After years of saying that it was not going to censor books, online eTailer Amazon has starting purging its Kindle store of titles.
Ars Technica said that the outfit removed an "incest-themed erotica" novel from its store. While this is “niche market” stuff it is an unusual move from Amazon which recently defended the sale of Pedophile’s Guide to Love and Pleasure.
At the time it said that it believed it is censorship not to sell certain books simply because we or others believe their message is objectionable. “Amazon does not support or promote hatred or criminal acts, however, we do support the right of every individual to make their own purchasing decisions.” It swiftly changed its mind about the Pedophile’s Guide, removing the book without comment. But it seems to have caught the censorship bug.
Self-published author Selena Kitt, who wrote a novel that addresses the theme of “incest-themed erotica”, has been deleted along with several other authors that write on the same topic. Writing in her bog, Kitt said that while the subject of incest may not appeal to some, there is no underage contact in any of her work, and she make that either explicitly clear in all my stories or she states it up front in the book’s disclaimer.
She said that she did not condone or support actual incest, just as someone who writes mysteries about serial killers wouldn’t condone killing. What is worse is that Amazon has been deleting these books from Kindles remotely. So those who have paid for it will lose their content.
Amazon told Ars that this was a technical glitch and those books are now available to be downloaded if already purchased prior to their ban from the Kindle store. All this is a reprice from the time that Amazon, without a trace of irony, deleted copies of 1984 from Kindles without the end users permission. As a result of that fiasco, Amazon promised only delete books from a Kindle for the following reasons: failed credit card transactions, judicial orders, malware, or the permission of the user.