And in turn, why would market rent for your area be N instead of N-$500 (or N plus discount matching), if that discount is generally available? If everyone gets the $500 Amazon discount, then everybody has the switching cost problem, and so landlords would want to match what the market is actually willing to pay, not what it looks like they're paying on paper. This is basically the same scenario as early termination fees - when cell phone companies decided to increase the switching cost, other cell phone companies said they'd eat that increase in switching cost just to unlock locked-in customers that they couldn't reach.
And ultimately all of these mechanisms are annoying and fiddly mental overhead, but could purchasers band together and join an organization that negotiates on their behalf, organizes boycotts, etc. for a relatively small fee?
Watch Spider-Man 87 for $1,340,233 but receive free Chex-mix for life, $3000 off each gas purchase at qualifying locations, in-home massages, the ability to use highway 37 from 11:30-3:30 without charge from Nov 23rd 2043 to Oct 18 2067, increased inspections from police, tutoring for your next born child, and 34 trees are planted in your name in Nigeria.
This obviously grows necessarily from an economy focused on increasing GDP and maximizing the effectiveness of financial instruments :)
However his movie studio rents him a high-class apartment, gets him cool cars to drive, covers various bills from shops and restaurants and whatnot as 'the entertainment expenses', can send him on the high-profile vacations, etc. They can even get him the expensive escorts, because absolutely anything can be worded to fall under the umbrella of the 'enterntainment expenses'. So in short, he can 'have' anything as long as he does not actually own it.
In the end this character kills himself, due largely to the inability to exert agency over his life. And that if you read the book in the face-value 'no-mystical' mode, otherwise the outcome is rather worse.
So to answer your question, going into the infinite debt for infinite reward does not really sound attractive.
Your debts don't disappear, but when your Ferrari rental is late to appear, you maybe will realize the hole you've accepted to be dug around you.
Sounds like buying an airline ticket. No thanks.
You might enjoy the TV show The Good Place.
Maybe this is me being broken by working in finance (even if just SRE for finance), but your example doesn't seem too far off from the problem of valuing ETFs or options or currencies or cattle futures (in theory, if you buy one and forget to sell it in time, some cows show up at your office...).
None of the things you 'buy' will be fungible because they will all be discrete licenses locked to you personally and have no actual 'value.'
Another HN commenter wrote about how if you use a Gilead card they will pay the deductible for their HIV medication.
They wanted insurance to pay the high discounted negotiated price of their high price HIV med.
I might make that deal...
That makes no sense, who wouldn't do that. It would be more like $250 rent discount for $500 purchases.
I think you just reinvented unions.
"The toaster oven will only accept certain co-branded bread and other marked-up food products: any attempts to cook other food will throw an error message; “Unauthorized Bread.”"
Barely fiction: Keurig, Juicero.
Even if you bought stuff you didn't need, but you could resell later for a 20% loss after fees, that's still essentially a free $400 a month just for holding onto some merchandise in your closet temporarily. That's probably worth it for most people.
Worse: in this scenario, "Amazon" competitors are unable to provide competitive pricing any more because everyone else, like you, waited a few cycles, and now they don't get enough sales volume for that. It is no longer economical for you to leave for another apartment that doesn't mandate this supply monopoly. The only way to break out of the cycle is if 1) a large proportion of people in your situation agree to move at the same time, which is particularly difficult because of individual circumstances as well as political will; and 2) all of you can afford to prop up the more expensive competing suppliers until volume discounts start rippling through the supply chain.
* I say "Amazon" because this is entirely hypothetical, as the author admits, and I think it's rather unfair to use Amazon's name like this, which the author does not.
Forget the math about rent, they're bugging my house.
A smartphone seems like a requirement in life to some extent, but it isn't added to any given homes that I'm aware of.
I'd love to see some improvements in that space as far as switches that actually power off mics and cameras.
Take the apartment complex i live in as an example, last year there was a marked increase in package thefts that the residents started complaining. The management came up with a few solutions that all got shot down, cameras were a straight no from most people because of privacy implications, increasing rounds by the security was also shot down since its a huge complex and it would require a lot more people (which they implied might lead to increase in rents in the coming years).
What did everyone decide on? on-site Amazon lockers. So now the choices are that you either buy from Amazon, or risk having your package stolen. Guess what everyone does now?
why not general lockers that all deliveries could be put in? The pin could be given as instructions to the deliverer.
Retail has razor thin margins as it is, so I can't imagine companies paying customers enough to make a significant enough dent in their rent.
Also, the practice of buildings selling exclusive customer access to certain companies already has precedent - cable providers. And as you may imagine, profits or savings from such deals are never passed down to renters.
The flip side of this coin is that I get free stuff subsidized by investors in hopes that eventually they get big enough or kill enough of their competition to get to the above state.
a properly functioning rental mechanism should produce a maximum utiliztion of the object being rented. The savings to the consumer ought to come from the fact that an object you purchase isn't 100% utilized at all times, but the rental mechanism could make this the case, and therefore, produce a savings for the renter (you don't pay for under-utilization like you would for purchasing).
Waaaait a minute... you don’t think the wily motherfuckers could be using all their data and resources to boost revenue on the a la carte side, do you?
Those circumstances would have to include clauses such as:
1. reasonably low purchasing quotas (i.e. well under a few hundred dollars per month)
2. reasonably substantial rent discounts
3. Amazon maintains its competitive pricing
4. the "subsidized" rent has to be meaningfully cheaper than a comparable "unsubsidized" competitor while maintaining substantially equivalent quality
However balancing #1 and #2 cannot actually be possible in reality in my view.
But in the longer term, the rental discount has to at least be balanced by the extra profit from the sales quota. If amazon then turn a dial to increase sales quota (or decrease the discount), they then stand to make significant profit on the captive customer (who may no longer have an option to move away at the same low cost).
I think this type of deal is anti-competitive, and should be prohibited under monopoly laws (i.e., using dominance in one market to leverage another market).
A creepy, polluting, malevolent non-human entity would be doubly unwelcome.
Why should I pay a constant fee for things that should have been one time purchases?
Why should I lock myself into a proprietary ecosystem?
Why should a pay a membership fee to Cos. who just want to harvest my data at every turn?
Lawmakers, in the spirit of promoting competition, should seek to lower switching costs, increase price transparency, increase interoperability, reduce network affects, and lower barriers to entry for all fields, tech especially. Generics, in every field, should be encouraged and widely available.
1(see Spotify, Netflix, most terrible VC ideas(Bryd, Line) etc)
2(see Amazon, Apple's walled garden of hardware and software, etc)
3(see Amazon, most membership clubs)
But here's the kicker: the people on the Rich Floors have to pay more, effectively subsidizing the rent of the people on the Poor Floors.
This is the sort of thinking that leads people to state that (for example) smaller apartments shouldn't exist, because someone will be forced to live in them. A purely theoretical person, of course, no-one they actually know - some sort of downtrodden non-entity.
The entire economy is set up on the basis that negotiation is a thing that people can and will do. If you don't do it, you're setting yourself up to get shafted at every turn; this sort of thing is the least of your issues.
I wouldn't rent a flat like this because it sounds bloody stupid. It makes me think of American sponsored things. 123 North Street brought to you by Coca-Cola(tm) and Amazon(R). Weird unnecessary legalistic nonsense.
I would personally stay far away from any rental agreement that had weird corporate subscriptions going on.
I thought we invented money so we wouldn’t have to trade this for that.
Assuming Amazon reacts to spending habits of its customers, wouldn’t I be more able to effect change that way (and also enjoy good services) than by a complete boycott that doesn’t tell Amazon why I am diverting money from them or which parts of their services I find deplorable?
Yeah, lost me there, pal. I thought I was getting lower rent for not going _over_ some quota - which would work great, since my quota is exactly $0, on principle.
I get an email with a pickup code to the email address tied to my Amazon account whenever a package arrives that is too big for my mailbox, from any sender. This means that Amazon presumably has a profile about my package receiving habits, including size, frequency, and how long it takes me to pick up a package after it arrives.
My building installed the Hub after I moved in and I was given no choice in the matter.
As for goods, well I buy a new computer about once a decade and a phone perhaps twice as often, fresh bread, fruit, vegetables, meat, butter, biscuits, and tea, every few days or weeks.
No idea if Amazon sells all that but it doesn't seem so from a glance at their web site.
They sell fresh bread, real bread that is worth eating? Fresh fruit?
Actually of course in my particular case it's all theoretical anyway because Amazon has no physical presence here in Norway