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Activists Use Amazon Reviews to Hurt Sales For Book

These days we’ve heard a lot about sock puppets, authors who write reviews of their own works or dismissive reviews of competing books, but we haven’t seen Amazon reviews being used for a social cause. Until now.

Anti-circumcision advocates have posted a number of one-star reviews about the book Tinderbox: How the West Sparked the AIDS Epidemic and How the World Can Finally Overcome It by Craig Timberg and Daniel Halperin, triggered by a section in the book about the importance of male circumcision in preventing HIV in males.

“What a horrible, biased book! Sure, the little history on AIDS is interesting, but what total baloney to advocate circumcising African men to stem the HIV/ AIDS epidemic,” writes a reviewer. “If anything, circumcised men may be more likely to engage in risky behaviours.”

Apparently, these bad reviews are hurting sales. PRNewser has more: “According to author Daniel Halperin, ‘the sales ranking of the book on Amazon plummeted’ after the attacks began earlier this year.”

 

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