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Introducing O.W.L.S. (waterstones.com)
50 points by sambeau 1243 days ago | hide | past | web | 7 comments | favorite

  Q: But owls aren’t robots, they’re birds.
  A: That’s the end of the questions, thank you.
Ha, nice to companies having a bit of fun. Worth the quick read.

I'd rather have companies release occasional posts like this throughout the year, rather than everyone trying to cram theirs into the 1st April.

Bookshops (at least here in the UK) have been almost totally eradicated by Amazon (especially on the high street) so it's nice to see Waterstones (pretty-much the last survivor) poking a little fun at its exterminator.

Amazon has also affected independent shops for second-hand books on the high street. As has eBay. But independents also have competitors on their own turf: charity shops -- particularly specific charity bookshops.

Charity shops receive tax concessions and get business rate relief.

They also don't have to pay for stock. People are willing to donate their books to a charity shop. If they took them to an independent bookseller they would probably want something in return, either in cash or a trade-in value.

Some charity bookshops get more stock than they can handle. I've heard stories of them taking boxloads to the local tip.

Doesn't Amazon now own a stake in Waterstones?

I don't think so. They seem to have an agreement where Waterstones sells kindles & e-books but that's about it.


Site is farked. Relevant YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=agpB5FVMkOg

When reading about Amazon developing air service for parcel delivery, I was at a loss as to how to take it. Obviously this wasn't anything that was going to happen soon. Obviously this was a big PR win for Amazon. Obviously my fellow HN'ers would love such a suggestion. And obviously who even knew if it would ever happen?

It's not that I didn't believe Amazon, or Google. It's that there seems to be a trend of early release of nerd-candy for R&D projects that may or may not see the light of day. I'm a huge Elon Musk fan, and that's exactly what happened with the hyperloop. The hyperloop may become a reality -- or it may not. In either case, Musk got a great deal of PR for stringing us all along and then making the announcement. I don't feel tricked, but I'm definitely starting to feel manipulated.

Since this is such a tricky issue, humor looks like the best way forward. Nobody need go to extremes and call anybody out. I think everybody is acting in good faith. But it's also easy to generate a lot of hoopla over ideas. Execution is a different matter entirely. And the best way to show that is to spoof it.

tl;dr I liked this post. Made a similar tweet this morning. https://twitter.com/danielbmarkham/status/407526820784140288

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