A 2013 Amazon recruiting video, first noticed by the Stranger, has gone viral. The video which shows current Amazon employees pitching Seattle as a sunny, easy-going city which isn’t too weird or punk rock (despite its grungy past), a place with no traffic and no homeless, that is just quirky enough to have not one, but two, circus classes. (Also, according the Amazon workers, “the rain is overplayed.”)
One employee claims that “everyone does Crossfit” and another extols the virtues of all the outdoorsy activities. And yet another offers the tone-deaf observation that “housing is great, it’s not very expensive, it’s very affordable.” (In fact, housing costs have notoriously skyrocketed.)
The video was ripe for satire. Two videos have since surfaced in response.
Local rapper Spekulation (Matt “Spek” Watson) took the video itself and overlaid it with voice-overs containing mocking responses to the original. In this version, the utopia laid out in Amazon’s video is transformed into a “beautiful place that’s been thoroughly destroyed by corporate corruption and poor urban planning.” Another girl says, “I really like the neighborhoods of Seattle and how we’ve been able to keep poor people segregated from the rest of us.”
Even better, though, was Sub Pop’s all-original take, complete with gray skies, homeless people and the Seattle Freeze. The hometown record label riffs on:
- The rain: “It’s been noticeably drier and warmer every year. It’s like Mother Nature can’t make up her mind. Women, right?”
- The outdoorsy claims: “Between my condo and the office, I can be outdoors — two to three times a day”
- The diversity claims: “There are people from all walks of life — web designers, data administrators, your application developers.”
But the best riposte? “Housing is plentiful and affordable. There are a ton of great places to live,” says one Sub Pop employee, pausing, “in Burien.”
For more on the growth and gentrification of Seattle:
- Cultures clash as gentrification engulfs Capitol Hill
- Lifestyle trumps affordability in central Seattle, even for some budget-stretchers
- Census shows Seattle has lowest percentage of struggling renters
- Explore this: How fast is your neighborhood densifying?