Amazon Won't Host Wikileaks… But Will Sell The Leaked Cables For Your Kindle?

from the choices dept

This is making the rounds on Twitter, but cc was the first to submit it here. When Amazon kicked Wikileaks off of their S3 hosting service, we noted how it had (just weeks earlier) tried to defend a pro-pedophilia book by stating:

“Amazon believes it is censorship not to sell certain books simply because we or others believe their message is objectionable.”

While Amazon did cave and pull that book eventually, some suggested that perhaps this just meant that Amazon would be fine with Wikileaks if it was being sold in book form. And, apparently, someone is testing that theory, and so far it’s working. You can apparently buy the Wikileaks leaked State Department cables on Amazon for your kindle, if you’re so inclined. Of course, since they’re available (at an ever increasing number of mirror sites) for free, there’s no reason to — but as a way of showing Amazon’s hypocrisy, well, that’s just priceless.

Update: Amazon’s “explanation” is that the book also contains commentary. Um. What? So if the Wikileaks website also contained commentary (which I believe it does), it would be okay?

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Companies: amazon

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Comments on “Amazon Won't Host Wikileaks… But Will Sell The Leaked Cables For Your Kindle?”

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Lisae Boucher (profile) says:

Hypocrisy? Not really. Any moron can write an ebook, publish it on Amazon and earn a few dollars that way. Someone just did that with those cables, hoping some people are foolish enough to pay for something they could also get for free.
I don’t think Amazon even checks what kinds of ebooks it’s actually selling! At least, not until someone complains. Then their bureaucracy will start to slowly get the book removed, possibly hoping that a few more customers will still buy the book before it’s gone.
Well, that pedophile book was sold quite a lot after all the negative publicity, so dropping that book immediately would probably hurt their profits even more…

Marcus Carab (profile) says:

Re: No It Does Not

Interesting… the link now seems to be gone. And I see what you are saying about the “DOES NOT CONTAIN” – but that’s especially weird because it was definitely NOT like that when it first went up. Check out Techcrunch’s screenshot from earlier today:

It’s weird how the title still says “ALL CABLES WITH TAGS” but now the note “DOES NOT CONTAIN TEXT” has been added. And the book is gone now anyway (though it still comes up in search results)

Anyone know what’s goin on?

Hephaestus (profile) says:

Someone should suggest to the guys over at wikileaks, that they publish the entire WikiLeaks site as a multi part e-book on Amazon …

Actually, I think I will do this tonite and donate all the proceeds to wikileaks. Wouldn’t that be a kick in the ass, wikileaks goes from being charged for hosting to getting paid by Amazon …

whats the word for that …

Dark Helmet (profile) says:

Re: Re:

“The Government just does what it is instructwed to do by Elders of Zion.”

Bwahahahah! You’re trolling, right? Please tell me that the people on this site aren’t so uneducated so as not to know the twisted history of the document that term (Elders of Zion) comes from, and how false the conclusions those pushing antisemite views are about it….

Michial Thompson (user link) says:


“if you’re so inclined. Of course, since they’re available (at an ever increasing number of mirror sites) for free, there’s no reason to”

WOW just how many times have I read little mikee talking about how piracy doesn’t affect the music industry… And god I have no clue how many times he has sat there and stated that just because something was available for free it doesn’t prevent people from paying for it…

WOW little mikee’s true colors are shining on this entire wikileaks thing…. Real credibility here little mikee…

Marcus Carab (profile) says:


(and for the record, this blog has never said that people will still pay for things when they are available exactly the same for free – in fact it has constantly said it’s stupid to try to compete with piracy if you aren’t going to offer anything else. The point has always been that free content can drive people to buy related things that add value to that content, whether something simple like a vinyl record or something wacky and elaborate like mini-golf with the band.)

Anonymous Coward says:

Some ideas:

1. People should release many thousands of e-books that contain the cables, but certain sections are redacted. Find out what the cut-off point is from e-book sellers/tie up their analytical department until they give up in exasperation.

2. Release books with the title “Censor this book” or “Don’t censor this book” that contain the cables as 1% of the content of the book. Amazon/borders/etc will go down in history as participatory in the act of actual censorship.(amongst the above examples given.)

3. Probably the most effective: Cancel your amazon/visa/mastercard accounts, and tell them you cancelled these accounts because of the censorship. Nothing speaks faster to a company than permanent loss of revenue.

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