Why Amazon Sellers should understand the Offensive and Controversial Materials rules
Thompson and Holt managing partner Craig Gedey has urged Amazon Sellers to be familiar with the company's Offensive and Controversial Material rules, following the furore over items showing images of Auschwitz.
Amazon removed several products from its marketplace last week following complaints that they carried images of the Nazi concentration camp.
Amazon was widely criticised for allowing the items to appear in the first place, but warned Sellers that they face suspension if they breach their terms.
An Amazon spokesperson said: “All sellers must follow our selling guidelines and those who do not will be subject to action, including potential removal of their account.”
It’s important at this point to look at the exact rules that Amazon is referring to, which fall under “Offensive and Controversial Material”.
They state: “If you supply products for sale on Amazon, you must comply with all federal, state, and local laws and Amazon policies applicable to those products and product listings.
Amazon’s Offensive Products policies apply to all products except books, music, video and DVD.
“Amazon does not allow products that promote, incite or glorify hatred, violence, racial, sexual or religious intolerance or promote organisations with such views. We'll also remove listings that graphically portray violence or victims of violence.
“We maintain these policies to ensure a welcoming environment for our global customers and selling partners to do business while offering the widest selection of items on earth. We promote trust and respect, as well as adherence to the law.”
Amazon concludes by stating that they exercise judgement in prohibiting listings, and reserve the right to determine the appropriateness of listings on its site.
The full terms can be read at: https://sellercentral.amazon.com/gp/help/external/200164670.
Thompson and Holt’s managing partner Gedey, who has vast experience of Amazon suspensions, says it pays to be fully informed when selling anything you might fear would be deemed as offensive.
Gedey said: “Amazon Sellers can be suspended for a wide variety of indiscretions, some of them more avoidable than others such as inauthentic Amazon suspensions. In this case, familiarising yourself with their full terms and conditions over Offensive and Controversial Materials is highly recommended.
“There is an element of subjectivity, because Amazon can use their own judgement to decide whether items fall under that category. But knowing the terms will help - and our advice at Thompson and Holt would be to steer clear of items that you think might breach them. It simply isn’t worth the threat of suspension in the vast majority of cases, and given the controversy over the recent Auschwitz listing, their systems are likely to become stricter in coming weeks and months.
If you have found yourself suspended while selling on Amazon, contact Thompson and Holt for a free LiveChat to get your Amazon Seller business back online as quickly as possible.”
Thompson and Holt’s blog has been recognised by website expertido.org, rating it as one of the leading Amazon Seller blogs on the internet.
The website said: “We analysed your website based on content quality, authenticity factors, uniqueness, data security and a bunch of other aspects throughout the last weeks.”
The Thompson and Holt blog now forms part of their best list, which can be found at: www.expertido.org/best-amazon-seller-blogs-reviews.