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  Fifty Shades of Censorship...

Amazon hides away erotic books in its latest search algorithm


Link Here 30th March 2018
Off Limits Amazon has changed its search algorit to prevent erotic books from surfacing Unless a user searches for erotic novels.

Amazon is trying to make its vast website a bit less NSFW. The internet giant made some sudden changes to the way that erotic novels surface in its search results. As a result of the update, erotic novels have been filtered out of the results for main categories and many of their best-selling titles have been relegated into nowhere land.

The move has angered many erotica authors who say it could lead to a massive dent in revenue.

When a book has been labeled a best-seller, eg Fifty Shades of Grey, it might make the title more likely to appear at the top of search results.

Amazon has yet to issue a statement on the changes to its search results. However, one author said it received a notice from Amazon via email following inquiry. It said:

We've re-reviewed your book and confirmed that it contains erotic or sexually explicit content.

We have found that when books are placed in the correct category it increases visibility to customers who are seeking that content.

In addition, we are working on improvements to our store to further improve our search experience for customers.

It is not yet clear whether the search algorithms have been changed as part of US internet censorship requirements recently passed in the FOSTA that nominally required censorship of content related to sex trafficking but in fact impacts a much wider range of adult content.

 

  Banning books...

Campaign group attacks major book sellers for carrying books with an element of holocaust denial


Link Here 24th March 2018
Here's a thought for the 'progressive' politically correct left. Perhaps it was their tactic of yelling 'racist' at anyone who dares criticise immigration, that caused Brexit. The left's censorship effectively pushed commonly held views on immigration under the carpet. Now if these views had been allowed to be aired, then perhaps David Cameron would have realised that the referendum was not such a good idea, and not called it in the first place.

Perhaps censors everywhere should be reminded that censorship may block the airing of views but it doesn't stop people from holding those views.

hope not hate logoThe New Statesmen is reporting about a campaign group called Hope Not Hate, that seems to hate free speech.

The group has spent a couple of weeks seeking out examples of texts denying the Holocaust sold on the Waterstones, Foyles, WHSmith and Amazon websites. The group has published its findings in a paper called Turning the Page on Hate , and is urging the retailers to remove these texts, which range from what are deemed dangerous to Holocaust denials to far right books.

Since the campaign began, Foyles appears to have removed numerous works from its website. However, its chief executive Paul Currie said:

This is a difficult scenario for all booksellers given the width and scale of publishing and the perennial issue of censoring from all aspects of life what people can read.

WHSmith also appears to have removed some books from its website since the campaign launched.

At the time of writing, Waterstones retains the works Hope Not Hate listed. Waterstones' owner James Daunt told Hope Not Hate, What should we censor? he asked rhetorically, refusing to remove the titles:

It is not our position to censor this listing beyond the existing measures we take to exclude self-published books that may potentially be offensive.

Index on Censorship's chief executive Jodie Ginsberg. Encouraging bookshops not to stock certain content because it's considered hateful I think is problematic, she explains:

When you're suggesting [the removal of books from] some of the largest bookshops in the country, which are the ones most people can access, then you are limiting people's access to information... Anything that limits people's ability to find out information is a threat to freedom of expression.

 

  Censorship blows...

A Spanish book sellers association protests about a court ban on a book pending a libel case


Link Here 18th March 2018
Fariña A book about Spain's drug-smuggling underworld was banned last week by a Madrid courta. José Alfredo Bea Gondar, a former mayor of the coastal town of O Grove in Galicia, to freeze distribution of Fariña (Blow) by Nacho Carretero Pou because of references to his alleged involvement in the unloading of a shipment of cocaine and a supposed negotiation between Colombia's Cali cartel and local smugglers. The book is banned pending the hearing of libel case. 

Kicking against what they consider outdated censorship, a booksellers' association has reacted to the seizure of the non-fiction book 'Fariña' by launching a website to replicate it word for word. The website includes a digital tool that searches for and locates the 80,000 words that make up the banned book from within the text of Don Quixote , extracting them one by one to recompose the banned book. On Friday after two days online, the website had racked up over 30,000 hits, according to the Booksellers Guild of Madrid. Fernando Valverde, the Guild secretary explained;

It's a metaphor for the fact that in the digital era you can seize a book, but you cannot gag words.

It is not clear whether the ruse is a legal way for people to read it.

 

 Offsite Article: Politically correct censorship is damaging fiction...


Link Here 23rd February 2018
Big Brother I've plenty of recent experience of using non-white characters in my novels, only to have them singled out and scrutinised for thought crime. By Lionel Shriver

See article from theguardian.com

 

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