Amazon Dash Button: The Ultimate Convenience or the End of Civilization?

Amazon’s latest experimental product is the Dash button, a programmable key that makes reordering essentials like laundry detergent as easy as pushing Start on the microwave. Is this the best thing that ever happened to busy America? Or a sign that we’ve become the docile servants of our Amazon Prime accounts?

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When the Gizmodo staff discussed this very topic today in a group chat, we couldn’t decide whether it was the best or the worst. On one side, some saw the new tech as the natural evolution of shopping. It is a magic button, they said. It is convenient and not at all troubling.

Others, perhaps irrationally, believe that the button is that next sad step toward the post-consumer dystopia popularized in films like Wall-E and Idiocracy. We are losing our agency to the companies that want us to buy buy buy, some lamented. Pretty soon we’ll never leave the house or think at all.

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There are obviously only two ways you can feel about the Dash button. Either you are happier for its existence, or anxious about its implications. How do you feel?

GIF by Andrew Liszewski. Stock finger by rvlsoft/Shutterstock.com

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DISCUSSION

Just yesterday I purchased a book that wasn’t available on Kindle and since there was no rush I accepted Amazon’s “prime pantry” credit of $5.99. I have never purchased anything from prime pantry so I decided to check it out to see what I could get for my $5.99. Found some razors I needed and went to use my credit and, imagine that, it costs $5.99 to ship!

So you’re telling me that if a person is lazy enough to want one of these dash buttons they are also willing to pay $5.99 a pop to ship whatever item it is they are frequently buying?

Anyone stupid enough to do that is already a part of our idiocratic decline.