You might want to check and perhaps unplug your USB cable before reading this article because, according to a recent story by CNN, many products from one of Amazon's private labels, AmazonBasics, are liable to flame broil your face off.
We can't say for sure how many of these gadgets from AmazonBasics are likely to set off an unintentional fireworks display in your hall closet, but considering there are 1,500 reviews in which "consumers explicitly called out items as potentially dangerous -- using terms such as 'hazard' or 'fire' or saying the product should be recalled," it already feels like too many. Even worse, per CNN's reporting, "around 30 items with three or more reviews like this remain for sale on Amazon.com today."
It seems like the oft-used tech phrase "halt and catch fire" could very well be literal this time around, but the situation reminds more of another TV reference, and that's to a fan-favorite episode of The Office. In the episode "The Cover-Up," Andy gets a call from a client reporting that one of their printers caught fire from basic use. Andy brings this to corporate's attention, who immediately shrug him off, claiming the faulty printer is an anomaly, before trying to buy Andy's discretion with a $5 gift card. But Andy remains suspicious and then tests another printer only to find that it is indeed an exploding piece of shit. Here's the whole plotline in full:
The only difference here is that while that printer sparked and smoked a bit, the AmazonBasics products seem to be much worse. For example, one man described his surge protector as turning into a "blowtorch," which is scary as hell but is also incredibly frustrating. I mean, that's the surge protector's one job! Protect us from the surge! Don't turn the wall into a glory hole for Satan's dick!
We can only hope that there was some love-able goof, possibly from Cornell, within the Amazon corporation who tried to flag down these products as 1st degree burns waiting to happen. But even so, if Bezos runs Amazon like Jo Bennet runs the fictional Sabre, then the best-case scenario from this situation is that some lucky employee scored themself a $5 gift card.
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Top Image: NBC/ Wiki Commons