Monday, 13 April 2009

Amazon: giltch?

Slashdot reports that firestorm broke out on the internet yesterday when blogger Mark Probst noted that Amazon instituted an overnight policy that removes books that may be deemed offensive from their search system. He found that Amazon had deleted the sales ranking from two newly-released gay romance books as well as hundreds of other gay and lesbian themed books. Information Week tells how the story quickly became the hottest topic on Twitter and made its way to major online news outlets; by late evening the Associated Press was reporting that an Amazon spokesman said a "glitch" in the Amazon system had caused the problem and was being fixed. However, this does not jibe with the reply that Mr. Probst had received from Amazon: "In consideration of our entire customer base, we exclude "adult" material from appearing in some searches and best seller lists. Since these lists are generated using sales ranks, adult materials must also be excluded from that feature."

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