Amazon reports that 57,310 titles in categories including Health, Mind & Body, and Erotica were affected by a “embarrassing and ham-fisted cataloging error.” Literary blogger Edward Champion reported that Amazon had answered his questions, and the Seattle PI had a similar report.
Spokesperson Patty Smith emailed the official response: “This problem impacted books not just in the United States but globally. It affected not just sales rank but also had the effect of removing the books from Amazon’s main product search. Many books have now been fixed and we’re in the process of fixing the remainder as quickly as possible, and we intend to implement new measures to make this kind of accident less likely to occur in the future.” Update: NY Times conducts a postmortem.
On Sunday, author Mark R. Probst reported that Amazon has excluded certain books with adult content from bestseller lists and some searches. Many believed that the company sought to scrub gay and lesbian books off the site, and organized an online petition and a popular Twitter tag called #amazonfail.