Posting Date: April 23, 2002
WebWord Comment -- Is Amazon Scan another part of the Voyeur Web? I think yes. What do you think?
For me, the term "voyeur" applies to observing the personal behavior of an individual or small group when there is an expectation of privacy, done so without that person or group's knowledge.
I don't know how to define Amazon Scan, but I would liken it to the NYT Bestseller list or Top 40 music charts. I don't think I'm being a voyeur when I consume that information.
But hey... if Amazon allowed me to look at Customer #129832 who just bought a copy of the "Life is Beautiful" DVD, and let me view all other purchases by that customer (whom I'm told is a homemaker living in the Pacific Northwest), and Amazon then offered to e-mail me updates every time that customer buys something new... hey, now that's the voyeur web.
I would rename John's "Voyeur Web" to something like the "Collective Mind" or something similar with a catchier name.
I know we're talking about Amazon Scan in particular and as far as I've seen it doesnt show you customer specific information.
But Amazon, in general, allows you to look at customer specific information. There are limitations and all but you can still be a voyeur. For instance, when a customer posts a comment or review about a book they've read, you can look at their Profile, see what kind of books they have on their wishlist, which ones they've purchased and what they've reviewed.
Though you cant access all the information a "voyeur" might be interested in, I think that it allows access to much specific information.
So maybe we can call Amazon "Voyeur" much easier than AmazonScan.
Note, however, that Amazon.com doesn't make this customer information public without permission. You have to explicity agree to have your profile shown (you can post reviews anonymously), as well as making your wishlist public.
Amazon.com: The Hit List -- "The Amazon.com Movers & Shakers lists, located at www.amazon.com/movers-and-shakers, feature the biggest gainers in sales rank over the past 24 hours. The lists are organized by product type: books, music, video, DVD, electronics, software, toys and games, video games, kitchen and housewares, outdoor living, and tools and hardware. Amazon.com also features hourly updated bestseller lists found on each store's home page."
...just a little bit more on Amazon.