Shameless PR? Amazon boss Jeff Bezos slammed for ‘inconsequential’ donation amid Australia bushfires

Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos (Photo: YourStory.com)

Scores of social media users are expressing their disappointment at an announcement from Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos, who on Sunday said he would be donating US $690,000 to the relief efforts in fire-ravaged Australia.

Bezos, in an Instagram post on Sunday, pledged one million Australian dollars (US$690,000) on behalf of the tech giant and like a knee-jerk reaction, several Twitter users ripped the donation as nothing more than a publicity stunt, in comparison to what Amazon could actually be capable of doing.

“Our hearts go out to all Australians as they cope with these devastating bushfires,” Bezos said, adding, “Amazon is donating 1 million AU dollars in needed provisions and services.”

A drop from the ocean to quench the desert, do you see how this looks and why people are incensed by the donation?

The donation, though well-intentioned, faced immediate backlash in comparison to Bezos’ net worth, which Forbes estimates at US$116.7 billion.

What’s more, a 2019 Business Insider article posited that on average Bezos earned almost US$9 million an hour in 2018.

In the eyes (and mouths) of Twitter users, even as a sign of goodwill, Sunday’s announcement was a slap in the face to the devastated Australian outback – still reeling from the effects of months of continuous wildfires.

Amazon’s pledge to control the deadly bush fires was also compared to other high-profile contributions, as social media users pointed out that a string of celebrities, with far less personal or disposable wealth than Bezos, donated more out of their own pockets.