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The protest of the Amazon workers is on Tiktok

If the power of Employer Branding is in the hands of employees

The protest of the Amazon workers is on Tiktok If the power of Employer Branding is in the hands of employees

If for you too TikTok is a social platform made up of ballets and short comedy videos, you are not so far from reality, but you have probably not fully explored your For You section. For some time now, on what was once, workers have found a voice ready to share their experiences with the rest of the community. There are those who complain about their boss and their colleagues or those who tell about their experiences in large companies, opening in one way or another an indiscreet eye on the world of work but above all risking, as has happened in many cases, the dismissal. The American employees of Amazon also found space in this vast and varied world, only geographically distant from those of our country because they share the same problems. Only a few months ago, Amazon itself was forced to admit that many of its employees were sometimes forced to use plastic bottles instead of a normal bathroom to avoid wasting time in deliveries, giving substance to what until recently it just seemed like an urban legend seen in a Ken Loach movie.

Despite not having a specific name, the “TikTok of Amazon” has transformed in a few months into a crude showcase on the working conditions of employees, between exhausting shifts in mega warehouses and endless rounds for deliveries. There are those who tell it in an ironic way like, a courier who “prays” Jeff Bezos for a bathroom break, but also those who have decided to do it by risking their job. This is the case of @amazonassiciate1, an employee of the company in charge of packaging who in his TikTok tells the inhuman rhythms imposed by the company, filming himself during working hours while preparing hundreds of orders from his station, constantly accompanied by a voice coming from the loudspeakers which reminds employees to be fast and efficient. Given the exponential growth of his profile, I decided to contact @ amazonassiciate1 to understand the reasons behind his TikToks, but above all to look for a further insight into a working world that we all know all too well. After the pleasantries, @amazonassiciate1 immediately asked me to be able to remain anonymous for security reasons, explaining in our brief exchange of messages that he had opened his account and started publishing TikTok from his workstation about a year does. A brief exchange, because less than twenty-four hours after our first exchanges @amazonassiciate1 informed me that he was in trouble with Amazon, thus deleting all the videos uploaded to his profile and then denying himself to my new messages. Despite the brevity of our exchange, what happened perfectly describes an environment in which those who want to try to tell the interminable shifts and inhuman work rhythms in person risk being discounted against the very tight company meshes that want to filter any type of information that comes out of the offices.

While the Amazon workers have found support in many other users of the platform, on the other hand the company of the new CEO Andy Jassy seems to have decided to reciprocate the attacks with the same coin. In fact, it is not difficult to find videos of employees on TikTok who talk about their experience within the company in very different tones, almost opposite to those we have talked about. Testimonies that in addition to being discounted with the many stories that have emerged over the years are intertwined with the policy adopted by many companies, ready to encourage their employees to talk about their workplace online, as long as they do so in a positive way. McDonald's is one of these and it is not uncommon to find on social networks, TikTok but also Instagram, videos of employees from all over the world ready to show us the making of a Crispy McBacon, to be prepared strictly with gloves, or to tell us about the gifts that the company reserves him. If for many companies, Employer Branding seems to have become an essential resource for increasing their reputation, what happens when this is reversed? If the backstage that has always been passed under the scrutiny of brands becomes unfiltered, it can turn into a double-edged sword, giving life to a "TikTok truth" from which it is difficult to understand who could be the winner.