Neo-Nazis are able to generate revenue, propagate their ideas and grow their movements because of the Amazon affiliate program’s “inadequately enforced policies,” according to a report released Friday.
The report, authored by the Action Center on Race & the Economy and the Partnership for Working Families, finds that Confederate, anti-Black, Nazi and fascist imagery, and the newly adopted imagery of the modern white nationalist movement, like “Pepe the Frog,” are being sold. And, a number of these products toys and books are targeted at children to teach hate at an early age.
Below are examples of images identified by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) as hate symbols. The products were available for purchase on Amazon.com in June 2018:
From “Delivering Hate: How Amazon’s Platforms Are Used to Spread White Supremacy, Anti-Semitism, and Islamophobia, and How Amazon Can Stop It”
The company’s corporate policy for third party vendors if you supply products for sale they must not promote or glorify hatred, violence, racial, sexual or religious intolerance or promote organizations with such views isn’t being properly enforced.
Amazon has been reactive, not proactive, in its response to use of its site by peddlers of hate,” the authors write. They also describe the company as “responding slowly” to public pressure. In 2015, The Washington Post published a story about white supremacists using Amazon to make money, focusing on far-right publisher and hate outlet Counter-Currents’ use of the Amazon affiliate program.
The report also found that white-supremacist groups use CreateSpace, Amazon’s self-publishing service, for print books. In addition, at least 11 bands were identified as making hate music and, as of last month, four racist record labels have songs available for streaming or digital download on Amazon.
Authors of the report propose a solution is to “develop and resource transparent enforcement mechanisms to ensure that Amazon and its users and clients are adhering to its policies.”