Bloomberg Businessweek reporter Brad Stone has a new book on Amazon called, The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon.
Amazon is not a fan of the book.
Bezos’ wife trashed the book with a 1-star review on Amazon. Then, Amazon also attacked the book, saying in a statement, “He had every opportunity to thoroughly fact check and bring a more balanced viewpoint to his narrative, but he was very secretive about the book and simply chose not to.”
Amazon is normally a very quiet company. It’s rare that it makes any comment, so these aggressive comments about the book are surprising.
Stone responded to Amazon’s attacks with a gracious post at Bloomberg Businessweek saying of Bezos’ and his wife’s complaints, “If they point to errors, I’ll gladly correct them.”
He also wrote, “Bezos said that he married MacKenzie after searching for someone tenacious enough to break him out of a Third World prison. By that standard, I got off easy.”
This sentence has sent Amazon into another tizzy, it seems.
Craig Berman, a spokesman at Amazon, sent out this statement in response to Stone:
In the rebuttal Mr. Stone published in Bloomberg Businessweek today, he writes:
“Bezos said that he married MacKenzie after searching for someone tenacious enough to break him out of a Third World prison. By that standard, I got off easy.”
Entertaining, and inaccurate.
Mr. Bezos says “resourceful” — not “tenacious.” Mr. Stone knows that. He also knows that the correct word doesn’t work quite as well for his purpose. “Resourceful” and “tenacious” mean different things. They also have subtle connotations. You might or might not like a tenacious person. It’s easy to imagine someone tenacious that you find a little exhausting and unpleasant. On the other hand, resourceful is hard to dislike. But no matter how well the word choice works for his purpose, it is not Mr. Stone’s choice to make. By beginning with “Bezos said,” he obligates himself to get it right.
It is ironic that he has done this in a rebuttal to a one-star review that comments on the combination of inaccuracy and slanted characterization in his book.
We don’t know what the back story to all of this is, but clearly Stone’s book touched a nerve.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.