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Amazon tried to market worker’s labor as weight loss success story—and the internet isn’t having it

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BTW

In probably the most Amazon tweet ever, the e-commerce giant tried to sell a delivery woman’s labor as a weight-loss activity.

“Amazon Flex allowed this woman to lose 100 lbs in 18 months by creating a workout while delivery packages,” the tweet read, linked to a September story by KHSB in Kansas City.

The woman, Jackie Crow from Kansas City, Kansas, started at Amazon as a delivery driver after she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis three years ago, KHSB reported. She said Amazon was the “missing piece” she needed to “stay active.” She has lost 100 pounds in 18 months.

Even though her journey may have been positive, the internet did not agree with the message of masking labor for wellness by an organization known to treat its workers poorly.

Some were especially furious with the word choice of “allowed.”

Labor hasn’t been the company’s biggest strength. Amazon is known widely for treating its workers poorly, from reports of employees peeing in bottles to avoid being disciplined, to leaked videos showing managers being asked to secretly monitor unionizing workers. More recently, its decision to have its second headquarters in New York and D.C. received backlash from New Yorkers who anticipate further transportation and housing problems.

The story tweeted out yesterday is reminiscent of a fake feel-good story created by comedian Nathan Fielder in 2015, wherein an episode of Nathan for You he “tricked” people into thinking they were getting a workout by moving stuff, while the moving company got free labor. According to Vox, the fake story became a hit in local morning news shows.

Yesterday, Fielder responded to Amazon’s story with the perfect jab.

The media may have picked up Fielder’s fake story back in 2015, but the internet is doing what the internet does: going beyond that narrative and, in this case, calling out the e-commerce company for trying to mask labor as wellness.

H/T BuzzFeed News

Samira Sadeque

Samira Sadeque

Samira Sadeque is a New York-based journalist reporting on immigration, sexual violence, and mental health, and will sometimes write about memes and dinosaurs too. Her work also appears in Reuters, NPR, and NBC among other publications. She graduated from Columbia Journalism School, and her work has been nominated for SAJA awards. Follow: @Samideque