A Bevy of Books May Go Bye-Bye: Amazon Institutes a Moratorium on 'Hate Speech' for Written Works

Orlin Wagner

Do you know what “hate speech” is?

The definition seems a mite vague.

A long time ago, the phrase would’ve denoted someone using the word “hate” in a sentence.

Example: I hate vague definitions.

But these days, vague is in vogue.

Not in vogue: hate speech.

Speaking of, Just the News reports mail-order mammoth Amazon has updated an internal rule.

Allegedly, as for its policy against selling items which contain or promote hate speech, the commercial colossus previously provided an exemption for periodicals and books.

No more.

As noted by The Daily Wire, such change attracted attention when author Ryan T. Anderson’s book on transgenderism disappeared from the site. Suddenly, it was offered neither by Amazon nor third-party vendors.

The item at issue: When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Movement.

The unwoke work’s no longer available in physical form, as a Kindle book, or in audiobook format.

The Wire quotes Amazon’s new book policy: “We don’t sell certain content including content that we determine is hate speech.”

Will the subjective notion of hate speech be equally applied, regardless of politics?

From The Washington Free Beacon

The policy could seemingly be invoked to bar sales of a wide variety of books previously deemed permissible on the platform. Amazon sells between 50 and 80 percent of all physical books in the United States.

How does the site comb through material?

By “a combination of machine learning, automation, and dedicated teams of human reviewers. We’ll remove content that does not adhere to these guidelines and promptly investigate any book when notified of potential noncompliance. If we remove a title, we let the author, publisher, or selling partner know and they can appeal our decision.”

Author Ryan doesn’t believe he was hateful:

Anderson said he repeatedly defends the human dignity of people who think they are transgender in the book and pointed to passages such as, “First and foremost, as we advocate for the truth, we must be careful not to stigmatize those who are suffering.”

Both the author and the publisher Encounter Books claimed they had not been contacted by Amazon, and that repeated requests for an explanation had gone unanswered. Anderson said he only found out the book had been removed when a prospective buyer alerted him.

As America awokens to policing products, I predict books will take an increasingly significant hit.

Such a thing occurred on a much smaller scale last week, as a socially-conscious library worker took home conservative writings and lit them on fire — while broadcasting the ignition to Instagram.

Speaking of, that’s just how Sen. Marco Rubio characterized Amazon’s edict:

“American oligarchs,cheered on by leftist politicians,are conducting digital book burnings. @Amazon banned a thoughtful & well-researched book on a complicated issue. We reached out Amazon yesterday for an explanation. So far, they feel no need to respond.”

Prepare for more of the same.

And here’s a bit of poetry, in case you forgot: Amazon started as an online book dealer.

-ALEX

 

See more pieces from me:

You Won’t Believe How Much Money Black Lives Matter Received Last Year

Progress Clobbers the Confederacy, 160-0: That’s How Many Statues and Symbols Bit Last Year’s Dust

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Find all my RedState work here.

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