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To all Amazon.com shoppers...

URGH. Has anyone else seen the absolutely wretched new search default that's on the site? Now, instead of doing anything *useful*, like searching for a specific book by title, author, or ISBN number, it searches out submitted text *inside* various books for matches as well. While this may sound alright offhand, basically it makes trying to find any specific book or author completely useless, because searching for say one author's name lists not only the ten or twenty books that they've written, and a handful of others that also "ping" for some reason but which are easy enough to wade through - instead you now get literally thousands of entries because of the various words or names matching not only with the desired books and a few others that happened to share a few words in a title, but with thousands more that happened to have those words throughout multiple pages' worth of text.

While this may sound like something silly to worry about, I personally like to do a lot of my online shopping through Amazon. They're very easy to use, with a good interface and features (at least up until this point), have a pretty good selection over a wide variety of items, and have good prices to boot. Oh, and usually good, fast, reliable shipping. But if you can't even *find* anything that you search for...? Well, I really don't want to have to switch to someplace else that I may not be nearly as happy with. I'm a creature of habit, in many ways.

So I'm hoping really that other people will find this as hideous an idea as I do, and will let Amazon know. Maybe if enough customers send them intelligent feedback, they'll re-think this, and make it an option for searching rather than The Way To Do Things.

So if anyone else wants to send the feedback, the following URL *should* take you to the feedback page, or at least the best one I could find for the purpose... (URL is broken up on the page for ease of typing, and needs to be recombined...

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/handle-generic-form/102-2182072-6330526?
action=next-page&target=stores/help/self-service-email-form.html&display=suggestions
&browse=900912&method=GET/102-2182072-6330526

Or click this link.

Comments

( 12 Notes — Write a Footnote )
auronsgirl
Oct. 25th, 2003 12:29 am (UTC)
I noticed that, too. I no likey. I also no likey that Amazon's now charging sales tax on top of shipping. It's not worth it to me to spend my money there, unless I'm getting a lot of "qualified" items to negate the shipping cost. I'll pay one or the other, but not both, I don't care what the Man has to say about it.
ceara
Oct. 25th, 2003 01:38 am (UTC)
I never pay shipping at Amazon - I just make sure to spend at least $25, and choose the free-shipping option.

Also, I just made an order there and was not charged sales tax.
auronsgirl
Oct. 25th, 2003 01:41 am (UTC)
I think it depends on the state you're in. Amazon has two "physical" locations here, one in Campbellsville and one in Lexington. I think the rule is that they have to charge tax anywhere they have a physical location. Or, KY's just money grubbing. It's a toss up.

I always go for the free shipping. That's what I meant about the "qualified" items. Unfortunately, video games don't qualify - dammit!
ceara
Oct. 25th, 2003 01:50 am (UTC)
I'm fairly certain Amazon has a warehouse in Kansas. Do warehouses not count?

I didn't know that about video games. I tend to live about six or seven years behind the times, and buy my video games in used software shops and such. Which works, as long as one doesn't want to be on the cutting edge...
auronsgirl
Oct. 25th, 2003 03:28 am (UTC)
I'm fairly certain Amazon has a warehouse in Kansas. Do warehouses not count?

Again, I think it depends on the state. Many states are trying for every avenue of revenue they can find, and while the money-grubbing accountant in me sees nothing wrong with it, it's that same money-grubbing instinct that leads me to buy locally if I don't have enough to make up a free shipping order. I love Amazon because I'm lazy and I don't like always having to drive for half an hour to get to shops that sell what I want/need. (We've only got a Kmart in my town - pity me.)

I know the laws do vary from state to state. Our tax accountant has a hell of a time when the auditors from the state revenue boards start making their calls. We've got one in the office now, but I'll be damned if I can remember which state he's from. Colorado, maybe?
ceara
Oct. 25th, 2003 01:36 am (UTC)
I like the search-text-thingee. And when one doesn't want to search text, it's easy enough to go here.
stormfeather
Oct. 25th, 2003 01:43 am (UTC)
Well, that helps - annoying and out-of-the-way and not nearly as convenient, but doable.

But where the hell do you get to it from the "main page," so to speak? I swear I looked around and couldn't find any such thing.
ceara
Oct. 25th, 2003 01:47 am (UTC)
Click the "Books" tab, and then "Search" is the first item in the green bar below the tabs. I usually used that page anyway, as it allows a more precise search.
missysedai
Oct. 25th, 2003 01:41 am (UTC)
You could click off the "welcome" page to the Books tab, hit the Search button in the green bar at the top (right under the tabs), get taken to this page, which has always been better than the box in the sidebar.

I'm happy as hell about the new Search Inside feature. It will make answering obscure book quote questions much easier.
missysedai
Oct. 25th, 2003 02:01 am (UTC)
Heh, I see that in the time I was writing a comment, getting pulled away for a minute, then getting back to post, the conversation had been had.
stormfeather
Oct. 25th, 2003 03:20 am (UTC)
Better late than never, right? ;)

*sigh* Maybe I and AG are in the minority then. *grumble* I still think that this would be a more useful feature as something other than the default search option though. Although at least the other search option at least means the site is still vaguely useable the way I use it. :/
(Deleted comment)
stormfeather
Oct. 29th, 2003 07:54 pm (UTC)
After having dealt with it for a few days (well, not that I've used amazon all *that* much in the time period) I'd still like it much better if this new "default" were in fact one of the Advanced Options, as it should be.

I'd also like it much more if the damned advanced search page was easier to get to from Amazon's main page. Rather than having to, y'know, perform a search, then jump through a few hoops to get to it.
( 12 Notes — Write a Footnote )