Wednesday News: Amazon bans bloggers, Tennessee’s Bible bill, sex coloring book, and trolls v. jesters
Amazon, you hit like a bitch. – So apparently a number of book bloggers have become caught up in Amazon’s war against fake reviews, as this post from The Never Ending Book Basket details. This blogger was sent an email from Amazon indicating that Amazon had deleted her 300+ reviews and would no longer allow her to submit a review on the site. Amazon further indicated that they would not provide her with the specifics behind the decision to ban her as an Amazon reviewer, leaving her to wonder what made her and her reviews a target. One anonymous author claims it has to do with independent bloggers placing affiliate links on their blogs, indicating “paid compensation,” but that doesn’t really speak to the “manipulation” charge (aka fake reviews), which Amazon has been aggressively pursuing for several years now. Has anyone else had this problem?
As some of you know, on February 24th I was sent an email from Amazon letting me know that I could no longer post reviews on their website, and that all of my previous reviews had been suppressed or removed. In case you’re wondering, that was well over 300 reviews that I had written in my over 2 years of book blogging.
All gone in an instant because Amazon decided that I was “manipulating product reviews.”
I don’t even know what that means for Amazon. I have no idea why my reviews were deemed manipulating or misleading, and when I asked for clarification on this, you know what I got? I got an email from them saying they weren’t going to give me any information or “evidence” as to why this all happened. – The Never Ending Book Basket
Bill to make Bible Tennessee’s official book heads to governor – A previously derailed bill aimed at making the Christian Bible the state book of Tennessee was brought back to life last week, sponsored by Republican legislator Steve Southerland, who apparently has not read the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the US Constitution (the very first clause of the very first amendment, in fact): Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. Constitution, Shmonstitution.
Southerland tried to allay those fears, arguing that his bill relies on the historical and cultural impact the Bible has had on the state.
“The Holy Bible is a history book,” he said, quoting comments he received from a Jewish friend, during an at times emotional plea in favor of the legislation.
Arguing against the measure, Sen. Ferrell Haile, R-Gallatin, said he believes the measure would degrade the Holy Scriptures.
“The Bible is a book of history, but it is not a history book to be placed on the shelf,” he said. – The Tennessean
This NSFW Adult Coloring Book Is Full Of Steamy Sex Positions – I know this is a gimmick, but it’s a pretty clever one, and I’m kind of surprised it took so long. The author is apparently working on a same sex version of Fill Me In, which she plans to release in June (the book is self-published, and it looks like she’s got some companion products – like calendars – for sale, as well).
. . . Has there truly been an adultcoloring book to hit the shelves? That’s what crossed Sarah McDonnell’s mind when she started parsing through adult coloring books last September at a local bookstore.
“There are all these amazing books and just beautiful images of animals and rainbows and all really intricate,” the 26-year-old London consultant tells SELF. “And I can really understand why adults are getting into this—it’s so therapeutic and good for the mind. But if it was me, I’d really want something more adult.”
Her solution: A true “adult” coloring book filled with drawings of a couple doin’ the deed. She sketches for fun, so she went home and started illustrating a man and a woman in various sex positions. She says she drew from her own experience, her friends’ sex lives, and even poses in the Kama Sutra. – SELF
Seriousness and sincerity: how to tell jesters from trolls – Yet another “dumb chart on the internet” that builds its stereotypes around a kernel of truth for distinguishing between the unseriously sincere and the seriously insincere.
Trolls, when cornered, often excuse themselves as Shakespearean fools of the modern age, as jesters. Given that the term “troll” spans a vast expanse from cute to abusive, this grasp at virtue seems legit. But there’s a plain difference between jesters and trolls: sincerity. Jesters are unserious – a good thing! – but that doesn’t mean their performance is insincere. Trolls, though, are both of these things.
How, then, do you see a troll for what they are? Unseriousness is visible, but insincerity is often not. – BoingBoing