Amazon Boots Minnesota Associates

Amazon AssociatesAmazon announced an update to their associates operating agreement this week, effective July 1st, 2013.  While the changes may seem dull in and of itself, there are a few key impacts to some passive income seekers.  The highlights include:

  • A redefinition of what “Your Site” actually refers to
  • Residents of Minnesota are no longer allowed to be associates
  • Referring customers to Amazon Prime Instant Video Registration is now worth $2
  • New wording on using Amazon links on sites that aren’t designed for the type of device (ie. mobile) that they are being used on

The change that stands out in this is the exclusion of Minnesotans from being allowed to participate in the affiliate program.  They now join the residents of Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, North Carolina and Rhode Island in being banned and none too happy about it.

The reason for the shift in policy seems to stem from Gov. Mark Dayton signing a law that requires certain online businesses with a physical presence to charge sales tax.  Amazon has called this legislation unconstitutional, leading to their most recent moves.

Is Amazon overreacting or do they have a point in this government vs. big business showdown?