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How sad! I won’t apologise for expressing my opinion here.

Amos Lassen, one of Amazon’s top reviewers, has had thousands of his reviews removed by Amazon. The accusation? To ‘plagiarise’ the plots… er… most reviews report the plot of the film or book they are reviewing.

Amazon, known for their fair play (with such careful attention for what they ‘distribute’, because remember, even if one publishes through them, they won’t take the responsibilities of a publisher, only the proceeds, that you can literally misspel a few hundred words on why we should be murdering the Dalai Lama, and class it as ‘poetry’ and I’m a few hours it will be available as kindle worldwide, and forget protecting the inncocence of children), never check anything, and function ‘by complaint’. A very clever move, that means that if no one complains, everything is available, but just get enough complaints and everything gets censored.

The problem: apart from what I said before, that reviews do paraphrase the plot, a complaint must be dealt as such. At decent company would report the complaint to the person it is levelled against, carry out a fair, thorough and impartial investigation, then take action. At least in this case, it looks like Amazon have simply counted the complaints and taken action (much cheaper, especially as it can be done by an automatic calculator). They never replied to Amos, who, of course disagreed with it. So, it only takes a few homophobes to complain about a reviewer who has been promoting LGBT films and books for years to silence him on Amazon.

Amos has taken action via Lambada’s legal team. If there is no fair investigation, no complaint can be upheld. The investigation was clearly unfair as it totally ignored one side of the story.

Interesting, because the other day, I ad a review saying, ‘I didn’t like this book because it was poetry, so I didn’t read it,’ followed by a lovely one star! The word ‘poems’ on the title should have given it away, but no one has complained, so nothing’s happened.

There is a difference between paraphrasing the plot and admitting to rating and reviewing a book while not having read it.

Fine, let’s concede that Amazon does not publish books, but do the reviews get published on Amazon? Of course, so they have an obligation to have a fair review policy, and an obligation to monitor it, they cannot leave that task to the casual reader, as they publish them, not the readers.

In my little world, before I publish comments, I check that there are no swear words and are not deliberate offensive. If someone finds a comment published on this site offensive, I’ll take the responsibility for it, why? Because I published it… How many of you have read the Amazon notice that ‘reviews will be checked’? Are they? Or do they simply keep them waiting for a few hours then publish them? If so they are, as Amazon say, then how is it possible that two thousand reviews by Amos were first approved by Amazon then taken down at the first complaint? And who the **** checked that review that admitted to not reading even the cover of the book and… of course approve it!

I have read Amos’s reviews; they do report the plot, and that’s what the majority of readers want, that’s what the majority of reviewers do. So why target only Amos? If Amazon have a fair review policy, then they must also have a procedure; a policy with no procedure is not acceptable, and they should apply it across the board, not just to one reviewer who, it so happens, may have annoyed many homophobes by supporting LGBT books and films.