B’nai Brith Canada has been urging Amazon to better monitor the types of products being offered for sale on their website. Amazon is the world’s largest online marketplace, and as such, the defacto choice for many holiday shoppers. Those shoppers deserve not to be confronted with items bearing messages of hate, racism and antisemitism while browsing for gifts to give to family and friends.
At the time of this writing, both amazon.com and amazon.ca had dozens (page doesn’t exist anymore) of listings for products that are offensive (page doesn’t exist anymore), antisemitic (page doesn’t exist anymore) and promote hate (page doesn’t exist anymore) – a direct violation of Amazon’s ‘Restricted Products’ policy. According to Amazon’s website, all items that “promote or glorify hatred (page doesn’t exist anymore), violence, racial, sexual or religious intolerance or promote organizations with such views” are banned from sale. And while there were no Confederate flags offered for sale, there were dozens of items bearing the Nazi flag and numerous books (page doesn’t exist anymore) denying the Holocaust (page doesn’t exist anymore) and blaming ‘Zionists’ (page doesn’t exist anymore) for all the world’s ills. While ISIS propaganda could not be found, several items promoting the banned terror group ‘Hezbollah’ were easily located, including a baby sleeper with the words ‘I heart Hezbollah’ emblazoned on the front, with the description ‘for the Hezbollah lover’.
While it’s obvious that Amazon is self-censoring some listings, it’s troubling that the above items were allowed to remain.
The items in question are not collectors items, being purchased by legitimate historians or hobbyists. These items are cheap, foreign-made knock-offs, designed with one purpose only: to promote hatred.
We the undersigned therefore call on Amazon to:
Immediately remove all items bearing imagery or messages which glorify or promote hate, violence, racial, sexual or religious intolerance or promote organizations with such views, as per your existing policy (which includes all items with Nazi imagery or which promote listed terrorist groups).
Commit to creating a new, clearer and more robust policy to ensure that this type of hate paraphernalia is not promoted on your website in the future.