Amazon Rejects Shelby Steele’s Michael Brown Documentary For Not ‘Meeting Content Quality Expectations’


A documentary on race relations written by Hoover Institution senior fellow Shelby Steele was allegedly deemed “not eligible for publishing” by Amazon because it doesn’t mean the company’s “quality expectations.”

“Amazon refused to stream Shelby Steele’s documentary, ‘What Killed Michael Brown?’, b/c they say it ‘doesn’t meet Prime Video’s content quality expectations,’ civil rights activist Bob Woodson tweeted Wednesday. “Why not let Americans decide for themselves if the film has merit?”

A screenshot of Amazon’s alleged message to Steele, posted on the website promoting the film, shows an email from the company stating, “Unfortunately, we have found that your title doesn’t meet Prime Video’s content quality expectations and is not eligible for publishing on the service at the time.”

“We will not be accepting resubmission of this title and this decision may not be appealed,” the email added. “We apologize for any inconvenience this might cause.”

“Amazon currently streams several documentaries on what happened at Ferguson,” a passage below the screenshot on the website says. “This rejection by Amazon reveals much about our culture. Our film offers up a compassionate, truthful, and intellectual version of those events and there were no grounds for rejection.”

“Amazon not only rejected our film but the viewpoints of many Americans,” Eli Steele, Shelby’s filmmaker son and director of the project, told the Washington Examiner. “We worked hard on this film to include a great variety of voices, most of them black. These voices rarely never find their way into the limelight, which is overcrowded with the opinions of the elites. So when Amazon rejected us, they also silenced these voices, and that is the great sin of a company that professes to be diverse and inclusive.”

The elder Steele, a black man, has long been a critic of “racial victimization,” which he believes is pushed by the Democratic Party within the black community, and he recently spoke out about the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014.

“So [with] an event like Michael Brown, the simple actual truth of what happened is irrelevant,” Steele said. “It had the look of racism, and therefore, it is something that we seized upon, same with George Floyd and Trayvon Martin and Freddie Gray and any number of other instances like that. We seize on them for the power they render up. … It’s enough power to have changed American universities, and now, we see it having an impact in corporate America, where the institution itself changes to accommodate this idea that blacks are victims.”

Steele argued that “racial victimization” is a “dark thing” because “if you define yourself as a victim,” then you “define yourself as impotent.”

Author: Andrew Mark Miller

Source: Washington Examiner: Amazon rejects Shelby Steele’s Michael Brown documentary for not “meeting content quality expectations”