Remember Milo Yiannopoulos? He’s the British social and political commentator who was once senior editor for Breitbart News where he gained a large alt-right following during the Gamergate movement. He’s also openly gay while opposing gay rights, isn’t a fan of feminism, and has been permanently banned from Twitter.
Most recently, he’s been the subject of a very public spat with publisher Simon & Schuster, who intended to publish Milo’s autobiography, but dropped him after Milo stated in an interview that sexual relationships between an adult and 13-year-old-boys can “happen perfectly consensually”.
Milo sued for breach of contract, the publisher wants its healthy $250,000 advance back, and Milo went and self-published the book, called Dangerous, on Amazon. Milo then announced that, after release, the book became the best-selling political humor book on Amazon.
But… is that true?
Not really. We pulled the data and, while Dangerous did have a short run within Amazon's top-100 list (and it apparently topped the pre-sales charts for a day), the truth is that not only was the book’s best-selling run short, it never hit #1 when it was actually for sale.
In fact, Amazon doesn’t even have a list of best-sellers for a category called “political humor”. While you can search under those keywords, you can only sort by number of reviews, rating, and price.
Amazon only lists its top-20 “Most Read” and “Most Sold” books. “Most Read” describes books that were read digitally via Kindle, and “Most Sold” describes books that were, well, purchased.
That said, here at Thinknum we’ve been tracking Amazon’s top-100 selling books for a couple years, including the blip in time that was Dangerous’ brief moment on Amazon’s list. So, for your curiosity, here it is.
As you can see, he had a moment. The book was released on July 4, and it took a full month to even enter Amazon's top-100 at 35. The next day it peaked at 27 before slowly deflating over the next couple of weeks. There was a pitiful dead-cat bounce after August 29, and then it disappeared from Amazon's charts forever on August 21, 2017.
And that was that for Dangerous as far as Amazon was concerned.