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You have a public Amazon.com profile page that others can see

You have a public Amazon.com profile page that others can see
Dreamstime

Q. Just found out today that if you have an Amazon account for purchases or video streaming, Amazon automatically creates a PUBLIC PROFILE for social networking - whether you want it or not. And, like Google+, it uses your real name unless you change your profile. Excuse me??? I thought this was a merchandising site!!! Is there any way to opt out of social networking altogether at Amazon?
-Patricia from Fort Myers, Florida, listens to Kim's show on 92.5 FM WFSX

A. Thanks for the question, Patricia. This is a little confusing because there are two things going on here. Yes, Amazon does create a public profile for your account, and yes it has a "Your Social Settings" section in your account, but they're two different things. We'll cover both.

Amazon is a site to buy products, whether it's books, music, clothes or furniture. Of course, it's increasingly more than that. It has the streaming TV service Prime Video, which streams original content like "Transparent" and "Hand Of God," plus old TV shows and movies. You can also listen to Amazon's million-plus songs whenever you want, or listen to many of them by genre, as you would a radio station.

Amazon is not a typical social networking site like Facebook and Twitter. It isn't a place where people post photos or videos, share family vacation adventures, or even "Find Friends."

However, it did just launch a new feature dubbed Amazon Spark. It's reminiscent of the social networking apps Instagram or Pinterest. I'll give you details of Spark later in this article.

Let's begin by answering, why does Amazon have a "Your Social Settings" section in your account? And why is Amazon making a public profile for you?

Next page: Controlling Amazon's social connections
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