Episode 112
June 14, 2019

Chipotle is Woke Subway

Brian wants to go "woke" hunting, Phillip identifies socially conscious brands, Digiday launches Modern Retail. PLUS: MailChimp creates a content division because, quote, "why not?" Listen now!

<iframe frameborder='0' height='80px' scrolling='no' seamless src='https://simplecast.com/e/64d5ef92?style=light' width='100%'></iframe>

this episode sponsored by

Brian wants to go "woke" hunting, Phillip identifies socially conscious brands, Digiday launches Modern Retail. PLUS: MailChimp creates a content division because, quote, "why not?" Listen now!

Show Notes:

Main Takeaways:

  • Brian wants to tell all of us about "woke commerce," and he's taken to Twitter to talk about it
  • Will outdoor brands start to cater to hunters and fishers in the counterculture?
  • June is Pride Month (Happy Pride!!), and brands are using their platforms to amplify allyship with the LGBTQAI+ community.
  • Is Target the more socially conscious version of Walmart?
  • Phillip really wants Brian to get hate mail.

Brian (And Only Brian) Wants to Talk About "Woke Commerce.":

Creating Content Around Community: The New/Old Way of Commerce:

Amazon Creates a Credit Card For The Underbanked:

  • When we talk about commerce, we tend to forget that there are populations that may be underserved by a lot of the innovations in commerce, and those store closings (like dress barn) may affect significantly, people in rural areas, and those with considerably less disposable income.
  • Amazon has created a credit card for those with subpar credit, which is in direct contrast to Apple's card partnership with Goldman's Sachs.
  • According to Lauren Thomas of CNBC: "The e-commerce giant partnered with publicly traded bank Synchrony Financial to launch "Amazon Credit Builder" --- a program that lends to shoppers with no credit history or bad credit, who would otherwise be exempt from Amazon's loyalty cards."
  • Phillip and Brian seem to disagree on if this is a good idea.
  • Brian thinks e-commerce is the answer to store closings.
  • The exciting thing about this is that unlike other secured cards Amazon's card comes with some perks, like 5% cashback.
  • Amazon also has special programs who are on EBT or Medicaid, and also have student discounts for Prime.
  • Phillip wonders if this kind of program for vulnerable populations may be a slippery slope to unethical control of people's entire lives.

We love to hear from our listeners: Do you think brands are doing a good enough job of being socially conscious? Do you think Amazon's new program is a good idea? And what's the best example of a brand creating an inclusive community for their customers?

Let us know in the content section on Futurecommerce.fm, or reach out to us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Linkedin.\ Any questions, comments or inquiries, can be emailed to info@futurecommerce.fm, and if you really want to send Brian hatemail, you can do so at Brian@futurecommerce.fm.

Download MP3 (34.6 MB)


Brian: [00:00:00] Welcome to Future Commerce, the podcast about cutting edge next generation commerce. I'm Brian.

Phillip: [00:00:03] And I'm Phillip.

Brian: [00:00:05] Today we have a fun show ahead. Yeah.

Phillip: [00:00:08] Get woke everybody.

Brian: [00:00:09] Get woke. It's Woke Commerce time.

Phillip: [00:00:11] Woke Woke Commerce. So I don't know if it's happening... if it's happening like at this exact moment, but you're you're supposedly going to start a whole Twitter storm about something you're calling Woke Commerce, and I need you to get into this right away because I need to hear what this is all about.

Brian: [00:00:29] Well I had a great conversation at Future Stores by someone from Glowforge which was, which is a really cool company. Yeah.

Phillip: [00:00:38] Oh yeah. You were at a Future Store Seattle just... We talked about it on the last episode.

Brian: [00:00:42] Yeah. Yeah.

Brian: [00:00:44] Really interesting trends going on at Future Stores, and this conversation definitely one of those great conversations you tend to just have at conferences like that when you're sitting down for lunch with really interesting people there that are doing really interesting things, and so I was chatting, chatting with a couple of people about you know what, what you know... Is retail getting woke?

Phillip: [00:01:12] Ugh, Can we make that show title just like, an audible groan.

Brian: [00:01:21] Yeah.

Brian: [00:01:23] I like that. I like that a lot. I think there's been a lot of brands have been trying to get woke for a long time, and is that a good thing is that even a good thing. I'm not even sure. "Woke" is so you know so like millennial pretentious.

Phillip: [00:01:40] Well I don't like everything it's sort of you know becomes like it takes on a whole new meaning on its own.

Phillip: [00:01:49] I think in the beginning "woke" meant that you were you were, you know hip to social justice issues. And I definitely think that it started around Black Lives Matter and it was co-opted by a bunch of people as these things are, want to do, that to mean all kinds of things so. But when you say Woke Commerce what, like give me a short notion of what you mean.

Brian: [00:02:11] Yeah that's a great question. I was like oh well we're gonna talk about Woke Commerce I should probably go on urban dictionary dot com and just make sure that I understand what woke actually means and that I'm not... But I didn't really like their definition, or at least the top definition that showed up, which was effectively like saying that someone's extra pretentious about their specific issue that they believe.

Phillip: [00:02:32] Fine fine. Yeah exactly.

Brian: [00:02:35] But I think what, I think in this case let's just sort of, you know define it as brands that are you know, that are aware of, and make it clear that they're aware of, you know, of modern takes on on a number of issues, so that...

Phillip: [00:02:57] Usually left leaning. Usually, you know progressive. Right?

Brian: [00:03:02] Typically. Yeah. Typically typically left leaning and progressive, but not necessarily just, you know I think...

Phillip: [00:03:09] So brands that sort of take public stands, and so that that was what the conversation was about, was brands that take public stands. Maybe not as as a culture, but maybe you know on certain issues from time to time and one that comes to mind is like Patagonia standing up to the Trump administration over you know, the Bureau of Land Management and a bunch of you know things there... That is woke, right? Would that be typical of woke?

Brian: [00:03:38] That would be an example I think it, but it reflects like, being woke is more than just taking a stand. I think it's about sort of your ego culture as well like ok up and down the culture.

Phillip: [00:03:50] Or identifying like, people of like mindedness. Right?

Brian: [00:03:52] Right. Exactly...

Phillip: [00:03:52] It's like you're woke, I'm woke, we're all woke. Everyone else is un-woke.

Brian: [00:03:55] It's a community sort of thing. Yeah. So Patagonia would be a perfect example, like you said of like a woke brand, if you will.

Phillip: [00:04:03] Yeah. Okay. So give me give me, give me an example of how this evolved. That's not really what we're talking about.

Brian: [00:04:10] We started to have some fun with this. And I was like, "You know what I think a new category might be... woke hunting." In that, like I mean I live in a town that's sort of on the edge edge of the edge of the, you know the Mount Rainier National Forest. And there's a lot of hunting and fishing that happens in my town, for sure. And I think that you know I, I know several people that you know aren't necessarily you know all in on you know sort of the the the current hunting culture and gun culture. But they do like to hunt. And so they I think they found themselves without places to to to purchase things from, whether it's gear or or you know what whatever it is the thing you need that, you know that sort of in line with their belief systems.

Brian: [00:05:09] And I think that that you know the challenge here of course is that you know, there's just been such a divide on this issue. But I do think that there's like a whole series of outdoorsman and an outdoors people and hunters and... And you know and and fishers and so on that that aren't necessarily fitting in to what the brand schemes that have built around the...

Phillip: [00:05:42] There is a culture.

Brian: [00:05:42] There's a culture of of you know sort of of of you know red neck.

Phillip: [00:05:48] And I was hoping you wouldn't say the word but yeah. OK.

Phillip: [00:05:53] Like we could dance around it but yeah there's there are people who enjoy sporting without having you know being lumped in with a a a an archetype or some kind of a you know some sort of a being pigeonholed as a kind of a person who you know drives a certain type of a car or whatever.

Brian: [00:06:11] Right. Right.

Phillip: [00:06:12] Or truck if you know if you're. OK fine. So you're thinking that something that's coming is brands that appeal to sensibilities of folks who want to participate in a particular, in a particular activity or around a set of sort of maybe out you know sporting that doesn't identify with that cultural norm usually goes with it. OK.

Brian: [00:06:40] Where it might be for more gun control instead of less gun control. And you know they might be for you know, more more regulations around you know when and where to hunt, and you know and more conservation. And actually a lot of hunters I know are you know are very focused on conservation. But again I mean I live in, I live in western Washington. I live in King County which is where Seattle is. It's where you know, if if Seattle... I feel like Seattle would want to describe itself as a woke city but...

Phillip: [00:07:14] I would I would believe so yeah they've got the pot culture is very woke I guess.

Phillip: [00:07:20] Yeah I can I can I put this in a bunch of different context you know.

Brian: [00:07:25] Exactly. Now now now we get to have the fun like let's say...

Phillip: [00:07:28] I love how excited you get about stuff like that like you're so you're jumping up and down excited. I'm curious what you think, like if that's the case. But let's say that that's a repeatable... There are a couple examples of this already what we see is it's very normal, and we're in June so it's Pride Month, right? And Happy Pride to everybody, but in in this month you see a lot of brands sort of co opting you know the message you see that a lot or you had you did see it a lot like around the NFL and you know breast cancer awareness month, and you know and and you see a lot of those sort of social messages that big brands, you know, affirm to to be relevant... to be culturally relevant. Right? We see that, we're seeing it right now. Just go look it's not hard to find. I was at Bath and Body Works and they have a pride scented soap, which,  Ok. Sure. I'm almost there. I'm with you. So there must be...

Phillip: [00:08:34] So what you're saying is that there are brands who will appeal to some sort of, a sort of counterculture to certain certain... you know sort of... if there is a... And I think these exist actually if I'm thinking about it. There are brands that exist especially in outdoor and hunting and sporting and hiking. What was the brand that had the spider silk that we talked about not too long ago?

Brian: [00:08:58] Bolt threads.

Phillip: [00:08:59] Who?

Brian: [00:09:00] Bolt threads.

Phillip: [00:09:01] Bolt threads. They had a brand that they they they like sold beanies into or something. It was like a high end hiking. They had an axe. You know I'm talking about?

Brian: [00:09:17] No, I don't know. I don't know what you're talking about.

Phillip: [00:09:19] How do you. How is... OK. I'm not going to come off of this we're gonna. Oh Best Made. That's right.

Brian: [00:09:26] Yeah. Best Made. Oh yeah for sure. Oh yeah. A connection. I'm sorry. I just didn't. I wasn't following.

Phillip: [00:09:31] Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Yeah. So we we'd mentioned this a long time ago on the show. It wasn't just like textile innovation Bolt Bolt Threads as in some of Best Made's apparel. But what's interesting about Best Made, is they are doing what you're talking about, right?

Brian: [00:09:47] Sure there are other brands that are doing it. It's been more on like the sort of strictly outdoor side. And it haven't really like, actually you know, pushed into what I you know what I would consider the hunting and fishing categories. But...

Phillip: [00:10:05] So fair enough. But I think that's what I'm trying to get like an example so that we can point to something.

Brian: [00:10:11] Filson. Filson.

Phillip: [00:10:11] Oh Filson is a great example. Yeah yeah totally yeah. In that same category it's based on the same...

Brian: [00:10:18] Yeah totally, right. So there are some brands that have sort of ventured into this realm, but I don't think they're... I mean Filson's probably you know, a you know a little bit too, like actual, like urban than than someone who actually goes hunting is going to wear out hunting. I think so yeah.

Phillip: [00:10:40] But I it's it's the same issue that you might have with, who's the Canada Goose right?

Brian: [00:10:47] Right. Right.

Phillip: [00:10:48] It's in the, it's in the style or the aesthetic of of a certain type of apparel, like outdoor gear, but you'd probably never wear your thousand dollar Canada Goose jacket out, you know on, a you know across the AT. OK. So I wanted to think about oh yeah... Whatever. Like just send me hate mail, phillip with two L's at Future Commerce fm, I don't care. So I'm trying to get to a point. So I was thinking about this and I have I have some examples that already exist. I think Target is like the woke Walmart right? Where I want to participate in that sort of convenient shopping experience with everything under one roof and get everything that I want to get and shop at a bunch of, you know kind of that one stop shop. I really want that. But I don't really want to participate in the Walmart. like community, if you will. That's a horrible thing to say, but I think that's what you're saying right?

Brian: [00:11:47] Yeah I think targets like barely there. If if at all like like that... Like woke Wal-Mart doesn't really exist. Yet Amazon would probably be the closest thing but I don't... I don't know how woke Amazon is.

Phillip: [00:12:03] I don't know, like Amazon doesn't really hit on the on the the social justice message, which I'm I'm thinking is part of an undercurrent like, or I don't know, like, some sort of like, you know... There has to be an appeal, I think, it to to millennials and sort of like a socially conscious generation. I think of you know Everlane or ThirdLove as you know, as like those socially conscious brands.

Brian: [00:12:26] Yeah. Yeah. Like the we talk... Actually we've pretty much alluded to this in our last episode but we didn't really come out say it, but like it's like the ThirdLove is woke Victoria's Secret.

Phillip: [00:12:40] Yeah yeah. Victoria's Secrets just gross and culturally irrelevant. Send me hate mail, send Brian hate mail, too... Brian with an "i" Future Commerce dot fm.

Brian: [00:12:53] I'll probably get, I'll probably get some flack for woke hunting, I think.

Phillip: [00:12:56] Yeah. Woke hunting. That's that's that's such a thing. But that's okay. We're okay to be wrong. Pragmatic retail futurists and all we don't have to be right all the time. What is woke McDonald's? What is there, is their woke McDonald's?

Brian: [00:13:10] Let's, let's keep this trend up woke McDonald's. What would that actually look like? I was thinking Chipotle may but honestly, not really. Here's the reason why. Chipotle is is fast casual. Chipotle is more like woke Subway.

Phillip: [00:13:27] All right. Okay. We now have a show title... Chipotle's more like woke Subway. I got it.

Brian: [00:13:32] It's not. It doesn't have the cultural impact that McDonald's has in that McDonald's is everywhere. It's as cheap as it comes, and it's as convenient as it comes. And Chiptole is not as convenient as it comes. Yeah. Yeah there. I don't think there is a woke McDonald's right now, and that makes me sad because I think that I would, I would love to go. I would love to go to a woke McDonald's.

Phillip: [00:14:03] Maybe McDonald's itself is kind of woke when you think about it. You know... I don't know that... I don't even... You know what I feel gross even trying to argue that. Nevermind.

Brian: [00:14:15] Nope, nope, nope, nope.

Phillip: [00:14:15] I can't even be the contrarian in that in that res... In that respect. Okay. Well I want to hear what other people think about this whole idea that Brian has, and it's totally Brian's idea not mine at all. Remember Brian with an eye Future Commerce dot fm,

Brian: [00:14:27] and I kinda what to do this like... What, you know what would, what would woke things look like? And then what will happen if you un-woke something?

Phillip: [00:14:35] Oh my gosh, yes that's like, that is so good.

Brian: [00:14:41] Oh my gosh.

Phillip: [00:14:42] I love this idea of the stuff being un-woke. Like...

Brian: [00:14:48] What is like, un-woke Glossier look like?

Phillip: [00:14:51] Yeah oh gosh. Ooh. I don't know. I'm sure someone's got an idea. I have a problem. I have the problem the opposite end of the spectrum, like golf. If we're just talking about recreation, like golf is too woke for me now it's like way too civilized.

Brian: [00:15:08] Oh I totally disagree with you. I don't think golf is woke yet 1, and 2 un-woke golf already does exist. It's called mini golf.

Phillip: [00:15:15] Oh God it's so true. O o o o o woke wrestling. I want woke wrestling.

Brian: [00:15:25] Oh that's good.

Phillip: [00:15:26] Or boxing...

Phillip: [00:15:28] Well, actually you know what... Boxing might be woke wrestling. I think that's I think it already exists.

Brian: [00:15:33] I don't think so, man. I don't know if it's... I don't know.

Phillip: [00:15:35] Woke woke football.

Phillip: [00:15:37] I want something that is like it's a it's a high end upscale and socially conscious experience without all of the like, dude brodery. I mean like I don't want all the machismo. I don't know actually what I want just doesn't exist. I think I just need to play more video games online. OK.

Brian: [00:15:56] Nope, doesn't help, doesn't help.

Phillip: [00:15:59] Woke video games OK.

Phillip: [00:16:04] I'm never gonna stop thinking about this now. I think this might become a meme for us in and of ourselves speaking of memes, man. Every single company on earth is launching a Modern Retail reporting outlet, including Digiday.

Phillip: [00:16:20] So congratulations to Digiday for launching Modern Retail. And that's a you know, that's news that literally dropped today as we're recording this June 11th Tuesday.

Brian: [00:16:31] So it looks like pretty cool looks pretty cool. I having just looked on their web site but it looks interesting.

Phillip: [00:16:37] And Hilary Milnes... is looks like she's, she's got some sort of a leadership role or she's focusing on that now full time, which seems exciting. There is truly enough to talk about in the world of retail every single day and a big big audience. We know. You know having been at this almost three years now, three years next month I think, or in August anyway. Right. So we're we're, you know we are part of you know, I think we're truly direct to consumer, if you ask me, we're not we're not where the more direct to consumer in that we have you know... There's no level of you know, or layer between us and our audience. We directly publish to our audience, whereas I guess that's what a bunch of these, you know storied new media or old new media brands have, you know they, they have paid content,

Phillip: [00:17:32] they have online content, they have distribution through you know traditional journalism, and they've sort of played that game for a long time, and now they're trying to be way more direct to consumer with you know things like newsletters and you know and vertical specific content.

Phillip: [00:17:49] I think that's what Modern Retail is all about. I find it interesting that the Modern Retail logo looks a whole lot like the Magento logo, but that's just me.

Brian: [00:17:57] I'm sure there's a connection there Phillip somewhere.

Phillip: [00:18:02] There has to be. There has to be. There has to be. Probably not the logo you want to copy right now. Adobe Adobe is not one you wanna pick a fight with. Also interesting Modern Retail is all one word. According to this so which is...

Brian: [00:18:17] At least in the logo. In the logo it is. That's interesting.

Phillip: [00:18:20] Interesting. Very very cool, so congratulations, Digiday on that, and they're not the only ones launching a content brand this week. MailChimp launched a content arm, so MailChimp, which by the way MailChimp is no longer just about mail anymore. You would think that in in their quest to become a broader marketing platform they would have ditched the word mail. But that's okay so they have a...

Brian: [00:18:47] They just need to "Alphabet" it. That's the thing. MailChimp so yeah. It's such a known brand, it'd be really hard to lose that brand. But like yeah they need to. They need their "Alphabet". Yeah.

Phillip: [00:18:59] So my favorite hot take on this. I mean you could look at Variety you could look at Fast Company You could look at their own press release and you could get. Ok we'll mail chips creating an in-house entertainment studio. They're working with you know Vice and WME and a bunch of others.

Phillip: [00:19:14] My favorite hot take...

Brian: [00:19:16] Oh go ahead. Finish your hot take.

Phillip: [00:19:17] My my my hot take is Tubefilter dot com has the best headline. "MailChimp is making original content now because why not."

Brian: [00:19:27] I think cause everyone can make original content now.

Phillip: [00:19:31] It's true. Everybody's always been able to make original content. I think MailChimp's always had a really interesting voice. I've always been very... I don't know. I've always been intrigued by the way that they do business and they're not a teeny tiny little company, you know, to be a private company and doing you know 700 some million dollars in revenue and employing a whole mess of people in Atlanta. That's you know, that's a pretty awesome thing. Now they're actually creating content. And they have it. You know what they have a passionate audience that actually really loved their product that, you know, they have an audience on day one. They're not the first to do stuff like this. They did a whole... They've done a bunch of really interesting viral marketing campaigns over the last couple of years. And so yeah, congratulations to them. But this is I think this is where modern brands are going. Now they're a tech company, but I think when we look like we interviewed, we interviewed Lively's founder Michelle Cordiero Grant, who, I was so, Lianne Hikind, who's our director of content here at Future Commerce actually just calls her MCG because that's just her name now.

Phillip: [00:20:45] You know we just talk about her so so much. Michelle Cordiero Grant. So. But you know modern brands especially those of of Lively's sort are keen to create communities and be part of the cultural zeitgeist in conversation around those communities and the things those communities care about. It's not just about products and you know I think there is a real story around fostering community through content creation for, for modern brands. So yeah.

Brian: [00:21:15] Well I think it makes sense like, if you think about, you know, back back... Let's let's look at history for a minute. Like how has commerce always been driven. It's you know it's been it's been driven through through, I think, through different forms of content whether it be, you know, events and sports, or the church, or whatever it is, there's always a content and community arm to commerce. You know...

Phillip: [00:21:50] Which also touches on culture and arts and history and...

Brian: [00:21:54] Exactly.

Phillip: [00:21:55] Right. It all works together for sure. But. Yeah I want to see more about what MailChimp is doing if MailChimp... You know MailChimp could go acquire you know a Gimlet Media, which I mean they're no longer in the market, but that's neither here nor there. And it wouldn't surprise me. It would not surprise me at all. Because I can see them doing it. They have, they have a voice, and they have an understanding of. And... And the fact that I can say that maybe, maybe I just have an interesting vantage point. But to me they've always been more than just email marketing. Maybe maybe. Maybe I just have a unique viewpoint anyway. It's interesting.

Brian: [00:22:42] I think you're right about that. I actually agree with you. MailChimp's always been an early, I think, they were one of the early adopters on sponsoring podcasts. Right? And yeah I just I think that they've always had an interesting voice. So I think you're on point here. A few other interesting things happening around retail right now. One thing that that definitely caught my eye was Amazon's new credit card.

Phillip: [00:23:10] Don't call it a credit card. Is it a credit card? It's not a credit card.

Brian: [00:23:15] I think it's a credit card.

Phillip: [00:23:16] It's a, for people who don't have a credit card.

Brian: [00:23:18] Yeah yeah totally. Yes it's a credit card. It's a credit card for the under banks.

Phillip: [00:23:25] Right. Which you're literally reading their press release basically.

Brian: [00:23:31] Right. Exactly. Well the I need to know a little bit more about this that always makes me a little bit nervous when someone launches something for the other bank because it's easy to take advantage of the under banks.

Phillip: [00:23:46] Well it makes things right. Yeah for sure. These things have already always existed. This goes hand-in-hand with a story that we kind of brought out a little while ago, which shout out to Jesse Lazarus who is a faithful listener of the show who called me out in person and told me that we did a really bad job actually taking a real, a real look at, you know. An interesting, speaking of woke, you know a social issue that is important which is there are brands that do serve the the, you know that do serve an underserved population and brands like Dress Barn going out of business should probably be big deals. But yes this is the other end of the market. You have Apple on the extreme up end, the high end of the market, you know wanting to have these you know ultra premium credit services through banks like Goldman Sachs, and then you have Amazon who seems to want to play to the other end of the market to provide upward mobility for people to help build their credit with things like secure credit cards. And it's not that the Goldman Sachs you know ultra luxury credit card market never existed before, and it's not like secured credit cards never existed before. I've had both in my lifetime. Right? But. And so there is a need for both. It's that you have big brands who are championing these efforts along with banks.

Phillip: [00:25:06] And I think that's where it starts to feel a little gross which is... Do I want to you know do I want Amazon to control everything in my life including my upward economic mobility?

Brian: [00:25:18] And the answer might be yes actually.

Phillip: [00:25:20] Yeah maybe. I don't know. You seem to think so. I mean you're your answer to the Dress Barn question was literally Amazon. It was. It was you don't need Dress Barn.

Brian: [00:25:29] We've got Amazon Wal-Mart and Target. And you know a lot of other brands that that fill that spot. I I don't think it's exclusively Amazon. I think that it's it's e-Commerce is the answer to that. Like you don't need the Dress Barn to have a good... to be able to purchase dresses anymore.

Phillip: [00:25:52] Are affordable clothing you know for people without access to you know other other other places to get it. So but you also have this really interesting take on that. What we've not seen is a lot of rewards focus on cards like this. Usually secured credit cards are... do have zero perks. And so this seems to be built in with a 5 percent cash back. You know if you did have Prime you'd have access to all those other things and maybe having a Prime is an answer to spending money on things like you know cable or. Yeah.

Brian: [00:26:26] And you know I mean cord cutting has been a huge trend and definitely cheaper to have Prime than it is to spend money on cable. But I think there's even an offering for for households in need for Prime. Like you can get discounted Prime. I believe that they had at one point. I'm not sure if they still have it, but they did introduce that at one point. Sort of Prime for for those in need, and so I think that, you know there may be there may be opportunity here. I do. I mean I just think that there's always caution on on this, as well, like you don't want it to be what does that...what's that super predatory payday loan company? You know in short, you don't want to end up in a situation like that. But it also, you know there are also reasons why people have bad credit that, you know, that they may be coming out or they may, you know it, or they need a way to get back on their feet. And so yeah doing it responsibly is also a good thing. I think, you know... I just don't know enough detail here to say whether it is or not.

Phillip: [00:27:37] You actually you made a good point and it does actually. It does exist still. Which is Amazon has, Amazon has special programs for people who have EBT or who have Medicaid cards.

Phillip: [00:27:56] And so those are folks that are on you know on government assistance in some way, you know in one way or another. That's, some of those are you know temporary assistance for needy families or TANF. Those are all U.S. based programs, but there is a qualification process, but they do provide it for six dollars a month.

Phillip: [00:28:16] For Prime which, you know, good on them, and they've always had student discounts as far as like I can remember... long time they've had student discounts, so you have to wonder in this U.S. Antitrust is looking into this right now. When when you have you know when you're providing credit services, when you're providing effectively banking, you're providing retail, and you're providing entertainment to a very specific part of the populace who you know could be seen as vulnerable... How is that not antitrust? You know every like, how you could... If you so chose, and I'm not saying they do, you can control every facet of someone's life from the products that they consume, to the content that they watch, you know, you control the world view. That's a scary thing. And now you control their money too.

Brian: [00:29:14] Well I think that the answer to that is that there's lots of other ways that people could get these products and services. You've got Netflix, you've got Wal-Mart, you've got Target, you've got, you know a whole host of other retailers that that don't really... You're not locked in.

Phillip: [00:29:30] You could definitely put it together yourself. And I do all of the above. Right. But right for people that are, you know for people that are in need, which is the reason why we're talking about the story to begin with at all right. For people that are in need or somewhat vulnerable or financially unstable. The question for me would be do they actually have access to those things? Not everybody does. Well you and I have a particular view because we have access to a Target and Wal-Mart. But we talked a few episodes ago about food deserts. You know there's a good portion of rural population that only has access to Dollar Stores for food and it's all prepackaged and none of it's fresh. And so in their case, in their world view, or their world, their experience of the world is very different to ours. So I'd love to get someone who actually knows what they're talking about on the show to talk about something like that.

Phillip: [00:30:27] But great great last story for you to to draw out there. It's interesting.

Brian: [00:30:32] It is really interesting. I think you know this is actually... This is in line with something that we talked about probably last year, maybe early last year, which was the idea of household subscriptions, and... I think that you know I had a chat with Wal-Mart about household subscriptions not long ago. I feel like that that household subscriptions and, you know working in partnership with, you know govern... governmental agencies is, a deeper partnership with governmental agency, is is a future that I could see coming to your nearest Amazon or Wal-Mart. It's such that there's better communication and collaboration for the underserved and that there's easier and better ways to to sort of get your basic needs met for, for those you know even above the underserved, like so... I think that is a trend that will happen eventually. Whether or not it gets you know we get into the antitrust thing is a different story. But I think that there's enough choice where we won't. And so I don't I don't... I don't see that... I don't see that being as a as a big of a deal for antitrust as something say like what Google's dealing with right now. So.

Phillip: [00:32:02] Well fine. But yeah I guess we'll see. We'll see. And I'm I'm the one guilty of, you know also a year ago saying just please someone just take my life and put on autopilot. I'm so tired of making decisions. Someone just make all the decisions for me, and now I'm you know complaining that you know, somebody is making all the decisions for other people and I'm like oh that's icky that's gross. OK. Anyway thanks for listening. I can be a hypocrite. That's fine. Thanks for listening.

Phillip: [00:32:36] We'd love your feedback to make sure you do that at Future Commerce dot fm and like and subscribe everywhere we're podcasts or found. Big Spotify audience these days, so make sure you subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.

Phillip: [00:32:52] And until next time retail tech moves fast,

Brian: [00:32:53] But Future Commerce is moving faster.

Recent Podcasts

Recent episodes

LATEST PODCASTS