Amazon Successful Because of Sex Toys
The title of this post is about Amazon's success being based on sex toys … but before I address that, I want to talk about some background semi-related issues.
There has always been a strong factor in the growth of technology that has been based on or fueled by the Adult Industry. Those outside the industry might try to argue the point, but the facts still tell the story.
Although porn may not have been the only reason vhs triumphed over betamax, the overall logistics make sense. Sony wouldn't let anyone else make machines to play/record betamax tapes, while vhs machines were like todays "open source" licensing model.
VHS tapes also ran longer (3 hours vs. Beta 60 minutes). Because anyone could produce VHS machines and VHS tapes, prices continued to decrease, pushing more and more into the VHS market.
Lower prices meant porn producers could cheaply and easily distribute their product to the new masses that were VHS equipped. Lower prices meant MORE porn titles available, and lower COSTS meant there was a LARGER market to sell to. We were renting porn for $5-10 per tape per night! Just ask anyone who owned an adult video store — porn rentals in VHS were flying out the door every night.
My dad had a Sony Betamax machine, because it was expensive and of "the highest quality". He didn't care about porn (his loss) — he only cared about the bragging rights to owning a BetaMax machine. And just like his Philips LaserDisc machine, it sat idle most of the time until he stumbled on something he wanted to watch. (And with his betamax machine, he had to make sure the movie he chose to record was less than 60 minutes long!)
After a while, Sony finally saw the writing on the wall and began making VHS machines. It always reminded me of Radio Shack's cluster-f*ck of make all computers cables and connectors "proprietary" so the only cables you could use with a Radio Shack machine was a cable purchased AT Radio Shack.
See how far that got them? They changed that program a few years later when their computers were left in the dust. And today? No more Radio Shack. Just like Radio Shack, Sony didn't understand what consumers WANTED. Sony "thought" consumers wanted a better quality machine and would pay more for it. They were wrong.
There is even a term in use today called "BETA-MAXED". It refers to a product that came quickly on the market, but had a limited shelf-life and quickly failed.
The same is true with the internet. PORN built the internet (regardless of what Al Gore says). I ran a "BBS" in the early days (mid-to-late 80's). Most of you reading this probably don't know what a BBS is … I was running a 32-telephone line chat system on "AT" computers. Yes, 32 phone lines in my house! (PS: For those of you who know or care, I was running the most advanced software of the time — DLX. This software developer took at xt/at computer and let 32 people dial in and use the computer at the same time!!)
The "community" chatted, exchanged porn and had sex. It was amazing how many people on the board were screwing someone else on the board. Two of the biggest BBS systems were dedicated to posting and exchanging porn (MILLIONS of images) and hooking up (swinging couples).
Understand how this works – because it wasn't "internet". People connected their phones to their computer and dialed our computer — allowing all of the computers to connect and talk. It was slow, unreliable and costly.
GTE was developing and testing various technologies back then including today's DSL. But in those times, no one knew it was going to be used for data/internet. Everyone was jumping up and down, excited that they could get 7 conversations on 2-wires (previously only one conversation on 2-wires was possible). It was only later that GTE realized, "hey we could move a lot of fast data" on those two wires and the rest of DSL research changed forever.
When high-speed internet started being offered, do you REALLY believe Dad's forked out the money so Junior could have faster and easier access to his studying? NO. Dad was secretly thinking about the online porn that was being put on the internet at a rate no one can begin to understand.
With the desire for online porn, came the need to process credit cards online, and another industry was born — the online payment industry. Porn sites needed a way to get money from customers wanted to become a "member" and look at porn. Mainstream companies were still in the diaper stages of "getting a website" and an "online presence" and putting nothing more than yellow-page information online, as no one except adult websites knew how or WHAT to sell online.
And with more and more people getting email address, the SPAM industry took control. The number one most frequent spam from then until TODAY, is promoting VIAGRA (a sex drug!). Do you see the connection and the trends??
AND THAT BRINGS ME BACK TO THIS POST, "Amazon Successful Because of Sex Toys".
The story originated from the KTVN-Reno early morning newscast. It is not clear whether the newscast was live or being recorded when this occurred, or whether or not it went over the air. But here is what happened.
The female news host was explaining that Amazon had just been valued at more than Walmart. This was quite a feat for a virtual store vs a company with more than 5000 physical store fronts.
The male anchor shared his opinion, which shocked (and annoyed) his female co-host:
Do you know why? Because they [Amazon] sells sex toys. And WalMart can't or won't sell sex toys, because Amazon does. A friend of mine works in warehouse, and he say they sell a TON of them. I'm just telling you how it is!
Although we want to agree, his logic is a little off. But it is not to say that the sales of Adult products hasn't helped Amazon grow. Which is what I have said in this post from the beginning — the adult industry (like it or not) has driven technology for mainstream America.
Watch for yourself!
What no one wants to talk about however, is the proliferation of FAKE and COUNTERFEIT branded sex toys sold on Amazon. No one bothers to consider why a quality toy is for sale on amazon at 29.95 but sold elsewhere on the net for 59.95. There is a reason folks!