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Amazon.com Doesn’t Want You Buying Gay Books on Kindle



Amazon.com has enjoyed its share of backlash from gays thanks to the sudden classification of queer books as porn and the apparent (temporary) de-listing of GLBT titles from search listings. Now, a new cause for concern: The company’s much-hyped Kindle doesn’t have its own gay section for book buyers.

An astute reader asks Queerty, “Did you know that there is no Gay & Lesbian category on the Kindle bookstore page of Amazon?” Actually, no, we didn’t! And we’ve bought books on there before. (We’re in the middle of Sag Harbor.)

But it turns out to be true.

Amazon breaks down its print-version books by categories like Arts & Photography, Health, Mind & Body, Parenting & Families, and Science Fiction & Fantasy. Also among those categories? Gay & Lesbian.


But hop on over to the Kindle storefront and you’ll find listings by Arts & Entertainment, Parenting & Families, Religion & Spirituality, and Science Fiction. Not making the list? Gay & Lesbian.

To be sure, not every book is available on Kindle, which also means many gay books aren’t downloadable. But surely, some gay books must be available for purchase?

Indeed. And that includes books like Heather Has Two Mommies, The Well of Loneliness, and Running With Scissors — all books that were affected by the “these gay books are porn” scandal. And yet, no special section on Amazon.com is devoted to gay and lesbian tomes for the Kindle. (Though there appears to be one on the device’s bookstore.)

All the more surprising, since as we know, gays love their technology.

Whew, overreacting is fun!

On:           Jun 11, 2009
Tagged: , , , ,
    • Fitz

      It’s simply untrue. I have my kindle in front of me right now, on the gay section.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 10:15 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jeremy

      I’m looking at the page on my Kindle (click Menu, select Shop in Kindle Store, select Books), and there’s no “Gay and Lesbian” section in the list of book categories. But I don’t think this is really a slight against queers–I think they were just trying to keep the category list down to one page.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 10:35 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Pete

      There is a gay section; it’s a subcategory under “Lifestyle and Home.” Click on the “Lifestyle and Home” link on the page you’re referring to and you’ll find a Gay & Lesbian section with an amazing selection of 305 books.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 10:40 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Donald

      Quit over reacting. You can find them by searching. Like Jeremy said, they were probably trying to keep it at one page and not an intentional slight against the GLBT community.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 10:48 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • queerunity

      I see it under lifestyle & home.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 10:51 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Taylor Siluwé

      As an author with a book available on Kindle, I don’t know if this is over-reacting. And if it is, over-reacting is what our community does best. It keeps us, and everyone else, on their toes.

      All hail the overly sensitive. :-)

      Jun 11, 2009 at 11:30 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Alexa


      Unless Amazon is censoring parents and families, poker players, and people who eat, I would say you are overreacting, definitely ;-)

      (hoping the add picture thingy works, never tried it before)

      Jun 11, 2009 at 11:38 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Alexa


      Maybe this will work

      Jun 11, 2009 at 11:39 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • osocubano

      Never mind!

      Jun 11, 2009 at 11:50 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Michael W.

      I just tried it on my Kindle iPhone app.

      You go to

      -> Categories

      -> Lifestyle & Home

      -> Filter More

      -> By Category

      and Gay & Lesbian is listed there with Cooking Food & Wine, Home & Garden, Parenting & Families, Poker, Puzzles & Games.

      You don’t have to dig that deep for Cooking Food & Wine, and Parenting & Families and Home & Garden. They’re also right there under Categories. But I think that’s because they have about 5,000 books in their categories each vs. only 305 for Gay & Lesbian. The categories with the most books get more prominently displayed.

      That’s how it is under the iPhone version of the Kindle Store. Not sure if it’s the same for the Kindle itself or online.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 11:53 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Max

      You can also go to Fiction, then “Genre Fiction”, where you’ll find 1,474 gay and lesbian titles.

      Stop fussing! There’s no “Straight” section, either.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 12:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Alex

      I’ve always found it a bit odd that there are always gay and lesbian sections. I understand ‘mos wanting books where they can see people like them, but so do black Americans, Jews, deaf persons, etc. And they are able to find those books.

      I always kind of got the sense (or maybe this is me projecting my insecurity) that this was more for the sake of straight people, who didn’t want to rent an innocuously titled film like Summer Storm and–gross!–be exposed to affection between people of the same gender.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 12:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • AndTom

      and there is no white history month

      Jun 11, 2009 at 12:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jackson

      This post is a great example of Queerty’s unbalanced view of LGBT news. This website was quick to criticize Amazon for an apparent technical snafu that caused LGBT books to disappear on the website. In fact, they (or is it he?) called for a boycott.

      From A Queerty posting: “It seems the onus is on Amazon, to answer for the de-ranking and until they do– and frankly, at this point an explanation beyond “it was a glitch” is necessary– the boycott should continue.”

      A week or so later, Queerty was touting the release of the latest version of Kindle without even mentioning that they had called for a boycott of the company that created the Kindle.

      Considering I haven’t read that Queerty has abandoned it’s call for a boycott of Amazon, I find it remarkable that they promote the Kindle. Additionally, they continue to use it (as written above).

      Jun 11, 2009 at 3:20 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • MR

      @Jackson: This is why newspapers will never ever fully go away; blogs simply aren’t willing to – or capable of? – fully research their stories in the way true journalists are obliged to do.

      Jun 11, 2009 at 7:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • SaintCahier

      Remember the story of the boy who cried “wolf” ?

      Jun 12, 2009 at 12:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Stephen

      This is the last straw, I’m officially unsubscribing from the RS feed and don’t plan on returning.

      CHECK YOUR STORY BEFORE YOU POST IT. This is common sense, but it’s apparent that you at Queerty do not have any of it.

      Jun 12, 2009 at 2:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Marco

      My book it is now listed in:

      Books > Gay & Lesbian > Travel
      Books > Literature & Fiction > Erotica
      Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Fiction > Erotica


      Dec 4, 2011 at 6:57 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Martin Cosgrove

      Okay well this is interesting. I just published my first novel to the Kindle store. It’s called The Destiny of Ethan King and has a gay protagonist. Although it’s listed in the ‘fantasy’ category, I have tagged it with ‘gay’ and ‘gay interest’. I sure hope Amazon is not discriminating in that way.

      May 1, 2012 at 6:26 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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