Snark: Amazon’s New Warning Labels

With the rollout of Amazon’s new quality control initiative, books with critical issues will be flagged with warnings on their sales pages.

This is a step in the right direction, but it doesn’t go far enough. I therefore present to you this tongue-in-cheek chart of Amazon warning labels for your consideration.

Suggested Amazon Warning Labels

About John Doppler

Author, cruciverbalist, serial hobbyist... John Doppler blends science, art, and humor into a delicious smoothie of chaotic evil.
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  1. They will be cumulative, right? A whole row of little icons as the official Amazon assessment? I love the idea – then readers who love infodumps in their stories can find them easily; and those who WANT head-hopping, because that is the norm in their favorite genre, will be able to find books well-written under that particular convention.

    Where do I sign the petition?

  2. They REALLY need one for cliff hangers!

    If I got clear warnings that the book didn’t contain the full story then I wouldn’t feel so manipulated when it happens. Opting in is one thing, getting side swiped with it is another thing all together.

  3. Oh man, these would be SO useful in reviewing. I really want them to be a totally usable thing!

  4. Need three of them for stories that stretch 30 pages of plot over three books in order to achieve a “trilogy.” I think an icon of a shell game would be appropriate.

  5. The first one in the second row could just as easily by a stylized icon of George R. R. Martin’s face, beard, and trademark Greek fisherman’s cap.

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  7. I’d like to see the more generic visuals (e.g., exclamation point) revised, but most are excellent. I could imagine a set ofstickers for purchase by English teachers.

  8. Characters die without warning or reason is trademarked by George RR Martin I believe.

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  10. Does mean someone at Amazon will actually read all these books? Or will simply they apply an algorithm?

  11. Oops. That was meant to be “Or will they simply apply an algorithm”?

    • If you’re referring to the new “CFQI” customer warnings, Amazon will use software and customer complaints to assemble a list of issues. These issues are then verified by human staff, and reported to the publisher.

      I don’t see why they couldn’t do the same here!

      I learned yesterday that when you hover over the CFQIs, they will display a list of the types of issues present. I promptly submitted this icon list to Amazon, but they haven’t gotten back to me yet….

  12. What about Woman in the Fridge?

    • It had occurred to me, but Toxic Stereotypes won out for its broader coverage. I’m thinking a sequel might be in order, though!

      • Very true…otherwise you’d have to design one for every stereotype, and that’s all it’d be. I guess I think of Women in Fridge as separate from stereotypes because it serves that specific plot device of “motivating” the male lead.

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  15. We need sticky labels.

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  18. This is priceless. I howled with laughter…or lightning…or lightening…one small infraction here…or infarction…to use the above given…or above gifted…procession…or precession or c-section or whatever of symbols, someone at Amazon would have to actually read the said offensive tome. Thank you 4 my chkle.

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  22. Thanks for this, though I must sign as Barbara-come-lately. I’m threatening to use some of these.

What are your thoughts?