Sources: Amazon warehouses have TVs for public shaming

Amazon warehouse employees past and present paint a picture far from wholesome — they tell of long, hard, hot days spent running from one place to another, assembling orders at breakneck speeds for hours on end. While Amazon has previously fired back at these claims, there's no shortage of new ones being made, and the most recent is a spat of warehouse workers describing flatscreen TVs in warehouses that continuously threaten staff with termination.

The latest report comes from Bloomberg speaking on behalf of Amazon workers it interviewed. According to those sources, some Amazon fulfillment centers (that is, some of the warehouses in which the company stores inventory) have flatscreen TVs that continuously play threatening videos telling of Amazon employees who have been fired and arrested for alleged theft (in one case, a person was reportedly fired for eating someone else's lunch).

These videos, according to sources, show footage of alleged on-the-job employee theft. The individuals shown in the videos are covered by a black silhouette with the word "terminated" floating over them. Details on how the person was caught, what they stole, and more are also reportedly shown alongside the silhouette. In some cases, the silhouettes have a more threatening designation: "arrested."

Most of the thefts presented in the videos are minor, according to sources, including things like a lighter or a phone case, but some are larger and more valuable, such as a microwave or an iPad. If a warehouse doesn't have the flatscreen TVs, they may instead feature a good ol' bulletin board on which paper detailing fired workers are manually posted.

The videos are meant to 'remind' existing workers that theft isn't acceptable and will be punished, but many workers describe the screens' continuous presence as depressing or "offensive." One former Amazon warehouse worker, James McCracken, said to Bloomberg, "That's a weird way to go about scaring people."

While some say there's no problem with the anti-theft measure, others have criticized Amazon for the method, saying it makes an already burdensome job more difficult by, essentially, threatening employees with termination for something the company insinuates they may be plotting to do. It also tends to be counterproductive, according to at least one source, as workers pause during the day's work to watch the video and see who the newest round of offenders are.

SOURCE: Bloomberg