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FEATURES

How Amazon Rigs its Shopping Algorithm

STACY MITCHELL AND SHAOUL SUSSMAN  |   Nov. 6, 2019

In a new piece for ProMarket, ILSR Co-Director Stacy Mitchell and Legal Fellow Shaoul Sussman describe how Amazon rigs its shopping algorithm to produce results that favor its own interests, harming shoppers and the many businesses that rely on its platform to get to market.

For companies that sell on Amazon’s platform, “winning the Buy Box”—the area on the right-hand side of the page that says “Add to Cart” or “Buy Now”—is everything. But Amazon gives itself perfect score on some of the metrics that feed its own algorithm. This means that Amazon often “wins the Buy Box” — even when it has a significantly higher price than other sellers, or won’t ship as fast as them.

Stacy and Shaoul make a number of legal and policy recommendations to restore competition and level the playing field for third party sellers—including breaking up Amazon. READ MORE

DOLLAR STORES

New Orleans Fights Dollar Store Saturation with New Zoning Regulations

CHARLIE THAXTON  |   NOV. 13, 2019

Decisions made by city officials in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 left some devastated areas of the city particularly vulnerable to the invasive spread of dollar store chains. A few neighborhoods in the city — like New Orleans East and Algiers — saw dozens of dollar stores open in the intervening years, draining investment in independent businesses and traditional grocery stores, and creating urban food deserts.

Local agricultural groups, residents, and businesses took notice and lobbied City Council to act. After an intensive study of the issue and the production of standout research document, New Orleans has amended its zoning code to prohibit new dollar stores from locating within two miles of existing ones in some neighborhoods, one mile in others. The City also passed food and agricultural reforms to encourage urban agriculture and investment in full service grocery options. READ MORE

WE'RE HIRING

ILSR is looking for an experienced communications professional to join our team as Communications Director. This position can be based in Washington, D.C.; Minneapolis, Minn.; or Portland, Maine. READ MORE AND APPLY.

ICYMI

Stacy Mitchell and Charlie Thaxton explain how independent pharmacies can flourish and  fight the growing problem of healthcare deserts — if only policymakers would stand up to the big players in the drug industry.  READ MORE.

NEWS STORIES WE'RE FOLLOWING

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Copyright © 2019 Institute for Local Self-Reliance, All rights reserved.


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