Amazon has removed some Nazi and Ku Klux Klan-related products, such as swastikas and burning crosses, after the company deemed the goods had violated its policies.
After an early July report reviewed the sale of the extremist goods, Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota wrote an open letter saying he was “alarmed” that some companies were profiting off hate groups.
“Amazon has reviewed the products and content referenced in your letter, and we have removed those listings, and permanently blocked the seller accounts found to be in violation of our policies,” Amazon’s vice president of public policy Brian Huseman responded July 31. “We have restricted the inventory to prevent it from being sold and are in the process of removing it from our fulfillment centers.”
Several sites have misreported that the product removal is under a new policy, but it’s not new. Instead, it’s a part of a long-standing policy Amazon has of removing offensive content. The policy prohibits the sale of easily identifiable extremist products, like glorified hatred of protected groups or human body parts. Under the policy, Amazon will remove products if it’s reported offensive and or controversial.
“Sellers are expected to comply with our policies, and we immediately investigate any reported violations. The items referenced by Rep. Ellison were previously reviewed, and we removed those that violated our policies well before we received his letter,” an Amazon spokesperson told The Daily Caller News Foundation in an email Friday. (RELATED: Protestors Target Amazon For Selling Tech To ICE)
The study titled “Delivering Hate: How Amazon’s Platforms Are Used to Spread White Supremacy, Anti-Semitism, and Islamophobia,” conducted by Action Center on Race & the Economy and the Partnership for Working Families, listed extremist hate groups selling items and services, and provide suggestions to better combat their endeavors, The Daily Caller News Foundation reported.
“Amazon has been called the ‘everything store,’ but today it is much more than just a store, with publishing, streaming, and web services businesses. Its reach and influence are unparalleled,” a summary of the report reads. “A close examination of Amazon’s various platforms and services reveals that for growing racist, Islamophobic, and anti-Semitic movements, the breadth of Amazon’s business combined with its weak and inadequately enforced policies provides a number of channels through which hate groups can generate revenue, propagate their ideas, and grow their movements.”
Some of the extremist products remain on the site for purchase. When The Daily Caller News Foundation searched for “Nazi flag” on Amazon, other Nazi-related good were still for sale, including one product sold by someone under the name “Hitler” and three Nazi gold coins.
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