Due to a global resource shortage, Santa and Bezos are considering employing naughty kids in coal mines.
Photo by Maria Dhilla
This holiday season, former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has teamed up with North Pole CEO Santa Claus to optimize Santa’s “naughty-and-nice” list and distribution pipeline with data, drones, and delivery vans.
Claus, the executive behind the long-running tradition of distributing gifts to well-behaved children, welcomes the change and has high hopes for the future of Christmas: “Sure, the sleigh-and-reindeer image is a charming and nostalgic sight for many, but the truth is, I’ve needed help funding this enterprise for decades. Coca-Cola gave us a much needed stimulus, but you can only get so far on an informant network of Elves-on-the-Shelf and tattletales. Mr. Bezos has done me the service of modernizing this holiday for the 21st century. Now, with the naughty-and-nice algorithm, you can kiss the elves’ clerical errors goodbye. Based on kids’ internet browsing, purchases, and report card histories, we can finally decide at a glance who is objectively good, and send every child the gift they truly deserve.” Claus paused for a moment. “And,” he added, with his trademark jolly wink, “you know the Child Goodness Score is always right, because it’s done by a machine.”
Yet, not all is calm this silent night — many across the globe have decried the Amazon/North Pole deal as “unethical, disturbing, and bluntly dystopian.” Lorna Keol, a representative for Anti-Corporatocracy United, said in a press statement, “The extralegal presence of Amazon DoGooder© Units maintaining 24/7 surveillance of the world’s children has concerned government agencies. Furthermore, the supposedly foolproof ‘Child Goodness Score’ algorithm has shown worrying biases toward children of specific races and income levels.”
According to Michelle Fuko, a middle-schooler at Horace P. Legmann’s Academy for Gifted Youth, the latest actions of Santa Claus “constitute the final transformation of a global surveillance society.” Having long tracked the movements and practices of Father Christmas from her Fisher-Price Office, Fuko projects that the worst is yet to come. “Nobody’s getting presents this year,” claimed Fuko. “What child on this planet can act good all the time? The whole point before was to hide our collective and inevitable faults the best we could: stashing our stolen candy, smiling for family photos, and tabbing out of let’s play videos or coolmathgames.com when the teacher came around. But now, our keystrokes are logged and our childlike goofs are recorded. They know when we’re sleeping, for Christmas’ sake! Yes, maybe we can stay good enough to earn a Nerf rifle, but what’s the point if we can’t shoot our little brothers with it? It’s the dilemma that’s affecting playgrounds everywhere, and I fear one we may never solve.”
When asked for comment, Bezos cryptically hinted that the SANTOPTICON project is slated to go into “full effect” by next month, coinciding with the construction of the True North Pole, a surveillance and transmission tower of unprecedented size that’s sure to “teach the world the true meaning of Christmas.”