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Simon & Schuster Will Publish Book By Breitbart Editor, Despite Criticism

Milo Yiannopoulos, a conservative columnist and Internet personality, confirmed that he has a book deal with Simon & Schuster, saying on his Facebook page: "They said banning me from Twitter would finish me off. Just as I predicted, the opposite has happened."

The AP reported Friday that Simon & Schuster planned to move forward with publication of a book by Milo Yiannopoulos, in spite of harsh criticism. The forthcoming book, called Dangerous, is said to be about free speech.

Yiannopoulos, who writes for Breitbart News, became widely known over the summer after he was permanently banned from Twitter for "participating in or inciting targeted abuse of individuals."

As NPR reported at the time, Yiannopoulos had launched a campaign against Ghostbusters actress Leslie Jones, calling on other users to help him harass her on Twitter. (Editor's note: The linked site contains offensive material.)

"People should be able to express diverse opinions and beliefs on Twitter," Twitter said in a statement emailed to NPR. "But no one deserves to be subjected to targeted abuse online, and our rules prohibit inciting or engaging in the targeted abuse or harassment of others."

Several Simon & Schuster authors expressed their outrage on Twitter at the news that they would be sharing a publisher with Yiannopoulos.

In a post on his Facebook page, Yiannopolous wrote:

"They said banning me from Twitter would finish me off. Just as I predicted, the opposite has happened. Every line of attack the forces of political correctness try on me fails pathetically. I'm more powerful, more influential, and more fabulous than ever before and this book is the moment Milo goes mainstream. Social justice warriors should be scared — very scared."

In a statement to the AP, Simon & Schuster said Friday that it does not condone discrimination or hate speech and that readers should "withhold judgment until they have had a chance to read the actual contents of the book."

The book, which is available for preorder, had climbed to No. 1 on Amazon's Best Sellers list as of Friday.

Copyright 2016 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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