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So in case you didn't know, there's a big ol' hubbub going on regarding Amazon's apparent policy of not listing gay/lesbian literature in sales rankings because they're "adult". While Playboy centrefold books remain listed for all to see. Naked ladies? Yes! Same sex love, even if it doesn't contain explicit scenes? No!

Which is a very good reason to get angry. I sure as shit know I was angry. However, after following a link on the community [ profile] meta_writer, which has some very good info on this sort of thing, it seems it might not be so clear cut. From a post at the journal of Mark R. Probst:

“A glitch had occurred in its sales ranking system” Is that the truth? Oh, you betcha. Though the glitch was most likely human error in that while attempting to find a lazy way to conform to the “old” policy of not ranking adult material, a horrible miscalculation was made and many not-so-adult books fell into the trap.

So my guess is, yes Amazon has a policy in place not to display the sales rankings of adult material, but no, they never intended for gay and lesbian material, per se, to be classified as “adult.” It’s a major faux-pas which I’m sure they mean to correct.

Benefit of the doubt time? We shall see. I can't believe a company as big as Amazon could be quite so completely dunderheaded. Then again I am quite naive... EVIL, yes, but THAT STUPID? Ugh.

If it turns out that, no, they really are that stupid, I'll be the first to take my business elsewhere. Going to be an interesting story to follow, though.

EDIT:: the big question I have now is - if a boycott is in order, where do you go instead to buy books in the UK that won't cost the earth? I use amazon at least once a week. Yikes.

FURTHER EDIT:: But then there's this: How the filtering works. Which makes it look as bad as we're all thinking.

I have no idea what to think, really.

FINAL EDIT HONEST:: Okay, yeah, I am naive. Maybe Amazon really is that dumb. Looking around the internet, it certainly seems that it's one hell of a weird glitch to have. Am just reluctant to scream that AMAZON ARE GAYHATING BASTARDS!!1 when there might genuinely be a technical fuck-up.

On the other hand, they might indeed be gayhating bastards.

Judgement withheld, still, but gravitating now towards "dubious" and "fuck off, amazon."


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Kerrie Sakura

July 2010

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