Amazon Goes Straight recently started tagging gay-themed books as “adult,” meaning they’re removed from sales rankings and don’t show up in general searches. (Conical hat tip to Neil Gaiman.)

According to Amazon management, it was a glitch.

According to Amazon employees, it wasn’t a glitch.

At times like these it’s worth remembering that there are other places to buy books online besides Amazon ….

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10 Responses to Amazon Goes Straight

  1. Andrew April 14, 2009 at 3:32 pm #

    Being different is inappropriate.

  2. Roderick April 14, 2009 at 11:05 pm #

    Latest updates on the Amazon situation here and here (conical hat tip once again to Neil Gaiman).

  3. Anon73 April 15, 2009 at 12:16 am #

    I hate to rain on your parade, but if we assume that books featuring sexuality are “adult”, and it is the case that many books that are “about gays” will feature sexuality, it follows that many books that are “about gays” are adult, and so the mistagging doesn’t seem like a big deal. Do you disagree, and if so why?

    • Roderick April 15, 2009 at 2:08 am #

      The objection is not to the tagging but to the results of the tagging.

  4. Tony Hollick April 15, 2009 at 4:15 am #

    I never thought that I’d see the day when I’d defend the IEA again (after the evenements of ’82-’83), but here we are…

    Posting to SAMIZDATA bears an uncanny resemblance to posting to IZVESTIYA or PRAVDA in the days of the USSR. Gross censorship is the norm, unless you slyly insert a piece which seems to agree with the prejudices of SAMIZDATA’s Ruling Clique, with a subtle addition of something substantial.

    As they used to say back in the USSR: “There is no news in Izvestiya, and no truth in Pravda.” There is seldom anything remotely critical of the smelly little orthodoxies of SAMIZDATA’s lords and masters. A perfect example of Chomsky’s assertion, that a wholly “Capitalist” society could easily become the most hideous tyranny the world has ever seen.

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    The only person in the IEA who was worth a damn was Arthur Seldon. I admired him and liked him. I admired John Wood for having the nerve to have Martin What’s-his-name smuggle in cocaine to finance the Alternative Bookshop. The ideological hegemonists turned the poor bastard in, and he got two years in prison (sharing a cell with Captain Colin Wallace, who disclosed MI5’s Dirty Tricks in Nothern Ireland, including the hideous scandal whereby hapless kids at the Kincora Boys’ Home were used as sex slaves to entrap Protestant politicians…).

    On result, the Alternative Bookshop was perpetually undercapitalized — not entirely a bad thing, perhaps, given the Social Darwinist bullshit its controllers pre-loaded it with. Still…

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    Here are Imre Lakatos and Spiro Latsis of the Journal for the Philosophy of Science. Two of Karl Popper’s most eminent students and colleagues.

    This post is addressed to those few thinking, critical people for whom “Austrian Economics” and “The Chicago School” are not the economic and social equivalents of the Nicene Creeds in the Anglican and Roman “Catholic” Churches (fiction invented by St. Paul, as Hyam Maccoby and many others point out succinctly).

    Creeds have no place whatever in Critical Rationalism. Nor (or so it seems) does SAMIZDATA, which strives to convince me and many other people that it’s a fiefdom for egomaniacal ideological bigots with unconfessable interests. It can only be a matter of time now, before some outraged neo-Popperian inserts “Logic Bombs” (or whatever) in its Fundamental Orifices…

    [ FX: “HHOK…” ]

    ———— * * * * * ————

    I’ll post all this in a number of other venues read by the more rational and critical readers of SAMIZDATA’s Control Freakish outpourings, and we’ll all have some healthy fun seeing what happens next… (smiles)

    Have a Nice Day!

    Tony Hollick (INTJ)

    Pilots for 911 Truth ( )

    ———— * * * * * ————

    “The Secret of Happiness is Freedom; and the Secret of Freedom is Courage.” — Thucydides, Classical Greek Philosopher and General.

    [ FX: “Hi, Chris…” ]

    ———— * * * * * ————


    The Milton Friedman neoclassical economics case study

    In August 1972 a case study of the methodology of neoclassical economics by Lakatos’s London School of Economics colleague Spiro Latsis published in The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science found Milton Friedman’s methodology to be ‘pseudo-scientific’ in terms of Lakatos’s evaluative philosophy of science, according to which the demarcation between scientific and pseudo-scientific theories consists of their at least predicting testable empirical novel facts or not.[5] Latsis claimed Friedman’s instrumentalist methodology of neoclassical economics had never predicted any novel facts.[6] In its defence in a three-page letter to Latsis in December 1972, Friedman counter-claimed that the neoclassical monopoly competition model had in fact shown empirical progress by predicting phenomena not previously observed that were also subsequently confirmed by empirical evidence.[7]But he notably never actually identified any specific economic phenomenon as an example of any such successfully predicted positive novel fact.[8]

    In early 1973, as Editor of the Journal, Lakatos invited Friedman to submit a discussion note based on his December 1972 letter to Latsis for publication in a symposium on the issue of the scientific status or not of neoclassical economics . Lakatos even assured Friedman he would have the last word.[9] But Friedman never took up Lakatos’s invitation. Three years later, in 1976 Friedman was awarded the Nobel Prize for Economics without this outstanding charge of ‘pseudo-science’ ever having been publicly conclusively rebutted. The citation for Friedman’s prize said it was awarded “for his achievements in the fields of consumption analysis, monetary history and theory and for his demonstration of the complexity of stabilisation policy.” But four Nobel Prize laureates protested at Friedman’s award, and most notably the 1974 joint laureate of the Economics award, Gunnar Myrdal, complained that Friedman’s prize (and also Hayek’s) was undeserved because the economics did not qualify as a science, thus apparently concurring with Latsis’s judgment that Friedman’s economics was ‘pseudo-scientific’.

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  5. MBrown April 15, 2009 at 11:58 am #

    If you are purchasing books on-line, a great resource for this is, which will search all the on-line bookstores for the best prices (and will note shipping).

    I have found that by and large, the best place to buy on-line is BooksAMillion IF you have their ‘BAM card’ AND buy more then $25 (so you can get free shipping). Once a month they put out a newspaper that has a coupon on the back giving you $10 off your on-line purchase if you buy over $50. This means 30-40% off each book, free shipping, and an extra $10 off…

    Now, you might find better deals on-line at eBay, but it can be tricky. A problem is that some sellers won’t combine shipping on orders, so you may loose a good deal on the shipping (same problem with the Amazon Marketplace, as its a flat-rate of $4 per book).

  6. Ray Mangum April 16, 2009 at 4:44 pm #

    Last I heard, Amazon was already changing the tagging “glitch” after being inundated with customer complaints. Sounds like another testament to the power of the consumer to me.

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