By James Marcus
The pleasing tale of the 1st 5 years of Amazon.com, stated by means of worker quantity 55.
"Americans with a watch cocked towards the markets have been requested to think that Amazon, a two-year-old bookseller, was once worthy greater than the mixed values of Sears and US Steel."—from Amazonia
James Marcus used to be employed as a senior editor at Amazon.com in 1996, giving him a ringside seat for the company's explosive upward push and dismal wallet-busting swoon. Now—as the e-commerce huge makes an astounding comeback—he tells all. not like the hot crop of dot.com memoirs, this can be no story of a bankrupt and brokenhearted entrepreneur. Marcus got here aboard as a self-described "token humanist," and his tackle the recent economic climate juggernaut is predominantly a cultural one. Why, he asks, did Jeff Bezos's brainchild develop into the foremost image of web euphoria? How did the corporate swap because it morphed from a miniscule start-up to a world, multibillion-dollar leviathan? was once the internet breaking extra offers than it stored? and at last: What may an editor do to withstand being reworked right into a hyperventilating shill?
In answering those questions, Marcus takes us to conferences, activity interviews, alternate indicates, and company retreats. We spend a freezing vacation season on the warehouse, and a significantly hotter afternoon on the company's summer time picnic—where Bezos himself mans the dunk tank. Amazonia is a piece of infrequent wit and razor-sharp commentary, and a superlative consultant to America's misplaced international of the nineties.
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Extra resources for Amazonia: Five Years at the Epicenter of the Dot.Com Juggernaut
It’s infuriating. And it’s not for want of effort. We follow her ovulations like a day trader follows the Nasdaq. She takes her temperature every morning, she makes charts and notes and annotations. Spreadsheets are involved. Still, bubkes. The Britannica points out that despite the widespread myth, women don’t need orgasms to conceive. Which is a very good thing for us, because at this point, our sex life has become about as erotic as artificial respiration (which, by the way, should be given at a rate of twelve breaths per minute).
And worst of all, I’ve missed several hours of crucial television, including what Julie tells me was a particularly riveting Real World episode in which an enraged girl throws a fork at another cast member. So it’s tough, this pursuit of intelligence. But I feel humbled by Sir Francis Bacon, who made the ultimate sacrifice. He died in the quest for knowledge, a martyr to the cause. I hadn’t remembered much about Bacon from school, except that he’s suspected by some to be the real Shakespeare. Also, he wore a huge ruffled collar.
When I have kids—God willing—and they complain about having to share an Xbox, I’ll show them this photo. I’ve got three words for you two, I’ll say: Chang and Eng. character writer In 17th-century England, writers such as Sir Thomas Overbury and Joseph Hall drew up character sketches to exemplify a quality such as vanity or stinginess. I’m no Tom Overbury, but there’s someone in my life who calls out for a little character sketch. It’s Julie’s brother Eric, and the quality he exemplifies is brilliance.
Amazonia: Five Years at the Epicenter of the Dot.Com Juggernaut by James Marcus