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France Considers Ban On Free Shipping By Amazon, A "destroyer Of Bookshops"; Prepare For Economic Collapse In France

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Aurélie wasn't hired for her brains.

aurelie-filipetti-jambes-1.jpg

There is also a smartphone tax coming (fancy that, socialists and another tax!) to pay for films that no-one watches.

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I'm no socialist but there is definitely a case IMO for charging companies like Amazon something to operate in a country, it's clear the international tax issues are never going to be solved, or not any time soon.

Banning them would be stupid, making them pay something is not stupid.

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Aurélie wasn't hired for her brains.

aurelie-filipetti-jambes-1.jpg

There is also a smartphone tax coming (fancy that, socialists and another tax!) to pay for films that no-one watches.

Clearly she should tax ebooks. That's destroying bookshops..... Or don't the French use ebooks?

Hired for her legs?

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what they could do is stop national post operators eg royal mail,giving them massive discounts so everyone pays the same but thats a separate issue.

problem solved once RM privitised, packet price will go up for Amazon and the like, rather than subsidised by the tax payer, or they will have their own delivery services set up, which they're starting to do already.

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Amazon will just negotiate cheap deals with other delivery providers, this is a small issue.

The problem is that they are bankrupting the high street while not paying tax, which is not fair competition.

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Amazon will just negotiate cheap deals with other delivery providers, this is a small issue.

Not sure it's such a small issue though, in present form the postal service has near on 100% coverage six days a week, with post going everyday, plus leaflet drops incorporated in that, with the small packets and light parcels being delivered in that scope. It's easy, quick and cheap to drop off say fifty letterbox size small packets a day - everyday in that scope as postie is already passing that area with letter post. Whether this will change in the near future (1-3 years say) is the issue, any private company is going to want to reap the profits of these small packets, they're not going to just want to break even that's for sure.

For a van and worker to just deliver say fifty small packets in a typical one postie area is going to take far far longer to go and deliver them than a postie who's already passing the door.

Although for the highstreet it would be a good thing as an extra 50p-£1.50p in postal costs per small packet type item would reduce mark up on lower priced items, thus more sales returning to the bigger stores in Cities/Towns perhaps?

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I'm no socialist but there is definitely a case IMO for charging companies like Amazon something to operate in a country, it's clear the international tax issues are never going to be solved, or not any time soon.

Banning them would be stupid, making them pay something is not stupid.

I don't that Amazon's tax bill is the issue here.

The French have a weird system that says having as many bookshops as possible is the best way to disseminate culture - even if it makes books more expensive. For example, it's verbotten to give anything more than a trivial discount on a book's RRP. The idea is to prevent big shops from undercutting the little players.

Amazon is the complete opposite of this, so is never going to be popular - IIRC it's already been successfully sued for selling books cheap.

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I think the more salient question is why there are no French internet giants (or British for that matter). Why do all the good internet ideas come out of the US?

There's some big UK players, but even now, nearly all French websites are rubbish.

Shopping in France is horrid. Rather than having one shop open for a normal length of time, they basically have a shop for each item, open for a couple of hours a day.

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Shopping in France is horrid. Rather than having one shop open for a normal length of time, they basically have a shop for each item, open for a couple of hours a day.

Didn't the French invent the hypermarket?

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There's some big UK players, but even now, nearly all French websites are rubbish.

Shopping in France is horrid. Rather than having one shop open for a normal length of time, they basically have a shop for each item, open for a couple of hours a day.

You should try Swiss websites, they're still in the dark ages, although (as in everything else) the German speaking part of Switzerland is a bit more together.

Shopping in France(and often also in Suisse-Romande although they're a bit better) is horrid, but not for the reasons you mention - it's horrid because the concept of customer service will not enter the francophone mind. They are doing you, the customer, a favour by deigning to allow you through the door, and they are quite happy to stick with that approach even when it loses them your custom - uppity customers who expect them to be honest, polite and helpful aren't worth it, in their mind.

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Didn't the French invent the hypermarket?

And over 30 years ago the French Videotex system for online shopping amongst other things.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minitel

250px-Minitel1.jpg

Minitel 1. Built 1982

The Minitel was a Videotex online service accessible through telephone lines, and is considered one of the world's most successful pre-World Wide Web online services.

Rolled out experimentally in 1978 in Brittany and throughout France in 1982 by the PTT (Poste, Téléphone et Télécommunications; divided since 1991 between France Télécom and La Poste).[1] From its early days, users could make online purchases, make train reservations, check stock prices, search the telephone directory, have a mail box, and chat in a similar way to that now made possible by the Internet.

In February 2009, France Telecom indicated the Minitel network still had 10 million monthly connections. France Telecom retired the service on 30 June 2012

Business model

220px-Minitel1980.jpg

1980 Alcatel Minitel terminal with non-AZERTY keyboard

Millions of terminals were lent for free to telephone subscribers, resulting in a high penetration rate among businesses and the public. In exchange for the terminal, the possessors of Minitel would not be given free "white page" printed directories (alphabetical list of residents and firms), but only the yellow pages (classified commercial listings, with advertisements); the white pages were accessible for free on Minitel, and they could be searched by a reasonably intelligent search engine; much faster than flipping through a paper directory.

France Télécom estimates that almost 9 million terminals—including web-enabled personal computers (Windows, Mac OS, and Linux)—had access to the network at the end of 1999, and that it was used by 25 million people (of a total population of 60 million). Developed by 10,000 companies, in 1996, almost 26,000 different services were available.[4]

Minitel allowed access to various categories of services:

phone directory (free)

mail-order retail companies

airline or train ticket purchases

information services

databases

message boards

The development of Minitel spawned the creation of many start-up companies in a manner similar to the later dot-com bubble of Internet-related companies. Similarly, many of those small companies floundered and failed because of an overcrowded market or bad business practices (lack of infrastructure for online retailers). The messageries roses ("pink messages", adult chat services) and other pornographic sites were also criticized for their possible use by under-age children. The government chose not to enact coercive measures, however, stating that the regulation of the online activities of children was up to parents, not the government. The government also enacted a tax on pornographic online services.

Edited by Take Me Back To London!

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I'm no socialist but there is definitely a case IMO for charging companies like Amazon something to operate in a country,

Why would Amazon have to operate in France? Surely they could run a website in (say) Ireland and just post the books over the channel. I doubt under EU law France could do anything to stop this.

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Shopping in France(and often also in Suisse-Romande although they're a bit better) is horrid,

I've always found the small shops in Geneva to be very good at customer service and very polite. Media Markt are a bit crap treating all their customers as shoplifters. Migros/Coop - good range of goods compared to France and well presented, almost like a British supermarket and service is ok.

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Amazon will just negotiate cheap deals with other delivery providers, this is a small issue.

The problem is that they are bankrupting the high street while not paying tax, which is not fair competition.

Ten, or so, years ago I thought the High St could be saved and also thought I would always retain a reasonable number of bricks and mortar stores. I would happily reel off statements like 'teletext didn't kill newspapers' and 'online is just glorified mail order'.

High parking charges and greedy landlords etc. are all real factors accelerating the decline of the high street but ultimately aren't the killer blow. Put simply the killer blow the internet has is choice and this is also what the independent bookshop can never beat Amazon on.

I don't think Amazon are reliant on RM at the moment. I expect/am led to believd prices will drop post-privatisation at RM what the tax payer is really subsidising is an excessively large workforce unnecessarily driving round opening and shutting the doors on empty pillar boxes every day. After some initial union action ultimately I would think a sizeable chunk of the workforce, beyond the doorstep delivery staff, will be spending more time with their black and white cats.

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It says more about French fear of foreign media rather than any particular attack on Amazon.

To the French, their national language is being attacked on all fronts, to the world, natural selection continues.

Bless them.

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Weird how the public are getting very wound up about Amazon's corporation tax but don't seem too concerned on all that lost vat revenue and corporation tax from illegal online downloads.

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Put simply the killer blow the internet has is choice and this is also what the independent bookshop can never beat Amazon on.

Yet, according to articles I've read recently, independent book stores appear to having a renaissance in America now the big chain book stores that put them out of business in the 90s are going bust. Probably in no small part because they don't offer that level of choice, but specialize in their own niche and sell over the Internet as well as locally.

BTW, it would appear that thanks to the brick and mortar stores whining about internet sales tax, Amazon are now setting up local operations around America and getting into other businesses like grocery delivery. Their competitors should be careful what they wish for...

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Whilst I think companies should be taxed for market access (like Swissy said) e.g. 1% of gross revenues would be enough to eradicate any need to chase corporation tax, I do think that taxing smartphones would be a bad idea.

It could put a very good technology out of the reach of some poor potential users.

Alternatively, the state could get its arm out altogether and could offer a subscription model for services people actually want instead.

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  • 242 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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