Pedophilia guide sold by Amazon causes outrage

By Associated Press
Posted Nov. 10, 2010 at 5:54 p.m. Inc. is selling a self-published guide that offers advice to pedophiles and that has generated outrage on the Internet and boycott threats.

The availability of “The Pedophile’s Guide to Love and Pleasure: a Child-lover’s Code of Conduct” calls into question whether Amazon has procedures — or even an obligation — to vet books before they are sold in its online stores. Amazon did not respond to multiple e-mail and phone messages.

The title is an electronic book available for Amazon’s Kindle e-reader and the company’s software for reading Kindle books on mobile phones and computers. Amazon allows authors to submit their own works and shares revenue with them.

Amazon bans certain materials, including those deemed offensive. However, the company doesn’t elaborate on what constitutes offensive content, saying simply that it is “probably what you would expect.” Amazon also doesn’t promise to remove or protect any one category of books.

The author of “The Pedophile’s Guide,” listed as Philip R. Greaves II, argues that pedophiles are misunderstood, as the word literally means to love a child. The author adds that it is only a crime to act on sexual impulses toward children, and offers advice that purportedly allows pedophiles to abide by the law.

Many users on Twitter called on Amazon to pull the book, and a few threatened to boycott the retailer until it does.

Child online safety advocacy group Enough is Enough says it isn’t surprised that someone would publish such a book, but believes Amazon should remove it. It says selling the book gives the impression that child abuse is normal.

That doesn’t mean Amazon should be prohibited from selling it, counters Christopher Finan, president of the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression. He said that Amazon has the right under the First Amendment to sell any book that is not child pornography or legally obscene. Finan said Greaves’ book doesn’t amount to either because it does not include illustrations.

This isn’t the first time Amazon has sold material that promotes illegal activity. It is  accepting orders for the hardcover version of “I Am the Market: How to Smuggle Cocaine by the Ton, in Five Easy Lessons” by Luca Rastello.

Nor is it the first time Amazon has come under attack for selling objectionable content in its store. In 2002, the United States Justice Foundation, a conservative group, threatened to sue Amazon for selling “Understanding Loved Boys and Boylovers.” That title is still available through Amazon.

In 2009, Amazon stopped selling “RapeLay,” a first-person video game in which the protagonist stalks and then rapes a mother and her daughters, after it was widely condemned.

Read more about the topics in this post: , ,

Companies in this article


Read more about this company »


  1. ?!?! Nov. 10, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    Uhh…does this make anyone else wonder if these questionable books are traps set by the Feds for drug dealers and pedophiles (not that I would have a problem with that). Who in their right mind would provide their name and personal info for a book about smuggling tons of drugs or being inappropriate with children?! I mean, I know criminals aren’t exactly known for their intelligence, but…

  2. sara Nov. 10, 2010 at 7:39 pm

    I have to admit I’ve never boycotted anything before. First time for everything. The smuggling of cocaine guide doesn’t offend me, but this pushes the limits. Sorry, free speech advocates can go to hell on this one. Abuse of children – no excuse.

  3. really Nov. 10, 2010 at 8:10 pm

    Really evil! I question Amazon’s failure to respond.

  4. tasty Nov. 10, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    Looking forward to the guide. Tasty youngin’s!

  5. have brains Nov. 10, 2010 at 8:47 pm

    An argument against this book is an argument against your own freedom of speech. So many people get hung up on the specifics that they fail to see what it really means.
    BTW – I seriously doubt this book is going to be converting anybody to pedophelia.

  6. rcj66 Nov. 10, 2010 at 10:09 pm
  7. joe Nov. 10, 2010 at 11:02 pm

    Have brains,
    How is this an argument against freedom of speech?

    Amazon doesn’t sell porn, isn’t that against freedom of speech? Porn isn’t against the law either, pretty sure having sex with a 10 year old child is.

    I’m willing to bet the CEO of amazon is a pedophile.

  8. Dan Nov. 10, 2010 at 11:33 pm

    “I’m willing to bet the CEO of amazon is a pedophile.”

    You really want to make that wager, Joe? I’m pretty sure Jeff Bezos is not a pedophile. And I’ll go double or nothing that you’re an idiot.

  9. have brains Nov. 11, 2010 at 12:03 a.m.

    It’s an argument against free speech, Joe, because true free speech only exists if the speech is something many people don’t like, yet it is still allowed. If everyone agrees it’s no issue. You can’t have a right without a cost – and the cost in this case is having something on the market that you don’t like.
    Amazon not selling porn is their choice.
    Personally I think anyone who would write a book like this probably belongs in jail and probably will be soon. Hopefully so will all the morons who buy it. (There’s an example of my freedom of speech)

  10. earthtoned Nov. 11, 2010 at 4:13 a.m.

    brains, does that mean that all book stores must be forced to carry all books? arguments such as yours do not have any basis in law. the writer of the book got their “free speech” when they wrote this book and didn’t go to jail for it. no business or individual is forced to sell something they find objectionable. It is the right of any business to use their discretion on what they sell. Amazon has the right to sell it as well, if they so choose, and it is also the right of the public to express their own freedom of speech by denouncing, boycotting or otherwise.

  11. writer Nov. 11, 2010 at 4:21 a.m.

    Just received a reply to the email I sent to Amazon. The book is no longer available.

  12. Question Nov. 11, 2010 at 4:41 a.m.

    I thought we weren’t suppose to judge a book by its cover

  13. Carrot Nov. 11, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    It’s free speech, period – we didn’t say it was “acceptable free speech” or “censored free speech” and it sucks but maybe now we should ban Google from providing Earth’s images since they are being used by terrorists to plan attacks on countries.