Amazon nixes Hebrew, Yiddish from online creative writing platform

Reshuffling within Amazon causes removal of Yiddish and Hebrew from affordable self-publishing space.

January 29, 2019 06:00
1 minute read.
Amazon nixes Hebrew, Yiddish from online creative writing platform

YIDDISH IS very much alive: Israel Treistman (left) with Yaakov Bodo.. (photo credit: Courtesy)


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Many people make the mistake of believing Yiddish is dead. But according to hasidim (ultra-Orthodox) Jews, nothing can be further from the truth.

In Israel, the United States and other pockets around the world, ultra-Orthodox people still often know and use Yiddish.

But these Yiddish speakers - and the estimated 220,000 members of the Hebrew speaking community - will be having a more difficult time, thanks to an unlikely move by online giant Amazon.

Amazon recently merged its Create Space - which allows people to create and sell fiction and other writing in a variety of languages - with Kindle Direct Publishing. Now, according to a report published by the Forward, Yiddish and Hebrew are no longer available.
Create Space was a cheaper publishing platform that allowed people to publish under pen names. For the haredi community, this was especially relevant, as they could share their writings without worry of judgement by members of their sect.

Arabic still remains an active language.

The Yiddish magazine Der Veker alerted its readers to the new challenge and suggested they appeal to Amazon directly to have the media giant restore the Yiddish option. Amazon, reported The Forward, will consider expanding the languages on KDP if they see the market demands it. 

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