Pedophilia Guide Sold On Amazon Stirs Outrage

Amazon.com Inc. is selling a self-published guide that offers advice to pedophiles, generating threats to boycott the retailer.

The availability of The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure: a Child-lover's Code of Conduct calls into question whether Amazon has any procedures — or even an obligation — to vet books before they are sold in its online stores. Amazon did not respond to multiple e-mails and phone messages.

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Censorship?

Should people be able to write books about doing illegal acts?

What about civil disobedience? Should people in the 50's have been able to write about how blacks could protest by sitting at lunch counters?

Clearly there is a major distinction between pedophilia and the civil rights movement but how do we make that distinction in regards to censoring writing?

I would think there are times that people should be allowed to write about illegal acts. Clearly pedophilia is a issue that sorely test this rule because of the heinous nature of the activity.

What laws should you be able to write about breaking and still have the protection of the 1st amendment?

Not Censorship

I feel this is almost too basic to post, but Amazon's decision to not sell the book is not censorship.

Basic?

What is so basic about it? Is Amazon not a censor because they are not a government body? The definition of censorship is broader than the times that a government body is involved.

Do you think Amazon is capable of censorship? Is there any scenario where when Amazon does not offer a book for sale they are censoring?

I agree with them censoring this book but it is censorship all the same.

Dictionary definition of censor - to examine in order to suppress or delete anything considered objectionable

Amazon suppressed an objectionable item. Hence censorship.

A Censor

Amazon is capable of many things, but one thing they are not capable of is suppressing speech--anywhere but on their own site. The argument you seem to be making is that Amazon, a corporation, has a societal obligation to promote and distribute any idea of any author without restriction. I don't believe they have this obligation.

Let's not forget that they are nothing more than a capitalistic corporation. They sell what will provide a profit, and they hope to avoid controversies that will lower that profit. Wal-mart (to cite but one example) regularly refuses to stock CDs with objectionable content. This seems to be begrudgingly accepted as their corporate prerogative. Should amazon be treated differently? Why hold them to a higher standard than other corporations?

Amazon has removed book

I saw on the news this morning that Amazon has removed the book from their site.

Link to article about removal

Amazon caves in and removes pedophilia book from website

It appears Amazon pulled an electronic book on pedophilia off their website early Thursday morning after the company was threatened by a boycott.

Early Thursday morning a listing and description of the book were no longer available on Amazon.com.

Full story

Any collection development

Any collection development policy has to include "censorship."

Amazon (as does any library) needs to follow its mission in determining what books should be made available. The mission is, in a sense, censorship - but it keeps the organization focused.

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