Amazon: “Notice of Contract Termination Due to Potential New California Law”

Amazon: “Notice of Contract Termination Due to Potential New California Law”

I received an e-mail from Amazon, and they are alerting Amazon Associates in California that they will terminate the Associate program in that state if its “Amazon law” goes into effect.

I’ll write more about this, but I wanted to get this out right away.

I was going to include the body of the e-mail, which would normally be my right with an e-mail sent to me that was not indicated as private, but they included a copyright notice.

Update: my account has now been closed. When I accessed it this morning, I saw this:

Alert Account Closed

This account is closed and will not generate referrals. Access to this site is for historical purposes only.

For more of my thoughts on this, see

Lose/lose/lose: how California’s Amazon law hurts the state, Amazon, and individuals

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

7 Responses to “Amazon: “Notice of Contract Termination Due to Potential New California Law””

  1. Harold Says:

    I’m sorry that you may be caught in the battle, but California needs to stop their cash mongering ways. I’m on Amazon’s side in this battle.

    • bufocalvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Harold!

      I appreciate that. I’d be better off than many, since I get more of my writing income from subscriptions and book royalties (neither of which would be impacted) than from advertising fees.

      It’s not just me, though…I also do some work with a non-profit, and they would lose that as a source of revenue.

  2. Edward Boyhan Says:

    Andrys emailed me: Brown signed it this afternoon.

  3. Bob Fry Says:

    Closing the online tax loopholes is part of California’s just-signed budget (I am a California state employee so have watched these budget wars for years). Not real sure what Amazon Associates’ relationship is with Amazon; can you describe more how Amazon’s intended action will affect you? Is this simply spite by Amazon, or do they believe that this will eliminate in in-state physical presence, and thus exempt them from collecting sales taxes?

    • bufocalvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Bob!

      I’m going to go into more detail on this in a post, but your latter is correct. It’s not spite, in my opinion.

      Briefly, here’s the idea. Due to the interstate commerce clause in the US constitution, states can only impose regulations on companies doing business in their state.

      So-called “Amazon laws” re-define people, like me, who get an advertising fee when someone clicks through a URL and purchase something as employees of that out of state company, and more specifically, as a “sales force”. That creates what is called a “nexus”.

      By eliminating those Associates in California, Amazon won’t have a nexus, and won’t have to do what the state otherwise has the responsibility to do.

      With no nexus, they will not have to collect the sales tax.

  4. arunreasey Says:

    I got this problem too but I didn’t get any email from amazon. And What should I do?

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, aruneasey!

      I don’t think you have the same problem. 🙂 That post is from about four years ago, when Amazon was in a dispute with the State of California (where I live) over collection of sales tax. Amazon and California worked out a deal within 18 months of that.

      It’s possible something similar is happening in another state…can you tell me more about your situation?

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