Banned From Amazon for Returning 37 Things

Greg Nelson calls axing of his account "egregious"
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 20, 2016 2:32 PM CDT
Banned From Amazon for Returning 37 Things
An package is prepared for shipment by a United Parcel Service driver in Palo Alto, Calif.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)

Returned a few purchases on Amazon? Then take note of Greg Nelson, a computer programmer who saw his account canceled after he returned 37 of 343 items, the Guardian reports. "I could understand if there were evidence that I had somehow tried to abuse the system, but I haven't," says Nelson. He claims the returns were all justified, but Amazon UK simply axed his account and deleted any remaining gift card balance. Customers who lose their account also lose access to Amazon Prime streaming services and downloading on Kindle. "I find [Amazon's] actions in this situation totally egregious," adds Nelson, who questions whether the site can legally swipe a customer's unspent balance.

Questioned by the Guardian, an Amazon spokesman said that "in a tiny fraction of cases we are forced to close accounts where we identify extreme account abuse." So what constitutes extreme? Amazon UK allows customers to return items within 30 days but refuses to say how many returns are too many. Tech Walls advises customers to keep return rates at under 10%—a threshold that may explain Nelson's canceled account and those of two others (described in this tweet and this posting on Amazon). "Making a new Amazon customer account, however, remains a simple task," says Inquisitr. "A lot of individuals will just use a spouse or family member’s account after their account is closed." (In other Amazon news, read about the company's unusual tactic for curbing warehouse theft.)

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