Can You Believe What Amazon Just Did? It Quietly Ends Sales of Books it Labels ‘Hate Speech’

Retail giant Amazon quietly made a policy change before purging from its store “When Harry Became Sally,” a book criticizing transgender ideology.

Amazon recently removed from its digital shelves a book critical of transgender ideology, and quietly changed its content policy to explicitly forbid books that promote “hate speech.”

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This is a huge rule change that could be used to rationalize action against numerous books the digital retail giant sells.

The boom in question is “When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Movement”, and without any explanation, Amazon removed it from its main web store, its Kindle servers, and its audiobook lineup.

The book has been available on the site for three years with no apparent controversy.

The 2018 book, by author and political philosopher Ryan Anderson, uses years of scientific research and data to criticize the prevailing approach to transgender issues in modern medicine.

According to the sales blurb, the book “exposes the contrast between the media’s sunny depiction of gender fluidity and the often sad reality of living with gender dysphoria.”

Anderson admitted he had received no explanation for the ban.

Amazon also refused to provide any explanation, and just offered a link to its book content policy instead.

A review of the policies indicates that Amazon has quietly made a dramatic change in the last few months, and it had altered book content on its servers, imposing a much stricter standard on books than it had previously done.

The link provided by Amazon this week claims in part that the company “[doesn’t] sell certain content including content that we determine is hate speech … or other material we deem inappropriate or offensive.”

Yet, as recently as August of last year, its book content policy did not include any mention of “hate speech.” At that time, Amazon stated only that “we reserve the right not to sell certain content, such as pornography or other inappropriate content.”

On the older page, the company directed users to “guidelines for other categories of products,” like products featuring “offensive and controversial material.”

That policy suggested that Amazon “does not allow products that promote, incite or glorify hatred,” but the rule explicitly noted that the policy did not apply to books.

Moreover, the author of the book, Anderson, explained that the company did not notify him that his book had been removed.

He said:

“I only found out because people trying to buy it told me it was gone.”

As of Tuesday, he said that he and his publisher had received no response from Amazon.

Anderson admitted that the book “advances an argument from a certain viewpoint,” but he stated that it “didn’t get any facts wrong, and it didn’t engage in any name-calling.”

He added that the book upon its publication received widespread praise from credentialed experts, including “the former psychiatrist-in-chief at Johns Hopkins Hospital, a longtime psychology professor at NYU, a professor of medical ethics at Columbia Medical School, a professor of psychological and brain sciences at Boston University, [and] a professor of neurobiology at the University of Utah.”

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