As the dust settles after a “ham-fisted cataloging error” that resulted in 57,310 titles being de-ranked on Amazon, GalleyCat caught up with Don Weise, the publisher of Alyson Books–“the world’s oldest and largest publisher of LGBT literature.”
Despite the resolution, Weise had words of caution for the bookseller: “In spite of Amazon issuing a formal statement about the computer glitch (which I believe was actually the case more or less), I’m still curious about what would motivate them to want to filter out adult content in the first place. Whether that content is gay or straight is irrelevant. It concerns me when lines of permissible content get drawn because so often they’re arbitrary and reflect social prejudices, usually against gay people and women,” he explained in a statement.
Nevertheless, Weise added that he would “welcome the opportunity to work with Amazon toward making more gay books available to more readers. Perhaps the error and the resulting outcry can be put to good use. From my 15 years experience Amazon has been great about offering a wide array of gay literature, and for many people who live in rural places or who aren’t out and are afraid to be seen going into a gay store or even the gay section at the chains, they can offer a lifeline to readers.”