According to a recent report, local news stations across the United States have run news segments scripted and produced by e-commerce giant Amazon. Unsurprisingly, the segments were overly positive about Jeff Bezos’ company and its employment practices.
Vice News reports that local news stations across the United States recently aired a segment that was produced and scripted by e-commerce giant Amazon praising the company’s role in delivering essential groceries and cleaning products during the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic, as well as highlighting that the company is “keeping its employees safe and healthy.”
Vice reports that at least eleven local TV stations aired the segment which was introduced with a script written by Amazon and recited word for word by news anchors. The segments praise Amazon and its efforts during the pandemic despite reports that the firm is struggling to provide its workers with protective equipment, support the sellers on its platform, and cutting coronavirus pay increases to factory workers.
The anchors in the segments introduce the script and then cut to an Amazon-produced exclusive look “inside” an Amazon fulfillment center which is narrated by Amazon spokesperson Todd Walker, who states:
Millions of Americans staying at home are relying on amazon to deliver essentials like groceries and cleaning products during the COVID-19 outbreak.
For the first time we’re getting a glimpse *inside* Amazon’s fulfillment centers to see just how the company is keeping its employees safe and healthy.. While delivering packages to your doorstep.
Todd Walker takes us inside.
A YouTube compilation shows the segment scripted by Amazon:
The segment further shows interviews with Amazon employees who praise the company and discuss their dedication to their job. One Amazon fulfillment center site leader, Marty Kuhl, states: “I was extremely proud of my team and the way they were handling the situation on a daily basis. Every day they came to work ready to embrace change.”
The footage inside the Amazon fulfillment center was sent to news stations as a press release along with instructions on how to best run the segment, which states: “Go inside one of the company’s fulfillment centers to see the unprecedented ways Amazon is using innovation to continue operating, including COVID-19 testing, disinfectant spraying and physical distancing.”
Walker recently wrote on his LinkedIn page that he “got to dust off my reporting skills to give local markets their first look inside our fulfillment centers to see how Amazon is protecting the health and safety of its associates to continue delivering for you. News friends, the story is available to download in this link if you’d like to give your viewers inside access. I made a plug-and-play version, as well as one anchors and reporters can track themselves. It’s already been shared in markets from Los Angeles to Lexington.”
Zach Rael, an anchor and reporter at ABC’s KOCO 5 News, recently tweeted out the script and “pre-edited” story that he said Amazon’s PR team emailed to him:
Just got an email from Amazon’s PR team with a pre-edited news story and script to run in our shows. They are selling this as giving our viewers an “inside look” at the company’s response to COVID-19.
Let us go inside a fulfillment centers with our own cameras… pic.twitter.com/7mDk2xmf4O
— Zach Rael (@KOCOZach) May 24, 2020
Alyssa Bronikowski, a spokesperson for Amazon, told Motherboard: “We welcome reporters into our buildings and it’s misleading to suggest otherwise. This type of video was created to share an inside look into the health and safety measures we’ve rolled out in our buildings and was intended for reporters who for a variety of reasons weren’t able to come tour one of our sites themselves.”
Read more at Vice News here.
Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address email@example.com