OK, let’s carry that thought home. You bought a Mac notebook and the keyboard became defective? Who you gonna call?
In each case you take the product back to the source. Not the manufacturer; but the location where you paid money. It make take awhile and there is always some effort involved, but defective products often get repaired or replaced.
Hell, Apple is doing it with its much beloved butterfly-design keyboard for Mac notebooks.
OK, let’s carry that thought about defective products down to one more level. Amazon. The online retail giant is the retailer. What if a product you buy is defective? If it’s within a certain period of time, you can return it to Amazon, otherwise you may be required to ship it off to a manufacturer or distributor or repair location to get it fixed.
What if a product is so defective it causes problems? Can you sue Amazon?
Colin Lecher explains the scenario of a defective product on Amazon’s Marketplace platform:
A district court in Pennsylvania found that Amazon couldn’t be sued because it wasn’t a “seller” under the law, and because it is protected by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which gives protection to platforms from the actions of the people using those platforms.
Amazon was protected but is no longer protected.
If this was a mom and pop store down the street, well, tough cookies for the buyer. Standard warranties apply, and a defective product that causes harm won’t cause harm to mom or pop.
Amazon is different because deep pockets. That’s where ambulance chasing lawyers always go. Deep pockets.
In the ruling, the appeals court said Amazon could be held liable for its role in the sales chain. The court also ruled that Amazon is protected for “speech” on its platform, but wasn’t necessarily protected for the sale of goods in the real world.
This is yet another reason why the Mincey Plantation has more than our fair share of Apple products. The company stands behind what it sells that has its own brand attached. Yes, it may take time and sheer numbers to get Apple’s attention, but we have taken products back to Apple that were broken shortly after the warranty expired and Apple took care of it.
For those poor Mac users with bad keyboards, it was an expensive proposition to get them fixed and they were not always fixed. But Apple came through and implemented a program that backed up and made good on the problematic Macs.
So, what’s the problem?
Two different appeals courts have found in Amazon’s favor in similar cases, as have other lower courts. But any decision that chips away at Amazon’s legal protections for its platform represents a potential threat to its business.
Apple and Amazon both have deep pockets and plenty of lawyers on hand to help steer public controversies toward good outcomes.
Jeffrey and I are not spring chickens and we’re old enough to remember few sayings from grandpa Mincey.
The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
Keep squeaking and you might get the fix.