Monday, October 14, 2013

I Don't Want You To "Protect" My Reputation, Kobo

I want you to sell my goddamn books.

After joining Kobo Writing Life only a few weeks ago, this evening I (and, I gather, other users of their self-publishing platform) received this wonderful (=sarcasm) email:

As you may be aware, there has been a significant amount of negative media attention in the UK regarding offensive material that became available across a number of eBook platforms. Kobo was included in the reports from media and we are taking immediate action to resolve an issue that is the direct result of a select few authors and publishers violating Kobo’s content policies.

In order to address the situation Kobo is taking the following steps:

1.We are removing titles in question from the Kobo platform.

2. We are quarantining and reviewing titles to ensure that compliance to our policies is met by all authors and publishers. We will ensure that content meeting the policy is made available online as soon as possible.

3. We are reviewing our policies and procedures to implement safeguards that will ensure this situation does not happen in the future.

We are working hard to get back to business as usual, as quickly as possible. We appreciate your patience and understanding in this matter.

Our goal at Kobo is not to censor material; we support freedom of expression. Further, we want to protect the reputation of self-publishing as a whole. You have our promise that we will do all we can to ensure the exceptions that have caused this current situation will not have a lasting effect on what is an exciting new channel that connects Readers to a wealth of books.

Mark Lefebvre
Director, Kobo Writing Life

Don't you love how they go into absolutely no detail and they offer no specifics?  Kobo is a big player in the Canadian market, but this manner of obfuscation reminds me a hell of a lot of a certain amazonian institution in the worldwide market.

Anyway, I searched for Adam and Sheree's Family Vacation and Adam and Sheree's Family Business (two taboo brother/sister erotica title--all consenting adults, as you know) and they're gone. For now(?). I have very little faith you'll see them at Kobo again.

But wait... there's more! I just searched for a rather tame erotic romance I wrote called "Seducing the Sexy Celebrity Chef" and guess what?  It's gone too!

But it's not like they're censoring me or anything. Just protecting the reputation of self-publishing.

Happy Thanksgiving, Canada! Let's enjoy our free country by reading a copy of... hmmm... let's see what Nanny Kobo will let us to read... (oh look! they've removed my lesbian ageplay novella Nanny State!)

Pissed offedly,


  1. I just blogged about this too - the drama that started it and the witch hunt that followed... :/

  2. I just finished reading your post, Selena. You're a fabulously entertaining blogger, by the way. And it just went to show how little information I had, and highlight that these retailers are telling us nothing useful. We have to glean the facts from other sources. That just isn't right.