According to a Wal-Mart spokesperson, the illustration was never presented to the company.
“We’re excited about Kanye West’s new album and we look forward to carrying it in our stores on November 22nd,” a Walmart spokesperson says in a statement provided to EW. “As always, it’s our standard practice to carry the edited parental advisory version. We did not reject the cover artwork and it was never presented to us to view.” (Entertainment Weekly)
An industry source reportedly claims that stores such as Wal-Mart and Best Buy still account for a significant portion of album sales.
At issue, said the high-placed industry source, was whether or not mass-market retailers such as Best Buy and Wal-Mart would carry an album featuring venomous nudes, and one that would no doubt inspire controversy. Though sales at mass merchants have been declining in recent years, data from Nielsen SoundScan for the last two years still had the likes of Best Buy and Wal-Mart accounting for at least 10% or more of physical CD sales. (Los Angeles Times)