Amazon has removed online listings from two books that claim to contain remedies for autism, an initiative that follows recent efforts by several social media sites to limit the availability of anti-vaccination materials and other pseudoscientific materials.
The books "Cure the Known Symptoms of Autism" and "Fight Autism and Win," which were previously offered for sale on the Amazon Marketplace, were not available Wednesday. The company confirmed that the listings had been removed, but declined to discuss why similar works would be deleted in the future.
Many of these books were still listed on Wednesday. In an article published this week, Wired magazine noted that Amazon is stocked with headlines promoting unproven treatments for autism, including "sex, yoga, camel milk, electroconvulsive therapy, and veganism."
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are medications that can help treat the associated symptoms such as high energy levels and depression. The agency found that nearly a third of parents with autistic children have already tried treatments that most pediatricians do not recommend, and that 10% could use potentially dangerous tactics.
"Cure the known symptoms of autism" is one of two pseudoscientific books removed from the Amazon website. Credibility AutismO2
The books listed on Amazon were both written more than five years ago and together generated more than 600 customer reviews.
"Cure the symptoms known as autism" recommends autistic children to drink and bathe in chlorine dioxide, a compound often called "miracle mineral solution". and treatment of industrial water "that" can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and severe dehydration symptoms. "
California Democratic Party Representative Adam Schiff this month sent an open letter to Jeff Bezos, chief executive officer of Amazon, accusing the company of failing to "distinguish quality information from misleading or inaccurate information". misleading. "
"As a result, harmful anti-vaccine messages have been able to spread and spread," wrote Schiff. "Every online platform, including Amazon, must act responsibly and be careful not to contribute to this growing public health disaster."
In a letter to Mr. Schiff on Monday, Brian Huseman, Amazon's vice president of public policy, said the company's guidelines "do not specifically address vaccine-related content." Mr. Huseman said Amazon provided customers with "access to a variety of viewpoints, including books and videos that some customers may find objectionable."
"Fight Autism and Win" has also been removed from Amazon.CreditRT Publishing
Huseman also said in his letter that Amazon conducted an analysis of anti-vaccination cards and "discovered categorizations that did not meet our clients' expectations." The company, he said, was actively working to solve this problem.
A "small number" of publishers and authors have bought advertisements to promote books on vaccination, Huseman said, noting that Amazon had banned "general advertising related to the issues of public policy or advocacy, such as anti-vaccination messages ".
Several other Internet companies have said they are taking steps to limit the scope of pseudoscientific information on health.
Facebook said last week that it would not remove inaccurate information about vaccines, but would strive to make this material more difficult to find and stop accepting advertisements stating hoaxes of vaccines advances. Many anti-vaccination activists believe that vaccines are linked to autism, even though the idea has been largely debunked.
Pinterest has recently started blocking the posting of messages about vaccines in its search bar. And YouTube said it was adjusting its algorithms to increase the visibility of authoritative videos on topics related to immunization.