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Author Topic: RESOLVED: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 7, #161)  (Read 10886 times)  

Offline elizabethbarone

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #150 on: September 06, 2017, 02:53:09 PM »
One of my books does have LGBT characters in it, but I didn't label it LGBT. That book was accepted by Playster. I've since removed my titles from Playster, so it's a moot point.

Maybe, but it's still an interesting point.

I think Playster's explanation was rejected because it doesn't fit the facts. "We were having a problem with erotica, so we're rejecting all erotica while we clean house" doesn't really cover why they're also rejecting non-erotica with the LGBT tag.

Precisely.

I can't speak for everyone here, but I do hope Playster is still reading this thread and working on improving their guidelines or program.

I think the suggestion that they coded GLBT as erotica fits the information that we have--and is a common error.  That puts it under someone's implicit bias rather than top level explicit discrimination.

Agreed -- I don't think Playster is some nefarious entity, twirling its mustache. But something is definitely off here, and I'm glad they're looking into it.

One person's "witch hunt" is another person's "publicity campaign," so we'll probably have to agree to disagree on that. But just out of curiosity ...

Evidence?

We have both D2D's and Playster's attention on the problem now. Before, we didn't.

Yep -- my objective here was to get answers for people, because previously it appeared that we were being ignored.

I think people are upset because -- and I can only speak for myself as a bisexual woman -- LGBT+ people have a long history of being discriminated against. When the U.S. passed gay marriage, our struggles didn't magically end. We are passively aggressively oppressed every day.

I'm not saying that's the case here, but unless you've walked in those shoes, you can't understand.

It's my hope that Playster will resolve the issue or, if they don't want to sell LGBT fiction -- which is absolutely their prerogative -- their guidelines become more clear. However, I avoid any business that excludes queer people, because I am queer. So it's important to me to create awareness.

This is both a business and personal issue, and some folks may feel very passionately. I can only speak for myself and conduct myself accordingly. But I absolutely understand why some people are very, very upset.

Don't be! Playster did that to me the other day, maybe the same day. I laughed so hard that now I don't even remember what book it was. Erotic? Perhaps, the way the Bible is erotic.

It's not as if Playster is going to make you or me rich. They don't even register on my July sales by distributor. Tolino is streets ahead. So is Overdrive!

Playster is definitely not my biggest honeypot. I still felt it was an important issue to raise.

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Offline elizabethbarone

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #151 on: September 06, 2017, 02:54:52 PM »
...

Maybe I'm wrong, but this is the second time you sound as though you're invoking an ends-justify-the-means defence--that threatening Playster with the anti-LGBT smear was justified because it got their attention. That would be unethical. As for it working, well, if you think small fish whipping out guns in business negotiations works, you're as mixed up as this metaphor. You've created an adversarial relationship where you might have had a cooperative one. You've also drained part of the well of sympathy from outsiders because now it looks like you've used a real problem that people sympathize with as leverage in a business negotiation. So, yeah, working great.

I don't think that's what anyone in this thread is trying to do. Nor is anyone threatening Playster.

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #152 on: September 06, 2017, 03:25:05 PM »
If the CEO of Toys R Us states that the company won't sell brown Babies because he doesn't like brown people, you'd be right to get out the pitchforks. But the problem is the motive, not the action. You can't jump from the action alone to one and only one motive. Toys R Us might stop selling brown Barbies because no one is buying them, because an asteroid hit the brown Barbie factory--any number of a bazillion reasons. The Playster case is even weaker than the Barbie one because, as I have pointed out, Playster is still selling LGBT books.
 
As for your claim that a retailer billing itself as a general bookseller should carry LGBT romance, well, that's a matter of customer expectations, not morals. Your choice of words,"problematic," glosses this fact. If someone sets up a retailer that claims to sell "all the best books ever written," but doesn't sell Saul Bellow or Philip Roth, this might be called "problematic" in some sense of that vague word. But can we infer the owner is anti-Semitic?

So you say. But how can we be sure there's not a darker motivation? That's what's "problematic" with imputing motives. You can't prove you don't have the ones I dream up for you.

Bullying people with an anti-LGBT smear in order to get them to fix a technical problem is still bullying.
 
Second, you don't know their motives, and it's completely unfair to attribute that thinking to them, even if you're just "guessing." If the books appeared in that category, then it makes sense (at least from a hamfisted standpoint) to clear out that category.

Maybe I'm wrong, but this is the second time you sound as though you're invoking an ends-justify-the-means defence--that threatening Playster with the anti-LGBT smear was justified because it got their attention. That would be unethical. As for it working, well, if you think small fish whipping out guns in business negotiations works, you're as mixed up as this metaphor. You've created an adversarial relationship where you might have had a cooperative one. You've also drained part of the well of sympathy from outsiders because now it looks like you've used a real problem that people sympathize with as leverage in a business negotiation. So, yeah, working great.

Motives are what we're trying to uncover here. I agree that we don't have a full picture, and as I said in my blog post, hopefully the LGBT book rejections will turn out to have been caused by a mistake of some sort. Or next best, a boneheaded decision by a single person who didn't think things through very well. It seems okay to me to lay out clearly labeled guesses as to what happened. By their nature, guesses may prove correct or incorrect. We're all grownups, so we understand about guesses. And hopefully Playster is the kind of company that is glad to have been told their business partners perceive its behavior as discriminatory (because now they can fix it). Beyond that, I'm not going to get drawn into a long intellectual debate about it, WH, though you know I do enjoy engaging in those with you. This really doesn't seem the place for it. But I do look forward to reading your savage take-down of my romance-free oeuvre. At the very least, I'll finally get to read some of your off-forum writing, after all these years of knowing you but never having seen a lick of it. :)




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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #153 on: September 06, 2017, 03:35:48 PM »
Firstly, thanks everyone for the thoughtful posts. Coming to a thread like this, I don't usually expect to see measured, thoughtful responses. I didn't see pitchforks, I saw real talk. Moving on...

Bullying people with an anti-LGBT smear in order to get them to fix a technical problem is still bullying.

Where is the smear? First of all, you give one thread on kboards and a few blog posts an awful lot of credit if you're going to equate it with a smear campaign. For someone who keeps arguing we can't know the motives of this vendor based on their actions and first hand accounts of the authors who submit to them, it's interesting you continue to characterize the motives of people in this thread in a similar manner. From what I've seen, you're way off base. People want answers, they see patterns and they've spoken out. They are speaking to their experiences, and while it's critical at times, it's not bullying.

I really wish people would stop labeling everything as bullying. It's beyond tired. I don't see any schoolyard kids around here, do you? Seems to me that labeling people as bullies who speak up for groups that are smaller and easily marginalized is just another lame attempt to shut people up who are willing to push back and discourage discrimination. I repeat, where are the bullies?  ::)

"Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively dominate others."

That's a bit of a reach, wouldn't you agree?

Second, you don't know their motives, and it's completely unfair to attribute that thinking to them, even if you're just "guessing." If the books appeared in that category, then it makes sense (at least from a hamfisted standpoint) to clear out that category.

Okay, you win. It's completely unfair, as is everything in the world we live in. What does that have to do with anything? You've argued ardently that businesses have a right to choose what they stock, fair or not. Seems hypocritical to turn on the independent contractions and business owners that provide content and say it's unfair for them to have an opinion about it based on the only thing they will ever know: first hand and second hand experiences. No one would have to guess at Playster's motive if their response to the experiences shared in this thread made one lick of sense.

Maybe I'm wrong, but this is the second time you sound as though you're invoking an ends-justify-the-means defence--that threatening Playster with the anti-LGBT smear was justified because it got their attention. That would be unethical. As for it working, well, if you think small fish whipping out guns in business negotiations works, you're as mixed up as this metaphor. You've created an adversarial relationship where you might have had a cooperative one. You've also drained part of the well of sympathy from outsiders because now it looks like you've used a real problem that people sympathize with as leverage in a business negotiation. So, yeah, working great.

No one is benefiting from the resolution that Playster may be incorrectly targeting LGBT fiction for reasons stemming from archaic and false negative myths about gay people (As Becca noted). When did business negotiations take place? All they wanted was answers (clear and logical, preferably). The answer they got didn't make sense, so they're left to draw their own conclusions and take the appropriate steps moving forward for them, their work, and their business. And they have just as much right to do so as Playster. It's a lot less dramatic than what you describe, at least from where I'm sitting.

On another side note...

Marginalized communities get stomped on and undercut all the time. People are not drawing conclusions that that may be happening here for no reason. While it may or may not be true in this case, and we may never know for sure, allies are certainly not the problem and I question anyone who would frame a narrative that would cast them as such.

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #154 on: September 06, 2017, 04:02:04 PM »
Firstly, thanks everyone for the thoughtful posts. Coming to a thread like this, I don't usually expect to see measured, thoughtful responses. I didn't see pitchforks, I saw real talk. Moving on...

Where is the smear? First of all, you give one thread on kboards and a few blog posts an awful lot of credit if you're going to equate it with a smear campaign. For someone who keeps arguing we can't know the motives of this vendor based on their actions and first hand accounts of the authors who submit to them, it's interesting you continue to characterize the motives of people in this thread in a similar manner. From what I've seen, you're way off base. People want answers, they see patterns and they've spoken out. They are speaking to their experiences, and while it's critical at times, it's not bullying.

I really wish people would stop labeling everything as bullying. It's beyond tired. I don't see any schoolyard kids around here, do you? Seems to me that labeling people as bullies who speak up for groups that are smaller and easily marginalized is just another lame attempt to shut people up who are willing to push back and discourage discrimination. I repeat, where are the bullies?  ::)

"Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively dominate others."

That's a bit of a reach, wouldn't you agree?

Okay, you win. It's completely unfair, as is everything in the world we live in. What does that have to do with anything? You've argued ardently that businesses have a right to choose what they stock, fair or not. Seems hypocritical to turn on the independent contractions and business owners that provide content and say it's unfair for them to have an opinion about it based on the only thing they will ever know: first hand and second hand experiences. No one would have to guess at Playster's motive if their response to the experiences shared in this thread made one lick of sense.

No one is benefiting from the resolution that Playster may be incorrectly targeting LGBT fiction for reasons stemming from archaic and false negative myths about gay people (As Becca noted). When did business negotiations take place? All they wanted was answers (clear and logical, preferably). The answer they got didn't make sense, so they're left to draw their own conclusions and take the appropriate steps moving forward for them, their work, and their business. And they have just as much right to do so as Playster. It's a lot less dramatic than what you describe, at least from where I'm sitting.

On another side note...

Marginalized communities get stomped on and undercut all the time. People are not drawing conclusions that that may be happening here for no reason. While it may or may not be true in this case, and we may never know for sure, allies are certainly not the problem and I question anyone who would frame a narrative that would cast them as such.

THIS! THIS! THIS!

I registered so I could say THIS, and that's all I have to say because you said everything else for me. Loved the bit at the end about allies. So true and well put!

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #155 on: September 06, 2017, 04:26:23 PM »
Putting on my moderator hat ... I recognize that the situation with Playster touches on many other areas of LGBT+ rights and resistance thereto, but due to KBoards' no-politics policy, we need to keep our focus on Playster. A couple posts that were getting too far afield have been removed.




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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #156 on: September 06, 2017, 04:38:30 PM »
...

And hopefully Playster is the kind of company that is glad to have been told their business partners perceive its behavior as discriminatory (because now they can fix it).

...

Put much more succinctly than I could've.

Firstly, thanks everyone for the thoughtful posts. Coming to a thread like this, I don't usually expect to see measured, thoughtful responses. I didn't see pitchforks, I saw real talk. Moving on...

...

Marginalized communities get stomped on and undercut all the time. People are not drawing conclusions that that may be happening here for no reason. While it may or may not be true in this case, and we may never know for sure, allies are certainly not the problem and I question anyone who would frame a narrative that would cast them as such.

Echoing Linda here: THIS.

THIS! THIS! THIS!

I registered so I could say THIS, and that's all I have to say because you said everything else for me. Loved the bit at the end about allies. So true and well put!

Possibly OT, but: Welcome to Kboards!

Putting on my moderator hat ... I recognize that the situation with Playster touches on many other areas of LGBT+ rights and resistance thereto, but due to KBoards' no-politics policy, we need to keep our focus on Playster. A couple posts that were getting too far afield have been removed.

Understood!

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #157 on: September 06, 2017, 08:57:55 PM »
Firstly, thanks everyone for the thoughtful posts. Coming to a thread like this, I don't usually expect to see measured, thoughtful responses. I didn't see pitchforks, I saw real talk. Moving on...

Where is the smear? First of all, you give one thread on kboards and a few blog posts an awful lot of credit if you're going to equate it with a smear campaign. For someone who keeps arguing we can't know the motives of this vendor based on their actions and first hand accounts of the authors who submit to them, it's interesting you continue to characterize the motives of people in this thread in a similar manner. From what I've seen, you're way off base. People want answers, they see patterns and they've spoken out. They are speaking to their experiences, and while it's critical at times, it's not bullying.

I really wish people would stop labeling everything as bullying. It's beyond tired. I don't see any schoolyard kids around here, do you? Seems to me that labeling people as bullies who speak up for groups that are smaller and easily marginalized is just another lame attempt to shut people up who are willing to push back and discourage discrimination. I repeat, where are the bullies?  ::)

"Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively dominate others."

That's a bit of a reach, wouldn't you agree?

Okay, you win. It's completely unfair, as is everything in the world we live in. What does that have to do with anything? You've argued ardently that businesses have a right to choose what they stock, fair or not. Seems hypocritical to turn on the independent contractions and business owners that provide content and say it's unfair for them to have an opinion about it based on the only thing they will ever know: first hand and second hand experiences. No one would have to guess at Playster's motive if their response to the experiences shared in this thread made one lick of sense.

No one is benefiting from the resolution that Playster may be incorrectly targeting LGBT fiction for reasons stemming from archaic and false negative myths about gay people (As Becca noted). When did business negotiations take place? All they wanted was answers (clear and logical, preferably). The answer they got didn't make sense, so they're left to draw their own conclusions and take the appropriate steps moving forward for them, their work, and their business. And they have just as much right to do so as Playster. It's a lot less dramatic than what you describe, at least from where I'm sitting.

On another side note...

Marginalized communities get stomped on and undercut all the time. People are not drawing conclusions that that may be happening here for no reason. While it may or may not be true in this case, and we may never know for sure, allies are certainly not the problem and I question anyone who would frame a narrative that would cast them as such.

It will probably come as a surprise, but I don't disagree with you on most of what you said. The big difference between us is perspective. You seem to see it as a justice issue and a community issue where the reactions on this thread are the voices of allies and should not be questioned. I understand that stance. But I look at this is as a business problem in need of a business strategy, where the aim is to get the books back on Playster.

I think you have to choose one objective or the other. I'd be willing to contribute to the business solution, if I can, but it's now clear to me that this has become about getting justice, and I don't see what I can do, especially when it's not obvious that an injustice has been committed. So all I can say is good luck, but I'm walking away from this.

 


 

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #158 on: September 07, 2017, 07:12:27 AM »
Quote
But I look at this is as a business problem in need of a business strategy, where the aim is to get the books back on Playster.

More than one person has said this, in essence. No one has brought out the tar and feathers, no one has been bullied, or threatened in any way. If we decide we no longer want to do business with this company, that's what the much-vaunted free market is about, right?

All anyone is asking for is a clear, honest explanation and potential clarification of intent of not only this company, but D2D as well. Is someone adding an erotica tag to certain types of books? That needs to stop. Is someone only targeting LGBT books for removal/further review? Then that needs to stop. If a company doesn't have enough trained staff to handle this issue, then that's their issue, not their vendors. Hire and train more people (hey, Amazon, get a clue) so that this sort of thing doesn't happen again. Make policies crystal clear (Amazon, are you listening?). Enforce them evenly.

For the record, when D2D announced they would distribute to Playster, there was a pretty big thread about the companies practices (I believe they may have had some name changes along the line?), and I decided not to have my work go to them. I have books with sexual content, non-white characters, non-straight characters and the like, so I'm glad I don't have to deal with this. I have a SF novel in the works that is just filled with people who are not white, straight, cis-gendered, Christian and so on. It doesn't have explicit sex in it (not yet, anyway, but who knows what the muse has been working on), but going by the uneven removal of books, it likely wouldn't fly on some sites.
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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #159 on: September 07, 2017, 08:15:38 AM »
It will probably come as a surprise, but I don't disagree with you on most of what you said. The big difference between us is perspective. You seem to see it as a justice issue and a community issue where the reactions on this thread are the voices of allies and should not be questioned. I understand that stance. But I look at this is as a business problem in need of a business strategy, where the aim is to get the books back on Playster.

I think you have to choose one objective or the other. I'd be willing to contribute to the business solution, if I can, but it's now clear to me that this has become about getting justice, and I don't see what I can do, especially when it's not obvious that an injustice has been committed. So all I can say is good luck, but I'm walking away from this.

More than one person has said this, in essence. No one has brought out the tar and feathers, no one has been bullied, or threatened in any way. If we decide we no longer want to do business with this company, that's what the much-vaunted free market is about, right?

All anyone is asking for is a clear, honest explanation and potential clarification of intent of not only this company, but D2D as well. Is someone adding an erotica tag to certain types of books? That needs to stop. Is someone only targeting LGBT books for removal/further review? Then that needs to stop. If a company doesn't have enough trained staff to handle this issue, then that's their issue, not their vendors. Hire and train more people (hey, Amazon, get a clue) so that this sort of thing doesn't happen again. Make policies crystal clear (Amazon, are you listening?). Enforce them evenly.

For the record, when D2D announced they would distribute to Playster, there was a pretty big thread about the companies practices (I believe they may have had some name changes along the line?), and I decided not to have my work go to them. I have books with sexual content, non-white characters, non-straight characters and the like, so I'm glad I don't have to deal with this. I have a SF novel in the works that is just filled with people who are not white, straight, cis-gendered, Christian and so on. It doesn't have explicit sex in it (not yet, anyway, but who knows what the muse has been working on), but going by the uneven removal of books, it likely wouldn't fly on some sites.

WHDean, what solutions might you have? Because I've tried to direct discussion that way and you've continued to accuse authors with complaint of bringing out the pitchforks. Nothing is really getting accomplished if we keep going around and around this.

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #160 on: September 07, 2017, 12:49:55 PM »
After careful investigation of each step of our content ingestion process for self-publishing platforms, we discovered that our restriction on the 'erotica' category had unintentionally affected other tags and genres, including LGBTQ+ fiction.  We are extremely sorry for our mistake and any hurt it may have caused - it was never our intention to block these titles.

What happens now?  The books that were wrongfully declined are currently being added to the Playster catalog where they will join our existing collection of LGBTQ+ titles previously delivered by our other major publishing partners.

Playster takes an extra cautious approach when it comes to self-published fiction because we do not have a large in-house team that is able to thoroughly read and review all titles that are submitted.  However, we accept that, in this case, our efforts to solve one problem inadvertently caused another.

We strongly encourage authors to contact us if they have any further problems submitting books to Playster or notice that any titles that should be present are missing.  They can do so by emailing us directly at support@playster.com.
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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #161 on: September 07, 2017, 01:19:16 PM »
I'm glad to hear LGBT+ fiction wasn't intentionally banned and will now be accepted. I have to admit, I remain curious about exactly how Playster's restriction on erotica came to affect other tags and genres.




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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #162 on: September 07, 2017, 01:31:55 PM »
I'm glad to hear LGBT+ fiction wasn't intentionally banned and will now be accepted. I have to admit, I remain curious about exactly how Playster's restriction on erotica came to affect other tags and genres.

I think that's a very easy answer.

Erotica has tags containing LGBT. So, they stomped on tags with LGBT. It's simple. Unfortunately, that also effected genres outside of erotica that included the LGBT tag. I've held my peace on it, but I saw this a couple days ago when people were wondering how it could have happened.

Is it really that hard to see?

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #163 on: September 07, 2017, 02:11:22 PM »
I think that's a very easy answer.

Erotica has tags containing LGBT. So, they stomped on tags with LGBT. It's simple. Unfortunately, that also effected genres outside of erotica that included the LGBT tag. I've held my peace on it, but I saw this a couple days ago when people were wondering how it could have happened.

Is it really that hard to see?
I guess an automated process could glitch that way, but it could also have been a manual error involving some kind of bias. Regardless, it sounds as if Playster will rectify the situation. If the books in question do in fact get added to the catalog, that will show that the company is acting in good faith.


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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #164 on: September 07, 2017, 02:45:01 PM »
I guess an automated process could glitch that way, but it could also have been a manual error involving some kind of bias. Regardless, it sounds as if Playster will rectify the situation. If the books in question do in fact get added to the catalog, that will show that the company is acting in good faith.

My thoughts exactly. How it all happened may still feel skeevy to me, but if they're taking action to fix it, that says something important. I'll be tracking this thread to see if those books do get retroactively accepted.

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #165 on: September 07, 2017, 02:51:32 PM »
Good lord, I totally missed this.

Nice to hear the company say they will rectify. Now, does anyone know if we have to do anything on our end?

Like others, my books have been "publishing" since June. Should I soon expect them to be accepted on their own? Do I need to contact D2D to resubmit them?

And yeah, to be clear, no underage characters. No erotica.

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #166 on: September 07, 2017, 04:07:45 PM »
It will probably come as a surprise, but I don't disagree with you on most of what you said. The big difference between us is perspective. You seem to see it as a justice issue and a community issue where the reactions on this thread are the voices of allies and should not be questioned. I understand that stance. But I look at this is as a business problem in need of a business strategy, where the aim is to get the books back on Playster.

I think you have to choose one objective or the other. I'd be willing to contribute to the business solution, if I can, but it's now clear to me that this has become about getting justice, and I don't see what I can do, especially when it's not obvious that an injustice has been committed. So all I can say is good luck, but I'm walking away from this.

You may not ever read this since you're walking away, but I thought I'd post anyway. I'm not surprised. Kboards, unlike other corners of the internet, doesn't seem to be home to people who post about things they don't care about in order to provoke the people that do care. So I assumed you cared even though I wasn't seeing this thread in the same way you were. Issues involving my community will always be personal, so that bias will always burden my arguments and how I see the issues that arise.

That said, I didn't understand how you could jump to the initiative of getting books back on Playster without knowing where they stand and why they were refusing non-erotic books with LGBT+ characters/tags. Getting books back on Playster requires knowing if you want to do business with Playster, if Playster wants to do business with you, and the reason things went awry in the past. Jumping to the conclusion that everything was not as it seemed was putting the cart before the horse, but like you said: that's perspective. What you see as justice and personal, I also see as select authors with select goods doing what needs to be done in order to procure answers relevant to doing business with a distributor.

Turns out I was probably wrong in my assumptions, and in cases such as these I'm always happy to be wrong.

But we have the OP to thank for this result and progress. If Elizabeth hadn't started this thread, if people who write in this genre and people who support LGBT+ authors didn't make a little noise, blog, and contact Playster once the call to action was written and posted, we wouldn't have gotten answers. Playster might never have figured out they were incorrectly blocking publication of books they do wish to stock. I understand where you were coming from; I've seen threads and article comment sections riddled with pitchforks that needed a dose of WHDean. I just didn't see what you were seeing in this thread.

And last but not least, I wasn't suggesting anyone should never be questioned. It wasn't your questioning that bothered me, it was the false characterization of the contributors to this thread I took issue with. But either way, discourse is not the enemy in my book, it's thought provoking.
« Last Edit: September 07, 2017, 04:12:54 PM by Markus Croft »

Offline Markus Croft

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #167 on: September 07, 2017, 04:12:20 PM »
I have to admit, I remain curious about exactly how Playster's restriction on erotica came to affect other tags and genres.

Me too.

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #168 on: September 07, 2017, 04:37:41 PM »
I wanted to let people know that my book was published to Playster without me doing anything. Hopefully others will too.

Thank you to Playster for coming to a thread that wasn't happy with them and fixing things. That couldn't have been easy or comfortable.

I wanted to thank Elizabeth again for this thread. Raising awareness of what was happening confirmed that gay and lesbian books were being excluded based on their tags. I know that some people called this a witch hunt. It wasn't. It was an accident but it was real. Without her bringing this out though it wouldn't have been caught.




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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #169 on: September 07, 2017, 04:39:18 PM »
I don't know if Playster is owned by Mormons. I might have caused someone to believe it is, but I was just using Mormons off the top of my head without trying to connect them to the industry or even in being too straight to accept MM. It was just the first religion I picked. Insert any religion/denomination in their place.[...]

Ahahahaha!  I see!  I got mightily confused for a moment thinking I missed something earlier in the thread!  TBH tho, I'm not a 'good' mormon.  I don't live in the 'bubble' and I won't condemn those that love the same sex -- or gender... or non-gender... asexual?  How about, as long as you love and you love with a pure heart it can't be evil.  That's what I live by anyway. :D  Luckily, as a Mormon, I don't believe in hell with fire and brimstone, so I can't go there for my opinions on this hahahaha!  ;)   

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #170 on: September 07, 2017, 07:20:56 PM »
My missing books published as well. Glad to see the issue resolved.

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Re: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 5, #100)
« Reply #171 on: September 08, 2017, 07:15:02 AM »
After careful investigation of each step of our content ingestion process for self-publishing platforms, we discovered that our restriction on the 'erotica' category had unintentionally affected other tags and genres, including LGBTQ+ fiction.  We are extremely sorry for our mistake and any hurt it may have caused - it was never our intention to block these titles.

What happens now?  The books that were wrongfully declined are currently being added to the Playster catalog where they will join our existing collection of LGBTQ+ titles previously delivered by our other major publishing partners.

Playster takes an extra cautious approach when it comes to self-published fiction because we do not have a large in-house team that is able to thoroughly read and review all titles that are submitted.  However, we accept that, in this case, our efforts to solve one problem inadvertently caused another.

We strongly encourage authors to contact us if they have any further problems submitting books to Playster or notice that any titles that should be present are missing.  They can do so by emailing us directly at support@playster.com.


Playster, I really appreciate you looking into this and fixing the issue. Thank you so much!

My book was automatically published to the Playster store, and a few other books that had apparently been in limbo were published, too (they hadn't been rejected but hadn't been accepted, either). Incidentally, one of the titles in limbo has LGBT characters. The other is a m/f rockstar romance.

I'm glad to see that other authors' LGBT titles that were rejected are now back in Playster's catalog, too. This is an outcome that I'd hoped for, but wasn't sure we'd receive. Thank you to everyone who came forward and worked with me to reach a solution. I know sometimes it's not easy to speak up, but when we all work together, our voices can be heard and we can make a positive impact.

For the sake of full disclosure, I do have to mention that in the midst of this I decided to enroll AOL in KU; I just unpublished it on Playster until my KU term ends, but fully intend to re-publish there in December. I'd already been considering going into KU after having been wide for a couple of weeks. It just seemed like a good time to do it.

I can't stress enough how very pleased I am with this outcome.

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Re: RESOLVED: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 7, #161)
« Reply #172 on: September 08, 2017, 07:18:18 AM »
Good lord, I totally missed this.

Nice to hear the company say they will rectify. Now, does anyone know if we have to do anything on our end?

Like others, my books have been "publishing" since June. Should I soon expect them to be accepted on their own? Do I need to contact D2D to resubmit them?

And yeah, to be clear, no underage characters. No erotica.

I'd reach out to D2D and just let them know your books have been in limbo. If they're LGBT, it may be more efficient to contact Playster directly at support@playster.com.

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Re: RESOLVED: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 7, #161)
« Reply #173 on: September 08, 2017, 09:32:07 AM »
I'm glad to hear LGBT+ fiction wasn't intentionally banned and will now be accepted. I have to admit, I remain curious about exactly how Playster's restriction on erotica came to affect other tags and genres.

Equating non-straight content with sex or kink content (based on implicit bias)  is a common enough error that my blog has a tag for it.  It comes in the forms of retail coding, publisher "hotness" scales, reader expectation bias leading to bad reviews, school libraries banning kids books with gay content on they assumption that the content is "adult"--it's pretty pervasive.  I think this potential cause became the front runner very quickly in this thread.
 

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Re: RESOLVED: Playster Rejecting LGBT+ Fiction (Update Pg 7, #161)
« Reply #174 on: September 08, 2017, 10:10:49 AM »
Equating non-straight content with sex or kink content (based on implicit bias)  is a common enough error that my blog has a tag for it.  It comes in the forms of retail coding, publisher "hotness" scales, reader expectation bias leading to bad reviews, school libraries banning kids books with gay content on they assumption that the content is "adult"--it's pretty pervasive.  I think this potential cause became the front runner very quickly in this thread.

Yeah, agreed. I see it in how some of my kids' classmates' parents talk nervously about introducing the existence of LGB people to their kids. It's like because the issue of sexual orientation is involved, they're going to have to talk to their kids about having sex.