Amazon Fails Gay Readers And Writers, Reclassifies GLBTQ Books As “Adult”
“Amazon: Building Earthâ€™s Most Customer-Centric Companyâ€?
Shocking. As the news spread throughout the Internet yesterday, especially on social networking sites like Twitter, the anger and hostility rose quickly. It appears Amazon.com, “The world’s largest bookstore”, without notice has been removing LGBTQ publications from search results. At first it seemed reasonable to assume when the news broke that it was a computer glitch, or some over-zealous new employee who got a bit too rambunctious. But now, reports are coming in that the delisting has been going on since February. ViaÂ craigspoplife:
“Here’s my story: I’m the author of a memoir,Â All I Could Bare: My Life in the Strip Clubs of Gay Washington, D.C. (Atria/Simon & Schuster), which is about my journey from grad student to stripper to entertainment journalist to college professor. (I’m currently Associate Professor of Journalism at Northern Illinois University.) Like many authors, I frequently check my sales status on Amazon, so imagine my shock, back in early February when the “Amazon.com Sales Rank” completely disappeared from the Product Details of my book. The book also disappeared from the search listings, so that if a customer looked up “All I Could Bare by Craig Seymour” on the Amazon home page, nothing came up. Of course, I immediately sent emails to Amazon asking about this situation. I also placed several phone calls. But I could never get a straight answer, until February 25, when I received an email stating that “the sales rank was not displayed for the following reasons: The ISBN #1416542051 was classified as an Adult product.”Â “
Well-respected journalists and authors, among them Andrew Sullivan, have been affected:
“This has to be one of the weirdest and least defensible policy changes imaginable. Mein Kampf is fine. Jackie Collins is fine. But books about gay subjects are now “adult” on Amazon and soÂ not included on best seller lists or rankings. Sure enough, “Virtually Normal” and “Love Undetectable” have been de-listed and stripped of customer sales rankings. Jackie Collins’ “Married Lovers” hasn’t. My books contain discussions of Aquinas and Freud and Foucault and Burke. I’m puzzled as to why those authors are more “adult” than Collins’ adulterous couplings.”
Mark R. Probst writes:
“As I am a publisher and have an Amazon Advantage account through which I supply Amazon with my books, I had a special way to contact them. 24 hours later I had a response: 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. Hence, if you have further questions, kindly write back to us. Best regards, Ashlyn D Member Services Amazon.com Advantage”
Amazon’s insufficient response reportedly has been this, byÂ Patty Smith, Director of Amazon’s Corporate Communications:
“There was a glitch in our systems and it’s being fixed.”
But at 3:20 PM today, a search for “homosexuality” netted these results (see image here):
A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality by Joseph Nicolosi and Linda Ames Nicolosi Homosexuality (general topic fiction, non-fiction) You Don’t Have to Be Gay: Hope and Freedom for Males Struggling With Homosexuality or for Those Who Know of Someone Who Is by Jeff Konrad For The Bible Tells Me So ~ Gene Robinson, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Imogene Robinson
To be fair, Amnazon is a business. A very successful business. One wonders why they would, especially in these challenging times, attempt to limit access to products that, especially after events of the past few weeks, must be sufficiently lucrative to them. There don’t seem to be previous episodes of anti-LGBTQ attempts from Amazon. The question seems open, despite their claims of being a “glitch”? Why? If it was a glitch, why did it take them so long to realize it, especially since they were notified months ago? Personally, I’m in favor of giving them the benefit of the doubt, because any other explanation seems amazingly ridiculous from a business sense, and from an historical perspective.Â But they do get an “F” for how they’ve responded to this situation. A friend on Twitter forwarded me an email he received from Amazon, after requesting they close his account. Their response:
“Hello, Thanks for contacting us. We recently discovered a glitch in our systems and it’s being fixed. “Although I understand that you requested your account be closed, I sincerely hope that my efforts to correct this misunderstanding have been satisfactory. However, if you still wish to close your account, please visit the following link to submit your request…” “Best regards, Mohammed A. Amazon.com We’re Building Earth’s Most Customer-Centric Company”
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‘Indictment Anytime’: Experts Explain Significance of Trump’s Attorneys Meeting With DOJ – Warn Plea Deal Possible
Legal experts responding to news Donald Trump‘s legal team Monday morning walked into the U.S. Dept. of Justice agree it likely means Special Counsel Jack Smith is nearing a charging decision, but warn it could also mean the ex-president, under criminal investigation for unlawful handling of classified documents, among other possibly unlawful acts, might be offered a plea deal to avoid serving time in prison.
Trump’s attorneys being at DOJ “suggests indictment anytime. This would be the last step, and if neither side offers something worth thinking about, then DOJ would pull the trigger,” says former Dept. of Justice official Harry Litman.
“Plenty of possible angles they might choose to play including guilty plea for noncustodial sentence,” he adds, referring to any possible plea bargain with no sentence behind bars. “But unless Trump side leaks, discussions will stay confidential.”
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CBS News’ Robert Costa and Rob Legare broke the news that Trump’s attorneys had gone into DOJ. Responding to that, former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance offers up a few possible scenarios.
“The smart move here for Trump is a guilty plea to a misdemeanor if DOJ will offer one & a felony with no jail time if they won’t,” she says, pointing to her Substack newsletter where she discussed this very subject Sunday night.
“For those who dislike these possible outcomes (I would number myself in that group), it’s nonetheless important to understand the prior precedent that will shape DOJ’s charging decisions & any plea offers in this matter. This is Trump’s best possible outcome, not the country’s,” says Vance.
READ MORE: Classified Pentagon ‘War Plans’ Document Trump Bragged About in Audio Recording Is Missing: Report
She adds, “Trump seems incapable of saying he’s done anything wrong. To plead, he’d have to say under oath in open court that he was guilty. It’ll be interesting to see if he can do that, or would rather run the risk of being convicted of felonies that carry up to 20 years in custody.”
“Good sign,” says former federal prosecutor of 30 years, Glenn Kirschner, observing, “if Jack Smith had decided against charging Trump, there would be no need for this meeting. The last federal prosecutors often do before indicting is meet with the target’s defense team & give them an opportunity to present any evidence or arguments they want to offer.”
Dave Aronberg, Palm Beach County, Florida state’s attorney on MSNBC Monday morning said he believes Trump will be indicted this week.
Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license
Trump’s Attorneys Just Walked Into DOJ – Special Counsel Expected to Reach Charging Decision Soon: Report
Attorneys for Donald Trump Monday morning entered the U.S. Dept. of Justice, as expectations grow the ex-president could soon be charged in his unlawful removal, retention, and refusal to return hundreds of classified and top secret documents.
CBS News chief election and campaign correspondent Robert Costa reports sources say Special Counsel Jack Smith its expected to reach a decision on charging Trump in the case soon.
“Trump’s lawyers just spotted by @CBSNews entering the Justice Department, per @RobLegare who is on site,” Costa tweeted at 10:09 AM ET. He says that “comes as sources tell me the special counsel is moving toward a charging decision in the classified documents case.”
Citing sources, Costa adds, “Trump’s lawyers are expected to raise concerns about how prosecutors have handled atty-client questions during the grand jury but there is no sign the special counsel is going to waver from how he and his team have handled the crime-fraud exception…”
READ MORE: Former DOJ Official Says Audio of Trump Admitting to Keeping ‘War Plans’ Makes it ‘Inconceivable’ He Will Not Be Charged
Trump’s attorneys being at DOJ is a possible sign the Special Counsel could be close to asking a grand jury to bring charges against the one-term, twice impeached ex-president who is currently facing 34 felonies in an unrelated New York case.
“Often defense attorneys are given the opportunity to ‘pitch’ the DOJ before a charging decision is made,” former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti notes. “Trump’s team visiting DOJ likely means that we won’t see charges in the next few days—as their pitch is considered—but could potentially see charges in the next 5 to 15 days.”
The Special Counsel’s grand jury is reportedly reconvening this week.
Legal experts and Trump watchers have been expecting the ex-president to be charged as soon as this week, after CNN reported Special Counsel Jack Smith had an audio recording of Trump admitting to holding on to a classified document, described by some as “war plans” against Iran. In that audio Trump reportedly also said he knew the document was classified, and said he wished he could share it, which destroys multiple claims he has made in his defense of retaining the documents.
That document is still missing, and the Pentagon appears greatly concerned about the document.
On Sunday night Trump lashed out at Smith, calling him, the DOJ, and the FBI all “Marxist,” and described the investigation into his possibly illegal handling of classified documents as the “boxes hoax.”
This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change.
Right-Wingers’ Latest Chick-fil-A Meltdown Proves They Have ‘Officially Jumped the Shark’: Morning Joe Panel
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough and Donny Deutsch mocked conservatives for running the “woke” hysteria into the ground.
Ron DeSantis and other Republicans have screeched about the so-called “woke agenda,” which they warn will undermine American values and put children at risk from all manner of threats, but the “Morning Joe” host said most voters simply don’t care about that manufactured issue.
“Joe Biden, 350 pieces of bipartisan legislation signed, and Ron DeSantis and everybody else is talking ‘woke, woke, woke, woke, woke,'” Scarborough said. “Again, something that I said on this show and I heard a lot about from liberals, even, in 2021. You’re not hearing it, again, in part because there have been some corrections. You have the head of Berkley Law School, Yale Law School, Stanford Law School going, ‘Hold on, hold on, we’re not going to let these woke mobs get in the way of free speech.’ They’re saying it at the most elite law schools in America, so common-sense Americans are going, ‘Okay, there may still be a problem, but they’re working on it,’ and yet these Republicans are all acting like it’s 2019, 2020 and they just keep freaking out. Well, Joe Biden is talking about job training and signing bipartisan bills.”
Conservatives have turned against Chick-fil-A for hiring a vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion — which actually happened over a year ago but largely escaped notice until recently — and Deutsche said that was a nadir for “woke” hysteria.
READ MORE: ‘Cowards’: Soledad O’Brien rips former CNN colleagues for silence as Chris Licht wrecks the network
“The ‘woke’ movement officially jumped the shark,” he said. “Joe, you touched on this earlier with the Chick-fil-A move. Right-wing company, I don’t say that negatively, very family values, closed on Sundays, the head of the — [company chairman] Dan Cathy came out against same-sex marriages. They’re very conservative. Now, all of a sudden — you’re right, very conservative, obviously a great company, and they came under fire they have a DEI initiative, diversity, coming under fire from right-wing groups. That’s the official moment that ‘woke’ officially jumped the shark and put Fonzie on skis in Honolulu.”
Image by Hector Alejandro via Flickr and a CC license
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