Fun_People Archive
28 Feb
O'Reilly speaks out against Amazon

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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Mon, 28 Feb 100 20:22:29 -0800
To: Fun_People
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Subject: O'Reilly speaks out against Amazon

X-Lib-of-Cong-ISSN: 1098-7649  -=[ Fun_People ]=-
Forwarded-by: Mark Boolootian <>
Forwarded-by: Dave Farber <>
From: "Tim O'Reilly" <>
Organization: O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.

I've been pushing Amazon privately on the patent issue since January,
but after not getting much traction, I went public with the following
statement, which includes my formerly private email to Jeff Bezos, and
some associated commentary, as well as an open letter to Amazon that I'm
asking people to sign:

Obviously, I thought a lot about this before taking a public stance, since
Amazon is now one of our largest customers, but in the end, I believe that
if I didn't speak up, and let myself be intimidated by Amazon's market
power, then other less technically savvy publishers would also be silent.
As Edmund Burke said, "All that is required for evil to triumph is that
good men do nothing."  I don't want to say by that quotation that Amazon
is evil, but they are certainly misguided and short-sighted, and we are
all equally short-sighted if we stand by and do nothing.  Trivial and overly
broad software patents are a great danger to the entire future of the

I'd like to urge anyone with an interest in the subject to sign on to the
petition referenced from this page, and I'd particularly like to urge any
publishers who do substantial business with Amazon to speak up as I have.
They need to hear from all of us that what they are doing doesn't just hurt
their competitors, it hurts their customers and their suppliers as well.

Tim O'Reilly @ O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
101 Morris Street, Sebastopol, CA 95472
+1 707-829-0515, FAX +1 707-829-0104,

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