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I Hated, Hated, Hated This Obituary

As I’m sure you’re aware if you’re a member of any social media network–and you’re probably aware a thousand times over by now, almost eighteen hours later–Roger Ebert, one of the film critics who, for better or worse, helped define the generation who came after him (including yours truly), died yesterday, only a day after announcing he’d be taking a “leave of presence” from his job as film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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Rest in peace, Mr. Ebert. I hope they make better movies in whatever world may await beyond this one.

On a more personal note, I’m filing an obituary myself, for my four-year relationship with the Amazon Vine program. They sent out, just after midnight their time last night, an announcement that read, in part:

“the Vine team is implementing the changes below and we want to make sure you know about them.

Starting on May 15, 2013:
•       The percentage of items ordered that must be reviewed will increase from 80% to 100%.
•       Items must be reviewed within 30 days of receipt of shipment.”

I’ve mentioned before that I don’t work that way, and I’m not going to attempt to bend my own rules in any sort of attempt to conform to their new standards. I expect I won’t be the only one, and I guarantee you’ll see the flow of books from certain publishers drying up as well if you’re a member; I find it hard to believe that one could read, mull over, and intelligently review within the space of a month a book from FT Press, Cambridge, Morgan Kaufmann, or a number of other publishers who have gotten dramatically increased exposure/publicity thanks to the Vine program. Sorry, guys.

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Goat’s relationship with Amazon Vine, 2009-2013. Requiescat in pacem.

About Robert "Goat" Beveridge

Media critic (amateur, semi-pro, and for one brief shining moment in 2000 pro) since 1986. Guy behind noise/powerelectronics band XTerminal (after many small stints in jazz, rock, and metal bands). Known for being tactless but honest.

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