by a series of recent reports that Amazon, through its corporate headquarters in Seattle, has become more aggressive in its attempts to silence customers.
The company has also increasingly targeted consumers who are critical of the company, such as those who speak up about its practices and those who criticize the company or its employees.
Last week, the company sent a letter to hundreds of thousands of people who have complained about its customer service practices, threatening to disconnect them from their account if they try to talk to a representative.
In a letter, Amazon said the company will not be able to provide “service to customers with questions, concerns or complaints” and that “your information will be deleted from our servers, and will not continue to be available for future communications.”
In response to the letter, Consumer Watchdogs President Matt Wood wrote in a blog post that Amazon “should have provided a simple option for customers who were being refused service to make a complaint directly to their local Amazon customer service department.”
“Instead, they decided to try to silence and intimidate their own customers with a threat to delete their information,” Wood wrote.
In the same letter, Wood warned that the company is using the threat of “termination of customer account” to “force” its customers to leave Amazon.
In some cases, Amazon has even attempted to force customers to “pay for the cost of their service” in order to keep them from leaving the company.
In recent months, the internet giant has made several attempts to discourage consumers from complaining, and has tried to take steps to discourage its own employees from contacting customers.
In one case, Amazon sent letters to a group of employees who said they were being threatened with termination.
Amazon has also gone after users of its competitor, Google, for its alleged unfair business practices.
In a recent court filing, Google said Amazon has “repeatedly threatened to terminate [its] customers for expressing their opinion about Google.”