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Tuesday, 15 October 2013

The Porn Wars: Self publishing threatened by deluge of Porn books

Self publishing to eBook is still in its infancy but has seen remarkable growth in the last few years and empowered many authors and even generated big money, with many authors finding themselves able to make a more than comfortable living. The mega selling Fifty Shades series originally started off as self published works, and writers like Amanda Hocking, John Locke and Joe Konrath have become big names. Digital self publishing's made the book market far more interesting but now the industry are facing a threat after W H Smith and Kobo have found themselves having to temporarily close their eBooks site because of a large number of porn eBooks were found to be on sale - and not just straightforward porn but books featuring incest, bestiality and a thousand and one other perversions. Of course the greater majority of books do not come under the banner, but until eBook websites find a screening process that works it means that all books are shut out.



WHSmith said the "explosion" of self publishing was having an impact on many retailers.Self publishing was generally positive in that it gave new authors the opportunity to get their content published.However we are disgusted by these particular titles, find this unacceptable and we in no way whatsoever condone them. It is our policy not to feature titles like those highlighted and we have processes in place to screen them out."

Amazon, by far the biggest seller of self published eBooks have also pulled abuse themed eBooks from their digital shelves. And Barnes and Noble have also been dragged into the row after the BBC News revealed several unsavoury titles for sale on their site.

Amazon are of course no stranger to the problem and back in 2010 had to withdraw Phillip R Greaves's self-published ebook, The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure.
However the problem is that if Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and others don't get their houses in order then the long threatened government legislation of the digital book industry may come to pass...and none of us want that. Censoring books is not something that sits easily in a democracy but titles that promote rape and paedophilia clearly have no place and should indeed be withdrawn from sale.



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