This is pretty crazy. Amazon sells a ton of smut. Huge, vast amounts. But now they won't let people search for it?
Instead of nuking all porn, maybe a Safe Search style filter is in order?
Amazon looks pathetic by excluding porn from its search engine (but still selling it) – Telegraph Blogs
Over the weekend, without warning, Amazon removed the ability of anything rated "adult" to show up in a search on its main website. Upmarket porn is still there; but to find it, you have to go into the books or Kindle section and search specifically for the title you're looking for.
Previously, this sort of filtering had only been applied to books which contained things like incest, and quite right too, but now it's across the board on all erotic fiction. Even 50 Shades of Grey, one of the most ubiquitous books in the world right now, is caught by the filter.
Obviously, this makes it much harder to find very ordinary smut. As a result, publishers, authors and readers are all up in arms. "It's a pornocaust", said one online erotica author I spoke to. The grumbles of writers in the erotica industry are well founded. "We sell a huge amount of books through Amazon, yet we're treated with utter contempt. We aren't even allowed to classify our books," said another. She directed me to a blog post which makes the argument in detail:
With over 86,000 titles in “Erotica” on Amazon, that means there’s twice as many erotic e-books as scifi … Romance has 120k titles, and 15 subgenres. Fantasy, with its 56k titles has 10 subgenres. Poetry, 43k titles, 11 subgenres. [Yet] Erotica gets no subgenres, no way of distinguishing itself. There’s no heat levels, no way of knowing if you’re getting contemporary, fantasy, or taboo.
So, despite the huge sales of erotica through its Kindle platform, Amazon still thinks hiding the books away on a virtual top shelf is a good idea. This level of prudishness, of trying to protect adults from themselves, is pathetic. It's yet another example of pre-emptive, absurdly risk-averse censorship, appeasing a probably non-existent offended user.