Amazon wish list mysteries

I checked my Amazon wish list the other day and discovered that lots of items have been purchased but I haven't received them. Have they been sent to me? Or have people ordered items for themselves off my wish list? Who knows?

While I love the wish list feature, I wish it worked better. Whenever an item is ordered from my wish list, whether it's sent to me or to someone else, it's flagged as purchased, meaning that to future list browsers it looks like I've already received it. But in some cases, I haven't. So I have to delete the item from my wish list and add it again so that it won't appear purchased.

Problem #2 is Amazon's privacy policy, which is so strict that I cannot get any information about these purchases, not even vague info like, "did the items get shipped to any of the addresses associated with my account?" So now I don't know if a) someone sent me something that never arrived, or b) bought something for his/herself off my list. While I understand the need for a stern policy, it seems a bit extreme.

I would like to see Amazon re-evaluate the wish list feature (and privacy policy) with some additional scenarios:

  • An item is bought from my wish list but not shipped to any of my wish list addresses
  • An item is purchased by a "stranger" for another "stranger"

In the first instance, it would be nice if the item didn't get flagged as purchased. The "stranger" instance is trickier. It appears that Amazon assumes a certain level of communication between giver and receiver, so that if a gift is sent but not acknowledged, the giver will be alerted that something is amiss and can rectify the situation. But in the 21st century gift economy/weblog world, that's not always the situation. Someone who I don't know could very well send me something. I, not knowing to expect a gift, do nothing when I don't receive it. The giver, hearing nothing from me in response (either through email or via a message on my site), assumes I'm a total ingrate jerk face, turns bitter, and stops reading my site. But I'm not an ingrate jerk face! I don't want to be an ingrate jerk face!

So to get to the bottom of this mystery the only way I know how, here's a list of the MIA wish list items:

If you bought any of the following items for me (and it wasn't really recent as a Christmas present that maybe just hasn't arrived), could you please contact Amazon and tell them the package never arrived? And let me know as well. Thanks.