21/02/2017 14:34 SAST | Updated 21/02/2017 15:25 SAST

Milo Yiannopoulos Loses Lucrative Book Deal Over Paedophilia Controversy

The Breitbart News journalist and his fans have a long history of harassing various people they don't like.

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Milo Yiannopoulos, a conservative columnist and internet personality.

A representative from Simon & Schuster announced over Twitter that the publishing house is cancelling the publication of Milo Yiannopoulos' upcoming book Dangerous, following controversy over a video which surfaced in which Yiannopoulos appears to defend pedophilia.

Yiannopoulos confirmed the news on Facebook.

The announcement comes just after the Breitbart editor and alt-right poster boy was disinvited from the Conservative Political Action Conference, a conference held next week that is set to feature speakers including U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and Steve Bannon, an advisor to President Donald Trump.

Yiannopoulos was disinvited in part due to controversy over the video in which he condoned sexual relationships between adults and 13-year-old boys. On Facebook, Yiannopoulos said he was "partly to blame" for the comments, and "certainly guilty of imprecise language, which I regret".

Simon & Schuster received a hefty backlash following its decision to publish Dangerous in the first place, given Yiannopoulos' history of xenophobia, misogyny, and hate speech. Some critics threatened to boycott the publishing house in response, and Roxane Gay withdrew her upcoming book from the publisher in protest.

Why? Because Yiannopoulos has long used his platform to promote hateful views, from calling Black Lives Matter a "terrorist organisation" to likening feminism to a "cancer". He also outed a transgender woman in 2016 and called for the online harassment of comedian Leslie Jones.

Which is all to say, although the cancellation is surely warranted, why now?

We have reached out to Simon & Schuster for confirmation and will update accordingly.